Ruth 3: Assurance of Redemption

As the story of Ruth continues, we see the parallels between Ruth’s and our own redemption.  We learn more about who she is and who Boaz is.  We begin to see the picture of a redeemer, of Boaz for Ruth, of Jesus Christ for all of us.

Ruth 3

Then Naomi her mother-in-law said to her, “My daughter, shall I not seek security for you, that it may be well with you? Now Boaz, whose young women you were with, is he not our relative? In fact, he is winnowing barley tonight at the threshing floor. Therefore wash yourself and anoint yourself, put on your best garment and go down to the threshing floor; but do not make yourself known to the man until he has finished eating and drinking. Then it shall be, when he lies down, that you shall notice the place where he lies; and you shall go in, uncover his feet, and lie down; and he will tell you what you should do.”

And she said to her, “All that you say to me I will do.”

Naomi continues to teach Ruth about the customs of the land and encourages her.  Boaz is their relative, or in some translations, the word is “kinsmen-redeemer.”  It is a picture of Jesus Christ, our Redeemer.  To be a kinsmen-redeemer, or ga’al in Hebrew, one must be family, and he must be willing able to redeem.  In ancient Israel, for one to accept this, he must be willing to marry the widow, to carry on his name and produce an heir, he would also buy back property the family sold and buy back a family member who had been sold to slavery due to poverty.  Jesus Christ, God’s Son, or, “Son of Man,” came to this earth for that very purpose.  He was willing to pay for our sins in full.  He was able because He is God and He is sinless.  Through His death and resurrection, we are redeemd by His blood, if we accept it.

feetSo she went down to the threshing floor and did according to all that her mother-in-law instructed her. And after Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was cheerful, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain; and she came softly, uncovered his feet, and lay down.

Now it happened at midnight that the man was startled, and turned himself; and there, a woman was lying at his feet. And he said, “Who are you?”

So she answered, “I am Ruth, your maidservant. Take your maidservant under your wing, for you are a close relative.”

Then he said, “Blessed are you of the Lord, my daughter! For you have shown more kindness at the end than at the beginning, in that you did not go after young men, whether poor or rich. And now, my daughter, do not fear. I will do for you all that you request, for all the people of my town know that you are a virtuous woman. Now it is true that I am a close relative; however, there is a relative closer than I. Stay this night, and in the morning it shall be that if he will perform the duty of a close relative for you — good; let him do it. But if he does not want to perform the duty for you, then I will perform the duty for you, as the Lord  lives! Lie down until morning.”

Here, Boaz shows his integrity.  He follows the customs, he keeps her pure and keeps he reputation and virtuousness.  He is determined to make things right and in the morning he will talk to the other kinsmen and make arrangements for Ruth.  More on that in the next chapter.

Boaz also notes Ruth’s character.  She is an honorable woman of good reputation, virtuous.  She obeys her mother in law and shows her kindness by not going after a younger man but seeking that kinsmen-redeemer to take care of her and Naomi.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo she lay at his feet until morning, and she arose before one could recognize another. Then he said, “Do not let it be known that the woman came to the threshing floor.” Also he said, “Bring the shawl that is on you and hold it.” And when she held it, he measured six ephahs of barley, and laid it on her. Then she went into the city.

In a sense, Boaz gives Ruth a down-payment or guarantee.  God gave us a guarantee of our inheritance in Christ, His Holy Spirit:

Ephesians 1:13-14

In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.

When she came to her mother-in-law, she said, “Is that you, my daughter?”

Then she told her all that the man had done for her. And she said, “These six ephahs of barley he gave me; for he said to me, ‘Do not go empty-handed to your mother-in-law.'”

praying in lightThen she said, “Sit still, my daughter, until you know how the matter will turn out; for the man will not rest until he has concluded the matter this day.”

So, Ruth waits.  We wait.  One day Jesus Christ will come and take His people, His bride, home to live forever with Him.  Praise God for His mercy and grace, that He made the sacrifice for us, that He paid the price for us, that we are redeemed.  I pray that you put you trust in Jesus Christ that your soul will be in poverty no more, but rich in His glory.

Ruth 2: Showing Character

The second chapter of Ruth reveals the character of Ruth and of Boaz.  Ruth meets Boaz as she is gleaning wheat in his field during the harvest.  The culture in Israel allows the poor to go to fields and “glean,” or basically pick up the scraps in a field during the harvest.  A landowner is to leave the corners of the field so that the poor can come and collect grain for their family.  Also, anything that the harvesters drop is free for the poor to collect.  What a great welfare system! Continue reading “Ruth 2: Showing Character”

Ruth: A Story of Love and Redemption

There is so much in the story of Ruth about love, friendship, loyalty, integrity, redemption; it is an example of how God makes even the worst of circumstances for good, of His redeeming love for us, His plan of salvation, the character of Jesus Christ and the purpose of His ministry on this earth.  All this is contained in four chapters.  I hope that you will go on this journey with me in the next few blog posts as we dive into the book of Ruth.  Feel free to comment on what you have learned through this story.  May God bless you and teach you as you read through it. Continue reading “Ruth: A Story of Love and Redemption”

Love One Another

The key to following Jesus is love.  Christ loved us so much He died for us and paid the penalty for our sins.  While on this earth, He set an example for us; showing compassion, loving all, particularly the “unlovable”…in the world’s eyes, not His. We are to follow His example.  The greatest commandments are to love God and love others. Continue reading “Love One Another”

Love Speaks Truth

Sometimes love can be harsh.  As parents we don’t want our kids to run out in the street.  We don’t want them too close to the fire.  We don’t want them to make poor choices.  As we grow older, we still hope that our loved ones make right choices.  If we sit by and watch, and say “that’s ok” while they make bad life choices that can affect the rest of their life or even eternity, is that love?  We need to not only set the example, but tell them the truth, show them the right way.  Share our faith and share who Jesus is and what He has done for us.

Ephesians 4:15

…”but speaking the truth in love may grow up in all things into Him who is the head – Christ”

(Feel free to read the complete paragraph or the chapter…it is always good to get the full context of any verse you may read)

Hebrews 3:13

…”but exhort one another daily, while it is still called ‘Today,’ lest any of you become hardened through deceitfulness of sin.”

Galatians 6:1-2

Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

James 5:19-20

Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins.

I have often been accused of being judgmental. Sometimes it is that people don’t want to hear the truth, but many times they are right. I forget to speak the truth IN LOVE and it comes across as I want to show them they are wrong and I am right. My intent is to build them up and steer them in the right direction but I don’t always say it in the right way. Please pray for me that I always speak the truth IN LOVE and in a way that will be bold but gentle.

Other times, as I have said, it is that people don’t want their sin exposed or don’t want to hear the truth. Matthew 7:1 is often quoted, without the rest of the passage or ignoring those above and others. It says,

“Judge not, that you not be judged. For what judgement you judge, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, “let me remove the speck in your eye”; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! FIRST remove the plank from you own eye, and THEN you will see clearly to remove the speck in your brother’s eye.”

So, when leading others and telling them the truth, be sure the truth is in you and you are following Christ in a way that honors Him. Realize your own flaws and sin. Pray, and speak in the Spirit. Above all else, LOVE. Remember, though, not only is love gentle, but sometimes love needs to be stern and up front. If you love someone, you want what is best for them, and the best for them is Jesus Christ.  More on this next time.

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