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Summary: There are many definitions of love. It's easy to say you love someone, but your actions tell the truth. Orpah & Ruth are contrasts of what love really means.

LOVE IS MORE THAN KISSING

Ruth 1:1-18

INTRODUCTION

A. HUMOR

1. A man once commented after a revival service to the evangelist, "If you could see how people don't pay attention! And they get up and wander around. It’s terrible!” The evangelist answered, "If you think the back of their heads his bad, you should see the front!”

2. A forgetful husband thought he had conquered the problem of trying to remember his wife's birthday and anniversary.

a. He opened an account with a florist, provided the florist with dates and instructions to send flowers along with an appropriate note signed, "Your loving Husband."

b. His wife was thrilled by this display of attention. All went well until one day, many bouquets later, when he came home, kissed his wife, and said offhandedly, "Nice flowers, honey. Where did you get them?"

B. TEXT

1 In the days when the judges ruled, there was a famine in the land. So a man from Bethlehem in Judah, together with his wife and two sons, went to live for a while in the country of Moab. 2 The man’s name was Elimelek, his wife’s name was Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Kilion. They were Ephrathites from Bethlehem, Judah. And they went to Moab and lived there. 3 Now Elimelek, Naomi’s husband, died, and she was left with her two sons. 4 They married Moabite women, one named Orpah and the other Ruth. After they had lived there about ten years, 5 both Mahlon and Kilion also died, and Naomi was left without her two sons and her husband. 6 When Naomi heard in Moab that the Lord had come to the aid of his people by providing food for them, she and her daughters-in-law prepared to return home from there. 7 With her two daughters-in-law she left the place where she had been living and set out on the road that would take them back to the land of Judah. 8 Then Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go back, each of you, to your mother’s home. May the Lord show you kindness, as you have shown kindness to your dead husbands and to me. 9 May the Lord grant that each of you will find rest in the home of another husband.” Then she kissed them goodbye and they wept aloud 10 and said to her, “We will go back with you to your people.” 11 But Naomi said, “Return home, my daughters. Why would you come with me? Am I going to have any more sons, who could become your husbands? 13 It is more bitter for me than for you, because the Lord’s hand has turned against me!” 14 At this they wept aloud again. Then Orpah kissed her mother-in-law goodbye, but Ruth clung to her. 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 even death separates you and me.” 18 When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her. Ruth 1:1-11,13-18.

C. THESIS

1. There are all kinds of definitions of love. “Love is like an hourglass – the heart is filled as the head is emptied.”

2. People love: football, fishing, pizza, Coca-Cola, french fries, their husbands or wives….

3. Hopefully the same definition doesn't apply to all. Today we’re looking at true love. This passage teaches us that “Love is More than Kissing.”

I. HOW LOVE RELATES TO MARRIAGE

A. COMMITMENT, NO MATTER WHAT

1. Verses 16-17. One of the most romantic verses in the Bible.

2. It speaks of a Commitment to Each Other -- "For better, For worse; for richer, for poorer; in sickness and in

health; and forsaking all others, keep...”.

3. One Young Woman wrote a letter to her fiancé: "I haven't slept a week since I broke up with you. I can't live without you. Please know, I love you, I love you, I love you. Love Sue. PS: Congratulations on winning the $38 million Powerball lottery.”

4. One lady was reflecting her wedding vows, "Do you take him for better or for worse?" She later replied, "He’s a lot worse than I took him for!"

B. 4 IMPLICATIONS OF REAL LOVE

1. UNITY. 2 becoming one. “They 2 shall be one flesh.”

a. Not two houses, two roads or two families -- but one.

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