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Genesis chapter 9

New International Version

1 Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, 'Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. 2 The fear and dread of you will fall on all the beasts of the earth, and on all the birds in the sky, on every creature that moves along the ground, and on all the fish in the sea; they are given into your hands. 3 Everything that lives and moves about will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything.
4 But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it. 5 And for your lifeblood I will surely demand an accounting. I will demand an accounting from every animal. And from each human being, too, I will demand an accounting for the life of another human being.
6 Whoever sheds human blood, by humans shall their blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made mankind.
7 As for you, be fruitful and increase in number; multiply on the earth and increase upon it.'
8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him: 9 I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you 10 and with every living creature that was with you--the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you--every living creature on earth. 11 I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.'
12 And God said, 'This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: 13 I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. 16 Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.'
17 So God said to Noah, 'This is the sign of the covenant I have established between me and all life on the earth.'
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.'
26 He also said, 'Praise be to the LORD, the God of Shem! May Canaan be the slave of Shem. 27 May God extend Japheth's territory; may Japheth live in the tents of Shem, and may Canaan be the slave of Japheth.'
28 After the flood Noah lived 350 years. 29 Noah lived a total of 950 years, and then he died.
English Standard Version

1 And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. 2 The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth and upon every bird of the heavens, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea. Into your hand they are delivered. 3 Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. And as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything. 4 But you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. 5 And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning: from every beast I will require it and from man. From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man.
6 “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image. 7 And you, be fruitful and multiply, increase greatly on the earth and multiply in it.”
8 Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, 9 “Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your offspring after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the livestock, and every beast of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark; it is for every beast of the earth. 11 I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” 12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: 13 I have set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh. And the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” 17 God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.”
18 The sons of Noah who went forth from the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Ham was the father of Canaan.) 19 These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the people of the whole earth were dispersed.
20 Noah began to be a man of the soil, and he planted a vineyard. 21 He drank of the wine and became drunk and lay uncovered in his tent. 22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father and told his two brothers outside. 23 Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were turned backward, and they did not see their father’s nakedness. 24 When Noah awoke from his wine and knew what his youngest son had done to him, 25 he said, “Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be to his brothers.”
26 He also said, “Blessed be the LORD, the God of Shem; and let Canaan be his servant.
27 May God enlarge Japheth, and let him dwell in the tents of Shem, and let Canaan be his servant.” 28 After the flood Noah lived 350 years. 29 All the days of Noah were 950 years, and he died.
King James Version

1 And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth. 2 And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth, and upon every fowl of the air, upon all that moveth upon the earth, and upon all the fishes of the sea; into your hand are they delivered. 3 Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. 4 But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat. 5 And surely your blood of your lives will I require; at the hand of every beast will I require it, and at the hand of man; at the hand of every man's brother will I require the life of man. 6 Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man. 7 And you, be ye fruitful, and multiply; bring forth abundantly in the earth, and multiply therein.
8 And God spake unto Noah, and to his sons with him, saying, 9 And I, behold, I establish my covenant with you, and with your seed after you; 10 And with every living creature that is with you, of the fowl, of the cattle, and of every beast of the earth with you; from all that go out of the ark, to every beast of the earth. 11 And I will establish my covenant with you; neither shall all flesh be cut off any more by the waters of a flood; neither shall there any more be a flood to destroy the earth.
12 And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: 13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth. 14 And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud: 15 And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth. 17 And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.
18 And the sons of Noah, that went forth of the ark, were Shem, and Ham, and Japheth: and Ham is the father of Canaan. 19 These are the three sons of Noah: and of them was the whole earth overspread. 20 And Noah began to be an husbandman, and he planted a vineyard: 21 And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent. 22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without. 23 And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father's nakedness.
24 And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him. 25 And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren. 26 And he said, Blessed be the LORD God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant. 27 God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
28 And Noah lived after the flood three hundred and fifty years. 29 And all the days of Noah were nine hundred and fifty years: and he died.
New American Standard Bible

