Ruth 1 Out of Despair
Opens in Tragedy - Naomi, Famine, Death, Loss
Ends with Hope - God has visited his people in Bethlehem
Ruth 2 Into Hope
Ruth Gleans for food
God provision through his law - caring for stranger/poor
“Just so Happens” Ruth goes to Boaz’s field… meets him
Boaz shows God’s compassion and grace
Allow Ruth to glean (Two weeks worth in one day)
Food, Water, Protection, Conversation… Kindness
Ruth Reports to Naomi
Naomi thanks God
Informs Boaz is a Redeemer
Special responsibilities caring for his clan
Certain right regarding land
We begin today 3 months later, after wheat and barley harvest.
Naomi is about to reveal she has a plan
Ruth took initiative (Food), this time Naomi acts seeking rest for Ruth
Isn’t it time you settled down, tie the knot?
Rest mentioned in her blessing over Ruth and Orpah in 1:9.
Rest is attached to Home and Husband - Marriage/Family
Idea of Fulfillment, Completion, Satisfaction
Echoing what God establishes in Genesis
Man placed in the Garden…alone
God creates Woman… a helper
Together - Relationship and Purpose
To tend, guard, cultivate
To have children
God’s Glory “taken” “multiplied” throughout Earth
God Rests - His good design is complete
This is why the Church should have a high view of marriage
The marriage covenant entered into by one man and one woman illustrates the faithful commitment and love of Christ (the groom) displayed to the body of believers that form his church (the bride).
The cooperation and intimacy between a husband and wife resulting in children that are nurtured in childhood, given guidance in their adolescence, and maturing into adulthood to create families of their own provides illustration of the mission and purpose of the church in fulfilling the great commission in cooperation with the Holy Spirit.
The Church, in response to these illustrations provided by the marriage covenant, should have a high view of marriage.
Its members desiring to display these illustrations to those outside of the church by example, and guarding against ideas that contradict God’s good design such as; infidelity, divorce, cohabitation, fornication, and homosexuality.
As members of the church we should seek to mutually encourage one another to reject these inferior relationships and embrace God’s superior, perfect institution of marriage as an act of obedience, trust and worship to the glory of God.
Naomi desires that Ruth find fulfilment through God’s design of marriage.
What did we just read?
Doesn’t Naomi’s plan sound a little sketchy....risque?
Get dolled up, let him drink and lay down, go to him and do whatever he tells you…bad advice (Amen Parents?)
Varying opinions on what is going on here...
It is innocent - Naomi knows they will behave righteously
It is intentionally seductive - Ruth is fortunate that Boaz doesn’t take advantage of her.
Either way, there are sexual overtones…Naomi might have just given some bad advice, the Bible is honest…it doesn’t hide peoples imperfections.
Let’s Look at Naomi’s Plan
Naomi suggests making advances to Boaz
Distant Relative, Older, Single, Responsible, Reputable
But so far, has not made any moves towards Ruth
Go to the winnowing floor
End of harvest, almost a party/celebration
Men would get together in a barn with a breeze blowing through the open door.
They would use a “winnowing fork” to toss the grain into the air…the heavy grain falls, the wind blows away the chaff (husks, unusable)
They would hang out, eat, drink, sleep…really a time to see the profits from your labor.
Wash and anoint yourself....put on your cloak
This is not Ruth just getting ready for a date
David does something similar in 2 Samuel 12:20
This washing, anointing and changing clothes was a symbol that your time of mourning the dead was over.
Naomi is saying it is time to move on, it is time to turn the page on that chapter of your life and look to the future
Let Boaz know you are ready, that you are available.
Not primarily sexually seductive “put on something a little more comfortable”
It would be letting Boaz know…I’m ready for a new relationship
Wait, Find Him and Uncover His Feet
Tension here, similar to what happened to Lot
Think back to Lot in Sodom and Gomorah
The city is destroyed
His wife is turned to salt
Daughters panicked because their family line would end...
Get dad drunk and sleep with him…both get pregnant
This is how the Moabites started
Ruth was a Moabite
Was Naomi telling Ruth to do the same thing here?
Get Boaz to get drunk and take advantage of him?
Manipulating Boaz in order to keep the family line alive?
This really a risky move
There would be a lot of people at this party
Men counting their money…celebrating
Often women, hired for sexual favors with new money.
You can feel the tension
Was Naomi asking Ruth to become a prostitute?
Was Ruth going to seduce Boaz to sin?
Would she be caught in the act?
Ruth follows Naomi’s Plan
She goes in, lies down and Boaz is startled
Reminds me of when a child comes and stands at your beside...
Boaz —> Who are you....how much did I drink????
I am Ruth…your servant
Different word than when they met in the field
2:13 she uses the word for “slave”
Here she uses the word “concubine or maiden”
“Boaz, I’m available” (in case you didn't know)
Spread your wings over your servant
Boaz had prayed God bless Ruth earlier using the same words
Ruth is saying, Boaz…will you be the answer to your own prayer for me?
In your own life, are there things you would like to see changed, new ideas, ways to serve others?
It just might be that God has alerted you to something, an area where He is not waiting for someone else to serve…but inviting you to serve.
“That family is really on hard times”....let’s pray God would send someone to help them.
“Our community is really under oppression and bondage from addiction”....let’s pray God will provide someone to work with them
Could it be that you are that someone?
Boaz then responds to Ruth