Genesis 9-10 & Matthew 9

Genesis 9-10

    And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth and upon every bird of the heavens, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea. Into your hand they are delivered. Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. And as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything. But you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning: from every beast I will require it and from man. From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man.

    “Whoever sheds the blood of man,
        by man shall his blood be shed,
    for God made man in his own image.
    
        And you, be fruitful and multiply, increase greatly on the earth and multiply in it.”

    Then God said to Noah and to his sons with him, “Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your offspring after you, and with every living creature that is with you, the birds, the livestock, and every beast of the earth with you, as many as came out of the ark; it is for every beast of the earth. I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth.” And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant that I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for all future generations: I have set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be a sign of the covenant between me and the earth. When I bring clouds over the earth and the bow is seen in the clouds, I will remember my covenant that is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh. And the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. When the bow is in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth.” God said to Noah, “This is the sign of the covenant that I have established between me and all flesh that is on the earth.”

    The sons of Noah who went forth from the ark were Shem, Ham, and Japheth. (Ham was the father of Canaan.) These three were the sons of Noah, and from these the people of the whole earth were dispersed.

    Noah began to be a man of the soil, and he planted a vineyard. He drank of the wine and became drunk and lay uncovered in his tent. And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father and told his two brothers outside. Then Shem and Japheth took a garment, laid it on both their shoulders, and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father. Their faces were turned backward, and they did not see their father's nakedness. When Noah awoke from his wine and knew what his youngest son had done to him, he said,

    “Cursed be Canaan;
        a servant of servants shall he be to his brothers.”
    
        He also said,

    “Blessed be the LORD, the God of Shem;
        and let Canaan be his servant.
    May God enlarge Japheth,
        and let him dwell in the tents of Shem,
        and let Canaan be his servant.”
    
        After the flood Noah lived 350 years. All the days of Noah were 950 years, and he died.

    These are the generations of the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Sons were born to them after the flood.

    The sons of Japheth: Gomer, Magog, Madai, Javan, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras. The sons of Gomer: Ashkenaz, Riphath, and Togarmah. The sons of Javan: Elishah, Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim. From these the coastland peoples spread in their lands, each with his own language, by their clans, in their nations.

    The sons of Ham: Cush, Egypt, Put, and Canaan. The sons of Cush: Seba, Havilah, Sabtah, Raamah, and Sabteca. The sons of Raamah: Sheba and Dedan. Cush fathered Nimrod; he was the first on earth to be a mighty man. He was a mighty hunter before the LORD. Therefore it is said, “Like Nimrod a mighty hunter before the LORD.” The beginning of his kingdom was Babel, Erech, Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar. From that land he went into Assyria and built Nineveh, Rehoboth-Ir, Calah, and Resen between Nineveh and Calah; that is the great city. Egypt fathered Ludim, Anamim, Lehabim, Naphtuhim, Pathrusim, Casluhim (from whom the Philistines came), and Caphtorim.

    Canaan fathered Sidon his firstborn and Heth, and the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgashites, the Hivites, the Arkites, the Sinites, the Arvadites, the Zemarites, and the Hamathites. Afterward the clans of the Canaanites dispersed. And the territory of the Canaanites extended from Sidon in the direction of Gerar as far as Gaza, and in the direction of Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, and Zeboiim, as far as Lasha. These are the sons of Ham, by their clans, their languages, their lands, and their nations.

    To Shem also, the father of all the children of Eber, the elder brother of Japheth, children were born. The sons of Shem: Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad, Lud, and Aram. The sons of Aram: Uz, Hul, Gether, and Mash. Arpachshad fathered Shelah; and Shelah fathered Eber. To Eber were born two sons: the name of the one was Peleg, for in his days the earth was divided, and his brother's name was Joktan. Joktan fathered Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, Obal, Abimael, Sheba, Ophir, Havilah, and Jobab; all these were the sons of Joktan. The territory in which they lived extended from Mesha in the direction of Sephar to the hill country of the east. These are the sons of Shem, by their clans, their languages, their lands, and their nations.

    These are the clans of the sons of Noah, according to their genealogies, in their nations, and from these the nations spread abroad on the earth after the flood.

(Genesis 9-10 ESV)


Matthew 9

    And getting into a boat he crossed over and came to his own city. And behold, some people brought to him a paralytic, lying on a bed. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven.” And behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, “This man is blaspheming.” But Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, “Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he then said to the paralytic—“Rise, pick up your bed and go home.” And he rose and went home. When the crowds saw it, they were afraid, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to men.

