The Last Word

18 The sons of Noah who came out of the ark were Shem, Ham and Japheth. (Ham was the father of Canaan.) 19 These were the three sons of Noah, and from them came the people who were scattered over the whole earth.

20 Noah, a man of the soil, proceeded to plant a vineyard. 21 When he drank some of its wine, he became drunk and lay uncovered inside his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father naked and told his two brothers outside. 23 But Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it across their shoulders; then they walked in backward and covered their father’s naked body. Their faces were turned the other way so that they would not see their father naked.

24 When Noah awoke from his wine and found out what his youngest son had done to him, 25 he said,

“Cursed be Canaan!
The lowest of slaves
will he be to his brothers.” Genesis 9:18-25

We don’t know much about this passage except that it’s quite awkward to read. The number of people who have read this passage have given an equal number of opinions about it.

Why was Canaan accursed?

Obviously his father brought great shame upon Grandpa Noah, but it was taken out on the grandson. Certainly, it’s not fair, but we don’t know the full story.

Do we ever?

No, not really.

We don’t know the full story behind a great number of events in our lives. We think we know other peoples’ motives but we don’t. No one knows the human heart better than Almighty God Himself. In the end, He has the last word about everything.

Knowing that, though, is both troubling and comforting. It’s troubling because we are not in control, and we do like to be in control.

It’s comforting because it’s all in God’s hands. We don’t have to worry – though we do. We can sleep well at night knowing that He’s awake and taking care of the world – with or without our knowledge! He’s highly involved in the affairs of every man, woman, and child.

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