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The Command to Separate (Genesis 9:1)

Introductory Thoughts

Twenty-first century believers hold onto many misconceptions concerning the Lord’s desire for harmony. Far too many believers desire harmony at any cost. This harmony is commonly promoted on various ecumenical levels as spirituality and truth are sacrificed upon the altar of unity. Though the Lord certainly promotes unity within smaller units, He has never commanded unity in spite of diversity. All the way back to man’s earliest days, the Lord established His desire for His people to separate (read Genesis chapter 9). The only way for Noah to “replenish the earth” was for him and his seed to multiply and spread out upon the face of the earth. The people refused to divide, so we read the resulting judgment upon the world in Genesis chapter 11. The people stayed together and united to build a tower (Genesis 11:4). The Lord had other plans and divided the people by confounding their languages so that they could no longer communicate and cooperate in their godless endeavours (Genesis 11:5-8).

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): When the Lord asks us to separate from someone, it is always for a very good reason. Read Genesis 12:1-3. The Lord asked Abraham to leave his kinfolk and his country for a new land to make of him a great nation there. God blessed the world by sending His Son from heavens glory to be born into this great nation of Israel.
  • (For everyone): In what places did the Lord tell his people to be witnesses in Acts 1:8? What happened when the people did not split up as the Lord had commanded (see Acts 8:1)? Sometimes people do not understand why persecutions come, but God always has a reason.
  • What reasons could the Lord have for wanting people to separate? What has to happen in order for all peoples to come together? What might have to be forsaken for the sake of unity?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask God to help you have a better understanding of separation.
  • Ask God for wisdom in the matter of separation.


Have Thine Own Way, Lord!