    As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth, and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he rose and followed him.

    And as Jesus reclined at table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”

    Then the disciples of John came to him, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast. No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch tears away from the garment, and a worse tear is made. Neither is new wine put into old wineskins. If it is, the skins burst and the wine is spilled and the skins are destroyed. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.”

    While he was saying these things to them, behold, a ruler came in and knelt before him, saying, “My daughter has just died, but come and lay your hand on her, and she will live.” And Jesus rose and followed him, with his disciples. And behold, a woman who had suffered from a discharge of blood for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment, for she said to herself, “If I only touch his garment, I will be made well.” Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And instantly the woman was made well. And when Jesus came to the ruler's house and saw the flute players and the crowd making a commotion, he said, “Go away, for the girl is not dead but sleeping.” And they laughed at him. But when the crowd had been put outside, he went in and took her by the hand, and the girl arose. And the report of this went through all that district.

    And as Jesus passed on from there, two blind men followed him, crying aloud, “Have mercy on us, Son of David.” When he entered the house, the blind men came to him, and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to him, “Yes, Lord.” Then he touched their eyes, saying, “According to your faith be it done to you.” And their eyes were opened. And Jesus sternly warned them, “See that no one knows about it.” But they went away and spread his fame through all that district.

    As they were going away, behold, a demon-oppressed man who was mute was brought to him. And when the demon had been cast out, the mute man spoke. And the crowds marveled, saying, “Never was anything like this seen in Israel.” But the Pharisees said, “He casts out demons by the prince of demons.”

    And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”

(Matthew 9 ESV)



Something to Consider

Genesis 9: Throughout the Old Testament, God makes covenants with His people by covenanting with one man who acts as the representative of all mankind. Here with Noah, God states that there will never again be a flood to destroy the earth. The story of the flood and God's covenant with Noah (like the covenants that will follow) is one that undoubtedly points to the future fulfillment of God's eternal plan. We can quickly gather three observations from the flood story:

  1. The sinfulness of man is massive, and man's heart is full of evil. "The intentions of man's heart is evil from his youth" (Genesis 8). Man is full of sin.
  2. God will not remain patient with sin forever. God hates sin and does destroy unrepentant sinners in His judgement. God judges sin.
  3. However, God is faithful to His eternal plan to fill the earth with His own people who reflect His glory in their faith and obedience. God offers salvation.

In observing these few chapters in Genesis, we again catch the aroma of the gospel throughout the account of Noah. Mankind was full of sin, and therefore, God poured out His wrath of judgement on mankind's sinfulness. Only a remnant was saved (Noah's family), and they were saved by nothing else other than God's grace alone through Noah's faith alone (Genesis 6). God promised that He will not destroy the world again through a flood, but He has promised to pour out His judgment once and for all through a future judgement by fire (2 Peter 3). Where will we find hope and salvation from this future flood of fire? The sign of the covenant with Noah provides the clue - the bright bow in the clouds made manifest through the light of the Sun. A bow is a weapon that brings pain and death, but this is a bow pointed not in the direction of man but rather at the heart of heaven. And as the ark made of wood offered hope and salvation for a few, the wooden cross of Christ offers hope and salvation for all who will embrace it in faith.     

Matthew 9: Imagine being a devoutly religious Jewish leader during the time Jesus begins His ministry. You devote your entire life to learning the rules, memorizing the rules, teaching the rules, and keeping the rules in an effort to keep yourself pure and undefiled before God. Then this new Rabbi named Jesus comes bursting upon the scene, and He’s the talk of the town and begins to accumulate quite a following. However, instead of associating Himself with other notable Jewish leaders just like you, Jesus is hanging out with the degenerate outcasts of society. To say that this might rub you the wrong way would be an understatement.

The moment we begin to rank the type of people that can hang with Jesus based on some worthy to unworthy scale is the moment we have exposed the callousness of our hearts and the blindness of our eyes. We often flatter ourselves with a foolish confidence in our own righteousness and fail to acknowledge that apart from the grace of God, we all are the degenerate outcasts of society unworthy to enter the Kingdom of God.     

Jesus challenges us to examine and revaluate our religious righteousness. May we be rightly willing to wash in the same fountain as the most unclean and impure of this world. Eyes that have seen grace stir up hearts that are ready to extend it.