Matthew 1:5b meaning

Matthew continues the genealogy and includes mention of a third Gentile woman.

The third gentile woman that Matthew mentions is Ruth. Ruth was the wife of Boaz. She lived near the end of the period of the Judges. Her story is told in the Book of Ruth. Ruth was a Moabite. Even though the Moabites worshiped false gods, with cultic practices that included sexual immorality and human sacrifice, it is worth noting that the Bible never says anything negative of Ruth. Her virtue, faithfulness, and story of redemption was deemed worthy by God of dedicating an entire book of the Bible to memorialize her.

Ruth married the son of Naomi, a Hebrew whose family was sojourning in Moab. After her father-in-law, brother-in-law, and husband died, Ruth remained faithful to her mother-in-law, Naomi, and worshiped the true God. The two returned to Bethlehem, and even though she was a foreigner, Ruth’s virtue caught the attention of Boaz, a prominent and righteous man who was also related to Naomi, and in line to be a kinsman-redeemer. Boaz and Ruth were soon married. Ruth, the Moabite, gave birth to Obed, the grandfather of the shepherd David who would become king of Israel.

Biblical Text:

5b Boaz was the father of Obed by Ruth, and Obed the father of Jesse.

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