Ruth 4: Boaz Redeems Ruth

That day Boaz went and sat at the city gate with all the old men, waiting for that other guy. When that guy walked by, Boaz called to him to come, talk a moment of business. Boaz was like, I hear Naomi is selling the bit of property that belonged to her late husband, Elimelech. I’d like it, but you, my friend, have first dibs on it. Do you plan on buying it?

The guy was all, of course I’ll buy it! It’s not a bad little piece, if I remember aright. Boaz was all, Oh. Ok. I see. Too bad. You know, you’ll get that daughter-in-law of hers, Ruth the Moabite? For the Levirate marriage. To continue Elimelech’s name.

The guy was all, Really? Man, I don’t want to have to do that. Damn. Well, I don’t want the land then. It’s all yours, Boaz. And he took of his sandal and handed it to Boaz. Boaz held it up and bellowed, See here his sandal, his pledge that he cedes his right to the land and Ruth to me! And everyone congratulated him on this acquisition of wife and land.

So Ruth and Boaz married, and their first son was named Obed. Naomi doted on him as her first grandson. Obed became the father of Jesse and David’s grandfather.  Meaning David was 1/8 Moabite, and should therefore not have been qualified for religious membership, as per Deuteronomy 23. Or maybe because the Moabite-ness came from his great-grandmother, it didn’t count?

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