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December 27, 2023 - Ruth 4:1-8

As Ruth’s story continues, some observations from today’s text . . . Boaz was not the nearest kin and, thus, not the one with the immediate responsibility to marry Ruth.  He found that man, said to him, “Turn aside, friend; sit down here” (4:1), and calmly and graciously explained the situation to him.  Too often, perhaps, when explaining to someone his or her responsibilities, we tend to be confrontational rather than caring and polite.  Further, Boaz sets a good example for us in that he provides a clear explanation of the situation.  I am reminded here of Jesus’ instruction:  “Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ (Matthew 5:37).  He also sets an example in that he took with him ten witnesses to the conversation, which is reminiscent of Jesus’ instruction in Matthew 18, when going to a brother, to take one or two others along when addressing someone in the church.

 

Now, the kinsman refuses to fulfill his familial responsibilities, arguing:  “I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I impair my own inheritance” (4:6).  How selfish!  How uncaring!  How disobedient!  I am reminded of Jesus’ promise:  “Everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life” (Matthew 19:29).  One was not faithful to God’s instruction; one (Boaz) was.  Even when others are not, we must remain faithful to God’s Word.  And, thankfully, we have One has been faithful even to death, dying that we may live.

 

O perfect redemption, the purchase of blood!

To ev’ry believer the promise of God;

The vilest offender who truly believes,

Most surely from Jesus a pardon receives.

Praise the Lord, Praise the Lord,

Let the earth hear His voice!

Praise the Lord, Praise the Lord,

Let the people rejoice!

O come to the Father, thru Jesus the Son,

And give Him the glory - great things He hath done.   –Fanny Crosby (1875)

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