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Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The Legacy of a King

While I dearly love Scripture and this story in particular, I do get a little peeved at the way this specific book wraps up.  The author is content to cram the top two events in any woman's life into a few short verses.  Clearly the author is a man because we see no details of the wedding and/or birth of Ruth and Boaz's child.  For heaven's sake, we know how many pounds of barley she carried on her back but there is absolutely no mention of her dress or what the invitations were like or any description of her ring, not to mention there was no labor or delivery story what so ever!!  Would it have killed him to throw in a few verses to give us a bird's eye view of these important events in Ruth's life??

 Read verses 13-22 in the fourth chapter of Ruth.

 Here we see that Ruth and Boaz have married and have been immeasurably blessed with having a son.  I find verse 13 so amazing.  We see here for the second time in this whole book a reference to the Lord directly.  Certainly we know that the Lord has been at work behind the scenes throughout the entirety of this story, but here is the second reference in the whole book - and look at the significance!  We know that Ruth had been married to Mahlon for a while {presumably ten years or so} and had never conceived.  She and Boaz were meant to have a baby, this baby in particular.

Think back to earlier in our time together and try to remember what Naomi told Ruth and Orpah.  She wanted them to turn back as she was unable to provide husbands or children for her daughters-in-law.  She could only see one way to solve her problems.  But God, {don't you love that?  The words, "but God..." only leads to some of the most amazing events!!} had other plans to fulfill.  Who could have ever guessed that God himself would provide an Israelite child that would one day be Naomi's own redeemer.

 I am always astounded by the fact that human impossibility amplifies God's glory.  When we are up against a wall, when all of our resources are gone and our hope is dwindling, and the odds are mounted high against us, God steps in.  He gets to shine brightest when the night is darkest.

 God has been faithful to Ruth.  She has been faithful to God.  He has brought her through loss, love and now a legacy that will endure throughout eternity.  I don't know about you, but I never expected Naomi to come back into the picture.  I thought she would fizzle out and fall by the wayside.  I guess it makes sense that we began the story with her and we will finish with her as well.  In essence, our story has come full circle.  Naomi is found at the end of this tale redeemed by her own grandson, Obed.  He has restored her hope and her joy.  I can't imagine that there is much sweeter than that. Though he is not mentioned in Scripture, his descendants are of extreme importance. 

Try not to see the genealogy in this last part of the book of Ruth as a dry list of hard to pronounce names.  It is so much more that that.  We know little of most of the names in this list but take a close look at the last four names.  We can read that ," Boaz was the father of Obed.  Obed the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of David." {v. 21,22}  {Rarely, if ever, were women mentioned in the annals of genealogy.  Especially in a royal line such as this.  That is why we don't see any mention of Ruth in this section.}  I could have you go and research all these lines and descendants of people throughout Scripture, but honestly how it all ties together and how they are all connected is time consuming to say the least.  I'll tie it up for you here, to the best of my ability.  The long and short of it is this:  Eventually Jesus Christ came through the line of David.  Jesus.  Because of His life and his sacrifice, we are now a redeemed people, if we are willing.  The price He paid on the cross for all our sins, covers all of our debt .  I'm not even sure I have the words to give you a picture of what He has done for me, and you.  Because of his hesed, we are free.  Death has no grip, hell has no power over those who call Jesus their savior.  There is no greater love, that gives no greater gift.

Well, that is it.  Ruth in a nut shell.  I would be remiss if I didn't site my sources here and give credit where credit is due.  I have studied Ruth a few times but, the greatest resource I used here was Kelly Minter's study of the book of Ruth.  It greatly helped me stay on track and writing in a logical sequence.  I also relied heavily on my notes from Chuck Swindoll's preaching series of sermons on the book of Ruth.   The greatest credit of all goes to the Lord Jesus Christ.  I never in my life thought I would be doing anything like this - never!  It is only through His gifting and faithfulness that I could ever pull this off.  His plan of redemption in my life never ceases to amaze me and I am forever grateful; there really are no words to express the depth of my gratitude to Him.  The rest is straight from my heart and what I could pull together as I went. 

Wrapping this up is a bitter-sweet thing for me.  I am greatly relieved to have finished this, as it was far more in depth than I ever intended. I genuinely looked forward to putting the kids to bed and sitting down to think deep - not something that happens frequently in the summer when my kids are home!! :0) Thank you my sweet sisters for your encouraging words and emails that kept me working towards this end.  You all are priceless!!!  I hope you enjoyed this series and my greatest hope is that you leave here with a better sense of the Lord God and His amazing ways - they are nothing like ours and I stand in awe of Him every time I finish a study.  Who knows?  Maybe down the road I will take on another short book of the Bible?  I just know it won't be any time soon. :0)


1 comment:

  1. Kim.....thank you for this study of Ruth. This morning I reread the book (so glad it's short) & put it all together in my mind. Through it all I was so impressed with Ruth's faithfulness, kindness, integrity, and protection towards Naomi. What love they shared with each other.

    I look forward to your next blog & your wonderful words of encouragement. I have been blessed!