Sunday, June 11, 2017

Ruth Chapter 2

Ruth was willing for God to have His way in her life; so God began His gracious work with Ruth. If we want God to work in our lives and circumstances, then there are three conditions that we must meet. Let’s continue our study in chapter two and see how Ruth is overwhelmed by grace.

Ruth 2:1-3 And Naomi had a kinsman of her husband’s, a mighty man of wealth, of the family Elimelech; and his name was Boaz. And Ruth the Moabitess said unto Namoi, Let me now go to the field, and glean ears of corn after him in whose sight I shall find grace. And she said unto her, Go, my daughter. And she went, and came, and gleaned in the field after the reapers: and her hap was to light on a part of the field belonging unto Boaz, who was of the kindred of Elimelech.

First, we must live by faith in the Lord. To live by faith means to take God at His Word and then act upon it. Since Ruth believed that God loved her and would provide for her, she set out to find a field in which she could glean. This was an act of faith because she didn’t know who owned the fields.

It is here that Boaz enters the story, a relative of Elimelech, who was a mighty man of wealth. By the providence of God, Ruth gleaned in the portion of the field that belonged to Boaz.

Ruth 2:4-16 And, behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem, and said unto the reapers, The LORD be with you. And they answered him, The LORD bless thee. Then said Boaz unto his servant that was set over the reapers, Whose damsel is this? And the servant that was set over the reapers answered and said, It is the Moabitesh damsel that came back with Naomi out of the country of Moab: And she said, I pray you, let me glean and gather after the reapers among the sheaves: so she came, and hath continued even from the morning until now, that she tarried a little in the house. Then said Boaz unto Ruth, Hearest thou not, my daughter? Go not to glean in another field, neither go from hence, but abide here fast by my maidens: Let thine eyes be on the field that they do reap, and go thou after them: have I not charged the young men that they shall not touch thee? and when thou art athirst, go unto the vessels, and drink of that which the young men have drawn. Then she fell on her face, and bowed herself to the ground, and said unto him, Why have I found grace in thine eyes, that thou shouldest take knowledge of me, seeing I am a stranger? And Boaz answered and said unto her, It hath fully been shewed me, all that thou hast done unto thy mother in law since the death of thine husband: and how thou hast left thy father and thy mother, and the land of thy nativity, and art come unto a people which thou knewest not heretofore. 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. Then she said, Let me find favour in thy sight, my lord; for that thou hast comforted me, and for that thou hast spoken friendly unto thine handmaid, though I be not like unto one of thine handmaidens. And Boaz said unto her, At mealtime come thou hither, and eat of the bread, and dip thy morsel in the vinegar. And she sat beside the reapers: and he reached her parched corn, and she did eat, and was sufficed, and left. And when she was risen up to glean, Boaz commanded his young men, saying, Let her glean even among the sheaves, and reproach her not: And let fall also some of the handfuls of purpose for her, and leave them, that she may glean them, and rebuke her not.

Second, we must live by the grace of God. When Ruth set out that morning to glean in the fields, she was looking for someone who would show her grace. Grace is a favor bestowed on someone who doesn’t deserve it and can’t earn it. The channel of that grace was Boaz. How good it is to know that God has good people living in bad times!

No sooner had Boaz greeted his workers than his eye caught the presence of a stranger in the field. I believe it was love at first sight. Again, we marvel at the providence of God. The Lord led Ruth to the field of Boaz and then led Boaz to visit his field while Ruth was there. When we commit our lives to the Lord, what happens to us happens by way of appointment and not by accident. God was about to create a new relationship that would completely alter her circumstances.

Ruth 2:17-23 So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley. And she took it up, and went into the city: and her mother in law saw what she had gleaned: and she brought forth, and gave her that she had reserved after she was sufficed. And her mother in law said unto her, Where hast thou gleaned to day? and where wroughtest thou? blessed be he that did take knowledge of thee. And she shewed her mother in law with whom she had wrought, and said, The man’s name with whom I wrought to day is Boaz. And Naomi said unto her daughter in law, Blessed be he of the LORD, who hath not left off his kindness to the living and to the dead. And Naomi said unto her, The man is near of kin unto us, one of our next kinsmen. And Ruth the Moabitess said, He said unto me also, Thou shalt keep fast by my young men, until they have ended all my harvest. And Naomi said unto Ruth her daughter in law, It is good, my daughter, that thou go out with his maidens, that they meet thee not in any other field. So she kept fast by the maidens of Boaz to glean unto the end of barley harvest and of wheat harvest; and dwelt with her mother in law.

Third, we must live in hope. When Ruth had asked permission to go to the fields to glean, Naomi gave her daughter in law no word of encouragement; but now she not only blessed Ruth’s benefactor, but she also blessed the Lord! What a change has taken place in the heart of this grieving widow! This change came about because of the new hope she had in her heart. When Ruth shared with Naomi what Boaz had said, Naomi’s hope grew even more because the words of Boaz revealed his love for Ruth and that he was making plans that included her and her daughter in law.

Ruth’s experience of grace gave her new hope as she anticipated what her kinsman redeemer would do. No matter how you feel today, no matter how difficult your circumstances may be, you can rejoice in hope if you will focus your faith on Jesus Christ.

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