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God’s Covenant with Noah and Humankind

And God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. And fear of you and dread of you shall be upon every animal of the earth, and on every bird of heaven,[a] and on everything that moves upon the ground, and on all the fish of the sea. Into your hand they shall be given. Every moving thing that lives shall be for you as food. As I gave the green plants to you, I have now given you everything. Only you shall not eat raw flesh with blood in it.[b] And[c] your lifeblood[d] I will require; from every animal[e] I will require it. And from the hand of humankind, from the hand of each man to his brother I will require the life of humankind.

As for the one shedding the blood of humankind,
    by humankind his blood shall be shed,
for God made humankind in his own image.

“And you, be fruitful and multiply, swarm on the earth and multiply in it.” And God said to Noah and to his sons with him, “As for me, behold, I am establishing my covenant with you and with your seed after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you—the birds, the animals, and every animal of the earth with you, from all that came out of the ark to all the animals of the earth. 11 I am establishing my covenant with you, that never again will all flesh be cut off by the waters of a flood, nor will there ever be a flood that destroys the earth.” 12 And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I am making between me and you, and between every living creature that is with you for future generations. 13 My bow I have set in the clouds, and it shall be for a sign of the covenant between me and between the earth. 14 And when I make clouds appear over the earth the bow shall be seen in the clouds. 15 Then[f] I will remember my covenant that is between me and you, and between every living creature, with all flesh. And the waters of a flood will never again cause the destruction[g] of all flesh. 16 The bow shall be in the clouds, and I will see it, so as to remember the everlasting covenant between God and between every living creature, with all flesh that is upon the earth.” 17 And God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant which I am establishing between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.

Noah’s Descendants

18 Now[h] the sons of Noah who came out of 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 whole earth was populated.[i] 20 And Noah began to be a man of the ground, and he planted a vineyard. 21 And he drank some of the wine and became drunk, and he exposed himself in the midst of his tent. 22 And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and he told his two brothers outside. 23 Then[j] Shem and Japheth took a garment, and the two of them put it on their shoulders and, walking backward, they covered the nakedness of their father. And their faces were turned backward, so that[k] they did not see the nakedness of their father. 24 Then[l] Noah awoke from his drunkenness,[m] and he knew what his youngest son had done to him. 25 And he said,

“Cursed be Canaan,
    a slave of slaves he shall be to his brothers.”

26 Then[n] he said,

“Blessed be Yahweh, the God of Shem,
    and let Canaan be a slave to them.
27 May God make space for Japheth,
    and let him dwell in the tents of Shem,
    and let Canaan be a slave for him.”

28 And Noah lived three hundred and fifty years after the flood. 29 And all the days of Noah were nine hundred and fifty years, and he died.


  1. Genesis 9:2 Or “the sky”
  2. Genesis 9:4 Literally “flesh with its life, its blood”
  3. Genesis 9:5 Or “only”; the same word that occurs at the beginning of v. 4
  4. Genesis 9:5 Literally “your blood belonging to your life”
  5. Genesis 9:5 Literally “from the hand of every animal”
  6. Genesis 9:15 Or “And”
  7. Genesis 9:15 Literally “be to destroy”
  8. Genesis 9:18 Or “And”
  9. Genesis 9:19 Literally “all the earth branched out”
  10. Genesis 9:23 Or “And”
  11. Genesis 9:23 Or “and”
  12. Genesis 9:24 Or “And”
  13. Genesis 9:24 Or “his wine”
  14. Genesis 9:26 Or “And”