The children of Ham possessed the land from Syria and Amanus, and the mountains of Libanus; settling all that was on its sea coasts, and as far as the ocean, and keeping it as their own. Some indeed of its names are utterly vanished away; others of them, being changed, and another sound given them, are hard to be discovered; yet a few there are which have kept their names entirely.
The sons of Ham spread out primarily toward Africa. Cush is mentioned often in Scripture, and refers to Ethiopia. One notorious son of Cush, Nimrod, is listed. He moved east into the area of Babylon and Ninevah. (I’ll say more about him later.) Mizraim is Egypt, Put probably refers to Libya, and Canaan, of course, to the many peoples inhabiting the land of Palestine during the conquest.
Shem, the third son of Noah, had five sons, who inhabited the land that began at Euphrates, and reached to the Indian Ocean.
Of the sons of Shem, Eber is named at the head of the list (10:21) and again later (10:24) because the word “Hebrew” probably comes from his name. Elam was the ancestor of the Elamites, who lived in southeast Mesopotamia. Asshur was apparently the founder of the Assyrians, although nothing is known of him. Arpachshad was in the line leading to Abraham (11:10-26). Lud was probably the Ludbu of the Assyrians, situated on the Tigris River. Aram is the name of the Aramean tribes which lived on the steppes of Mesopotamia.
A mysterious note is attached to the name of Peleg (10:25, whose name in Hebrew means “divided”), that “in his days the earth was divided.” Most likely this refers to the dividing of the nations at Babel. Thus chronologically, Genesis 11 fits in here, which may be during Nimrod’s time (three or four generations after the flood). If Nimrod built Babylon, then God could have scattered the nations in his time, after which he moved north to conquer Ninevah.
If you recall from the last session, SHEM was the one who was Blessed. He and Japheth. While Ham and his son Canaan were cursed.