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10. The Life of Noah and His Children After the Flood.


The sons of Noah who emerged with him from the ark were Shem, Ham and Japheth.

Noah began to work the earth and planted a vineyard. When he had made wine of the juice of the vine and had drunk it, he became intoxicated because he did not know as yet the strength of wine, and taking his clothes off, he lay naked in his tent. His son Ham, the father of Canaan, saw this. He acted without proper respect for his father and told his brothers about this. Shem and Japheth, however, took clothing, and came up to their father in such a way as not to see his nakedness and covered him. When Noah woke up and learned about the action of the youngest son, Ham, he condemned and cursed him in the person of his son Canaan, and said that his offspring would be in slavery to the offspring of his brothers. But Shem and Japheth he blessed and prophesied that the true faith would be preserved in the offspring of Shem, and the offspring of Japheth would spread across the earth and accept the true faith from the offspring of Shem.

Noah lived for 950 years. He was the last to live to such an advanced age. After him, the strength of the human race began to decline, and people could live for only 400 years. But even with this length of life, the population increased.

All that Noah foretold his sons was fulfilled precisely. The offspring of Shem are called the Semites, to whom there belong firstly the Hebrew people, with whom faith in the true God was preserved. The offspring of Japheth are called Japhethites, to whom there belong the peoples that populated Europe and Asia, who accepted faith in the true God from the Hebrews. The offspring of Ham are called Hamites. The Canaanite tribes which originally inhabited Palestine, and were later subjugated by the offspring of Shem and Japheth, belong to them.

Note: See Genesis, chaps. 9:18-39; 10.

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