Genesis 10 Chapter Commentary: The Table of Nations

This chapter discusses how the nations started from Noah following the devastating deluge. After establishing themselves, Noah and his family went out to populate the world as God had commanded them to do in the ark of the covenant. This was carried on by the three sons of Noah and what God wanted to happen.

The sons of Japheth marked the beginning of the generations of Noah’s sons. Japheth had seven sons; Gomer and Javan were listed in this chapter for lineage reasons. The story then shifts to the descendants of Ham. Cush, Mizraim, Phut, and Canaan were among Ham’s four sons. The establishment of the monarchy by the man Nimrod, who is credited to Cush, made Cush the ruling family.

What’s the Main Point?

After God divides and disperses humanity, the countries that descend from Japheth, Ham, and Shem are listed in a table in Genesis 10.

What Can We Learn from This Chapter?

Noah’s sons settled in different places with their own families. The descendants of Shem moved to Mesopotamia and Southwest Arabia, the descendants of Ham lived in Northeastern Africa and Palestine, and the family of Japheth traveled to Asia Minor (which is now known as modern Turkey) and Western Europe.

Despite the fact that Noah was a righteous man in the eyes of God, his descendants continued to rebel against him and pursue their own desires which were not in accordance to the will of God. Later on, we will learn how Nimrod would turn against God.

Noah was faithful to God, but not always to his sons. His children were all grown up and responsible for their own lives.

To gain favor in God’s eyes, we don’t necessarily need to be related to somebody who is holy or righteous. Every person has the potential to be good and the willpower to follow God.


Dear God, thank you for allowing us to know our beginning. Because of that, we knew how much you love us. We ask you to continue to bless us and to keep us free from sin. May each of us be deserving of the salvation that your son Jesus provided for us on the cross. Give us the grace we need to follow you. Amen.

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Featured image attribution: 

1835 Bradford Map of the Ancient World and the Settlements of Noah’s Descendants by Thomas Gamaliel Bradford. This image is in the public domain. Cropped from original.