These are the generations of Shem: Shem was an hundred years old, and begat Arphaxad two years after the flood:…
The general title is expressed thus, "These are the generations of Shem." Of these Moses was speaking (chap. Genesis 10), so far as Peleg, whose name was given him upon the occasion of dividing the earth; by way of parenthesis, he includes the history and cause of this earth's division, in the former part of this chapter. He now returns to draw up the line full unto Abram, about which this title is set in the front. Consider the use of all these mentioned in the title.
1. To point where the Church of God was after the flood.
2. To show God's providence in singling out some generations in the world for His Church, these and not others.
3. To make known to us the state of the Church either for truth or for corruption at this time.
4. To continue to us the right chronology of the world, not for speculation only, but for pious practice to us, upon whom the ends of the world are come.
5. To make us better understand some passages of the prophets mentioning these persons or their conditions.
6. To show us the true line of Christ, and to confirm the New Testament given by Him. Every generation in the Church from the flood is but to bring Christ nearer.
(G. Hughes, B. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: These are the generations of Shem: Shem was an hundred years old, and begat Arphaxad two years after the flood: