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Torah Portion Noach

Noach is the Hebrew name for Noah, and this Torah portion is one of the few named after an individual (Jethro, Korah, Balak, Pinchas, and possible Sarah (as in the Life of Sarah), are the others).

Summary:  Because of the sins of humanity, G-d warns Noah that the world will be destroyed; Elohim gives Noah instructions to build an ark and save pairs of all animals, plus his family (his wife and three sons: Ham, Shem, and Japheth) and their wives, but no one else.  After the flood subsides, the inhabitants of the ark (animal and human) debark.  G-d makes a covenant with Noah never to destroy the world by flood again.  The sign of the covenant will be the rainbow.  Noah makes a sacrifice to YHVH and also plants a vineyard.  When the grapes were ripe, Noah made wine and got drunk.  He was naked in his tent and his son Ham did not protect his father's modesty, but told Shem and  Japheth, who backed into their father's tent and covered him with a cloak without looking at him.  When Noah woke, he realized what happened and cursed Ham, Ham's son Canaan and their descendents, declaring that the would be slaves to the other brothers.  The descendants of Ham are the Africans, Japheth the Europeans, and Shem the Middle-Easterners.  Among the descendants of Ham is Nimrod, the warrior hunter.  Among the descendants of Shem is Eber a possible origin of the word Hebrew).

All the world had one language.  The population chose to build a city with a tower in Babylonian all the way to the heavens to make a name for themselves.  YHVH came down and confounded their speech and scattered them before they finished the tower.

The Torah portion ends with a genealogical list from Shem to Terach and his three sons - Abram, Nahor, and Haran.  Haron is the father of Lot, Milcah (Nahor's wife), and Iscah.  Abram is married to Sarai.  Haran dies and the family moves from Ur Casdim, heading towards Canaan.  They settle in Charan where Terach dies.