Cover to Cover
Seeking a miracle and seeking the Miracle-Maker are two different things. Jesus said that generation was seeking a wonder, but they were not seeking to surrender to the God of Wonders. A sign is a sign because it points to someone, and that someone is Jehovah.
What sign did Jesus say was pointing to salvation? It was the sign of Jonah, three days and three days in the belly of a fish. This sign points to salvation because it was symbolic of Jesus death and resurrection, dead for 3 days and risen on the third. This passage reminds us to pursue and rely on HIM!
An eye is like a camera. It lets light in so that it can see an image. If the camera doesn’t let light in, it’s closed off. If a heart is closed, the light is dim. However, when we learn to live by GRACE, we OPEN our hearts and let LIGHT come in. The more open and generous we are, the more open we are to receive (verses 34-36).
The rest of this chapter confronts the restrictions of the control of religion, and oh how the controlling, self-reliant religious leaders hated Jesus for the message of freedom He brought! Let’s live FREE of condemnation and receive the free gift of salvation through our Savior, Jesus Christ! EVERY DAY is a day to celebrate His grace and respond with our obedience!
The name Ruth means “friend.” A friend is a covenant term, a person who joins in a relationship and never leaves the bond created. Ruth, a Moabite, had married into a family of Hebrews, as did the Moabite, Orpah. When men died in those days, widows struggled without men to provide and care for their needs. In addition, they were living in a time of famine. Naomi, the Hebrew mother-in-law, heard that there was bread in Judah, her home, and made plans to return. Naomi encouraged her younger daughters-in-law to stay in Moab and find new husbands. Orpah decided to go home and remarry, which was a good choice for her. In verse 14, Orpah made a painful decision to part from this woman she loved and considered as family, kissing her as she said goodbye.
Ruth, on the other hand, did not want to leave her widowed mother-in-law. Understand, Ruth was not just choosing to watch over her husband’s mother; she was also choosing to leave her home to go into Judah. She was choosing her covenant with Naomi and the Jews. She said:
“For wherever you go, I will go; and wherever you lodge, I will lodge; Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God.”
Ruth was choosing to covenant with Naomi and with Jehovah. This was a spiritual choice, not only a natural choice. This was a covenant that Ruth swore would only be broken by death.
The two widows, one older, one younger, enter into Bethlehem, the “House of Bread.” The people of the city are excited to see Naomi after ten years, and welcome her back. Naomi shares her heartache with her friends, unfortunately blaming God for her misfortune. They arrive at the beginning of the barley harvest, with a famine beginning to lift.
This entire story made it into the Bible as the inspired Word of God. Why? One, this story is about family in the line of King David and of Jesus, the Messiah. Two, this story is prophetic of Jesus, our kinsman redeemer.
In those days, a family member, a kinsman, is able to purchase, redeem, or reclaim land that belonged to family that had been sold. Naomi had sold the land, and had no sons to redeem the property. Boaz, a relative, stepped up to reclaim family land during the time of the judges, a time when possessing the land for Israel had tremendous meaning for the Jews, establishing them as a long-lasting nation from where the Messiah would reign.
Jesus is our kinsman redeemer. We were helpless, like Naomi and Ruth. Jesus knew our inability to reclaim our inheritance, so He did it for us. Today, know that Jesus is your personal kinsman-redeemer.
The use of a shoe or foot represented possession or authority (Genesis 13:14-17; Deuteronomy 11:24; Joshua 1:3; Psalm 60:8). The surrender of the sandal was to signify giving up the
The Bread of Life
There had been a famine, but then a harvest, and Ruth and Boaz were able to provide bread where there had been no bread. It was life to their region. It was restoration. It was redemption. Jesus came from Bethlehem, the Bread of Life. We were in a deep place of need when He came to us. Hallelujah, He satisfies our need and gives us His life!
The Royal Bloodline
Jesus’ bloodline goes back to this union between a Hebrew, Boaz, and a Moabite, Ruth, who gave birth to Obed. In the bloodline of Jesus is a story of a woman who turned her life over to Jehovah, leaving foreign gods behind her. Does God love the Hebrew? Yes. Does God love all other people? Yes. Jesus came through the Jews to bless the whole world! We are blessed!