Ruth was an Israelite; Ruth was not a Moabite by Race

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Here we will make a critical presentation of Bertrand Comparet''s sermon, Ruth was an Israelite, offering our own commentary on Comparet's original material, Clifton Emahiser's notes on the sermon, and our own research in addition to theirs, hoping to edify and substantiate Comparet's premise. This version of the sermon is available at Christogenea. It is from the book Your Heritage, which was digitized with critical notes by Clifton A. Emahiser:

It is unfortunate that many preachers, in their ignorance, teach so many false doctrines. One such false doctrine is the statement that Yahshua was not of pure Israelite blood, they say one of His ancestors was Ruth, a Moabitess. From the use of this term they believe that she was racially, not just geographically, a Moabite, in this they are greatly mistaken.

The territory of the Moabites was originally east and northeast of the Dead Sea. It extended from the Arnon river on the south to the Jabbok river on the north. Then their territory went from the Dead Sea and the Jordan river on the west, across the plains and foothills, into the mountains to the east. From the name of the people who lived there, it was called Moab. It kept that name for many centuries after all the Moabites were gone from it.

When the Israelites entered the promised land, after their 40 years wandering during the exodus, the land of Moab was the first land they conquered. Yahweh had commanded Israel to totally exterminate the occupants of the lands they were to settle, in Moab they did so.

At this time, about 1450 B.C. Sihon, king of the Amorites, had conquered and occupied the kingdom of Moab and was its ruler when the Israelites came in. In Numbers 21:26, 29 we read, “For Heshbon was the city of Sihon, king of the Amorites, who had fought against the former king of Moab, and taken all his land out of his hand, even unto Arnon. Woe unto thee Moab! Thou art undone, O people of Chemosh: he hath given his sons that escaped, and his daughters, into captivity unto Sihon, king of the Amorites.”

The Israelites conquered the land of Moab, killing all the people found there. We read in Deuteronomy 2:32-34, “Then Sihon came out against us, he and all his people, to fight at Jahaz. And Yahweh, our God delivered him before us: we smote him, and his sons and all his people. And we took all his cities at that time, and utterly destroyed the men and the women and the little ones, of every city: we left none to remain.”

From here, the Israelites advanced northward into the land of Ammon, Numbers 21:33-35 describes it. “And they turned and went up by way of Bashan: and Og, the king of Bashan, went out against them, he and all his people, to the battle at Edrai. And Yahweh said unto Moses, Fear him not: for I have delivered him into thy hand, and all his people and his land; and thou shalt do to him as thou didst unto Sihon, king of the Amorites, which dwelt at Heshbon. So they smote him, and his sons, and all his people, until there was none left alive: and they possessed his land.”

Here we are going to summarize what Comparet is telling us by presenting some of the notes which Clifton Emahiser had included with his publishing of Comparet's sermons from Your Heritage. These are the versions which appear at Christogenea and Israel Elect websites.

Returning to Clifton's notes on the subject of Ruth, for this section of Comparet's essay he had said the following, which was an extract of his June, 2002, Watchman's Teaching Letter # 50:

Before getting started on our walk through Daniel and Revelation, we should consider how false opinions get started. It’s like the mistaken conclusion by the majority that Ruth was a racial Moabite. Today, that untrue concept is being used by the enemy through nominal churchianity to promote multiculturalism. If one will consult Bertrand L. Comparet’s work Ruth Was An Israelite, one will see that the Israelites had driven the Moabites out of the land of Moab hundreds of years previous to Ruth’s time. Therefore, Ruth was only a Moabite geographically; not genetically...

To give you an example of what all these so-called “Bible experts” have little knowledge of, I will cite a case where nearly every bandstand would-be, adept on Scripture fumbles the ball. That is the story of Ruth. They will erroneously claim that Ruth was a “gentile Moabite” who became an ancestor of Yahshua Christ. Anyone who makes this declaration has little-to-no conception of what the Bible is saying.

