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EDITOR’S NOTE: This groundbreaking series is being offered in celebration of a previously top-secret project and now unprecedented new 3-Volume book series (over 10-years in the making) from best-selling scholar Dr. Thomas Horn and biblical history and theology majors Donna Howell and Allie Anderson: THE MYSTERY OF JESUS FROM GENESIS TO REVELATION—YESTERDAY, TODAY, AND TOMORROW

In a nutshell, the book of Ruth follows the story of a young girl from a pagan city who marries into a Hebrew family, faces the death of her husband, follows her mother-in-law to Bethlehem (where Jesus was later born), and meets and marries a kind-hearted man named Boaz.

Oh, I know this one, some readers may be thinking. It’s that age-old, “Jesus’ bloodline through the obedient daughter-in-law” thing, right? That’s how Jesus “appears” in the book of Ruth?


Except, uh, not entirely.

It’s true that the bloodline of Christ moves directly through the womb of this former pagan, but Ruth is often overlooked book when it comes to the exploring the significance of the Christ type. In fact, many might recall hearing terms like “kinsman” and “something about Boaz being a redeemer,” and they might know these concepts link to Christ, but it’s likely they haven’t seen how the pieces of the big picture all connect. One major eschatological (end-times) scene of Jesus in the book of Revelation draws its sweet and beautiful roots from this endearing, four-chapter book named after a young woman the many folks largely don’t understand (or pay much attention to). The story needs to breathe to be fully appreciated, as opposed to being dropped once a year into a twenty-minute sermon about being willing to abandon a former life in pursuit of a new one (although that is a great message also!).

The narrative begins with a woman whose first marriage was on a rocky foundation. Some might even say her marriages were…forbidden.

Once upon a time, there was a pagan city called Moab. It sprang from the incestuous seduction of Lot’s eldest daughter, who bore a son from her intoxicated father’s seed (Genesis 19:30–38). The child of this deplorable union, Moab—meaning “from my father”—grew to become the father and founder of the city that, for Israel, sat like a blight on the map as a constant reminder of sexual indecency between Abraham’s nephew and great-niece.

But that wouldn’t be the only shameful thing associated with this dark place.

Jewish tradition acknowledges that Chemosh, the national protector-god of the Moabites, is “developed out of the primitive Semitic mother-goddess Ashtar”[i] (also spelled “Astarte” and appearing in the Akkadian counterpart as “Ishtar”), the goddess of war and sex, as well as the “queen of heaven” whom the Canaanites worshipped. From the Moabite Stone—a stone tablet documenting parts of the city’s history ordered by then-reigning Moabite King Mesha—we read that the local worshippers considered Chemosh to be synonymous to certain early manifestations of the Canaanite god Baal, also. In fact, the Moabite Stone, according to lines 30 and 31, state that when Baal is pleased with King Mesha, Chemosh “speaks to Mesha,” or channels his knowledge into his servant directly: “Chemosh, therefore,” the twelve-volume Jewish Encyclopedia states, “was in general a deity of the same nature as Baal.”[ii]

The Encyclopaedia Biblica: A Dictionary of the Bible from 1899 acknowledges that back when ancient cultures believed the gods and goddesses were heavenly bodies or meteoric phenomena (basically, objects in space), Chemosh was considered to be the sun by some, and by others, “Milcom-Moloch-Saturn.”[iii] Sun worship was common for countless early civilizations, but Moloch (who is alternatively known as “Milcom” or “Saturn”) was the widely known Canaanite god of child sacrifice. This could explain why, as documented in the Word of God, this bizarre mishmash of Chemosh and Moloch/Saturn would accept child sacrifice to “secure his favor.”[iv] In 2 Kings 3:27, we read that this same King Mesha—who was accepting channeled oracles (translation: weird, demonic downloads) from Baal—sacrificed his eldest son and heir as a burnt offering to Chemosh in the middle of a war with Israel. Likely out of righteous indignation, disgust, or pity at the sight of the young crown-prince of Moab burnt and displayed atop the wall as a greeting, Israel retreated. Though the Bible verse doesn’t fully explain the retreat in those terms, historians, scholars, and linguists have ruled out most other motives for retreat, such as fear. In support of this, Jewish historian Josephus says everyone who approached the sight of the crown prince’s remains “were so affected, in way of humanity and pity, that they raised the siege, and everyone returned to his own house.”[v] But regardless of what shock the sight of a charred, smoking prince would have had on the neighboring nations, King Mesha’s choice to sacrifice his son to appease the eerie Moloch/Saturn/sun-god/Chemosh deity who apparently lived in his ear wasn’t a surprise to Moabites. On the contrary, it was “done in accordance with the fierce fanaticism of the Moabite nation.”[vi] Rather than lead a public mourning of the prince who had to be burned to mollify the blood-hungry god, the king instead spent his attention and energy compiling the Moabite Stone that would document the victory and elevate his name in history—that is, until he was defeated shortly thereafter. The Moabites who lived in subjection to this king didn’t appear to be offended by this form of worship, either. They would be known in the Old Testament by the pagan-god-fearing moniker, “the people of Chemosh” (Numbers 21:29; Jeremiah 48:46).

