God's covenant with Noah
1God blessed Noah and his sons. He said to them, ‘Give birth to many children so that you become very many people. Your descendants will live all over the earth. 2All the animals and all the birds will be afraid of you. You have authority over them. You also have authority over all the living things that move across the ground and all the fish in the sea. 3You may now eat anything that lives and moves. Before, I gave you the green plants to eat. Now I give you everything to eat as your food.
4But you must not eat meat that still has the blood of life in it.
5If any person or animal kills a human, I will certainly punish them. Their punishment will be death.
6God made people so that they were like himself. #9:6 See Genesis 1:26.
So if anyone kills a human,
another human must kill him.
7But as for you, you should give birth to many children so that you become very many people. There will be many people and they will live all over the earth.’
8God said to Noah and to his sons, 9‘I promise you that I will obey the covenant that I am making with you. #9:9 A covenant is a special agreement that God makes with people. He promises that he will help them in a certain way. I promise this to you and to all your descendants. 10I also promise this to all the animals and birds that came out of the ship with you. That is everything that lives on the earth. 11This is the covenant that I promise to keep: I will never cause water to destroy all living things on the earth again. Deep water will never again come again to destroy the earth.’
12Then God said, ‘I will show you clearly that I have made this covenant with you, and with every living animal. I will keep this promise for ever, for as long as people live on the earth. 13I have put my rainbow among the clouds in the sky. It will show you clearly that I have made this covenant with everything on the earth. 14When I bring clouds over the earth, a rainbow will sometimes appear. 15Then I will remember the covenant that I have made with you and with all the different kinds of living things. Never again will the water become so deep that it destroys everything that lives. 16When I see the rainbow in the clouds, I will remember my covenant. It is a promise that I have made with every kind of living thing on the earth.’
17Then God said to Noah, ‘The rainbow will show you that I will certainly keep my promise. I will keep my covenant that is between me and everything that lives on the earth.’
18The names of Noah's sons were Shem, Ham and Japheth. They all came out of the ship with Noah. Ham later became the father of a son called Canaan. 19All the people who live on the earth are descendants of Noah's three sons.
20Noah was a farmer. He was the first person to plant vines.
21He used the grapes to make wine. One day, he drank some of the wine and he became drunk. He lay inside his tent and he slept. He was not wearing any clothes. 22Canaan's father, Ham, saw that Noah was not wearing any clothes. He went out of the tent. He told his two brothers what he had seen. 23Then Shem and Japheth took Noah's coat and they put it between their shoulders. They walked into Noah's tent with their backs to Noah. In this way they covered their father with the coat. They looked away from their father so that they did not see him. They did this because Noah was not wearing any clothes. #9:23 Vines grow a small round fruit called grapes. People use grapes to make wine. Wine is a drink containing alcohol.
24Later, when he was no longer drunk with the wine, Noah woke up. He found out what his youngest son, Ham, had done. 25He said, ‘I curse Canaan! He will become a slave that must serve his brothers.’
26Noah also said, ‘I praise the Lord, the God of Shem! Let Canaan become Shem's slave! 27I pray that God will make the land of Japheth and his descendants grow bigger. I pray that the descendants of Japheth will share good things with Shem. I pray that Canaan will become Japheth's slave.’ #9:27 Noah wanted God to bless Shem and Japheth, because they did the right thing. Noah asked for a curse on the descendants of Ham because he caused Noah to be ashamed.
28Noah lived for 350 years after God covered the earth with deep water. 29In his whole life, Noah lived for 950 years. Then he died.
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God Confirms His Covenant
1Then God blessed Noah and his sons and told them, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth. 2All 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. 3I have given them to you for food, just as I have given you grain and vegetables. 4But 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. 6If anyone takes a human life, that person’s life will also be taken by human hands. For God made human beings#9:6 Or man; Hebrew reads ha-adam. in his own image. 7Now be fruitful and multiply, and repopulate the earth.”
8Then God told Noah and his sons, 9“I hereby confirm my covenant with you and your descendants, 10and 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. 11Yes, I am confirming my covenant with you. Never again will floodwaters kill all living creatures; never again will a flood destroy the earth.”
12Then God said, “I am giving you a sign of my covenant with you and with all living creatures, for all generations to come. 13I have placed my rainbow in the clouds. It is the sign of my covenant with you and with all the earth. 14When I send clouds over the earth, the rainbow will appear in the clouds, 15and I will remember my covenant with you and with all living creatures. Never again will the floodwaters destroy all life. 16When I see the rainbow in the clouds, I will remember the eternal covenant between God and every living creature on earth.” 17Then God said to Noah, “Yes, this rainbow is the sign of the covenant I am confirming with all the creatures on earth.”
18The sons of Noah who came out of the boat with their father were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Ham is the father of Canaan.) 19From these three sons of Noah came all the people who now populate the earth.
20After the flood, Noah began to cultivate the ground, and he planted a vineyard. 21One day he drank some wine he had made, and he became drunk and lay naked inside his tent. 22Ham, the father of Canaan, saw that his father was naked and went outside and told his brothers. 23Then 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.
24When Noah woke up from his stupor, he learned what Ham, his youngest son, had done. 25Then he cursed Canaan, the son of Ham:
“May Canaan be cursed!
May he be the lowest of servants to his relatives.”
26Then Noah said,
“May the Lord, the God of Shem, be blessed,
and may Canaan be his servant!
27May God expand the territory of Japheth!
May Japheth share the prosperity of Shem,#9:27 Hebrew May he live in the tents of Shem.
and may Canaan be his servant.”
28Noah lived another 350 years after the great flood. 29He lived 950 years, and then he died.
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