GRACE FROM MAN AND HOPE FOR MANKIND 

Naomi was pleased to learn that a relative has received Ruth, and encourages her to return.  She gives special instructions to Ruth for the coming night.  Boaz went to sleep feeling good, but was awakened to an unexpected disturbance.

And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of corn: and she came softly, and uncovered his feet, and laid her down.  And it came to pass at midnight, that the man was afraid, and turned himself: and, behold, a woman lay at his feet.  And he said, Who art thou? And she answered, I am Ruth thine handmaid: spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsman.  And he said, Blessed be thou of the LORD, my daughter: for thou hast shewed more kindness in the latter end than at the beginning, inasmuch as thou followedst not young men, whether poor or rich.  And now, my daughter, fear not; I will do to thee all that thou requirest: for all the city of my people doth know that thou art a virtuous woman.  And now it is true that I am thy near kinsman: howbeit there is a kinsman nearer than I.  Tarry this night, and it shall be in the morning, that if he will perform unto thee the part of a kinsman, well; let him do the kinsman’s part: but if he will not do the part of a kinsman to thee, then will I do the part of a kinsman to thee, as the LORD liveth: lie down until the morning.  Ruth 3:7-13

This seems a bit bold for our day, to bare his feet and lie down.  He was a bit startled himself, not knowing that she was a relative.  That fact cleared up the issue to him immediately though.  He knew the instructions of  Deuteronomy about a man providing for his brother’s widow.  She had a right to claim some familiarity as she was entitled to become his wife.  He did know that she had a good reputation as a virtuous woman in the community.  He knew exactly what he had to do, if the closer relative would not meet his responsibility.

If brethren dwell together, and one of them die, and have no child, the wife of the dead shall not marry without unto a stranger: her husband’s brother shall go in unto her, and take her to him to wife, and perform the duty of an husband’s brother unto her.  Deuteronomy 25:5

So she got up before they could get too familiar, and he gave her a good measure of grain. 

And she lay at his feet until the morning: and she rose up before one could know another. And he said, Let it not be known that a woman came into the floor.  Also he said, Bring the vail that thou hast upon thee, and hold it. And when she held it, he measured six measures of barley, and laid it on her: and she went into the city.  And when she came to her mother in law, she said, Who art thou, my daughter? And she told her all that the man had done to her.  And she said, These six measures of barley gave he me; for he said to me, Go not empty unto thy mother in law.  Then said she, Sit still, my daughter, until thou know how the matter will fall: for the man will not be in rest, until he have finished the thing this day. Ruth 3:14-18

Naomi knew then that Boaz would give her an answer before the end of the day.

Then went Boaz up to the gate, and sat him down there: and, behold, the kinsman of whom Boaz spake came by; unto whom he said, Ho, such a one! turn aside, sit down here. And he turned aside, and sat down.  And he took ten men of the elders of the city, and said, Sit ye down here. And they sat down.  And he said unto the kinsman, Naomi, that is come again out of the country of Moab, selleth a parcel of land, which was our brother Elimelech’s:  And I thought to advertise thee, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know: for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it.  Then said Boaz, What day thou buyest the field of the hand of Naomi, thou must buy it also of Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance.  And the kinsman said, I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I mar mine own inheritance: redeem thou my right to thyself; for I cannot redeem it.  Ruth 4:1-6

What land?  Boaz assembled ten witnesses to establish this transaction, but there was another one on his mind.  Was this a way to draw attention away from the young woman in question?  The kinsman wanted to redeem the land, but a wife was not in his interest.  Perhaps he had one wife already.  Well, Boaz gained his wife, and more in the deal.

 

Now this was the manner in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning changing, for to confirm all things; a man plucked off his shoe, and gave it to his neighbour: and this was a testimony in Israel.  Therefore the kinsman said unto Boaz, Buy it for thee. So he drew off his shoe.  And Boaz said unto the elders, and unto all the people, Ye are witnesses this day, that I have bought all that was Elimelech’s, and all that was Chilion’s and Mahlon’s, of the hand of Naomi.  Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance, that the name of the dead be not cut off from among his brethren, and from the gate of his place: ye are witnesses this day.  Ruth 4:7-10

So the deal was witnessed in the way of the transactions of his day.  The witnesses wished him prosperity in his coming marriage.

And all the people that were in the gate, and the elders, said, We are witnesses. The LORD make the woman that is come into thine house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel:   and do thou worthily in Ephratah, and be famous in Bethlehem:  And let thy house be like the house of Pharez, whom Tamar bare unto Judah, of the seed which the LORD shall give thee of this young woman.  So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son.  Ruth 4:11-13

Everyone acknowledged the mercy of God for redeeming the losses of Naomi.

And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed be the LORD, which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel.  And he shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thine old age: for thy daughter in law, which loveth thee, which is better to thee than seven sons, hath born him.  And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it.  And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi; and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David.  Ruth 4:14-17

It seems like a time warp here, so a child is introduced as a grandson to Naomi.  He is the ancestor of the famous king David.

Now these are the generations of Pharez: Pharez begat Hezron,  And Hezron begat Ram,and Ram begat Amminadab, And Amminadab begat Nahshon, and Nahshon begat Salmon, And Salmon begat Boaz, and Boaz begat Obed, And Obed begat Jesse, and Jesse begat David.  Ruth 4:18-22

As we know, the house of David will lead to another greater king.

THE OUTSIDER BRINGS THE OUTCOME

From a woman of Moab, a gentile, comes the fulfillment of the law and of grace. 

The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham.   Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judas and his brethren;

And Judas begat Phares and Zara of Thamar; and Phares begat Esrom; and Esrom begat Aram;  And Aram begat Aminadab; and Aminadab begat Naasson; and Naasson begat Salmon;  And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse;  And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias;  And Solomon begat Roboam; and Roboam begat Abia; and Abia begat Asa;  And Asa begat Josaphat; and Josaphat begat Joram; and Joram begat Ozias;  And Ozias begat Joatham; and Joatham begat Achaz; and Achaz begat Ezekias;  And Ezekias begat Manasses; and Manasses begat Amon; and Amon begat Josias;  And Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon:  And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel;  And Zorobabel begat Abiud; and Abiud begat Eliakim; and Eliakim begat Azor;  And Azor begat Sadoc; and Sadoc begat Achim; and Achim begat Eliud;  And Eliud begat Eleazar; and Eleazar begat Matthan; and Matthan begat Jacob;  And Jacob begat Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus, who is called Christ.  Matthew 1:1-16

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