Ruth was not a Moabite

Referencing information from a listener – well done research!

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 21:25,29 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.”

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.

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 land peaceably. And Jephthah sent messengers again unto the king of the children of Ammon, and said unto him, Thus saith Jephthat: 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.

Indeed, it could not have been otherwise, because from the beginning Yahweh very strongly condemned the Moaabites 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.

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 bloodline 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.


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