1 CHRONICLES 1
1 Adam, Sheth [Shet], Enosh,
2 Kenan, Mahalaleel, Jered,
2 Kainan, Mahalal'el, Yered,
3 Henoch, Methuselah, Lamech,
3 Chanoch, Metushelach, Lemech,
4 Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.
4 Noach, Shem, Cham, and Yephet.
In chapter one, we begin the history of the world. The history of God's purpose-Adam to Abraham, and Abraham's miscellaneous descendants-Ishmael, Esau, etc. From Adam to Noah-1600 years-in the first 3 verses. Three verses for 1600 years; 20 chapters for David. And 10 names in this list, the barest thing, the crown of darkness of much interesting human history and accomplishment, a time as long as from Constantine down to the present, but meaningless to God, except for a few righteous men aligned with His purpose.
Mankind got worse and worse, more and more violent and evil, and doubtless more scientific and learned. And finally God blotted them all out. We are told the last days will be the same. And we see it coming to pass on earth with ever increasing momentum.
"As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be at the coming of the Son of Man."*
Of the three divisions of mankind from the sons of Noah, the descendants of Japheth populated Europe and West Asia - all to the north. The descendants of Ham populated Africa to the south, and also at the beginning, Palestine, Babylonia and Assyria.
The descendants of Ham were clearly the early leaders of the world. Nimrod, the Hamite, founded the great cities of Babylon and Nineveh, and the other great original cities of Mesopotamia. Archeological research has shown these are the oldest known cities and that the original inhabitants were not, as later, Semetic.
At first, in accord with Gen 10, it was the Hamites in Mesopotamian and in Egypt that dominated the world. Then, the Semites-Babylon, Assyria, Persia, Israel-became dominant.
And finally, the Japheth nations - Greece, Rome, and the European nations - spread over all the earth. This is the root of all history, according to Genesis and Chronicles.*
5 The Bnei of Japheth [Bnei Yephet]; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal [Yavan, and Tuval], and Meshech, and Tiras.
6 And the [Bnei] Gomer; Ashchenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah.
7 And the sons of Javan; Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim.
7 And the [Bnei] Yavan: Elishah, and Tarshishah, Kittim, and Rodanim.
This is from Genesis chapter 10 - the basic framework of the division of the nations of the earth. Young's Concordance calls Gen.10 "the table of nations." It says that it is one of the most remarkable and unique documents in all literature. It points out that 19 names of people and places in it, mentioned no where else in all known writings, are identified by archeological research.
This is the foundation - the beginning point of all TRUE history and geography. This is dependable. This is the Word of God, as contrasted with all the vain and pompous theorizing of the wise of the world. It is very interesting and significant that many of these names of the original distribution of mankind occur again in the prophetic picture of the end of man's national history upon the earth.
The great crisis of Armageddon described in Ezekiel 38 -Gomer, Magog, Tubal, Meshech, Togarmah, and also Tarshish, Sheba and Dedan - names from the very beginning - the beginning of the divisions of the nations.
Surely, this tells us to apply these names given by Ezekiel on a broad world-wide pattern, as at the beginning of the nations. The scriptures many times tell us that all nations will participate in the final conflict.*