Needless to say, even though these events happened after the time of Ruth, these were the people she belonged to, and this is the child-sacrificing, incestuous-religion climate she grew up in. The inhabitants of Moab were so loathsome to the people of God when they first came from Egypt that even the heavy enforcement of the Mosaic Law sought to exclude them from the assembly at all costs:

An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of the Lord for ever: Because they met you not with bread and with water in the way, when ye came forth out of Egypt; and because they hired against thee Balaam the son of Beor of Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse thee. Nevertheless the Lord thy God would not hearken unto Balaam; but the Lord thy God turned the curse into a blessing unto thee, because the Lord thy God loved thee. Thou shalt not seek their peace nor their prosperity all thy days for ever. (Deuteronomy 23:3–6)

Can you imagine what the Israelites would have thought of Ruth? She was a woman from “one of those kinda nations,” a natural enemy to the chaste youth of the Hebrew tribes! It’s likely she didn’t look like she does in Sunday school coloring books.

This raises the question: How would an Israelite’s (and later Boaz’) marriage to Ruth, a Moabite, not be an affront to the Law of God during that era? Some say it would have been allowed because the prohibition of this Deuteronomic law would have naturally been upon the male Moabite procreating with Hebrews, not the female marrying into their tribes, for various reasons related to the preservation of the Jewish bloodline through the sons of Israel. (This is a likely possibility, actually, as such exceptions are recorded in the Mishnah.)

Others can argue that God would have allowed it because He had a special plan for Ruth (which is true) or because Ruth became a convert to Judaism (called a “proselyte”). We can assume this is true based on her story’s narrative (Ruth 1:16), even if her moment of conversion was not documented. And technically, there was no direct law against an Israelite marrying a Moabite (as there was for, say, a Canaanite [Deuteronomy 7:1–6]). But eventually, if they’re not even allowed to enter the assembly of Israel, common sense (if nothing else) indicates a union between Ruth and an upright Israelite man would be forbidden at least socially. That would have been true for other epochs scattered about the early days of Israel, as Israel and Moab were constantly at each other’s throats (see Numbers 22; Judges 3:12; 2 Kings 1:1; 3:4, among others).

So, there you have it: a slightly more intimate introduction to this brief book that will help you grasp the importance of its later events.

The book opens by explaining that it wasn’t happenstance or a flippant decision that caused a few families from Israel to flee to Moab for shelter and food during the famine. Elimelech, Naomi, and their two sons were one such family that had little choice but to move into pagan territory and place their fate in the hands of a city that would, off and on, wage war with their own. (Israel and Moab were not at war when Elimelech settled there.) Early on, Elimelech died and his two sons married Moabite women, one of whom was Ruth. Ten years passed, and both of Elimelech’s sons passed away, leaving Naomi and Ruth alone (the other son’s wife, Orpah, went back to her family in the city). Naomi, who was returning to Israel upon receiving word that the famine had ended, couldn’t convince Ruth to stay behind with her Moabite mother, family, or people. In an odd turn of events, Ruth repeatedly refused to leave her mother-in-law’s side, boldly pronouncing one of the most oft-recited verses in the Bible: “Thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God” (Ruth 1:16).

Pretty brave, all things considered. It may not be the Moab-vs.-Israel tumult we see just after Ruth’s story in 2 Kings, but since the day Moses descended from Mount Sinai, Israel did not like the Moabites. There was almost always bad blood between them. So Ruth determinedly staying beside Naomi as a young, widowed proselyte with the tainted, evil-city blood and human-sacrifice religious background marching into a camp of Yahweh (of all places!) says a lot about how much she loved Naomi.

