Sunday, November 29, 2009

85: Ruth, All of It

Ruth
Ruth approached quietly, uncovered his feet and lay down. - Ruth 3:7

Well, I've read over this book, and I'm not sure what the point is. It seems like this could have been thrown in as a random story somewhere else rather than it having it's own book.

Ruth is the daughter-in-law of an Israelite woman (Naomi) living in Moab. Ruth and Naomi's husbands die and Naomi tells Ruth to go back to live with her parents. Ruth says no and goes with Naomi to Bethlehem.

They go to live with one of Naomi's relatives, Boaz. He is a well-to-do farmer with many servants. He allows Ruth to be one of his servants, and lets her collect enough food to live.

They continually call Boaz their kinsman-redeemer. This must have some significance in the ancient world. Anyway, Naomi essentially tells Ruth to seduce him (Ruth goes into his room at night and sleeps at his naked feet). Boaz says that he will find someone else to buy Naomi's husband's land, and marry Ruth (maybe this is what a kinsman-redeemer is?). The other man he asks says no, so Boaz says that he will take the responsibility and marry Ruth.

There is a small genealogy section and the chapter ends. I'm not sure what the purpose of this book was. God is only mentioned in passing.

*News*
We have yet another time where someone is trying to mix their religion and their sports. Just stop. God doesn't care about your sports team.

As many of you have probably seen/heard Tim Tebow puts bible verses on his face during all of his football games (he is the Florida Gators' quarterback). This is the quote he used for the Florida v. Florida State game:
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
I'll let you analyze that and tell me what the hell that has to do with football.

(via Gather)

3 comments:

  1. The Hebrew term “hesed” which conveys the concept of “covenant faithfulness” of Yahweh and of two particular characters is clearly the theme of the book of Ruth as it impinges upon 1. Naomi (the main character) who is an “empty” widow and 2. a "name/lineage" (Elimelech’s) that seemingly would have been cut off in Israel. The term, hesed, is used in 1:8, 2:20 and 3:10 at strategic locations. The book begins with the setting of “judges” which was as we have seen a period when Israel struggled to follow God and remain “loyal” / “hesed” to God. Naomi seems to have been questioning Yahweh’s hesed through the first two chapters but then Yahweh’s hesed is resolved in Naomi’s mind in 2:20 and exalted at the end of the book.

    The real problem, as always, is God’s people’s "hesed" to Himself. But, pictures of true hesed are found in Ruth and Boaz. So, in this time of a lack of loyalty to God (the period of the judges), God continues to demonstrate His loyalty by an amazing story whereby He exalts an empty widow and reverses the fortunes of a name being cut off into a name that is exalted in Bethlehem—i.e. the line of David (and ultimately the Messiah) This royal seed will come from a 1 ) a foreign woman who demonstrates more “hesed” than God’s people and 2) Boaz who is introduced like the judges as a “mighty man” but different than the judges in that he is mighty in “hesed.” Ruth and Boaz are pictures of God’s “hesed” to His people and examples of appropriate individual hesed toward God. In contrast with the judges, the exaltation and chosen line is preserved not by the heroic deeds of the judges but by the simple loyalty to Yahweh of a foreign woman and one faithful Israelite man. The humble shall be exalted.

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  2. There are quite a few places in the bible where "feet" means "genitals". Could this be one of them? XD

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  3. You could say Boaz had a big pitchfork?

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