This is not at all what the Bible teaches. Under the Joshua period, the Israelites killed and displaced the occupants of the entire land of Moab, and then reoccupied the land of Moab for themselves for 300 years. Please check the following scriptures: Num. 21:25, 29, 31; 33-35; Deut. 2:32-34; Deut. 3:12-16; 23:3; Judg. 11:12-26; Zeph. 2:9; Isa. 25:10. If at first you don’t understand the connection, reread these until you do understand. Ruth was merely an Israelite who dwelt in the land of Moab. Ruth was a Moabite only by geographic area rather than by genetics. Christ was of a pure bloodline all the way back to Adam. Rahab was also an Israelite.

And the story of Rahab is another matter entirely. All of the passages which Clifton had cited in his notes were already cited by Comparet in this paper, which is obvious, but perhaps Clifton only wanted to compile them into one place. Doing so, however, Clifton stressed the importance of a few passages in bold type. They are Numbers 21:29, Deuteronomy 23:3 and Judges 11:26.

Numbers 21:29 explained that the Amorites had already conquered and taken the land of Moab which was in turn later conquered by the Israelites. Clifton's notes concluded the following in relation to this:

To understand the chronological order of events, one must fathom that: Firstly, Sihon, king of the Amorites, had conquered and occupied the kingdom of Moab. Secondly, that after Sihon had absorbed the Moabites, Israel destroyed both the Amorites as well as the Moabites whom Sihon had conquered and brought under his rule. How absurd then is the false claim made by incompetent wannabe Bible teachers that Ruth was a racial Moabite!

[Bear in mind that Clifton's notes were at the end of Comparet's paper as he had originally published them. This was his conclusion. I have chosen to reorder them for this presentation, and there is one paragraph left which we shall discuss later.]

Deuteronomy 23:3 contains the law which excludes Moabites from the assembly of Yahweh: “3 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.”

Judges 11:26 is a part of the protest of Jephthah to the Ammonites which, speaking in relation to the ancient land of Moab taken long before by the Israelites, says: “26 While Israel dwelt in Heshbon and her towns, and in Aroer and her towns, and in all the cities that be along by the coasts of Arnon, three hundred years? why therefore did ye not recover them within that time?”

We will discuss the importance of understanding the historical implications of Judges 11 and the law of Deuteronomy 23:3 in relation to the account in Ruth, after we finish with Comparet's portion of this presentation. To continue with Comparet, where he is speaking of the lands of Moab conquered by Israel:

This entire area of the Jordan river was settled by the tribes of Reuben, Gad and half the tribe of Manasseh, after all the original inhabitants, Moabites and Ammonites, had been killed or driven out. In Deuteronomy 3:12-16 Moses tells us, “And this land which we possessed at that time, from Aroer which is by the river Arnon, and half mount Gilead and the cities thereof, gave I unto the Reubenites and to the Gadites. And the rest of Gilead, and all Bashan, being the kingdom of Og, gave I unto the half tribe of Manasseh. And unto the Reubenites and unto the Gadites I gave from Gilead even unto the river Arnon half the valley, and the border even unto the river Jabbok, which is the border of the children of Ammon.”

All of this was accomplished about 1450 B.C., from this time on this was purely Israelite territory. This was even more so than the land west of the Jordan river, because in the old lands of Moab and Ammon, none were left alive. Today, Anglo Saxon Americans who live in California are called Californians, bearing this name and living in a former Mexican territory doesn’t make them Mexicans. Likewise, pure Israelites living in the old land of Moab were often called Moabites, just as those who lived in Galilee were called Galileans.

