We pick up with the messy family tree that brought in our perfect Savior, Jesus. From Matthew 1:5-6…
5 Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, 6 and Jesse the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife,
We see that the mother of Boaz, our hero in the story of Ruth, was Rahab. The story of Rahab is told in the book of Joshua. Like Ruth, Rahab lived in a foreign land…Jericho, the first city God calls the Israelites to conquer as they begin their entry into the Promised Land. Prior to the conquest, Joshua sends spies into the land and they encounter Rahab. A prostitute. She has heard of the Israelite God and hid the men to keep them safe. As a result, the Israelites spared her and her family when they ultimately destroyed Jericho. Like Ruth, Rahab made a decision to turn from the gods of her city and follow the God of the Israelites – our God, the one true God – and live among them. Like Ruth, she believed and followed. Rahab was the mother of Boaz! Think of the lessons she taught him as a child, recounting her redemption story and all that God had done for her.
Though not mentioned by name, we also see Bathsheba (cited here as “Uriah’s wife”), the mother of King Solomon. Her story is told in 2 Samuel. She is listed in this passage as “Uriah’s wife” because while married to Uriah she commits adultery with King David (who pursued and called on her). Their little encounter can’t be covered up when she becomes pregnant, but her husband is away at battle. David devises a plan to cover his sin by bringing Uriah home to spend time with his wife and hopefully make it seem as if the child is his. Uriah is a man of honor and refuses to go to the comfort of his home while his colleagues are in battle. David’s plan backfires so he comes up with plan b…a way for Uriah to get killed in battle. Bathsheba gives birth to a son who God causes to die shortly after birth. They marry and their second son is Solomon, listed in this passage. He becomes a great king of Israel…from a broken and messy union.
A foreigner, a prostitute, adultery, tragedy, pain…all part of the family line of Jesus. If you ever think God only uses perfect people and clean circumstances to carry out His plans, let this remind you that is not the case at all.
David sought after God, he begged forgiveness from God, He repented and turned his life around. We are never too far gone to be redeemed.
Take some time to read over Psalm 51, David’s prayer after he was confronted by a good friend following the adultery with Bathsheba. Spend time reflecting on God’s power, mercy and grace. Like David, pray to God. Seek forgiveness and a pure heart to be used in a mighty way in God’s mighty plans.