Summary: Good mothers may be tough because they have to be, but their outstanding quality is kindness. Because they are kind, sometime kindness comes back to them. Moms, see how many of her experiences you can relate to.
Ruth: The Story of King David’s Great Grandmother
1. Davon Huss tells this story about kindness:
For 30 years, Randy Murphy drove without a traffic incident, without being stopped by the police, and without a driver’s license. Then, the 46 year old Knoxville, Tennessee native’s luck ran out. On his way home from work as a dishwasher, he increased the volume on his radio. Turning the corner he was stopped by police officer Mark Taylor who pulled him over because of the blaring music.
When Officer Taylor asked Murphy for a driver’s license, Murphy admitted he didn’t have one. What would we expect in that situation? Officer Taylor asked Murphy why he didn’t have a license. Murphy said that he couldn’t read enough to pass the written test.
With uncommon courtesy, Taylor told Murphy, “If you’re willing, I’d like to help you with the reading part of the test.”
The police officer gave Murphy his pager number. Later that afternoon, Murphy paged Taylor to schedule their first meeting. For the next three months the men met several times a week to review the test booklet. When Murphy felt ready, Taylor accompanied him to the department of motor vehicles.
Murphy took the test six times before he passed and then sailed through the road test. Taylor’s act of kindness earned him the Officer of the Month award from the Knoxville Police Department. [source: Sermon Central]
2. Today is Mother’s Day, and I would like us to focus upon an attribute of the best-loved mothers, kindness.
Main Life: Good mothers may be tough because they have to be, but their outstanding quality is kindness. Because they are kind, sometime kindness comes back to them. Moms, see how many of her experiences you can relate to.
I. Ruth’s Early UPHEAVAL: Disappointment and Devastation (1:1-5)
A. A COMPROMISED marriage: believer married to unbeliever
2 Corinthians 6:14-15, “Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever?”
• The issue is not whether it can work, but whether it is God approves
• Not a sin for Ruth, but for Mahlon her husband
B. The DISAPPOINTMENT of childlessness
1. A big issue today, even more pressure back then
2. I wonder how they would have raised the children? As Jews or pagans?
C. Then she finds herself a young WIDOW
• Many of you have stories of heart-wrenching disappointment. Christian woman who married a man headed for ministry. His first church was a disaster and he turned into an alcoholic.
• But even in the midst of tragedy, we will note a spirit of kindness among all parties; Ruth, Orpah, and Naomi. Kindness and compassion abound.
Application: Have you had major upheavals in your life? Death? Divorce? Disease? Unemployment? Marriage problems? Straying child? This world is not all there is, and God has a will for you from this point on; fight the urge to get bitter
II. Ruth’s ATTACHMENT (1:6-22)
READ RUTH 1:8 FIRST!
A. CONVERSION: Clinging to God
1. Ruth had the real disease; willing to walk by faith with this new God, Yahweh. She forsook her other gods because our God is a jealous God.
2. If your faith hasn’t changed your life and doesn’t affect your decisions and does not seek to reach out in love to the lost, then you have to question it
B. Love for Mother-in-law: FAMILY
1. I have seen – on more than one occasion – situations in which a mother-in-law became a mother, with all the affection that accompanies motherhood.
2. In this case, Ruth shows kindness to Naomi, who had shown kindness to her.
3. I think both younger women and men appreciate having an older person they look up to and find encouragement and direction from. Charlie
Application: Is Yahweh your God? Are you a disciple of Jesus Christ? Are you capable of getting attached to another? Are you free to love others, or insulated?
III. Ruth’s PRO-ACTIVITY (2:1-3:18)
She is strong and does what needs to be done
A. She GLEANS
1. Ruth never though she would have to provide for herself
2. But she is not just providing for herself, but for Naomi out of kindness
3. Ancient Jewish Law and gleaning
4. She happened by chance to glean in Boaz’ field, a near kinsman (explain)
5. Boaz gives her special privileges because she was so kind to Naomi
6. READ RUTH 2:11-13
B. She SCHEMES Read Ruth 2:20
• Her strength, her compassion and loyalty to Naomi, and her bold profession of faith in Yahweh made her irresistible to a godly man like Boaz
C. She EXECUTES the plan
1. Naomi gives her advice to trap her man Read Ruth 3:10