And of course Comparet is correct. Later in Scripture, when the Israelites were admonished by Yahweh for leaving Canaanites in certain places, it was not said of this land east of the Jordan, from where they had indeed all been driven out. As for Comparet's chronology, in a digression which we had made in the first segment of our ongoing presentation of Paul's epistle to the Ephesians, we had explained how the dating of the reign of Solomon as king over Judah is arrived at from certain documents, such as the quotations of Menander of Ephesus found in the writings of Josephus. From this and other sources, the reign of Solomon can be confidently estimated to have begun about 971 BC, which would place the beginning of the reign of Saul at about 1051 BC. Therefore if the Judges period was 400 years, as it seems to have been and as it is attested to have been in Acts chapter 13, then it began right around 1450 BC, and that would include the period of Joshua, so Comparet's chronology is certainly close.

Now Comparet had said here that Ruth was called a Moabite as men of Galilee in the time of Christ were called Galileans. That is true. But his argument would have been stronger if he had presented evidence contemporary to the time in question, to show that Israelite people were indeed being identified by geography in Scripture at that time. A precursory examination shows that they were.

In 2 Samuel chapter 23, there is a list of the mightiest warriors of King David. In the list are found Ikkesh the Tekoite, Abiezer the Anethothite, Mebunnai the Hushathite, Maharai the Netophathite, Benaiah the Pirathonite, Hiddai of the brooks of Gaash, Abialbon the Arbathite, Azmaveth the Barhumite, Eliahba the Shaalbonite, Shammah the Hararite, Ahiam the son of Sharar the Hararite, Ahithophel the Gilonite, Hezrai the Carmelite, Paarai the Arbite, Zelek the Ammonite, and Naharai the Beerothite. All of these men are named by geography, and possibly some of the others in the list are also identified in that manner where the references are more obscure since it is not known whether the name they are identified with is a place or a clan, or even a description of some other sort.

In the 17th and 18th centuries of our era, the English had taken their territory in America, drove out the natives and established their colonies. From that time forward, it could never be taken for granted that a reference to a Pennsylvanian or a New Yorker or a Virginian could possibly refer to a native savage even in places where the native savage place names were retained by the English. The references could only refer to Englishmen and the men of kindred European peoples who had come along with the English, such as the Dutch or the Scots. Likewise, in this list of David's mightiest warriors, and within the context of the conquests of the children of Israel, it is just as certain that none of these were Canaanites or Moabites, Ammonites or Hittites, but that they were all Israelites.

Returning to Bertrand Comparet:

Three hundred years later, about 1143 B.C., we find evidence that the Israelite occupation of the lands of Moab and Ammon was still unbroken. In Judges 11:12-26 we read, “And Jephthah sent messengers unto the king of the children of Ammon saying, What hast thou to do with me, that thou art come against me to fight in my land? And the king of the children of Ammon answered unto the messengers of Jephthah, Because Israel took away my land when they came up out of Egypt, from Arnon even unto Jabbok, and unto Jordan: now therefore, restore again those lands peaceably. And Jephthah sent messengers again unto the king of the children of Ammon, and said unto him, Thus saith Jephthah: when Israel came up from Egypt, and walked through the wilderness unto the Red Sea, and came to Kadesh; then Israel sent messengers unto the king of Edom saying, Let me, I pray thee, pass through thy land: but the king of Edom would not harken thereto. And in like manner they sent unto the king of Moab: but he would not consent. Then they went along through the wilderness and compassed the land of Edom and the land of Moab, and pitched on the other side of Arnon, but came not within the border of Moab: for Arnon was the border of Moab. And Israel sent messengers unto Sihon, king of the Amorites, the king of Heshbon; and Israel said unto him, Let us pass, we pray thee, through thy land into my place. But Sihon trusted not Israel to pass through his coast: but Sihon gathered all his people together and pitched in Jahaz, and fought against Israel. And Yahweh, God of Israel delivered Sihon and all his people into the hand of Israel, and they smote them: so Israel possessed all the land of the Amorites, the inhabitants of that country. And they possessed all the coasts of the Amorites from Arnon even unto Jabbok, and from the wilderness even unto Jordan. While Israel dwelt in Hershbon and her towns, and in Aroer and her towns, and in all the cities that be along the coasts of Arnon, three hundred years, why therefore did ye not recover them within that time?” The Israelites had held unbroken possession of the land of Moab and Ammon all that time.

