The Call Of Abram – The Sons Of Japheth, Ham, Shem (G-10-HBS)

Origin of the Nations of the World

This is a chapter of genealogies, of families, which are the origin of the nations of the world. This chapter is far more important than the space I’m giving to it would indicate.

If you are interested in ethnology and anthropology and the story of mankind on the earth, you may want a far deeper study than you will find here.

Neither the sons of Japheth nor the sons of Ham ever comprised what some folk call the lost ten tribes of Israel. Here in chapter 10 we have the genealogies of all three sons of Noah.

First we see the genealogy of Japheth (vv. 2–5), then the genealogy of Ham (vv. 6–20)—this was the outstanding people at the very beginning and finally the genealogy of Shem (vv. 21–32).

Notice that throughout the Bible God follows this same pattern of giving the rejected line first and saying a word about it, then He drops that subject entirely and does not bring it up again.

Finally, He gives the accepted line, the line which is leading to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Genesis 10:1 KJV

[1] Now these are the generations of the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth: and unto them were sons born after the flood.

Genesis 10:1

Now these are the generations of the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth: and unto them were sons born after the flood.


  • Genesis 10 opens and closes with verses that bracket the genealogies between them and reveal their purpose.
  • Verses 1 and 32 both refer to the chapter as a record of the sons of Noah . . . after the flood, and verse 32 states that these lines of descent and the geographical distribution of the respective clans ultimately produce “nations” (people groups living in specific territories) that Abram and the patriarchs encounter later.
  • The chapter rehearses the genealogies of Noah’s three sons, beginning with Japheth, who seems least influential of the three in history.
  • Next comes Ham and then Shem, the latter being our next focus.

SONS OF JAPHETH 

You can see that the majority of us in America descended from these lines.

Genesis 10:2-5 KJV

[2] The sons of Japheth; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.

[3] And the sons of Gomer; Ashpenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah.

[4] And the sons of Javan; Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim.

[5] By these were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands; every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations.

Genesis 10:2

The sons of Japheth; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.


  • The listing of Japheth’s descendants is briefer than the others. Among the persons and peoples mentioned is Javan, an ancient name for the Greek people. It is thought that many of Japheth’s descendants migrated to Europe.

Genesis 10:3

And the sons of Gomer; Ashkenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah.


  • The descendants of Gomer came from near the Upper Euphrates region north of the Black Sea.
  • The descendants of Ashkenaz were the later Scythians who inhabited the region between the Black and Caspian Seas.
  • Riphath is near Carchemish.
  • The descendants of Togarmah are associated with Til-garimmu, the capital of Kammanu in modern Armenia.

Genesis 10:4

And the sons of Javan; Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim.


  • Elishah is probably Cyprus.
  • Tarshish is possibly southwest Spain (see note on Jon 1:3).
  • The Kittim were inhabitants of southern Cyprus.
  • The Dodanim were inhabitants of the island of Rhodes, later a territory of Greece.

Genesis 10:5

By these were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands; every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations.


  • seafaring peoples . . . various lands: They settled around the Mediterranean and on various islands.
  • Language: This occurred after the Tower of Babel episode.

I hope that you have really enjoyed this post,

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2 thoughts on “The Call Of Abram – The Sons Of Japheth, Ham, Shem (G-10-HBS)

  1. Thank you for sharing this great review of Genesis 10 and reminding the reader of the importance of family and the table of nations. 

    Anybody who wants to have a fair appraisal of the human family, will benefit from reading this post. 

    It is interesting to read how the sons of Noah multiplied and had more sons, after the flood and that Genesis 10 starts and concludes with the genealogy of the family.  

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