New American Standard Bible
So he said, "Cursed be Canaan; A servant of servants He shall be to his brothers."
King James Bible
And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
Darby Bible Translation
And he said, Cursed be Canaan; Let him be a bondman of bondmen to his brethren.
World English Bible
He said, "Canaan is cursed. He will be servant of servants to his brothers."
Young's Literal Translation
and saith: 'Cursed is Canaan, Servant of servants he is to his brethren.'
Genesis 9:25 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
The prophecy consists of two parts - a malediction and a benediction. "Cursed be Kenaan." A curse Genesis 3:14, Genesis 3:17; Genesis 4:11 is any privation, inferiority, or other ill, expressed in the form of a doom, and bearing, not always upon the object directly expressed, but upon the party who is in the transgression. Thus, the soil is cursed on account of Adam the transgressor Genesis 3:17. It is apparent that in the present ease the prime mover was Ham, who is therefore punished in the prospect of a curse resting on his posterity, and especially on a particular line of it. Let us not imagine, however, that the ways of the Lord are not equal in this matter; for Kenaan and his descendants no doubt abundantly deserved this special visitation. And as the other descendants of Ham are not otherwise mentioned in the prophecy, we may presume that they shared in the curse pronounced upon Kenaan. At all events, they are not expressly included in the blessing pronounced on the other two divisions of the human family, It is proper to observe, also, that this prediction does not affirm an absolute perpetuity in the doom of Ham or Kenaan. It only delineates their relative condition until the whole race is again brought within the scope of prophecy.
A servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren. - The curse here consists in servitude, which is in itself an inferiority, and, among the children of self-will, tends more and more to all the horrid ills of slavery. Slavery originated in war and conquest. The mere warrior put the captives to death, the cannibal devoured them, the economist fed them for their labor. Accordingly, slavery soon made its appearance in all countries which were trodden by the conqueror. A system of slavery, imposed without consent and for no crime, is a dire evil. Besides the direct injustice of robbing a fellow-man of his personal liberty, it dissolves wedlock, breaks the family tie, and disregards the conscience. It trades, therefore, in the souls as well as the bodies of mankind. It is a historical fact that the degradation of slavery has fallen especially upon the race of Ham. A portion of the Kenaanites became bondsmen among the Israelites, who were of the race of Shem. The early Babylonians, the Phoenicians, the Carthaginians, and Egyptians, who all belonged to the race of Ham, were subjugated by the Assyrians, who were Shemites, the Persians, the Macedonians, and the Romans, who were all Japhethites. And in modern times it is well known that most of the nations of Europe traded in African slaves. "A servant of servants" means a slave of the most abject kind. "Unto his brethren." If the doom of slavery be referred to the race of Ham, then his brethren are the descendants of Japheth and Shem, who have held many of the Hamites in bondage. If we limit the sentence to Kenaan, then his brethren may include the other descendants of Ham. It is said that the servile tribe is also the most tyrannical; and it is the fact that the Africans have lent themselves to the forcible seizing and selling into slavery in distant lands of their own kinsmen and fellow-countrymen.
PSALM CIV. 20, 21. Thou makest darkness, and it is night: wherein all the beasts of the forest do creep forth. The lions roar after their prey, and seek their meat from God. Let me say a few words on this text. It is one which has been a comfort to me again and again. It is one which, if rightly understood, ought to give comfort to pitiful and tender-hearted persons. Have you never been touched by, never been even shocked by, the mystery of pain and death? I do not speak now of pain and death …
Charles Kingsley—Westminster Sermons
The Doctrine of Non-Resistance to Evil by Force Has Been Professed by a Minority of Men from the Very Foundation of Christianity. Of the Book "What
Now the sons of Noah who came out of the ark were Shem and Ham and Japheth; and Ham was the father of Canaan.
When Noah awoke from his wine, he knew what his youngest son had done to him.
'Cursed is he who dishonors his father or mother.' And all the people shall say, 'Amen.'
"Now therefore, you are cursed, and you shall never cease being slaves, both hewers of wood and drawers of water for the house of my God."
1 Kings 9:21
their descendants who were left after them in the land whom the sons of Israel were unable to destroy utterly, from them Solomon levied forced laborers, even to this day.
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