What does Genesis 9:14 mean?
ESV: When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds,
NIV: Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds,
NASB: It shall come about, when I make a cloud appear over the earth, that the rainbow will be seen in the cloud,
CSB: Whenever I form clouds over the earth and the bow appears in the clouds,
NLT: When I send clouds over the earth, the rainbow will appear in the clouds,
KJV: And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud:
NKJV: It shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud;
Verse Commentary:
Verse 14 and 15 complete a single thought. Prior to the flood, God began to establish a covenant agreement with Noah (Genesis 6:18). At that time, the obligation was on Noah to build an ark to hold himself, his family, and the animals God intended to save. After the flood, God establishes His side of the promise. This binding vow is made to all of the people of the earth, as well as all of the animals. He will never bring a global flood again.

Covenant agreements were often remembered using some kind of visual sign or symbol (Genesis 17:11). In the prior verse, God explained that the sign of this particular covenant would be His bow set in the clouds. This evokes the idea of a warrior setting his weapon aside once the battle is over and the time has come for peace.

In verses 14 and 15, God begins to describe what will happen when a rainbow becomes visible.
Verse Context:
Genesis 9:1–17 continues God's interaction with Noah and his sons following the flood. First, God blesses them and gives them specific instructions about how to live in this remade world. God commands them to reproduce and fill the earth, among other things. Next, God establishes His unilateral covenant to never again end all life on earth with a flood, offering the rainbow as a sign of this promise.
Chapter Summary:
Chapter 9 describes God's interactions with Noah and his sons following the flood. First, God gives blessings and instructions, including the command to reproduce and fill the earth. Next, God makes a unilateral covenant with humanity and animals never to end all life with a flood again. He offers the rainbow as a sign of this promise. Finally, Noah prophesies about the future of his son's descendants after an awkward episode in which Ham talks to his brothers about seeing Noah passed out drunk and naked.
Chapter Context:
Chapters 6, 7, and 8 describe God's destruction of the world in a massive flood. Now, in Genesis 9, Scripture describes God's dealings with Noah and his sons following the flood. First, God blesses them and gives specific instructions, including the command to fill the earth. Next, God expands on His promise to never again end all life on earth a flood. Finally, Noah curses Ham and blesses Shem and Japheth after Ham tells his brothers about seeing Noah passed out drunk and naked. Chapters 10 and 11 will sketch out the history of mankind from Noah to Abraham.
Book Summary:
The book of Genesis establishes fundamental truths about God. Among these are His role as the Creator, His holiness, His hatred of sin, His love for mankind, and His willingness to provide for our redemption. We learn not only where mankind has come from, but why the world is in its present form. The book also presents the establishment of Israel, God's chosen people. Many of the principles given in other parts of Scripture depend on the basic ideas presented here in the book of Genesis. Within the framework of the Bible, Genesis explains the bare-bones history of the universe leading up to the captivity of Israel in Egypt, setting the stage for the book of Exodus.
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