Back in Bethlehem, Ruth learned of a wealthy kinsman of Naomi’s on Elimelech’s side and offered to go to his fields to gather some corn for food. Boaz spotted her from a distance as she was pathetically picking up the scraps of the field and upon discovering that Naomi was a Moabite (the Moabites’ wicked reputation alone could have ruined any chances Ruth may have had of appealing to Boaz’ mercy and charity), the kinsman urged her to gather freely from his harvest, told her to enjoy the company of the other Israelite women at the site, and informed her that he had already instructed the men to leave her alone. Ruth, in a wave of extreme gratitude, prostrated herself in humility and asked how she could have found such grace in his eyes that he would acknowledge her, a strange woman (Ruth 2:10).

Some readers might be thinking: Wow, this is a lot of reflection on these briefly mentioned Old Testament characters, all for the purpose of feeling warm and fuzzy about the lineage of Christ. If that crossed your mind, you may be missing the parallel here. Go back and read that last paragraph again, paying close attention to the reaction of Boaz to the young woman in need, whose previous sin nature and idolatrous upbringing didn’t even appear to cross his mind…

Remind you of anyone?



Such an act of unwarranted, unprecedented generosity left an impact upon Ruth that, without doubt, would never escape her thoughts. She would never forget the day she and her hungry mother-in-law were starving in Bethlehem with no food, no providers, no gardens or proper lodging—just her ruddy, willing muscles, rolled-up sleeves, and the courage to wander about on a rich man’s private property—and a man named Boaz gave her nothing but kindness. Then, as if it couldn’t get any sweeter, his response was over the top:

And Boaz answered and said unto her, “It hath fully been shewed me, all that thou hast done unto thy mother in law.” (Ruth 2:11)

Think about this for a moment: Boaz did not say she could only have food from his land if she was willing to pay interest, earn her keep, work extra hours, pay him personal favors, or fulfill any other requirement. He didn’t ask her about her former husband or her past in Moab. He didn’t seek to find out whether she planned to corrupt his other field maidens with pagan ideas; whether her lifestyle was such that she needed to be under supervision while she drank from the same vessels as the men (which he offered her in verse 9); what hair-raising temple activities she may have participated in back home; if she believed in tithing; if she attended confession regularly; whether she had memorized her denomination’s fundamental statements of faith; whether she had ever smoked a cigarette; if she had ever felt tempted to smoke a cigarette; how she felt about dying eggs on Easter; how long she’d been a member of her local church and whether she was current on her membership dues; whether she raised her hands during worship in church on Sundays; or whether blonde was her true hair color. Nothing! (And yes, I know this list is sarcastically anachronistic—outside the boundaries of accurate space and time—but to make clear the point: Boaz did not even care about her moral codes or reputation, which were huge considerations in Israel’s history. Might we learn something from this story about the way we treat people outside the church today?) It’s brutally straightforward: Ruth asked Boaz why in the world he would have ever showed her such kindness, acceptance, and grace, and his answer was, quite simply, because she had shown unconditional love for a widow named Naomi.

If you listen real close, you might be able to hear the verse we have in mind, straight out of the mouth of Christ, echoing the end of Boaz’ convictions…

Truly I say to you, inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these, My brothers, you have done it to Me. (Matthew 25:40)

By now, you’ve probably picked up on why so many ministers relate Boaz as a type of Christ, although it is usually (and unfortunately) skimmed over so quick that we miss the moment. Again, remember, this is the God-breathed, Living Word we’re talking about. Let it breathe

The rest of Boaz’ statement showed that he was aware of more than just the kindness offered to Naomi: “and how thou hast left thy father and thy mother, and the land of thy nativity, and art come unto a people which thou knewest not heretofore. The Lord recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust” (Ruth 2:11–13). In other words, he said, “You left everything you’ve ever known, your family, your people, your city, and you’ve come here to a bunch of strangers. May the Lord God of Israel give you full reward for this work and shield you under His wings, now that you are His.”

Ruth returned to Naomi from her prosperous encounter with Boaz, and Naomi was quick to inform Ruth that Boaz was “one of our nearest kinsman” (Ruth 2:20). As such, Naomi concocted a plan to see Ruth and Boaz married. This brings us to the famous “uncovering the feet while he sleeps” scene. Ruth uncovered the “feet” of Boaz, and he awakened, asking (in the dark, we presume) who was there. Ruth revealed her identity and asked him to spread his “skirt” over her because he was a “near kinsman” (Ruth 3:9).

