Traditionally, the book of Ruth is studied during Shavu’ot in most Jewish congregations. We have studied the surface story of Ruth in the past, but this study will dig deeper. Ruth had no right to an inheritance from God. She disregarded her birth family and follows her mother-in-law, Naomi, and Naomi’s God for the rest of her life.
In Luke 3:1–20, Luke provided many historical events to place these happenings in time, reinforcing that this is real history. The forerunner of Messiah Yeshua, Yokhanan the Immerser (John), begins his mission by “preaching a baptism for repentance for the forgiveness of sins,” based on the prophecy from Isaiah 40.
Yokhanan’s officiating at the mikvah, or washing, of Yeshua (Luke 3:21-22) was connected to God being well-pleased with the Son of God, the “last Adam.” This connection is related to Yeshua’s statement that He needed baptism “to fulfill all righteousness.”
The importance of linking the last Adam to the “first Adam” is emphasized through the two genealogies of Yeshua (Luke 3:23–38). Some skeptics try to use the “telescoping” nature of Matthew’s genealogy for Yeshua, which skips generations to emphasize three groups of 14 generations, as the basis for saying that the genealogies of the first people in Genesis 5 and 11 also are telescoped, thus allowing for many, many more generations and vast amounts of time in history. However, unlike the genealogies in Genesis, these do not have specific ages when one generation “begat,” or “fathered,” the next, with Luke linking each name with just the Greek equivalent for “of.” And the three groups of generations in Matthew seem to represent four periods in God’s working in history to correct the sin of the first Adam with the obedience, sacrifice and deliverance of the last Adam.
The long list of names of ancestors of Yeshua can be tedious to read, but it is an important statement about what God was doing by sending the Messiah.
Thought questions from the recorded discussion
What do all the “begat” or “father of” references have to do with anything?
Why is Zerubbabel one of the most important ancestors Yeshua?
Why are there five women, four of which weren’t Israelite mentioned in the lineage of Messiah Yeshua?
What is so important about the generations from Abraham to David, from David to Babylon and from Babylon to Yeshua?
Some Jews say that Yeshua’s lineage through cursed kings makes Him ineligible to become the Messiah King. What does the prophecy of Immanuel from Isaiah have to do with this? What that prophecy good or bad?
Why does Matthew’s genealogical list differ so much from Luke’s?
Why didn’t Mary get sentenced to death for having a child outside marriage, as God’s law required?