Ruth: An outcast accepted by faith
Scripture: Ruth 2:1-23; 3:1-18
Aim: To help the pupil understand that Jehovah God accepts sinners who turn to Him by faith.
Golden Text: “The Lord recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust” (Ruth 2:12).
Ruth made a definite choice to turn from her pagan gods to follow the Lord God of Israel while she was still in her native land of Moab.
Her background was that of idol worshipper. She had met and married Chilion, a son of Naomi and Elimelech who were Jews from Bethlehem.
Through them she was introduced to Jehovah God and His worship. (God even uses those children of His who are out of His will. Ruth is an example. Even in their disobedience Naomi and Elimelech influenced Ruth to follow the true God.)
Ruth’s husband died. His brother, Mahlon, died. This left three widows to fend for themselves in Moab.
Naomi was a despised Jew.
Mahlon’s wife, Orpah, returned to her people and her pagan gods.
Ruth refused to do the same. She chose to go with Naomi and make Naomi’s God her very own God. She chose Jehovah as opposed to the false gods of Moab.
She returned with Naomi with nothing more than a love for Naomi and determination to follow Jehovah God (1:16)
This determination was recognized by Boaz (2:12, see Golden Text).
I. Ruth’s meeting with Boaz (2:1-23). Ruth asked permission from Naomi to go glean grain in some field should she find a place that would allow her (vs. 1-3). Ruth found a place to glean in a field owned by Boaz (a complete stranger to her, vs. 3).
When Boaz came to the field, he asked who the new gleaning woman was (vs. 4-7). He learned that she was Ruth, daughter in law to Naomi (vs. 6). He gave her permission to glean in his field (vs. 7-13). When Ruth asked why he was so generous to her, he replied that he knew of her situation with Naomi and her devotion to Jehovah God (vs. 9-12). He asked her to follow the reapers in all his fields (vs. 9).
Boaz instructed the reapers to drop some handfuls of grain on purpose for Ruth to gather (vs. 16). Ruth went home to Naomi with a good harvest from reaping (vs. 17-23). Naomi apprised Ruth that Boaz was a kinsman who could redeem her property (vs. 21-13).
II. Boaz promises to act as the kinsman redeemer for Naomi and Ruth (3:1-18). First, Naomi instructed Ruth that Boaz was a kinsman who could redeem her family property for her (vs. 1-5).
Second, Naomi instructed Ruth to go to Boaz’ threshing floor.
Third, Naomi instructed Ruth to ask Boaz to perform his option to act as redeemer for Naomi. This included marrying Ruth and raising up an heir for the family of Elimelech.
Fourth, Ruth followed Naomi’s instructions (vs. 8-11). Boaz’ response was that he would act as kinsman redeemer (vs. 12-13). Boaz performed the requirement for the purchase of Naomi’s property and married Ruth.
Ruth became the great-grandmother of King David, the sweet psalmist of Israel (Ruth 4:13, 21-22). Ruth’s faith was rewarded in her lifetime. She became one of the great women of the Bible because she put her trust in Jehovah God and followed Him by faith.
Jehovah God calls sinners to repent, believe and follow Him. That is the reason Jesus came into the world. That was and still is God’s desire for sinful men regardless of nationality. Those who respond in faith and obedience will reap the blessings of the eternal God.