Simply the Bible Blog

Daily Devotion and Podcast

Genesis 9:18-28 “Noah’s Vineyard”

“After the flood, Noah began to cultivate the ground, and he planted a vineyard.”

Genesis 9:20 (NLT)

Maybe I wasn’t listening in Sunday School, but I don’t recall hearing this story. After the Flood, Noah planted a vineyard and drank some of the wine. He became drunk and lie naked in his tent. This is the first time the word “wine” appears in Scripture (Hebrew yayin). Noah’s son Ham discovered his dad and told his brothers about it. When Noah sobered up, he cursed Ham’s son Canaan, saying that he would be a servant to his relatives.

Why did Noah curse his grandson Canaan rather than his son Ham? Evidently, Noah saw the same character flaw in Canaan that was also in Ham. My guess is that the restrained defiance in Ham was full-blown in Canaan. Children often imitate the bad habits of their parents and make them even worse. Noah saw what Canaan would become and what he would pass down to his descendants and spoke prophetically. This set the stage early in history for how the Hebrews would ultimately drive out the Canaanites from the Promised Land.

Nevertheless, this is a sad chapter in the life of a great man of God. While Noah had a sin nature like the rest of us, this story shows the harmful effects of alcohol consumption on everyone involved. Perhaps you grew up in a home of alcohol abuse. Parents or grandparents “under the influence” often say and do harmful things to their children and grandchildren that they wouldn’t have done had they been sober.

In contrast to Ham and his son Canaan, when they were told about their father’s condition, Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on their shoulders, and walked backward into their father’s tent, so that they would not see his nakedness. They covered Noah and left the tent.

This is a beautiful example of what Peter says we should all do.

“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.”

1 Peter 4:8 (NIV)

We all sin and fall short of God’s glorious standard (Romans 3:23). But how do we treat the sins we see in others? Do we make snap judgments or do we seek to cover over their sins in love? Do we talk about their flaws with others or do we go to them privately and humbly show them their faults?

“Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.”

Galatians 6:1 (NLT)

This is love in action, and how we all need it! If we love others deeply, then it will surely come back to us. This is the fruit of the Spirit and what God most desires from us.

Listen to the complete podcast

Photo by Min An on Pexels

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