We may have just reminded some readers of a rumor they’ve heard. Briefly (and respectfully), we will address this.

There is much speculation regarding what the language used to describe this particular event suggests, as the “covering” or “uncovering” of one’s “feet” in the Old Testament is a well-known euphemism referring to a man uncovering his lower region to relieve himself, such as Samuel did when he entered a cave to “cover his feet” (1 Samuel 24:3). Several explanations for this euphemism have been suggested, including the concept that the feet were covered for royalty so the man wouldn’t soil them when he “restroomed,” or that clothing moved out of the way for a man to relieve himself would naturally drop to the feet. Over time, many scholars agree, the term likely came to refer to certain acts involving women as well, as some commentaries acknowledge that the newborn babies coming from between a woman’s “feet” in Deuteronomy 28:57 is one example. David, in an attempt to cover his sin of impregnating Bathsheba, told her husband, Uriah, to go home to her and “wash his feet,” with the context appearing to refer to when Uriah refused to “lay” with his wife in response to David’s command (2 Samuel 11:8–11). More word studies show the seraphim from Isaiah’s prophecy are found modestly covering their “feet” with their wings (Isaiah 6:2). A natural reading of this Scripture, which leaves other clothing articles up for assumption, leaves an awkward visual that begs for further explanation, until we can imagine it’s a type of loincloth covering.

Thus, with “feet” possibly indicating below the belt instead of below the ankles” in Old Testament terminology, many have assumed Naomi instructed Ruth to go to Boaz at night and uncover what only a wife was allowed to see. If this is the true meaning behind the story, Boaz would have been put on the spot, so to speak, to accept Ruth as his wife by obligation of moral code. They had already been intimate with each other to some degree by the time he had awakened to see Ruth by his side, making her request to be brought under his “skirt” a symbol of consummate marriage right there in the moment (even though the narrative doesn’t appear to suggest anything further happened physically in that regard). Elsewhere in Scripture—as well as in Hebrew studies and historical accounts of the early Arabs—we know that “spreading a skirt” over someone did represent one person’s covenant with and over another, protectively. Observe in Ezekiel 16:8 how the Lord, Himself, refers to this covenantal act: “‘Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time was the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee,’ saith the Lord God, ‘and thou becamest mine.’”

Thus, two possibilities are in range here: 1) Ruth exposed Boaz’ literal feet, the cool night air awakened him, and they further conversed about her becoming his wife; or 2) Ruth exposed Boaz in a more intimate way so that, when he awakened, he would be obligated to marry her or react against her in the moment.

Either way, Ruth’s proposal attempt, as it might be considered, should not be viewed through a modern lens.



As the Old Testament frequently relates, a man and woman could “go into a tent” and emerge married. So what may appear in today’s society to be an indecent move may have been, for Ruth and Boaz, in the visual coverage of darkness (we assume nobody “left the lights on” back then), a marriage proposal and nothing more. It’s not like today when a young man gets on his knee to propose, and six months later the promise of marriage is consummated. Had Boaz the mind to, as a single man, he could have consummated the union with Ruth in that moment, and the new dawn would have brought an announcement of marriage. Most scholars agree this was the hope of both Ruth and Naomi, as is seen in Ruth’s request: “spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsman” (Ruth 3:9). In other words, “Spread your skirts over me and let’s be married here and now because you’re the nearest kinsman to me: a widow of Elimelech’s son.” Placing today’s modern ideas into this scene, regardless of the “feet” interpretations, could lead to a corruption of an otherwise pure story. In verse 3:14, Ruth “rose up before one could know another,” which speaks of the fact that she rose and left without her and Boaz having consummated their marital plan (“knowing each other” is another euphemism for that particular marital act between a man and woman). Thus, the physical innocence on the part of these two is present in this scene, no matter what “feet” means in Ruth’s proposal of marriage.

With that addressed, Boaz’ response as recorded in the subsequent verses shows that Ruth’s integrity had been under Boaz’ watchful eye for some time. All the while she was in a position to consort with other young men, some of whom were rich, Boaz acknowledged, she chose to save herself for Boaz. He honored her chastity, recognized her kindness, called her a “virtuous woman” (Ruth 3:11), and then admitted something that may have been quite a blow: Yes, he was her near kinsman, just as she said, and he had every intention of taking her as bride…but one other kinsman was nearer to her than he. In the morning, he would ask this relative if he intended to marry Ruth. If so, then Boaz would bless the marriage; if not, he would take her as his own and their relationship would be official. Meanwhile, he instructed Ruth to go to bed and await his news.

