What’s In A Name?

“So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife.  Then he went to her, and the Lord enabled her to conceive, and she gave birth to a son.”  –Ruth 4:13

Regardless of where you stand on the Nature vs. Nurture argument, you can’t deny that the family a person is brought up in will, on some level, affect how they behave–even into adulthood.  It also affects how people perceive us.  I remember several occasions growing up when my father would hear the surname of one of my brother’s playmates, and instantly his face would either show a sign of relief or a pained cringe.  In the latter cases, it was most likely because as a firefighter, he worked closely with the police department, and it seemed that certain people with similar last names spent an awful lot of time in the pokey…

I don’t know a lot about Boaz, except that he was somehow related to Ruth’s dead father-in-law (they shared an ancestor somewhere).  I was surprised to find out that he was a descendant of Rahab, who was a prostitute that worked the wall at Jericho (and hid some Israeli spies).  Coming from the other side, though, we have Ruth, who was a Moabite.  One thing I learned (and was completely horrified by!) years ago was exactly where the Moabites came from.  The story is in Genesis 19:30-38, and it goes something like this:  Lot (Abraham’s nephew) lived in a cave with his daughters.  Since there were no other dudes around, they realized that if they were to die, the family name would die with them.  Sooooo, they got this brilliant idea to get Daddy schnockered so they could ride his jock.  They both ended up pregnant, and the first daughter named her son Moab, which sounds disturbingly similar to the Hebrew term for “by father.”

Yeah, I was a little creeped out too.  Especially since I was in junior high when I read it.

Anyhoo, so both Boaz and Ruth come from less-than-prime stock.  And they gave birth to Obed, who fathered Jesse, who fathered David (who I have already identified as a “shitbag” in a previous blog).  But here’s the kicker–the Moabite, the prostitute, and the shitbag were all direct ancestors of Jesus.  And he turned out okay…

So maybe there’s hope for Paris Hilton’s great-grandkids after all…

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2 Responses to What’s In A Name?

  1. Cyndy says:

    Ok so there is hope for Paris but what about Lindsay is there any hope for her?? Great writing and thought provoking. Keep it up!!

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