Ellen G. White Writings

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From Eternity Past, Page 69

Chapter 10—When Languages Were Changed

This chapter is based on Genesis 9:25-27; 11:1-9.

To repeople the desolate earth God had preserved but one family, the household of Noah. To him He declared, “Thee have I seen righteous before Me in this generation.” Genesis 7:1. Yet in the three sons of Noah—Shem, Ham, and Japheth—were foreshadowed the character of their posterity.

Noah, speaking by divine inspiration, foretold the history of the three great races to spring from these fathers of mankind. Tracing the descendants of Ham through the son rather than the father, He declared, “Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.” The unnatural crime of Ham revealed the vileness of his character. These evil characteristics were perpetuated in Canaan and his posterity.

On the other hand, the reverence manifested by Shem and Japheth for divine statutes promised a brighter future for their descendants. Concerning these sons it was declared, “Blessed be Jehovah, God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant. God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.” The line of Shem was to be that of the chosen people. From him would descend Abraham, and the people of Israel, through whom Christ was to come. And Japheth “shall dwell in the tents of Shem.” In the blessings of the gospel the descendants of Japheth were especially to share.

The posterity of Canaan descended to the most degrading forms of heathenism. Though the prophetic curse had doomed them to slavery, God bore with their

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