The Cloud of Witnesses
Former title Lessons From the People of the Bible
Lesson 4: Ruth – Was Purchased By Her Redeemer
Was Purchased By Her Redeemer
Overcome by the generosity of the owner of the field where Ruth gleaned, Naomi wanted to find out more – whose field was it? When she learnt that it was Boaz’ field, her heart must have missed a beat. Boaz had evidently been a kind and supportive relative to Naomi and her family before they left for Moab. Now his inherent goodness was revealed once more, through his graciousness and liberality to Ruth.
Naomi’s joy was intensified by the realisation that he was one of the folk who had the right to redeem their land. In those days if a male died leaving no heir – especially a male heir – his land was forfeited to the closest relative. That relative could buy the land and marry the deceased’s widow.
In this case Boaz was one of the relatives who could redeem the land and he would then receive Ruth as ‘part of the package’. Boaz could therefore make everything ‘right’ once more. No longer would Naomi and Ruth be outcasts and ‘orphans’ but they would have the joy of being included as family once more. That’s what Jesus has done for us. We were outcasts and orphans without God but Jesus died to bring us back – to redeem us – into the family of God. Hallelujah!
Ruth had gone to Boaz for redemption – he gave her that and even more; he provided for her needs. It’s a beautiful picture of God. We are helpless and hopeless without God. We desperately need provision and protection. But our basic need is salvation. We need to be redeemed from the enemy – that needs to happen first. We are captives of the enemy and under the sentence of God’s wrath. We desperately need to be forgiven and set free. That’s what Jesus accomplished for us on the Cross – all we need to do is acknowledge our need of salvation and accept His forgiveness. That happens when we become a Christian.
However, we also become a Child of God and, as such, receive all the blessings of God. All the things mentioned in our reading from Ephesians 1 become ours straight away – that is an incredible example of God’s amazing grace. Instead of receiving what we deserve – God’s wrath, death and Hell for eternity – we receive forgiveness, help, health, hope and every spiritual blessing in Christ, and on top of all that – God treats us as one of His children. Wow! Why would anyone not want to be a Christian? Thank God this morning and then determine to tell someone this Good News soon.
God always answers prayer! Yes, sometimes the answer is No – because we ask with the wrong motives or it is outside God’s will for us. But God has never refused a cry for mercy yet! As soon as someone humbly prays a prayer asking God to forgive them and become their Saviour / Redeemer, He acts on it straight away. By definition, a Redeemer acts on our behalf because we can’t! He doesn’t wait for us to get better – that’s not an option. He doesn’t wait for us to perform or achieve – that is not an option. We go to our Saviour / Redeemer because there is nothing else we can do. There is no help or solution outside of Him. He is Plan A and there is no Plan B! Outside of Christ Jesus there is NO Saviour – no matter where you look.
Boaz was a man of action, as we shall see later. Jesus is a “Man of Action”, too. As Paul reminds us – Jesus left the glory and splendour of Heaven and came down to this earth to save and redeem us. He came as our Servant and died for us.
Is it too much for us to become His servant in response? Surely our hearts can only cry out in response: What a wonderful Saviour is Jesus my Lord! Will you live for Him as His servant today and for the rest of your life?
Ruth would say to us today...
Your Redeemer lives. We are all in desperate need of help. We have all found life too difficult and we so often let ourselves down – as well as God. When we come to the end of ourselves – we need to cry out to God for forgiveness and help. He is just waiting for us to do so. When we do, it’s then we find – Our Redeemer lives.
Father, I thank You that You love me unconditionally. I thank You that although I fail You, ignore You and go my own way – You have made a way for me to return to You. Thank You, Jesus, for being my Redeemer – today and every day. Amen.
Job 19:1-27; 1 Peter 1:13-21; Philippians 2:12-18.
Why do we find it hard to submit our lives to God?
Why does God want us to fully rely upon Him?
Why do we want to be constantly in ‘control’?