Summary: Theme: Ruth is a story that starts out as a tragedy but then evolves into a romantic drama of the life of a Godly non-Jewish woman who trusted in Jehovah-Jirah and was rewarded for her faithfulness.
We have been challenged through Scripture over the last few months to immerse ourselves into the spiritual realm. We have been encouraged to immerse ourselves in a new way of living for ourselves and for our families. We have been challenged to look at things differently through the eyes of the spirit.
Series 3: Is called “Press In”
13Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Thesis: We need to learn from the OT heroes of the faith. We need to learn what to do and what not to do. W e need to learn to press in or push through like Tri-athletes do through their grueling race. To press in for the Christian means we strive to grow spiritually and to be in tune with God and His agenda for our life. It means we don’t quit or give up but press for a spiritual breakthrough! It means we never–never–never give up!
Press in like RUTH
Theme: Ruth is a story that starts out as a tragedy but then evolves into a romantic drama of the life of a Godly non-Jewish woman who trusted in Jehovah-Jirah and was rewarded for her faithfulness.
Key Verses: Ruth 1:15-18
15“Look,” said Naomi, “your sister-in-law is going back to her people and her gods. Go back with her.”
16But 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.
17Where 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.”
18When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her.
Key Word in the book: Redeem
Defined: re•deem --- from Webster’s Dictionary
: to make (something that is bad, unpleasant, etc.) better or more acceptable
: to exchange (something, such as a coupon or lottery ticket) for money, an award, etc.
: to buy back (something, such as a stock or bond)
Key Phrase: Kinsman – Redeemer
Kinsman defined - a male relative
Redeemer defined - a person who brings goodness, honor, etc., to something again : a person who redeems something
1. The crisis of famine, death, grief, poverty and depression (Ruth 1:1-2:3).
2. The response of the Kinsman Redeemer to persistence, hard work and faith.
3. The deliverance and and the blessing of living happily ever after.
This book is taken from the time of the Book of Judges. The nation Israel is in anarchy, chaos and apostasy.The romantic story centers in upon a woman named Ruth. Ruth was not Jewish but a Moabite who had married a Jew. Her ancestors were from Lot's line. The Moabites were birthed by Lot having an incestuous union with his eldest daughter. (Gen. 19:30-38) The son born out of this sin was "Moab". Moabites were into the cultic worship of local deities and Baal worship. Ruth opens up with tragedy but ends in victory.
Vernon shares his thoughts on Ruth.
We see a woman who responds to tragedy with a clear statement on her purpose in life and her faith. (Ruth 1: 16, 17).
Quote: “There are two great days in a person’s life -- the day we are born and the day we discover why.” SOURCE: William Barclay
Illustration: A PLAN FOR EVERYONE
In the opening pages of his autobiography, An American Life, Ronald Reagan writes, I was raised to believe that God had a plan for everyone and that seemingly random twists of fate are all a part of His plan.
My mother - a small woman with auburn hair and a sense of optimism that ran as deep as the cosmos - told me that everything in life happened for a purpose. She said all things were part of God’s plan, even the most disheartening setbacks, and in the end, everything worked out for the best. If something went wrong, she said, you didn’t let it get you down: You stepped away from it, stepped over it, and moved on. Later on, she added, something good will happen and you’ll find yourself thinking - "If I hadn’t had that problem back then, then this better thing that did happen would’nt have happened to me."
After I lost the job at Montgomery Ward, I left home again in search of work. Although I didn’t know it then, I was beginning a journey that would take me a long way from Dixon and fulfill all my dreams and then some.