Genesis 9: Brave New World

I know that some people try to read through the Bible in a year . . . or sometimes two

How about five? That’s right, I said five. I did a little math and discovered that there are 1189 chapters in the Bible. If I average five per week, it will take me approximately 238 weeks (rounding up) to get through the whole thing. If I divide that by 52 weeks per year I get 4.57 years. Then I factor in days I will miss or vacations or laziness, adding another 6 months and that gets me to five years.

Five years. I will be 34. You will be . . . well, I don’t know how old you are so that makes it a little difficult for me to make an accurate guess.

Can I do it? Can I stick with this thing for that long? Well, any encouragement from you would be most appreciated.

On to Genesis 9!

The picture that comes to mind as I think of Noah leaving the ark is the scene in “The Wizard of Oz” where Dorothy steps out of her black-and-white house and into the beautiful Technicolor world of Oz. I wonder if Noah felt like that. Is he bursting with hope or a bit nervous about the fact that he and his family are literally the only people on the planet?

Either way, God comes out swinging. Not only does he bless Noah and his family, but he gives them even more than people were given before. Now he can eat meat! Hallelujah! He just has to catch it first. This could be a problem since all the animals are afraid of him now.

The First Covenant

By my count, Genesis 9 uses the word “covenant” seven times. Two of those times involve God remembering the covenant and three of them involve a sign of the covenant. Whenever God sees a rainbow he will remember that he is not going to destroy the earth or all flesh again. I am totally down with that.

He can see the rainbow . . . but can He TASTE it?

Noah doesn’t do anything to earn this. Neither do the rest of the people whom it will affect; that is, everybody. God just does it because he wants to. It seems like all Noah needs to worry about in this covenant is being fruitful and multiplying and not killing anyone. Seems easy enough.

Soiled Soil

Noah, we are told, is a man of the soil. Cain was a man of the soil and I am guessing Adam was too. I am beginning to think that when we are told someone is a man of the soil or that they till the soil, something terrible is about to happen. For Adam it is part of the curse. For Cain it may be a source of idolatry. For Noah it is a way to get drunk and naked. I bet he is glad camera phones that could upload to twitter weren’t around yet!

But something about being seen naked and people knowing about it sets him off and he ends up cursing his grandson, Canaan. This is the first time a human has uttered a curse. Does this curse do anything? I wonder if the curse to Canaan might be the beginning of some messed up family and identity issues. The Canaanites become enemies of Israel and this is where it all started.

Perhaps we ought to watch our words.We never know what the fruit of them might be.

What about you? Do you wake up most days feeling blessed by God or cursed by someone else’s words? Yeah, a nice, light-hearted question for today.

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