SOAP Journal – 11 August 2017 (Ruth 3)

Then she said, “Wait, my daughter, until you know how the matter turns out; for the man will not rest until he has settled it today.”

Ruth 3:18

The story of Ruth keeps rolling along and Naomi decides that she should try to find a husband for Ruth. It makes sense. The best way to make sure that Ruth’s situation was secure was to find her a husband. Ruth could, as a widow, continue to glean and to provide for herself and Naomi, but that would be a very uncertain future. What is more, Naomi has a man in mind: Boaz.

Something Boaz says is interesting to me. He says to Ruth,  “May you be blessed of the LORD, my daughter. You have shown your last kindness to be better than the first by not going after young men, whether poor or rich.” (Ruth 3:10), thus revealing himself to not be a young man. This brings questions: How old is he? Did he ever marry before? If no, why not? What is the age different between him and Ruth? And the text is silent on these. We are told only that he is willing to marry Ruth and thus redeem both her and the property. Then Naomi adds her color commentary and says that the man will not rest until he has settled it today. So we learn something else about him: he is decisive and tenacious. Once he has decided to do a thing, he will do it and make sure that it is done.

Small wonder, then, that Jesus and Boaz are often paralleled. Jesus also decided to redeem His Bride, the church, and once He had decided that, He made sure it was done.

How do I apply this? The Church, as a body, is the Bride of Christ, so let me not be confused on that score. I am not Christ’s Bride. I am His friend, according to His own words. He is, however, my Redeemer. He paid my debt so that I could be free. Let me act on this knowledge and acquit myself as a man ought. I owe a debt, let me seek to repay it as best I can. I know that I cannot repay it, the debt was too great for me to repay or I would have repaid it myself. Let me, instead, seek to render service to Jesus Christ; the One Who paid my debt and set me free from it and its penalties. Jesus paid my price, let me seek to render service that may pay back some small measure of what He has done for me. I owe Him that much and more.

Father, please keep me mindful that I am a debtor to You and to Jesus Christ Who paid my debt. Please work in me to make me a worthwhile servant; to enable me to give back to You even an infinitesimal fraction of what I owe. Thank You, Lord Jesus, for paying the debt I could not pay.

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