Right in the middle of this period about 1322 B.C., or 130 years after the Israelites of the tribes of Reuben and Gad had occupied the land of Moab, Elimelech a man of Judah, with his wife Naomi and his two sons were driven by famine out of Judah. Ruth 1:1 records that he “went to sojourn in the country of Moab.” Note the accuracy of that expression, it doesn’t say among the people, but in the country of Moab, which was occupied by Israelites exclusively. Elimelech’s sons married women of this country, one of them being Ruth, who became an ancestor of David and through David an ancestor of Yahshua. She could not have been of any race except Israel, for no others lived there.

There was a country which continued to be called Moab and to belong to the Moabites, which was only a small portion of the original land. It was south of the river Arnon, bordered by the land given to the tribe of Reuben in the north, and by Edom in the south. David later subdued this remnant of the kingdom of Moab, and put it under tribute. Of course, no relationship of the original people of Moab to the king was ever mentioned in Scripture. If there was one, you would think that the Moabites would have tried to take advantage of it in order to relieve themselves of such tribute. In 2 Samuel chapter 8 we read:

1 And after this it came to pass, that David smote the Philistines, and subdued them: and David took Methegammah out of the hand of the Philistines. 2 And he smote Moab, and measured them with a line, casting them down to the ground; even with two lines measured he to put to death, and with one full line to keep alive. And so the Moabites became David's servants, and brought gifts.

If David were part Moabite through his great-grandmother Ruth, would the narrative omit any observation of that? Would the Moabites not protest their fate on the basis of kinship? But instead, Ruth was only a Moabite by geography, because she came from the land to the north, which had formerly also belonged to the Moabites, but now belonged to Israel.

Now concerning the chronology, Comparet may have done the best he could with the text of Ruth, but he neglected to notice the fact that it is very likely that there are gaps in the genealogies which cannot be explained or filled in. Here we shall read from 1 Chronicles chapter 2:

5 The sons of Pharez; Hezron, and Hamul. 6 And the sons of Zerah; Zimri, and Ethan, and Heman, and Calcol, and Dara: five of them in all. 7 And the sons of Carmi; Achar, the troubler of Israel, who transgressed in the thing accursed. [Carmi is not mentioned previously, so whose son is he? This indicates that something may have been missing here.] 8 And the sons of Ethan; Azariah. 9 The sons also of Hezron, that were born unto him; Jerahmeel, and Ram, and Chelubai. 10 And Ram begat Amminadab; and Amminadab begat Nahshon, prince of the children of Judah; 11 And Nahshon begat Salma, and Salma begat Boaz, 12 And Boaz begat Obed, and Obed begat Jesse, 13 And Jesse begat his firstborn Eliab, and Abinadab the second, and Shimma the third, 14 Nethaneel the fourth, Raddai the fifth, 15 Ozem the sixth, David the seventh...

From this we can determine the following genealogy from Judah to David: Judah, Pharez, Hezron, Ram, Amminadab, Nahshon, Salma, Boaz, Obed, Jesse, and then David. This is the same list, aside from a few spelling variations, that we see at the end of the book of Ruth. That is 11 generations from Jacob all the way to David, a period of at least 800 years. Of these, Amminadab was young enough to be a leader of Judah in the armies numbered on the plains of Moab in Numbers chapter 1: “4 And with you there shall be a man of every tribe; every one head of the house of his fathers.... 7 Of Judah; Nahshon the son of Amminadab.”

Paul accurately informs us that from Abraham to the giving of the law was 430 years, and from Abraham through Isaac and Jacob and then Judah we have 7 generations down to to Amminadab. But then in the Judges period which only covered 400 years, we see that during that entire time we have only 6 recorded generations from Amminadab down to David, in a period when all of the recorded life spans were also considerably shorter. For this reason I would not be so confident to set the date for the sojourn of Elimelech, esteeming the possibility that some generations are actually missing from the genealogies, but the other things which Comparet says here are valid.