1 Then God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. 2 The fear of you and the terror of you will be on every animal of the earth and on every bird of the sky; on everything that crawls on the ground, and on all the fish of the sea. They are handed over to you. 3 Every moving thing that is alive shall be food for you; I have given everything to you, as I gave the green plant. 4 But you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. 5 I certainly will require your lifeblood; from every animal I will require it. And from every person, from every man as his brother I will require the life of a person.
6 Whoever sheds human blood, By man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made mankind. 7 As for you, be fruitful and multiply; Populate the earth abundantly and multiply in it.'
8 Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying, 9 'Now behold, I Myself am establishing My covenant with you, and with your descendants after you; 10 and with every living creature that is with you: the birds, the livestock, and every animal of the earth with you; of all that comes out of the ark, every animal of the earth. 11 I establish My covenant with you; and all flesh shall never again be eliminated by the waters of a flood, nor shall there again be a flood to destroy the earth.' 12 God said, 'This is the sign of the covenant which I am making between Me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations; 13 I have set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall serve as a sign of a covenant between Me and the earth. 14 It shall come about, when I make a cloud appear over the earth, that the rainbow will be seen in the cloud, 15 and I will remember My covenant, which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and never again shall the water become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 When the rainbow is in the cloud, then I will look at it, to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.' 17 And God said to Noah, 'This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between Me and all flesh that is on the earth.'
18 Now the sons of Noah who came out of the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth; and Ham was the father of Canaan. 19 These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the whole earth was populated.
20 Then Noah began farming and planted a vineyard. 21 He drank some of the wine and became drunk, and uncovered himself inside his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside. 23 But Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it on both their shoulders and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were turned away, so that they did not see their father’s nakedness. 24 When Noah awoke from his wine, he knew what his youngest son had done to him.
25 So he said, 'Cursed be Canaan; A servant of servants He shall be to his brothers.' 26 He also said, 'Blessed be the LORD, The God of Shem; And may Canaan be his servant. 27 May God enlarge Japheth, And may he live in the tents of Shem; And may Canaan be his servant.'
28 Noah lived 350 years after the flood. 29 So all the days of Noah were 950 years, and he died.
New Living Translation

1 Then God blessed Noah and his sons and told them, 'Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth. 2 All the animals of the earth, all the birds of the sky, all the small animals that scurry along the ground, and all the fish in the sea will look on you with fear and terror. I have placed them in your power. 3 I have given them to you for food, just as I have given you grain and vegetables. 4 But you must never eat any meat that still has the lifeblood in it.
5 'And I will require the blood of anyone who takes another person's life. If a wild animal kills a person, it must die. And anyone who murders a fellow human must die. 6 If anyone takes a human life, that person's life will also be taken by human hands. For God made human beings in his own image. 7 Now be fruitful and multiply, and repopulate the earth.'
8 Then God told Noah and his sons, 9 'I hereby confirm my covenant with you and your descendants, 10 and with all the animals that were on the boat with you--the birds, the livestock, and all the wild animals--every living creature on earth. 11 Yes, I am confirming my covenant with you. Never again will floodwaters kill all living creatures; never again will a flood destroy the earth.'
12 Then God said, 'I am giving you a sign of my covenant with you and with all living creatures, for all generations to come. 13 I have placed my rainbow in the clouds. It is the sign of my covenant with you and with all the earth. 14 When I send clouds over the earth, the rainbow will appear in the clouds, 15 and I will remember my covenant with you and with all living creatures. Never again will the floodwaters destroy all life. 16 When I see the rainbow in the clouds, I will remember the eternal covenant between God and every living creature on earth.' 17 Then God said to Noah, 'Yes, this rainbow is the sign of the covenant I am confirming with all the creatures on earth.'
18 The sons of Noah who came out of the boat with their father were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Ham is the father of Canaan.) 19 From these three sons of Noah came all the people who now populate the earth.
20 After the flood, Noah began to cultivate the ground, and he planted a vineyard. 21 One day he drank some wine he had made, and he became drunk and lay naked inside his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw that his father was naked and went outside and told his brothers. 23 Then Shem and Japheth took a robe, held it over their shoulders, and backed into the tent to cover their father. As they did this, they looked the other way so they would not see him naked.
24 When Noah woke up from his stupor, he learned what Ham, his youngest son, had done.
25 Then he cursed Canaan, the son of Ham: 'May Canaan be cursed! May he be the lowest of servants to his relatives.'
26 Then Noah said, 'May the LORD, the God of Shem, be blessed, and may Canaan be his servant! 27 May God expand the territory of Japheth! May Japheth share the prosperity of Shem, and may Canaan be his servant.'
28 Noah lived another 350 years after the great flood. 29 He lived 950 years, and then he died.
Christian Standard Bible

