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Ruth 2:1-4:22

Therefore humble yourselves [demote, lower yourselves in your own estimation] under the mighty hand of God, that in due time He may exalt you, Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully. [Ps. 55:22.] (1 Peter 5:6-7 AMP)

Everything in today’s reading screams “humility.” The entire book is about love, the love not of the flesh or “love” that stems from lust, but love that is described in the thirteenth chapter of I Corinthians,

Love is patient, love is kind, it is not envious. Love does not brag, it is not puffed up. It is not rude, it is not self-serving, it is not easily angered or resentful. It is not glad about injustice, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NET.)


Too often today, and probably yesteryear too, woman compete with each other, mother-daughter, mother-in-law-daughter-in-law, best friends and not so good friends. But here we are privy to a relationship that is not based on envy or self-serving, but true genuine love. Naomi didn’t ask Ruth to go into the fields, Ruth desired to go so that she could be a benefit to her mother-in-law. While she was out in the fields, Naomi was concerned for Ruth’s safety and health not her belly. While in the fields Ruth didn’t have an attitude problem looking for what “I deserve,” or “my rights,” she worked hard and long. She was respectful thus she became respected. Even before she went into the field, her love for her mother-in-law was well known and she was honored for that.

What I always marvel at when I read the Book of Ruth is God’s mercy and grace. His people, though they were not His people, like Ruth, can be anyone. Anyone that is who gives up, “And whoever has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.” (Matthew 19:29 NET.)


May all who come to this site become a “whosoever,” one who leaves all to follow the King.

It amazes me the kind of love Ruth has for Naomi..wonder if she wasn't a teeny weeny bit scared.Yet she took no gods with her for protection.She was obedient to Naomi in spite of her
saying(I returned empty),she follwed Naomi to serve her with probably little expectations because Naomi didn't guarantee she'd get married again.When she was given food she thought of Naomi.Kinda makes me really look at my idea of serving God...do I serve him cos I want to be in His good books,think alot of the reward in heaven...have I truly given everything up or do I still hold on to things in my past(just in case....)I think Ruth paints a pretty good picture of what serving really is...Right now I really love grace cos I sure need it.
God bless you all

What verse stood out to me today?

Psalm 105:19 Until the time came to fulfill his dreams, the Lord tested Joseph's character.

Hmmm... made me stop and ponder the difficult situations, especially ones that seemed to go on and on, that I've had in my life and try to see them from a different perspective. Joseph's story is so encouraging.

John 4:43-54

Royal official is "basilikos" and is only used twice by John (both in this chapter). The meaning denotes being in the king's service. The King is Herod Antipas.

Herod's men were despised by the Jews of the land. Maybe even more so than the Samaritans in the earlier part of the Chapter.

John 4:50A "Jesus replied, "You may go. Your son will live." NIV

The actual Greek tense here is present active indicative - the boy lives and will continue to live.

So the "official" went from taking Jesus at his Word to believing in Him. It appears that through his faith and evangelism the whole household believed.

Some scholars think the name of this man was given in Acts 13:1. A prophet in Antioch - Manaen (who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch) - the foster brother of Herod.
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Elliot McQuaid talks about the gospel of John as being the "Glory of God". Each miracle (of the seven primary miracles described) greater than the last.

Water into Wine: Jesus changes water into wine, Jesus is physically present, his disciples (Jews) believed in Him (could be considered prone to believe).

Healing of royal official's son: Jesus changes sickness into health, Jesus is twenty miles away, a despised man and his whole household believe in Him. (Could be considered prone not to believe before the incident.)

In both cases - the wine stewards and the father were helpless. They had no remedy for the situation. Much like us before we are saved - there is nothing we can do to help ourselves get to heaven until the Father and Jesus act. The Father draws us, and Jesus provides the "way".

RUTH
kinsman-redeemer ("goel")

Vance mentioned this role of Christ the other day, and I was going to expound upon it now. But I found a good commentary that explains my thoughts.
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The goel - sometimes translated kinsman-redeemer - had a specifically defined role in Israel’s family life.

· The kinsman-redeemer was responsible to buy a fellow Israelite out of slavery (Leviticus 25:48).

· He was responsible to be the “avenger of blood” to make sure the murderer of a family member answered to the crime (Numbers 35:19).

· He was responsible to buy back family land that had been forfeited (Leviticus 25:25).