If the portion of the genealogy from Ruth down to David is correct, then Ruth is the great-grandmother of David, and probably only lived about 100 years before David did, during the 12th century rather than the 14th, as Comparet has it here. To continue with Comparet:

Indeed, it could not have been otherwise, because from the beginning Yahweh very strongly condemned the Moabites and Ammonites. In Deuteronomy 23:3 Yahweh commanded, “An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter into the congregation of Yahweh; even to their tenth generation shall they not enter into the congregation of Yahweh forever.” In the tenth generation there could be as little as one part in 1,056 of Moabite blood. Even still, a person with even one part in a thousand of Moabite blood, could not enter into the congregation of Yahweh forever.

If Ruth were a Moabite, by no means were there ten generations between Ruth and David, and even a literal reading of 'tenth generation” could not have been fulfilled. According to the literal records of David's genealogy, he only followed Ruth by three generations. Therefore he could not have been admitted into the congregation of Israel. It is evident in the Psalms, that no man loved the laws of Yahweh like David did. From Psalm 40, which Christ Himself had cited: “7 Then said I, Lo, I come: in the volume of the book it is written of me, 8 I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart. 9 I have preached righteousness in the great congregation: lo, I have not refrained my lips, O LORD, thou knowest.” Continuing with Comparet:

Yahweh was always consistent in this as in other matters. In Zephaniah 2:9 we read, “Therefore, as I live, saith Yahweh the God of Israel, surely Moab shall be as Sodom and the children of Ammon as Gomorrah.” Jeremiah chapter 48, the whole chapter is a condemnation of the people of Moab. In prophesying the triumphant return of Yahshua Isaiah 25:10 tells us, “For in this mountain shall the hand of Yahweh rest, and Moab shall be trodden down under Him, even as straw is trodden down for the dunghill.” Certainly Yahweh would not take from a people, whom He condemns like Sodom, a woman to be an ancestor of Yahshua.

Never let anyone tell you Yahshua was only a mongrel, with the blood of other races in His veins. Yahweh was so insistent that even the least peasant, among His people Israel, must keep the blood line pure, under penalty of being cut off from His people for violation of this law. Yahshua said in Matthew 5:17, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets: I came not to destroy, but to fulfill”.

We have the clearest proof, both as God the Father and as God the Son, Yahweh was consistently true to His own commandments. Ruth was a pure Israelite, from the land of Moab, but not from the race of Moab.

And this concludes Bertrand Comparet's presentation of the subject, which was good, but may have been even more thorough, as we hope to have already demonstrated. However there is still much more that can and should be said.

We had purposely withheld one paragraph from the comments of Clifton Emahiser on Comparet's sermon which we had provided earlier, and here it is now:

Ruth never told Naomi “Your God will be my God”, regardless of the claims of the translators. The term “God” is from the Hebrew elohim, and means mighty one/s. It can mean heathen gods as well as our Almighty. It can also be rendered “angels” or “judges”, and Ruth lived during the Judges period. Ruth, in essence, was saying to Naomi “I will leave the jurisdiction of my judge, and your judge will become my judge.”

Now Clifton may very well be correct here and we will not dispute with him. His interpretation continues to make more sense than any others in context of Ruth 1:15, the verse preceding the one in question, where Naomi speaks of Orpah and which may be read “And she said, Behold, thy sister in law is gone back unto her people, and unto her gods [or judges]: return thou after thy sister in law.”

