|The Dark Powers That Bind - Destiner Press Titles|
for Section 1. MESOPOTAMIA
Noah's curse and Genesis 9:18 to 10:12
Some notes from the Matthew Henry (1662-1714) Concise Bible Commentary, Genesis 9.
(originally written in 1706, available online at many sites and as a paperback or hardcover book from Nelson Publishing)
Noah curses Canaan, blesses Shem, prays for Japheth.
(words in brackets added to clarify the old English prose)
"Noah declares a curse on Canaan, the son of Ham; perhaps this grandson of his was more guilty than the rest. A servant of servants, that is, The meanest and most despicable servant, shall he be, even to his brethren. This certainly points at the victories in after-times obtained by Israel over the Canaanites, by which they were put to the sword, or brought to pay tribute.
The whole continent of Africa was peopled mostly by the descendants of Ham; and for how many ages have the better parts of that country lain under the dominion of the Romans, then of the Saracens, and now of the Turks! In what wickedness, ignorance, barbarity, slavery, and misery most of the inhabitants live! And of the poor Negroes, how many every year are sold and bought, like beasts in the market, and conveyed from one quarter of the world to do the work of beasts in another! But this in no way excuses the covetousness and barbarity of those who enrich themselves with the product of their sweat and blood. God has not commanded us to enslave Negroes; and, without doubt, he will severely punish all such cruel wrongs.
The fulfillment of this prophecy (prophetic curse on Ham's descendants), which contains almost a history of the world, frees Noah from the suspicion of having uttered it from personal anger. It fully proves that the Holy Spirit took occasion from Ham's offence to reveal his secret purposes (for the peoples of the whole world).
Jews were, for a great while, the only professing people that God had in the world. Christ, who was the Lord God, in his human nature should descend from Shem; for of him, as concerning the flesh, Christ came. Noah also blesses Japheth, and, in him, the Gentiles that were peopled by his seed. We may read it, that God shall persuade Japheth, and being persuaded, he shall dwell in the tents of Shem. Jews and Gentiles shall be united together in the gospel fold; both shall be one in Christ. Noah lived to see two worlds; but being an heir of the righteousness which is by faith, he now rests in hope, waiting to see a better (world) than either (the pre-Flood earth or this present one)."