Summary: Naomi and Ruth return, God begins to heal and work in their lives...
Date Written: July 23, 2012
Date Taught: July 11, 2012
Church: OPBC (Wed Night)
Title: A Study in the Book of Ruth
Text: Ruth 1:6-22 (read passage)
6Then Naomi heard in Moab that the Lord had blessed his people in Judah by giving them good crops again. So Naomi and her daughters-in-law got ready to leave Moab to return to her homeland.
It had been a terrible time for Naomi. Her husband had moved them from her homeland to a foreign country… He had died after they had arrived there and Naomi had stayed for over 10yrs.
Her sons then died and she was left alone with her daughters in law… she had lost her husband, but now her sons were gone and she was alone in a foreign land…
She was separated from her family and when her sons died it became painfully obvious to her… it was like her eyes were opened to her precarious situation. She finally realized the desperate nature of her predicament! And she was OVERWHELMED!
How awful it must have been for her. How does this speak to us today? Well there are people EVERYDAY that are convicted by the Holy Spirit and God reveals their sin to them and for the first time they ‘see’ and realize where they are spiritually… in a dark place, a place away from their Creator, a place that is NOT home! They finally realize where they are in relation to God and they see the desperation of their situation…
But we see that as desperate as her situation was, Naomi did see hope…she heard the good news that God has blessed her homeland & the famine was over… this was encouragement for her to get up and begin the journey home!
For those who are at the point of conviction and they realize their sinful state, there is Good news for them! That good news is Jesus… God has blessed them with a Savior in His Son! For those who have been convicted of sin by the Holy Spirit, this is an encouragement to get up and begin the journey by coming to Jesus!
This passage is about the beginning of redemption for Naomi, and it is a picture of what God has available for all sinners… those who are hopeless and alone… those who feel outcast and like life has come crashing down on them…
This passage also gives us a inside view of God’s role in providing redemption but it also reveals the human responsibility to act upon God’s invitation… let’s look at v7
7With her two daughters-in-law she set out from the place where she had been living, and they took the road that would lead them back to Judah.
Here we find Naomi taking this Good News and then acting on behalf of it… She hears the good news of God’s blessing in her homeland, but she doesn’t just sit there and pine about how she is so mistreated and life is so bad, and how could God help them and not her…
We find Naomi seeing the blessing of God and taking the initiative to seek out God’s blessing by returning to her homeland. She not only does this for herself but she brings along the only family she has left… her 2 daughters in law.
But there is an important lesson for us to gather here and it is that redemption is offered for all, but it comes thru the individual relationship with God. Naomi saw that there was redemption in her homeland, but told her daughters in law that they must make up their own minds about coming with her…
8But on the way, Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go back to your mothers’ homes. And may the Lord reward you for your kindness to your husbands and to me.
Now here is where the metaphor of redemption breaks down a bit, because Naomi realized that even when she returned to her homeland, she was returning a woman who had NO standing and all her security that was found in her husband and 2 sons was gone!
She gives her daughters in law the option of NOT coming with her because she knew it was going to be a difficult road for them because they would be foreign women without husbands in a foreign land. Naomi turns to them and releases them to go back to the homes of their youth… back to their own mothers!
This reveals the love Naomi had for her daughters in law… I am sure that they had been a comfort to her ever since her husband had died and since her sons had died they had comforted one another… but now she had released them from any obligation they may have had to her or her family… She tries to send them away with God’s blessing.