And with this, there may be something more that we do not fully understand from Scripture. In the Book of Genesis in chapter 31 there is recorded an issue between Jacob and Laban, because Rachel, unbeknownst to Jacob, had surreptitiously taken the household gods of her father. These household gods apparently had something to do with the inheritance, and Laban set up a pillar as a boundary and forced Jacob to take an oath, that he would not cross the boundary to do him or his house any harm. Jacob's response to Laban's stolen gods is, in part, “32 With whomsoever thou findest thy gods, let him not live: before our brethren discern thou what is thine with me, and take it to thee. For Jacob knew not that Rachel had stolen them.” That Rachel did not live very long may well have been a result of this imprecation of her own husband. So the “gods” which Ruth refers to in these places seems to be a reference to the household gods which the Hebrews had once been keeping out of tradition, as it is clear in Scripture that they maintained many pagan beliefs. The Romans had some customs which shed light on the nature of the Syrian idols for which Laban was searching. There were in Roman mythology, idols called Lares and Penates which were pagan deities that were believed to protect the family and the nation. Naomi could not guarantee her daughters-in-law any shelter or security for the future, so she was advising them to return to the shelter and security of their own families. This is a valid theory, and I hope that one day I find further information to support it.

However, in assessing the words of Ruth in this passage, I do not know if Clifton ever actually looked into alternative translations, or into the Hebrew or even the Septuagint Greek of this passage. I personally had not taken the opportunity, nor had I the initiative to do so until recently. That opportunity came when Staropramen at the Christogenea Forum had recently referred us to alternate translations of the particular passage in Ruth where it says in Ruth 1:16: "thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God".

The words shall be in that passage of Ruth are in italics in the King James Version, which indicates that the translators themselves had added those words to the text, as they do not appear in the Hebrew original. In fact, there is nothing in the original Hebrew text of this passage which insists that Naomi was inferring a future tense application for her statement. Likewise, Brenton's Septuagint has also added the words shall be, where it reads the same portion of Ruth 1:16 identically with the King James Version. But there is no future tense verb in the Septuagint Greek of this passage, which says only “your people my people and your God my God”: ὁ λαός σου λαός μου καὶ ὁ θεός σου θεός μου.

Most modern Bible versions follow the King James translation of this passage. But the translations of this passage of Ruth from both Young and Wylicffe, which can be verified online, do not take it for granted that the future tense was being inferred in the original statement.

From the Wycliffe Bible, with its odd Medieval spellings and grammar, we read at Ruth 1:16:

And sche answeride, Be thou not aduersarye to me, that Y forsake thee, and go awei; whidur euer thou schalt go, Y schal go, and where thou schalt dwelle, and Y schal dwelle togidere; thi puple is my puple, and thi God is my God;

Then in Young's Literal Translation we may read likewise:

And Ruth saith, 'Urge me not to leave thee -- to turn back from after thee; for whither thou goest I go, and where thou lodgest I lodge; thy people is my people, and thy God my God.

Now Wycliffe and his fellows translated his version from the Latin of the Vulgate, and the modern Douay-Rheims translation of the passage also adds the words “shall be”, but we can verify from the Latin original that the words do not exist in Latin either, that there is no definite indication of the future tense in the original Latin of the phrase, and that therefore the Wycliffe translation is valid. Like the Greek, all the Latin says is “populus tuus populus meus et Deus tuus Deus meus”, which, without adding any verbs, is “my people your people and my God your God”.

Of course, the Young's Literal translation is from the Masoretic Hebrew, but we have now also checked each word of the original Hebrew, and Young's is also correct. There is nothing in any of the original languages of Ruth 1:16 which would compel us to read the words “shall be” in reference to either people or God.

If Ruth were not a Moabite, but if she were instead an Israelite dwelling in the land of Moab, then Ruth 1:16 would simply be making a factual implication, that Ruth could indeed follow Naomi back to the land of Judah, because, as she very likely intended to say, “thy people is my people, and thy God my God”, as the passage reads in Young's Literal Translation. It is more honest to assume the present tense before insisting upon inferring the future tense.

