Each week we LIVESTREAM the Lord's Day Sabbath School at 10a, Lord's Day morning public worship at 11a, and Lord's Day p.m. singing (3p) and sermon (3:45), and the Midweek Sermon and Prayer Meeting at 6:30p on Wednesday

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

2020.01.22 Hopewell @Home ▫ Ruth 4:13-22

Questions from the Scripture text: What did Yahweh give Ruth in Ruth 4:13? What did she bear? What did the women say to Naomi (Ruth 4:14)? About whom do we find out they are speaking in Ruth 4:15? What do they pray that he will be for her? Who becomes one of the boy’s primary caregivers (Ruth 4:16)? Who call his name Obed (Ruth 4:17)? Who is the boy’s grandson? With whom does the genealogy in Ruth 4:18-22 begin (verse 18, cf. Ruth 4:12; Genesis 46:12)? With whom does it end? 
It is the fairytale happy ending to the story. Boaz and Ruth got married and lived happily ever after. Except that it isn’t. Because it isn’t even really about Boaz and Ruth.

They get a little mention in Ruth 4:13, but really the rest of the text is about Naomi whose forsakenness and forlornness was the main theme at the beginning of the story. Now, she is full and blessed. And who is her redeemer? Ruth 4:15 makes it plain that the redeemer mentioned here is the son that Ruth had borne.

But is it Obed? Already, of course, we have a hint that it is not. David is mentioned twice in the text. First, he is the short-term target of the line of Obed in Ruth 4:17. Then, the text reaches back to Perez, who received special mention among the grandsons of Jacob in Genesis 46, in order to reach down again to David.

Already, the elders of the city had recognized the specialness of this in Ruth 4:12. We too are remembering that there was a seed promised to Eve who would crush the serpent’s head. And then there was a seed promised to Abraham in whom all the nations of the earth would be blessed. And there was a prophecy upon Judah that the scepter would not depart from his house. The special mention of Perez in Genesis 46:12 and Ruth 4:12 and Ruth 4:18 has an eye that is not so much backward to Perez as it is forward to Jesus.

Soon this David, the great-grandson of Boaz and Ruth, would receive his own Messianic promise—that he would have a descendent whose kingdom would see no end! Naomi was blessed as she cradled little Obed the redeemer in her arms. Here was love and fulfillment and someone in whom the heritage would be preserved. But she—and we—are blessed here, because in little Obed is the coming Redeemer whose everlasting arms are underneath us, bearing us up (Deuteronomy 33:27). Even at the cost of spreading His human arms on a cross as He bore our sin. Hallelujah!

Whenever we experience these smaller, little-r redemptions, let us remember that for our holy God to do us any of these goods, it has required that big-r Redemption in our Lord Jesus Christ. And that is exactly what God was accomplishing, even as He was restoring the fortunes of Naomi.
What small deliverances have you enjoyed? How is it that a holy God could do this for a sinner?
Suggested Songs: ARP46 “God Is Our Refuge and Our Strength” or TPH256 “God Moves in a Mysterious Way”

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