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Noach Question 1

Weekly Parsha Questions

Noach Question 1

Yechiel Shaffer

Noach is a divisive character who stands out during a dark time in world history. Known for his righteousness, the Torah tells us that Noach walked in the path of God and was the only person worthy of being saved from the terrible flood that ravished the world.

In the entire narrative of Noach, he is only record talking once:

בראשית פרשת נח פרק ט

כה) ויאמר ארור כנען עבד עבדים יהיה לאחיו

25. And he said, “Cursed be Canaan; he shall be a slave among slaves to his brethren.”

כו) ויאמר ברוך יקוק אלהי שם ויהי כנען עבד למו

26. And he said, “Blessed be the Lord, the God of Shem, and may Canaan be a slave to them.

כז) יפת אלהים ליפת וישכן באהלי־שם ויהי כנען עבד למו

27. May God expand Japheth, and may He dwell in the tents of Shem, and may Canaan be a slave to them.”

The nature of Noach’s statements are troubling to say the least but these being the only words the Torah recorded Noach saying must force us to ask:

Why is Noach silent throughout his entire ordeal?

What is Noach’s legacy in light of the only words he has recorded in the Torah?

There is an obvious connection to Avraham’s dramatic plea to save the wicked Sedom from destruction (see Bereishis 18) but what are the contextual similarities between the two? Is there a shared loneliness that they felt?