The next morning, as planned, Boaz met with the man he had spoken of as well as the elders of the city. He explained that Naomi’s property was for sale…but with it came the obligation to produce offspring through her son’s widow, Ruth. Upon hearing this, the kinsman Boaz consulted stated that he had family of his own to tend to and said he needed to focus upon the inheritance he would leave them; he was not in a position to buy Naomi’s land and settle down with the young widow. With witnesses present, Boaz purchased Naomi’s land on the spot. Everyone was happy for him, wishing him the same level of prosperity in producing offspring as Rachel and Leah had been for Israel. Ruth and Boaz married, and right away the Lord blessed their marriage with a son. His offspring, too, would be incredibly important.

We’ve explained the characters and their interactions for more than just a lesson in genealogy or establishing Boaz as a type of Christ—though he is a beautiful one. In the Old Testament, we occasionally run across the terms “kinsman redeemer” or “nearest relative,” though both derive from the Hebrew word go’el. In proper context, these terms refer to the passing of property to younger generations. If one fell into rough times financially and the property was out of reach for his sons (for instance, if he’d leveraged or “mortgaged” it to pay a debt elsewhere and couldn’t afford to buy it back), then the property owner’s go’el could pay it off for him. In Ruth’s case, Naomi’s husband and sons died, leaving two women to manage a property they obviously couldn’t afford. Thus, Boaz became Ruth’s “redeemer,” purchasing her property and restoring it to her.

This type of real estate transaction at the time involved a legal document. When Ruth married her first husband, the terms of the property sale would be written upon an ancient form of parchment, and the back of that parchment would be signed by witnesses and whichever go’el was present as a potential future redeemer of the land (see Jeremiah 32:11). The document was then rolled into a scroll and sealed to keep the details private, though the signatures of the witnesses were viewable from the outside. In the case of a lost property, death, or other misfortune, only another kinsman (go’el) would be given the right to break the seal to view the contract and see what must be done to keep the property—and its inhabitants (wife, kids, elderly relatives, etc.)—in the family.

Thus far, the image is perhaps a bit underwhelming, seeming like nothing more than an ancient escrow officer notarizing signatures and melting a wax stamp of approval of the purchase. If it ended there, the account of Ruth would be at least a sweet love story of how one morally intact Israelite man took pity on a former pagan for the sake of his relative and loved her regardless of her former beliefs. That, alone, could place Boaz in the role of a Christ type. But if we flip over to Revelation, the parallel becomes a thing of momentary terror for both us and the Apostle John:

And I [John] saw in the right hand of him [God] that sat on the throne a scroll written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the scroll, and to loose the seals thereof?” And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the scroll, neither to look thereon. And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the scroll, neither to look thereon. (Revelation 5:1–4)

Prior to Christ, no person in history could ever be worthy to redeem humanity. Nor has any human ever been “kin” to God. In “Boaz terms,” we were living on a property with no owner, doomed to wander the earth forever as “no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth” would be “able to open the scroll” addressing our residence to consider any kind of repurchase, redemption, or resale of our property to another caretaker who would see to our provision. It’s heart-wrenching to see John in this passage, weeping at what scholars say represented the damnation of a forgotten humankind with no promise or future. We would have wept, too. What a tragic end for all of us…

But in the very next verses (Revelation 5:5–10), we are introduced to the utmost Kinsman Redeemer, Jesus Christ:

And one of the elders [one of the witnesses present at the time this scroll was sealed and therefore one of the only ones who would know what was stated inside] saith unto me, “Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the scroll, and to loose the seven seals thereof.” And I beheld…in the midst of the elders [the witnesses], stood a Lamb [Jesus] as it had been slain… And he came and took the scroll out of the right hand of [God, who] sat upon the throne. And when he had taken the scroll, the…elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints. And they sung a new song, saying, “Thou art worthy to take the scroll, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.”

What follows that passage is a scene of praise wherein every living creature both in heaven and on Earth worship the Lamb who was the only Kinsman of humankind with the right to break the seals on the scroll of our planet’s fate—the only Lamb whose spilled blood was the currency for the purchase of the land and its otherwise lost inhabitants. Jesus, the only entity in the universe who is literally related to both humanity and God, was willing to take the burden of our fate into His hands, break open the otherwise unbreakable seven seals, and unroll the contract to reveal its details for all to see and for all to inherit freely. Christ is our Relative. Without His blood-bought purchase, our destiny would be no more glorious than remaining spiritually lethargic while we wander the damned corners of the earth, belonging to none other than the prince of the power of the air and awaiting death and judgment.

