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Summary: On the Road to Bethlehem is a series leading up to Christmas day. Based on a series by Jim Bradford this is a historical look at Bethlehem that helps us bury our past, build our future, and birth a miracle in our lives.

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Part 2 - On the Road to Bethlehem

Building the Future

3 part series… on the way to Bethlehem…

Mark spiritual encounter points as we prepare out hearts for the entrance of Jesus in powerful ways into our lives as we approach this Christmas!

Ruth Chapter 1

15-19

15 "Look," said Naomi, "your sister-in-law is going back to her people and her gods. Go back with her." 16 But Ruth replied, "Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. 17 Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if anything but death separates you and me." 18 When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her.

19 So the two women went on until they came to Bethlehem. When they arrived in Bethlehem…

Lord help us on our way to Bethlehem…

• the Bethlehem and beyond story…

This is the second time Bethlehem appears prominently in the Bible. 1000 years before Christ…

The first time we talked about last week in Burying our Past as we saw it associated with a burial place before a birthing place at Christmas time… Before we find it to be a birthplace of new things, but it is first a burial place of old things…

Now when we bury our past… sometimes the devil tries to bring that back up… and old adage says… “when the devil starts reminding you about your past… start reminding him about his future.” For what God has done… if He has healed and removed the sin of your past we need to let it go… and begin looking to the future God has for you.

Talk a moment about Character… the only thing you can control is you…

• if your not married…

• if you want a better job…

• if you want a better life…

o Start with you…

Back to God’s plan to your life… bury the past of who you had been… and now build the future that God has for you…

The Bethlehem and beyond story is that it is a love story…

• which is were we find the story of Ruth…

• a love story that a family member can have for another family member…

o Naomi… home in Bethlehem, married… two sons… but there was famine… and moved to Moab… and her sons married Moabite girls…

o Ruth was one of those two… and during that time Naomi’s husband and two sons die…

o Then food returns to Bethlehem… (which literally means house of bread)… Naomi decides to go back to Bethlehem… on the way back her two daughter in laws follow her… and Naomi turns to them and says…

 You need to stay in Moab… you have a future here with your own people…

 One takes her up on it…

 But Ruth replies in verse 16: 16 But Ruth replied, "Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.

 I will go were you go… God forbid anything but death would separate us…

 A love story, about family…

But also a romantic love story…

• in Bethlehem… Ruth finds the love of her life Boaz…

• the rest of the book of Ruth is an amazing love story of how Ruth and Boaz meet, fall in love…

But it doesn’t stop there…

• it becomes a royal story…

• the real purpose of why this love story is given to us happens in the later words of Ruth…

• Chapter 4:17

• 17 The women living there said, "Naomi has a son." And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David.

• That is why the book is written… David becomes one of the most famous and most powerful King’s in all of their history…

A love story that becomes a royal story… where King David grows up… chosen by God… to become King of Israel… and God tells David that your thrown will become a Royal Thrown… prophesy of the Christ or messiah that would be to come…

• Bethlehem and beyond story… is about God putting together the pieces

• Story of God how through Bethlehem begins to build an incredible story, that begins with a love story, that becomes a love story… where a 1000 years later two relatives of King David, and ultimately Ruth and Boaz… where Mary and Joseph had to come back to Bethlehem…

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