Summary: The marriage proposal between Ruth and Boaz, shown as an example of stepping out in faith. Part of my ongoing series in Ruth.

Ruth 3 – “ A Decent Proposal”

By James Galbraith

First Baptist Church, Port Alberni

July 1, 2007


Ru 3:1 One day Naomi her mother-in-law said to her, “My daughter, should I not try to find a home for you, where you will be well provided for? 2 Is not Boaz, with whose servant girls you have been, a kinsman of ours? Tonight he will be winnowing barley on the threshing floor. 3 Wash and perfume yourself, and put on your best clothes. Then go down to the threshing floor, but don’t let him know you are there until he has finished eating and drinking. 4 When he lies down, note the place where he is lying. Then go and uncover his feet and lie down. He will tell you what to do.”

Ru 3:5 “I will do whatever you say,” Ruth answered. 6 So she went down to the threshing floor and did everything her mother-in-law told her to do.

Ru 3:7 When Boaz had finished eating and drinking and was in good spirits, he went over to lie down at the far end of the grain pile. Ruth approached quietly, uncovered his feet and lay down. 8 In the middle of the night something startled the man, and he turned and discovered a woman lying at his feet.

Ru 3:9 “Who are you?” he asked.

“I am your servant Ruth,” she said. “Spread the corner of your garment over me, since you are a kinsman-redeemer.”

Ru 3:10 “The LORD bless you, my daughter,” he replied. “This kindness is greater than that which you showed earlier: You have not run after the younger men, whether rich or poor. 11 And now, my daughter, don’t be afraid. I will do for you all you ask. All my fellow townsmen know that you are a woman of noble character. 12 Although it is true that I am near of kin, there is a kinsman-redeemer nearer than I. 13 Stay here for the night, and in the morning if he wants to redeem, good; let him redeem. But if he is not willing, as surely as the LORD lives I will do it. Lie here until morning.”

Ru 3:14 So she lay at his feet until morning, but got up before anyone could be recognized; and he said, “Don’t let it be known that a woman came to the threshing floor.”

Ru 3:15 He also said, “Bring me the shawl you are wearing and hold it out.” When she did so, he poured into it six measures of barley and put it on her. Then he went back to town.

Ru 3:16 When Ruth came to her mother-in-law, Naomi asked, “How did it go, my daughter?”

Then she told her everything Boaz had done for her 17 and added, “He gave me these six measures of barley, saying, ‘Don’t go back to your mother-in-law empty-handed.’ ”

Ru 3:18 Then Naomi said, “Wait, my daughter, until you find out what happens. For the man will not rest until the matter is settled today.”

Introduction – Popping the Question

Today’s message circles around that most romantic event, the proposal of marriage.

But what makes a marriage proposal so romantic, so special?

It could be the fact that it is the start of a life-long commitment.

It could be that it is such an expression of love.

It might be the drama that surrounds it.

But for the sake of our time here today,

I want to think about the uncertainty of it all.

For some, it may be a stab in the dark,

and for others it may seem a done deal,

but in almost all cases it is a question,

and a question that can go one of two ways – yes or no.

When the man asks, he is taking a chance that the woman may say no.

He hopes that she will say yes, but until it happens he can’t be 100% sure.

He is acting in faith.

Remember that – hold onto that thought.

Now, I have heard of some marriage proposals that are real humdingers. Some men propose with banners dragged behind airplanes, others post billboard on busy roads and a few go to even greater lengths to creatively ask for the hand of their bride-to-be.

A friend of mine just recently surprised his fiancé by flying her to New York for a show, and then a horse-drawn carriage ride in Central Park. The driver took them to a lake, where my friend knelt down on 1 knee and popped the question - and then my friend forgot his wallet to pay the driver 

I think I kind of blew it. I proposed to Lori on Christmas morning, in the guest room of my parent’s house. You see, giving her the ring on Christmas day ensured that I didn’t have to but any other presents!

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