After the flood as explained in Genesis 9, there were only eight people left on earth; Noah and his family. God put them in charge of everything on earth; telling them to be fruitful and increase in number to fill the earth (v. 1).
Before the flood, they ate vegetables and fruits. Now they would not only be blessed with just vegetables and fruit but meat under certain stipulations. They were not to eat the blood with the meat (vv. 3-4).
God made people in His own image and life was to be of great value so murder should be dealt with through capital punishment or execution. Then He made a covenant with Noah that there would never be a flood again to destroy all life on earth and the sign of this covenant is the rainbow (vv. 8-11).
We then get the account of Noah’s three sons (Shem, Ham, and Japheth) from whom the whole earth was populated. Noah lived many years after the flood as a farmer and in this passage (vv. 18-29) we get the account about his sons. This passage says Noah started a vineyard (v. 20). From the grapes he produced wine and on one occasion drank too much wine. It must have been a rather warm day because Noah removed his clothing and lay naked in his tent.
Unfortunately, Noah was seen naked and drunk in his private tent by his son named Ham and all this caused a situation. Shem and Japheth took a garment and without looking at the naked body of Noah, covered him with a garment (v. 23). Back then, I guess cooling off with less clothing was considered a far greater transgression than today.
Even though we have air conditioning today, you can’t watch TV, go on the internet, or to your local water park without seeing some who push the limit on wearing the least amount possible without being charged with a crime. Anyway, because of the way Ham handled the situation, he and his descendants were punished.
I guess what made Ham’s actions appalling to Noah is the lack of respect and then spreading this embarrassing incident to bring down his reputation. With God’s help, we must be trusted to understand and take care of our fellow Christian’s weaknesses. We are to build up and not tear down. We are to encourage, help, teach, and show respect for each other.
This day with God can be amazing if we sincerely believe that each human weakness will be overcome and one person at a time, support each person with respect; celebrating progress along the way by praising God for transformation.