1 God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. 2 The fear and terror of you will be in every living creature on the earth, every bird of the sky, every creature that crawls on the ground, and all the fish of the sea. They are placed under your authority. 3 Every creature that lives and moves will be food for you; as I gave the green plants, I have given you everything. 4 However, you must not eat meat with its lifeblood in it. 5 And I will require a penalty for your lifeblood; I will require it from any animal and from any human; if someone murders a fellow human, I will require that person's life.
6 Whoever sheds human blood, by humans his blood will be shed, for God made humans in his image.
7 But you, be fruitful and multiply; spread out over the earth and multiply on it."
8 Then God said to Noah and his sons with him, 9 "Understand that I am establishing my covenant with you and your descendants after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you--birds, livestock, and all wildlife of the earth that are with you--all the animals of the earth that came out of the ark. 11 I establish my covenant with you that never again will every creature be wiped out by floodwaters; there will never again be a flood to destroy the earth."
12 And God said, "This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all future generations: 13 I have placed my bow in the clouds, and it will be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. 14 Whenever I form clouds over the earth and the bow appears in the clouds, 15 I will remember my covenant between me and you and all the living creatures: water will never again become a flood to destroy every creature. 16 The bow will be in the clouds, and I will look at it and remember the permanent covenant between God and all the living creatures on earth." 17 God said to Noah, "This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and every creature on earth."
18 Noah's sons who came out of the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Ham was the father of Canaan. 19 These three were Noah's sons, and from them the whole earth was populated.
20 Noah, as a man of the soil, began by planting a vineyard. 21 He drank some of the wine, became drunk, and uncovered himself inside his tent. 22 Ham, the father of Canaan, saw his father naked and told his two brothers outside. 23 Then Shem and Japheth took a cloak and placed it over both their shoulders, and walking backward, they covered their father's nakedness. Their faces were turned away, and they did not see their father naked.
24 When Noah awoke from his drinking and learned what his youngest son had done to him,
25 he said: Canaan is cursed. He will be the lowest of slaves to his brothers.
26 He also said: Blessed be the LORD, the God of Shem; Let Canaan be Shem's slave. 27 Let God extend Japheth; let Japheth dwell in the tents of Shem; let Canaan be Shem's slave.
28 Now Noah lived 350 years after the flood. 29 So Noah's life lasted 950 years; then he died.

What does Genesis chapter 9 mean?

Genesis 9 describes God's dealings with Noah and his sons in a world remade by the flood. It can be divided into three sections.

First, God gives blessings and commands to Noah and his sons which very closely echo His words to Adam and Eve (Genesis 1:28), but with significant differences. God once again blesses mankind with both ability and responsibility to reproduce and fill the earth. This time, however, God's instruction to subdue the earth includes the fact that all animals would be fearful of humanity.

In Eden, God explicitly gave plants as a food source (Genesis 1:29–30). Now, after the flood, in addition to plants, humanity is given overt permission to eat animals. However, they are not permitted to eat the blood of those animals. In addition, if a person kills another person—or an animal kills a person—God will now require the killer's life to be taken, as well, as a protection against the kind of violence that raged on the earth before the flood (Genesis 9:3–6).

In the second section, God expands on His promise from chapter 8: to never again kill every creature on the earth with a flood. God establishes a universal covenant with humanity and the animals, and declares that He will make a sign of this covenant; He will set His bow in the clouds. God will cause the rainbow that appears in conjunction with a storm to remind Him of this promise. It serves as a reminder of God's grace and mercy to humanity, as well (Genesis 9:7–17).

The final section of chapter 9 tells an awkward story. Noah gets drunk on the wine from a new vineyard. He passes out naked in his tent. One of this three sons, Ham, walks into Noah's tent, sees his father naked, leaves the tent, and tells his brothers what He has seen. Noah's other two sons go to great lengths to cover their father's nakedness without looking at him. While vague on details, this passage makes it explicitly clear that Ham has somehow dishonored his father (Genesis 9:24-25). This story also demonstrates a common theme of Scripture: that all people, even those used by God, are fallible and prone to masking mistakes.

When Noah wakes up, he curses Ham's son Canaan, declaring that Ham's descendants will be subservient to the descendants of his brothers Shem and Japheth. Noah's curse on Canaan includes blessings on both Shem and Japheth with the first hint that the line of Shem will lead to the creation of God's chosen people: Israel (Genesis 9:18–29).

Chapter 9 ends with a simple report: Noah lived 350 years after the start of the flood for a total lifespan of 950 years. He will be the last of the patriarchs of Genesis to live nearly a millennia. The genealogies of Genesis 11 show a rapidly-decreasing maximum to the duration of human life.