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An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter the assembly of the Lord; even to the tenth generation none of his descendants shall enter the assembly of the Lord forever. Because they did not meet you with bread and water on the road when you came out of Egypt, and because they hired against you Balaam the son of Beor from Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse you. (Deuteronomy 23:3-4)

As we discussed in the previous devotion, those who were born into the families of Ammon and Moab were considered illegitimate in relation to Israel because they were born of an incestuous union. Consequently Ruth, being a descendant of Moab and the great-grandmother of King David, has caused some commentators, through the years, to ponder whether or not the marriage of Ruth and Boaz was legitimate. In other words, the issue has raised the question as to whether David’s monarchy was legitimate in the eyes of the Torah or was he a mamzer?

Obviously, by virtue of the fact that God chose Him and commissioned Samuel to anoint him as king settles the issue once and for all. Still, there are those who pose the question as to why God would allow David’s house to have such murky origins. And if God would allow David to be placed under such scrutiny, then we must take the topic to the next step — what does this say of Messiah’s “origins”? To be quite blunt, Judaism considers Yeshua’s background to be murky; the Talmud goes so far as to accuse Him of being a mamzer. So then, why would God have Moses write something in the Torah that is, seemingly, contradicted by those He raises up to lead His people? Why would He provoke such an enigma?

Personally, I believe He does it for just that reason –- to require us to grapple with something very difficult to understand, thus underscoring the fact that His thoughts are far beyond ours. In other words, just because it doesn’t make sense to me doesn’t mean it doesn’t make sense. When people of faith are faced with such a scenario, we must conclude that the problem is not on His end but on ours. In turn, this forces us to decide in whom and in what we will place our trust — the Almighty and His Word or our own understanding? Those who place their confidence in Him will not be disappointed because, in the end, we will see that He is just and truthful — He never contradicts Himself. So then, let us reaffirm that these familiar words are true and relevant:

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Blessings and Shalom,  




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