Summary: Through this unlikely couple, God brought redemption to you and me!
From Moab To Marriage To Messiah
Chad H. Ballard
This morning we are going to finish looking at the book of Ruth, GOD’S LOVE STORY FOR US.
The story of Ruth is one of the most fascinating stories I have ever heard. It’s true that it is a love story, but it is also quite a success story.
We saw in chapter one that Elimelech, his wife Naomi, and their two sons Mahlon and Chilion, had ran from God’s judgment in Bethlehem to try to make it without Him in Moab. As a result Elimelech died, his sons marry Moabite women and die 10 years later, and Naomi and one of her Moabite daughters-in-law returned to Bethlehem.
Now we already looked at the fact that YOU CAN’T RUN FROM GOD, and that you must come TO THE END OF YOURSELF TO COME TO THE BEGINNING OF GOD. And we even discussed God’s providence.
But I didn’t point out that the biggest example of God’s providence in chapter one is that a poor, Moabite woman would happen to marry a man who was going to die and whose mother would take her to Bethlehem in the first place.
And in chapter 2 we saw that as a result of these circumstances that God had brought into play, Ruth met a man named Boaz and they fell hopelessly in love. We see in this the sheltering, caring love of Jesus Christ for us.
And in chapter 3, we found out that of all the men that Ruth could have fallen in love with, she fell in love with a man who was a kinsman-redeemer.
Now let me assure you that none of these things are coincidence. God had worked out all of these events. He did it not only because of His love and care for Ruth, Boaz, and Naomi, but also for a much larger demonstration of His love that we’ll see in a minute.
Now with all of the things that have gone right with Ruth and Boaz, there was still one problem that had to be addressed. There was a kinsman-redeemer who was closer kin than Boaz and he would have to be dealt with first.
So let’s read what happens:
I. From Marriage (Read vv. 1-12)
A. Boaz has gone to the city gates, which is where all the official business is taken care of. It is like the courthouse of the day.
1. Boaz has got to find this “closer relative” and give him the first opportunity to redeem Elimelech’s land and Ruth as well.
2. Now the city gate was the place not only to take care of business, but it was apparently the most likely place to run in to someone.
3. It was kind of like walking through Wal-Mart today. You are pretty likely to find anyone you want to see in Wal-Mart if you hang out there long enough.
B. Now when Boaz saw this relative, he asked him to sit down with him in front of the elders and he told him the story.
1. Of course, we weren’t there, but I can just imagine that Boaz’s heart just sunk when the kinsman redeemer agreed to redeem the land.
2. But Boaz was quick to remind him that he couldn’t redeem the land without marrying Ruth, in order to carry on the name of the deceased.
3. Now that was a whole different story. You see if this man were to redeem Ruth and have a son by her, this son would get the piece of land that this kinsman was redeeming and possibly some of the inheritance that had been saved up for the sons he already had. That’s why he says that it “might endanger my own estate.”
C. I figure that about now Boaz is turning cartwheels inside. Finally he can marry the girl of his dreams.
D. Now there are some things here that we need to apply in our own lives. The first one is this: WE HAVE TO DEAL WITH THE ISSUES THAT GOD PUTS IN FRONT OF US.
1. Boaz could have asked Ruth to run away to Moab with him, but remember that’s how Ruth got in such a mess to start with.
2. But rather than do that, Boaz dealt with the issues that faced him openly and honestly.
3. And when we face problems in our lives, we need to deal with them in the same way.
4. When we have a cut we go ahead and clean it and put antiseptic on it. And while that might cause it to sting for a few minutes, its better than allowing it to get infected and make us sick.
5. Well our spiritual lives work the same way. There are those that God has dealt with about their salvation and they’ve put Him off. There are some, maybe even Christians, that God is convicting about the way they live, and they have decided to wait and see what He will do to them.