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Summary: The great hero of the flood, Noah, is now found drunk and naked in his tent. Sin survived the flood.

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Genesis 9:18-29

February 16, 2003

To err is human.

Arthur Pink: "It is human to err, but it is also human to conceal the blemishes of those we admire."

One of the most striking evidences that the Scriptures are the Word of God comes in its willingness to reveal the errors of even its greatest heroes.

Today we have a disturbing story Noah who had found grace in the eyes of the Lord.

1. Noah’s failure 9:20-21

- a man of the soil - a farmer - but also a reminder of the Adamic comparison - just another human

- drunk - definitely forbidden in Scripture

- lay uncovered - literally exposed himself - not an accident of the way he fell asleep - a consequence of the sin of drunkenness - drunkenness loosens one’s inhibitions and causes one to do things one would otherwise be ashamed of.

Nakedness - when man was sinless there was no shame in nakedness, but with sin came the shame - the idea of exposing oneself while drunk is a demonstration of one’s abandonment to sin.

2. Ham’s response 9:22

What did Ham do? To our minds the picture is almost harmless - he came across his father while he was naked.

A. Leviticus 18:7 ’You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father, that is, the nakedness of your mother. She is your mother; you are not to uncover her nakedness.

8 ’You shall not uncover the nakedness of your father’s wife; it is your father’s nakedness.

B. NIV Habakkuk 2:15 "Woe to him who gives drink to his neighbours, pouring it from the wineskin till they are drunk, so that he can gaze on their naked bodies.

Certainly there is a disrespect - having seen his father’s failure, Ham leaves him in that condition and immediately seeks out others he can tell.

3. Shem and Japheth’s response 9:23

4. Noah’s curse and blessing 9:24-27

Curses Canaan, blesses Shem and Japheth

The point

Why is the curse on Canaan?

- the character of the father is reflected in the son.

This is all about Canaan - the land Israel is about to invade.

They are under God’s judgment because they have continued in the depravity of their father.

For us:

Depravity didn’t end with the flood.

Noah had the opportunity to start civilization over and instead we find him drunk in his tent.

It is not what is outside of a man that defiles him, but what is in his heart.


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