Behold, the Christ of Ruth!

Boaz’ gentle, loving interactions with Ruth never once required her to account for the pagan, child-sacrificing, incestuous religious worldview she was raised in as he simply redeemed her in front of witnesses and elders, making nothing of her life before but a distant and irrelevant memory as he bought her and brought her into a new life and new promises. In his loving arms she would remain and never look back to what the world tried to make of her.

Jesus’ gentle, loving interactions with the human race never once require us to live in the bondage of past baggage or sin. No matter how grievous our wages of sin and death, new life awaits all inhabitants of this property—earth—and Jesus submitted Himself to the cross, paying the price for the redemption contract in blood, without a single person being required first to account for who and what we were before we found Him. In front of the heavenly elders, Jesus tore open that scroll and redeemed us all: We are truly the blood-bought, the Church, the redeemed, as the old hymns say. New life! New promises! And it is into the loving arms of Jesus and the Father that we fall, accepting this generous and gracious gift we could have never earned, while we never look back to what the world tried to make of us.

This gift is as free to all sinners who believe in the Kinsman Redeemer—our precious Go’el—as it was to Ruth when her precious go’el redeemed her. What a powerful picture we so often miss!

But, of course, the end of the story also involves another profound development in addition to the beauty of this scene from Revelation. Ruth and Boaz had Obed, who had Jesse, who had David—the David, the one and only boy who would kill giants with a sling and become the greatest king of Israel, the very man whose legacy would point by title of “Son of David” to the Messiah! It is thus twofold, at least: Jesus is in the story of Ruth as the Kinsman Redeemer, foreshadowed by the righteous and kind Boaz; He is also in the story of Ruth through the bloodline that would produce the Davidic King of the Jews—the very One who would later carry out His own “Boaz” story of redemption for all mankind.

Seriously, we couldn’t weave these elements together by mere human imagination. The Word is beautiful—so wonderfully, infinitely beautiful—in its extension of love and grace to us from the very beginning. It’s worthwhile, in the case of Ruth, to slow down and allow the big picture to come into focus instead of rushing through it the way we often do. And, as hard as it may be to believe, we have one more point to make about how Ruth’s life and legacy wind into the New Testament story of the cross. Albert Barnes, in his commentary, notes a detail that would, once again, be easy to overlook: “Ruth, the Moabitess, was undoubtedly one of the first-fruits of the ingathering of Gentiles into the Church of Christ, and so an evidence of God’s gracious purpose in Christ.”[vii]

Wow…Ruth from Moab, a pagan, a Gentile, a girl whose people were listed as off-limits in Deuteronomy to prevent them from spiritually contaminating the tribes of Israel, was brought into the family of Yahweh as one of His own, and she was blessed with a child. Her story would resonate, as Barnes states, with the New Testament message of this same kind of spiritual adoption.

We can’t think of a better note to end this chapter on. Praise the Lord for accepting this Gentile, and praise the Lord for accepting us, as well, into the family of God.

UP NEXT: Jesus In 1 & 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Kings, and 1 & 2 Chronicles

[i] Morris, Jastrow Jr., George A. Barton, “Chemosh,” Jewish Encyclopedia: Volume 4 (New York: Funk & Wagnalls, 1906), 9–10.

[ii] Ibid.

[iii] Cheyne, M. A., D. D., Thomas Kelly, and John Sutherland Black, “Chemosh,” Encyclopaedia Biblica: A Dictionary of the Bible: Volume 1: A–D (London: Adam and Charles Black, 1899), column 738.

[iv] Morris, Jastrow Jr., George A. Barton, “Chemosh,” Jewish Encyclopedia, 9–10.

[v] Josephus, F., & Whiston, W., Works of Josephus: Complete and Unabridged (Peabody: Hendrickson, 1987), 247.

[vi] Jamieson, D. D., Robert, (n.d.). A Commentary, Critical, Experimental, and Practical, on the Old and New Testaments: Joshua–Esther: Volume 2 (London, Glasgow: William Collins, 1872), 378.

[vii] Barnes, Albert, Barnes Notes. Kindle locations 22904–22908.

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