· He was responsible to carry on the family name by marrying a childless widow (Deuteronomy 25:5-10).
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But the consideration of Jesus in this book of Ruth doesn’t begin with the mention of King David; Jesus has been through the whole book, pictured by Boaz and the office of the kinsman-redeemer.

· The kinsman-redeemer had to be a family member; Jesus added humanity to His eternal deity so He could be our kinsman and save us.

· The kinsman-redeemer had the duty of buying family members out of slavery; Jesus redeemed us from slavery to sin and death.

· The kinsman-redeemer had the duty of buying back land that had been forfeited; Jesus will redeem the earth that mankind “sold” over to Satan.

· Boaz, as kinsman-redeemer to Ruth, was not motivated by self-interest, but motivated by love for Ruth. Jesus’ motivation for redeeming us is His great love for us.

· Boaz, as kinsman-redeemer to Ruth, had to have a plan to redeem Ruth unto himself - and some might have thought the plan to be foolish. Jesus has a plan to redeem us, and some might think the plan foolish (saving men by dying for them on a cruel cross?), yet the plan works and is glorious.

· Boaz, as kinsman-redeemer to Ruth, took her as his bride; the people Jesus has redeemed are collectively called His bride (Ephesians 5:31-32; Revelation 21:9).

· Boaz, as kinsman-redeemer to Ruth, provided a glorious destiny for Ruth. Jesus, as our redeemer, provides a glorious destiny for us.

comments by David Guzik
http://enduringword.com/commentaries/0803.htm

http://enduringword.com/commentaries/0804.htm

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Note: Let me add that what is left out in Jesus' role of kinsman-redeemer is His role as the "Avenger of Blood".

It is nice to think of the Love of Christ and the beauty of his message - and that was and is certainly appropriate for the message of salvation from the "Lamb of God".

But I firmly believe that when Jesus comes back it will be as the "Lion of Judah", and He will be the "avenger of blood".

At a steady rate over the last 20 centuries, and in all 238 countries, 70 million Christians have been martyred -killed,executed,murdered -for Christ.

--from Table 1-1 in World Christian Trends,William Carey Library,David Barrett & Todd Johnson.

Satan, his minions, and his followers will answer for this and other crimes.

Ruth

Quick Hits

Boaz did not come to the fields and immediately count grain or talk to foremen - Boaz blessed his workers and they blessed Boaz.

Ruth was grateful to be with Naomi, was grateful to have the opportunity to glean food, and was humble throughout.

Boaz blesses Ruth:
"May the LORD repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the LORD, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge."
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" Ruth approached quietly, uncovered his feet and lay down."

In that day, this was understood to be the role of a servant - to lay at their master’s feet and be ready for any command of the master. So, when Naomi told Ruth to lie down at Boaz’s feet, she told her to come to him in a totally humble, submissive way.


Ruth asking for a covering or a spreading of Boaz' garment over her:

"Many people interpret this as Ruth propositioning Boaz. That demonstrates a lack of understanding of Jewish culture. On the hem of the garment was the symbols of a tribe and any symbol of authority. Ruth is acknowledging his position and seeking his favor in redeeming her. She is asking him to play the role of kinsmen redeemer." - Bill Donahue

“Even to the present day, when a Jew marries a woman, he throws the skirt or end of his talith over her, to signify that he has taken her under his protection.” (Clarke)
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Naomi changes - from bitter to a doting grandmother

"But we should also learn from what she learned. We should learn that God’s plan is perfect and filled with love, and even when we can’t figure out what He is doing and it all seems so desperate, He still knows what He is doing. We should learn that all things work together for good for those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28)." - David Guzik
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Jesus' Ancestors

So from the Son of Rahab and a Moabite wife - the line of Jesus was continued.

Verses that stood out for me today:
Psalm 105
26 But the Lord sent his servant Moses,
along with Aaron, whom he had chosen.

Proverbs 14
27 Fear of the Lord is a life-giving fountain;
it offers escape from the snares of death.

Many times I try to explain to "non-believers" that I have fear of the Lord. Most of them are just so blind, and don't understand. I go to all our church-services weekly, I follow 3 bible-studies, I go out on the streets ... and they think I HAVE to do this. Well yes, I have to do this, because I WANT to do this, not because God will punish me if I don't. I do all this, because I love the Lord and because I fear Him. Doing all this makes me so much wiser, stronger, better ...

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