But there is more. There is evidence which is internal in the Book of Ruth which also proves that Ruth was an Israelite, and the following remarks are from a June, 2009 program which I had done with Clifton Emahiser, entitled Women in the genealogy of Christ:

One thing that I think all commentators miss about the Ruth account is this: At Ruth 4:1, we see that there was another kinsman closer to Naomi in blood whose turn it was before Boaz to redeem Ruth, however his personal circumstances forbid him from doing so, and therefore the responsibility fell upon Boaz. Yet this other kinsman underwent great reproach because he could not fulfill the role of a kinsman redeemer! We see at Ruth 4:5-8 : “5 Then said Boaz, What day thou buyest the field of the hand of Naomi, thou must buy it also of Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance. 6 And the kinsman said, I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I mar mine own inheritance: redeem thou my right to thyself; for I cannot redeem it. 7 Now this was the manner in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning changing, for to confirm all things; a man plucked off his shoe, and gave it to his neighbour: and this was a testimony in Israel. 8 Therefore the kinsman said unto Boaz, Buy it for thee. So he drew off his shoe.”

To fully understand this, we must go back to Deuteronomy 25:5-10: “5 If brethren dwell together, and one of them die, and have no child, the wife of the dead shall not marry without unto a stranger: her husband's brother shall go in unto her, and take her to him to wife, and perform the duty of an husband's brother unto her. {her husband's...: or, her next kinsman} 6 And it shall be, that the firstborn which she beareth shall succeed in the name of his brother which is dead, that his name be not put out of Israel. 7 And if the man like not to take his brother's wife, then let his brother's wife go up to the gate unto the elders, and say, My husband's brother refuseth to raise up unto his brother a name in Israel, he will not perform the duty of my husband's brother. {brother's: or, next kinsman's} 8 Then the elders of his city shall call him, and speak unto him: and if he stand to it, and say, I like not to take her; 9 Then shall his brother's wife come unto him in the presence of the elders, and loose his shoe from off his foot, and spit in his face, and shall answer and say, So shall it be done unto that man that will not build up his brother's house. 10 And his name shall be called in Israel, The house of him that hath his shoe loosed.”

So we see that it is a public and open disgrace for a man to shirk the responsibility of kinsman redeemer. Yet it is wholly evident from Ruth 4:5-8 that these men were operating under the law, and citing the law, this man could easily have avoided such disgrace if Ruth were a Moabitess by race! All he would have had to do was to cite Deuteronomy 23:3: “3 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” Clearly this proves that Ruth was truly an Israelite!

The law being only for Israel, only Israelites could seek such a relief as kinsman redemption under the law in the first place. Otherwise, the kinsman who could not redeem Ruth may have merely quoted Deuteronomy 23:3: "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." Doing so he could have escaped the obligation of redemption without suffering any reproach, IF Ruth was indeed an alien. His not doing so serves to demonstrate that Ruth was a racial Israelite from the land of Moab. We must imagine that the unnamed kinsman was aware of the law, and that he knew what his options were. We cannot imagine that these Israelites were aware of what the law said in Deuteronomy chapter 25, but were ignorant of Deuteronomy chapter 23.

Synagogues, which were places where the children of Israel gathered on the Sabbaths to hear the law of Yahweh, were first mentioned in Psalm 74. The act of redemption being required here having been conducted according to the law, it is certain that all parties involved understood the law, and were acting in order to keep the law, and not to despise it. If the kinsman nearest to Naomi could have escaped disgrace by citing the law, then he could have used Deuteronomy 23:3 against Ruth. because he did not use it, therefore Ruth must have been an Israelite.

In Scripture there are often things which are ambiguous, and men are given two or more possibilities of interpretation. Men who judge the Word of God according to the Law of God show their love for Yahweh's laws, ultimately display their love for Yahweh their God, and it is a credit to them. On the other hand, men who interpret the Word of God hypocritically, and imagine Yahweh Himself to be a nullifier of His Own laws, or to be a breaker of His Own laws, those men are hypocrites and they shall be judged accordingly.

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