Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Revived with a Purpose


Sit still, my daughter, for the man will not rest until he has concluded the matter.” Ruth 3:18
Today we see the second thing that stands out about Naomi. She is not only changed, but she has been changed to serve. Her comfort from God has affected her attitude toward others. From bitter complainer, she has become the encouraging helper. The one who couldn’t even see the great blessing God had given her through Ruth, now finds that she can be a blessing to Ruth. The tables are turned. Ruth is wondering what will happen. Naomi assures her that Boaz, the picture of Christ, will not rest until the will of God is fulfilled.
Paul told the Corinthians that they had suffered in order to be able to succor those who are suffering. We have been given an assignment by God, lift up those who are broken. Undergird those whose minds are filled with discouragement. Be Christ to someone near to you. Naomi, the transformed woman, does just that. God mends us to mend others.
Dear Father, Use us to help someone else find their hope and comfort in the promises of Christ. Amen.


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Monday, April 23, 2018

Revived


Sit still, my daughter, for the man will not rest until he has concluded the matter.” Ruth 3:18
Andre Crouch sang, “I don’t worry, I don’t fret, my God has never failed me yet. I’ve got confidence, God is going to see me through.” This was Naomi’s advice to Ruth in the early morning hours after Ruth’s meeting with Boaz. Two things stand out in Naomi’s comment. One for today and one for tomorrow.
Remember Naomi, the depressed and distraught woman of Ruth chapter one? Remember the woman who felt she had lost it all, the woman who wanted to change her name to “Bitter”? Remember the sad woman who, although she had a devoted daughter-in-law, felt that the future was hopeless? Look at her now!
Our times of misery, disappointment, yes, even anger at God do not have to be our defining moments. Misery, disappointment, and wondering where God is are part of our sinful human condition. But look at Naomi now! She has settled again in Bethlehem, the house of the bread of God, and her soul is revived. Praise God, she’s not where she was yesterday.
Dear Father, Refresh us in the presence of Your grace. Amen.


Friday, April 20, 2018

Serious About Our Soul


He measured six ephahs of barley and laid it on her.” Ruth 3:15
As a token of his promise to Ruth, Boaz gave her an abundant blessing before sending her home to Naomi to await the outcome of her future. Since their first meeting, Boaz had been caring for Ruth and her needs. He gave her constant assurances of his care. This last gift was six times greater than she had received the first day of her acquaintance with him. He had withheld nothing she needed from her. Such was the love of Boaz for Ruth.
Christ loved us enough to make the sacrifice needed for our souls. He has already secured our hand for eternity. Satan, as always, despised responsibility, and willingly let another suffer for us. Ruth did not yet know the outcome of her future, but she knew the one who promised and was content. The six ephahs of barley showed her he was serious. He would take care of her. The cross of Christ proved He was serious. He will take care of us.
Dear Jesus, Thank you for being serious about our souls and dying to give us eternal life. Amen.


  The Friday Benediction
Until Monday, my friends, may the good God envelop you with His grace; may you prove the common confession of faith, “I believe in the holy Christian church and in the fellowship of the saints”, and may you be enriched with joy and hope as you exercise that confession this weekend.  Amen
 

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Thursday, April 19, 2018

Who Will Make the Sacrifice


If he will not perform his duty, then I will perform the duty for you.” Ruth 3:13
The contest is now on. There is Boaz, the defender of Ruth’s purity, the provider of Ruth’s needs, the one who truly cared for Ruth’s life. There is the other claimant to her hand. He has first dibs, so to speak, but can he do it? Will he do it? This was what Ruth must wait to find out until the next day came. But during that waiting, she still had the promise of Boaz, “I will perform it for you.”
A sacrifice of self was required of the claimant for Ruth’s hand. When confronted the next day with the offer, the other claimant said, “Yes, I’ll take her.” But when reminded of the sacrifice he said, “No, I won’t take her.” Boaz accepted he sacrifice. Like Boaz, Christ made the sacrifice for us. He gave Himself in our place, died our deserved death for us, that we might have forgiveness of sins and hope forever. Satan is never willing to make any sacrifices for us. Only our loving Savior would do so.
Dear Father, Thank You for the sacrifice of Your Son, Amen.


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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Who Will Be the Champ?


I am a close relative, but there is another closer than I.” Ruth 3:12
Perhaps you have said to someone, “Do you want the good news first, or the bad?” What must Ruth have felt when Boaz finished his promise with the codicil that there might be someone else with a better claim to Ruth? All the time she had spent following him. the blessings he had bestowed upon her, the joy she had felt in getting to know him, and the hope for a future with him as her provider, and now the words some out, “There is another closer than I”.
There is another claimant for our soul that is Jesus Christ. That claimant is our great adversary, the devil. Satan, our accuser lays his claim as well. We are born in sin and that condemns us to separation from God. By birth we are his and without an intercessor, we remain his for eternity. But Boaz continued, “I will see to this matter myself.” He would confront the opponent for her claims. Christ has done that for us. Praise God.
Dear Father, Thank You for sending Jesus as our champion. Amen.



Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Promise Guaranteed


And now I will do for you all that you request.” Ruth 3:11
God tells us to call upon Him and He will answer us and show us great and mighty things. He says that He will hear our appeal and righteously answer it. Jesus calls on us to bring our prayers to the Father in Jesus’ name. He is our kinsman redeemer and He has promised to hear our prayers. James told the church that they “had not because they asked not, and that they had asked amiss.” (James 4:3) Ruth had asked clearly according to the word of God, and Boaz answered her with a promise of his own.
From whence comes our help?” the psalmist asks. Then he tells us, “My help comes from the Lord.” Boaz told Ruth that she had come to the right place to receive the answer she needed. We often go to God after all other helpers fail to help. Ruth took the right course first and Boaz blessed her for proper thinking and actions. We can do the same.
Dear Father, Help us to realize from whom our true help comes. Amen.



Monday, April 16, 2018

Who to Follow?


Blessed are you of the Lord, for you did not go after young men, whether poor or rich.” Ruth 3:10
How many offers does the world make to us each day to tear our attention away from Christ? There are the old Greek philosophies that get recycled every generation. There are the pagan cult options from ancient Canaan that focus on sexual immorality. There are the intellectual calls from a crowd apparently too well informed to believe in God. There is the newer and dramatically demanding call of sports to consume our time, attention, and resources.
Then there is Christ, our creator, savior, and keeper. From eternity past He has loved us and calls us to faith in Him. When Ruth went to Boaz to appeal to his relationship, He responded to her with praise. There were so many other options she could have sought out, but she sought out the one that God had designed in His word as the right choice. She had chosen the kinsman redeemer. We need, like Ruth, to heed only the call of Christ for our worship and devotion.
Dear Father, Help us to keep our hearts tuned only to the call of Christ. Amen


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