Summary: Let's begin a journey and discover some great and wonderful truths about God through this wonderful book about a woman of great faith and obedience!
Date Written: June 26, 2012
Date Taught: June 27, 2012
Church: OPBC (Wed Night)
Title: A Study in the Book of Ruth
Text: Ruth 1:1-5 (read passage)
Even the best laid plans can go awry and leave us in a desperate situation. Let’s look at the story told here in the book of Ruth as we begin our study…
The story is a simple story, but there are so many things we can learn from such a simple story… This story is about a woman in the history of Israel whose life made such an impact that her faith and obedience led God to place her in the Bible.
Now this book does not identify an author, but traditionally authorship has been ascribed to the prophet Samuel, who wrote this book in the second half of the 11th century BC. [1050BC or later…]
Historical Setting: The events in the book occurred at a dark time in Israel's history - in "the days when the judges ruled" (1:1), according to the historical introduction.
This was a period when the nation lapsed again and again into worship of false gods. What a contrast this is to Ruth, who remained faithful to GOD, although she was a Moabite by birth - one considered an alien by GOD's Chosen People...but as we find out one God would be pleased with because of her faithfulness!
Purpose and Theology: (HBH)
The story provides a transition from the patriarchs to the monarchy. Ruth married Boaz and their son Jesse father King David…
The story of Ruth shows how GOD sovereignly achieves His purposes through the faithfulness of His people. The book speaks about GOD indirectly through the prayers and blessings of the story's characters. Although the book reflects a strong belief in GOD's lordship over history, it equally convinces readers that human decisions and actions play a significant role.
The book teaches that GOD's will is sometimes accomplished by common people with uncommon faith. This book has simple people going about everyday affairs serving God in their everyday lives.
The theological emphasis of Ruth can be summed up by two key words - kindness (hesed) and kinsman-redeemer (goel).
The word kindness indicates a covenant faithfulness and it occurs 3 times in the prayers and commendations spoken by the characters (1:8; 2:20; 3:10). There is an implied contrast between the story's characters, who are righteous, and those of Judges, who "did as he [they] saw fit" (Judg. 21:25).
This story teaches that GOD rewards the faithfulness of His people. GOD accomplished this by using Boaz as the family's "kinsman-redeemer" (2:20; 3:12-13; 4:1-10).
Kinsman-redeemer refers to a relative who helped a troubled family member so that the family was not dispossessed of land or left without an heir (Lev. 25:25-34; Deut. 25:5-10).
The story corrected the Jews when they made the worship of GOD exclusively the prerogative of Israel. God is sovereign so RUTH did not impress God to ‘earn’ her way into Scripture, but God is faithful and God wants us to see the picture of Ruth’s faithfulness and obedience in a time of great difficulty in her life… this serves as an example for us today as believers…