Noah lived 350 years after the Flood and it was through his three boys that God established the nations. Shem, Ham and Japeth are the progenitors of the races of people who fill the earth.

 

“The theologians use a word that I’m not real comfortable with but they call it a ‘federal headship,’ ” explains Jordan. “They talk about one person representing everything. Now Adam did that. ‘In Adam, all did die.’ In Christ, ‘all are made alive.’ If you’re in Adam, death. If you’re in Christ, life. And that’s the idea.

 

“Hebrews 5 talks about how Levi paid tithes in the loins of Abraham. When Abraham gave tithes to Melchizedek, the writer of Hebrews says Levi, who is the descendant of Abraham, was actually paying the tithes. The idea there is the head of the race represents everybody else that comes along. We’re all coming from them.”

 

The contribution of each one of the boys is different and distinct but they were intended by God to be blended together into a harmonious, organized way of life to produce the highest form of civilization possible.

 

Jordan says, “As soon as one of the groups has ascendancy above the other the balance is put out of whack and then what happens in Scripture is there is a momentary excelling. One of them will step out in front of the others and be superior to him for a moment. It will look like there’s a great leap ahead but it flames out just like that. And suddenly it just crashes.

 

“Now you know what goes on today. There’s not one nation on the face of the earth that doesn’t have racial strife. Without one, the other two aren’t all they ought to be and more often it’s one (prong) stepping out and trying to take over. In the Millennium, when the Lord Jesus Christ comes back, the three will work perfectly.

 

*****

 

On an individual level, the threefold framework is represented by spirit, soul and body. If a person’s spirit is not feeding on the Word of God and being nourished, and is instead out walking in the flesh and not the spirit, his/her Christ life is a wreck.

 

When it comes to representations of the threefold division through Noah’s sons, the Bible is loaded with them. One great example is the three gifts the wise men brought at the birth of Christ—gold, frankincense and myrrh.

 

“Nobody knows how many wise men there were—there might have been 50 of them for all we know—but they only brought three gifts,” says Jordan. “Those three gifts represented Shem, Ham and Japeth. They represented the offices of the Lord Jesus Christ and they represented mankind in the threefold division that God had made.

 

“When the Lord Jesus Christ was crucified, did you ever read how they put the inscription over His head in three languages? Same thing!

 

*****

 

In Genesis 9, we’re told that when Noah got drunk from the wine of his vineyard, 

“Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without.
[23] And Shem and Japheth took a garment, and laid it upon both their shoulders, and went backward, and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were backward, and they saw not their father's nakedness.
[24] And Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his younger son had done unto him.
[25] And he said, Cursed be Canaan; a servant of servants shall he be unto his brethren.
[26] And he said, Blessed be the LORD God of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.
[27] God shall enlarge Japheth, and he shall dwell in the tents of Shem; and Canaan shall be his servant.”

 

Jordan says, “It was Ham who had messed up with his daddy so why didn’t God curse Ham? Well, look at verse 1. It says ‘God blessed Noah and his sons.’ Well, you can’t curse somebody God’s already blessed. And besides that, you remember when Saul, upon seeing young David out there where Goliath was, asked, ‘whose son is that?’

 

“The greatness of the father is attributed to the son and the activities and the blessings of the son were attributed to the father. You see, the greatness of the son had to come from the dad.

 

“You understand why it says ‘the sins of the fathers will be visited upon the children,’ and the only way to curse Ham, and only Ham, was to say, ‘Hey, God’s blessed you but your descendants out here is where the fruit of this thing’s gonna be done.’

 

“Now that’s what tells me that these prophecies are not individual. If it would have just been an individual thing about Ham, Shem and Japeth, he would have said Ham. But he didn’t.

 

“Ham was Noah’s youngest son so God takes Ham’s youngest son, Canaan, and He curses him so there’s no mistake that this is going to be on Ham’s descendants all the way down to the least one.

 

“But it’s important to understand why Canaan. Who occupied the land of Israel when they went into it? It was the Land of Canaan. The Canaanites were up there in that land, and when Israel was told to go in there and exterminate the Canaanites, and pull them out because they didn’t belong in that land, they understood about why that was to be done based upon the curse back there (in Genesis 9).”

 

*****

 

Throughout time, people have misunderstood Canaan’s assignment as “a servant of servants” to be a dishonorable job.

 

Jordan explains, “To be a servant can be a position of great honor and great bearing. You remember Jesus said if a man wants to be the greatest, let him be servant of all?

 

“What does it mean to be a servant of servants? Well, you know what it means to be a king of kings, don’t you? You’re the best king of all the kings. If you’re the Lord of lords, you’re the best lord of all the lords, right?

 

“This (verse in Genesis 9) was to say Canaan’s going to be a servant par excellence. He’s going to be a servant better than anybody else who tries to do be a servant. He’s going to render extraordinary service to mankind. He’s going to be able to go out and get the job done.

 

“You know, we live in a generation where people who labor with their hands aren’t looked on so wonderfully. But you know it’s a great thing to be able to go out and get a job done, isn’t it?

 

“That’s what Ham’s descendants are going to be—people who are skilled in accomplishing things that have to do with technology. They have to do with skilled performance and developing means to accomplish the job. It’s a great need among mankind. Man needs physical skill. He has these needs of accomplishing the thing.”

 

(Editor’s note: To be continued . . . )