Set in the days of the judges, the little book of Ruth is a beautiful story of Boaz faithfully filling the role of kinsman redeemer (Leviticus 25) by marrying Ruth, a widow, and raising up a son to carry on the name of Ruth’s deceased husband. Even more importantly, though, Boaz was the grandfather of David by Ruth (Matthew 1:5,6) and, so, both come to be counted in the line of David and, ultimately, of David’s descendant, Messiah. Boaz played a typological role in that he was of the tribe Judah (as was Jesus) and he, being an Israelite, married and was a blessing to Ruth, who was a Moabitess (Jesus is savior of both Jews and Gentiles).
All along the way in the story of redemption, God places these sorts of road signs, which repeatedly push us toward Messiah. Indeed, the story of Ruth and Boaz is a wonderful love story, but it is so much more! Ruth’s question to Boaz becomes our statement of amazement when considering how God has loved us and provided redemption for us: “Why have I found favor in your eyes, that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?” (2:10) Charles Wesley expressed our cry in his great hymn:
And can it be that I should gain
An int'rest in the Savior's blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain?
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! how can it be
That Thou, my God, should die for me?