From Barrenness to Blessing

Book of Ruth  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  34:11
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Ruth has proposed marriage to Boaz and he said yes. It appears that the maiden from Moab and the bachelor from Bethlehem are going to wed. However, a closer relative than Boaz has the first right of redemption and therefore can marry Ruth. Boaz is determined to settle the issue ASAP (cf. 3:18) and so the stage is set for our seeing “the rest of the story.” If nothing is impossible with God, how are we to proceed? What are we to do? How should we act? Chapter 4 provides 3 lessons we should learn.

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From Barrenness to Blessing

Ruth has proposed marriage to Boaz and he said yes. It appears that the maiden from Moab and the bachelor from Bethlehem are going to wed. However, a closer relative than Boaz has the first right of redemption and therefore can marry Ruth. Boaz is determined to settle the issue ASAP (cf. 3:18) and so the stage is set for our seeing “the rest of the story.” If nothing is impossible with God, how are we to proceed? What are we to do? How should we act? Chapter 4 provides 3 lessons we should learn. Number one...

God May Use You to Answer Your Own Prayer (vv. 1-12)

In Ruth 2:12 Boaz prayed that Jehovah would protect and provide for Ruth. God is about to answer that prayer through Boaz himself. However, God can answer the prayer through Boaz because of 2 aspects of Boaz’s life, a life worth emulating.

Be Devoted to the Right Person (vv. 1-8)

The nearer redeemer was willing to buy back Naomi’s property, but wasn’t willing to encumber himself with marrying Ruth and endangering his family’s estate.
This individual had neither the character nor desire to step up to the plate and take care of his responsibility.
Many will hitch their wagon to the wrong person or thing in hopes they will bring them happiness. But only Jesus will come through in the end.

Be Dedicated to Paying the Price (vv. 9-12)

Boaz kept his word. He’s willing to pay the price to redeem the property and willing to marry Ruth and carry on their family name.
God has used Boaz to answer his own prayer. He could do so because he was the right person willing to pay the right price. But God is not through with either Boaz or Ruth.

God May Bless You Beyond Your Expectations (vv. 13-17)

Boaz married Ruth. The long anticipated love story is complete, or is it? God has been gracious to Ruth, but…what about Naomi? What about the rest of her story?
Ruth 4:13–17 NKJV
13 So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife; and when he went in to her, the Lord gave her conception, and she bore a son. 14 Then the women said to Naomi, “Blessed be the Lord, who has not left you this day without a close relative; and may his name be famous in Israel! 15 And may he be to you a restorer of life and a nourisher of your old age; for your daughter-in-law, who loves you, who is better to you than seven sons, has borne him.” 16 Then Naomi took the child and laid him on her bosom, and became a nurse to him. 17 Also the neighbor women gave him 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.

Trust the Lord to Bless You (vv. 13-15)

We first met Naomi in a place of sorrow and bitterness. She was in this condition until she realized there was hope for redemption through Boaz’s kindness to her daughter-in-law Ruth.
In these verses we see a marriage, then a baby. The women of the town come to Naomi and pronounce a blessing.
And I find it interesting they don’t talk to Ruth, but to Naomi. And then it’s the neighborhood welcoming committee that gives Ruth and Boaz’s baby a name. How would you like leaving the naming of your child up to the local women’s club? Yeah, right.
God blessed Naomi in Obed. He was definitely a grand-baby. Our grandchildren are definitely grand. Every grandparent can bear witness that grandchildren are better than the Fountain of Youth. We get “young again” when they come to visit. Though not all grandparents agree with it, they all know the old saying, “They’re called “grandchildren” because they’re grand when they come, and grand when they leave.”
Obed would bless Naomi in another way. He would one day care for the family that brought him into the world, including grandmother Naomi.

Let Others Rejoice With You (vv. 16-17)

Ruth 4:16–17 NKJV
16 Then Naomi took the child and laid him on her bosom, and became a nurse to him. 17 Also the neighbor women gave him 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.
Naomi is a fulfilled/ “full again” grandmother enjoying and helping in the care of her grandson. Ruth sees joy in her mother-in-law’s eyes again.
The women of Bethlehem continue to rejoice as well (they probably did not literally/actually name him; rather they explain his significance in Naomi’s life and the meaning of his name: Obed=servant).
Obed will be famous (v. 14), for he will have a son named Jesse, and he will have. The rejoicing of Bethlehem is just beginning.

God May Do Through You What Transcends Your Imagination (vv. 18-22)

Ruth 4:18–22 NKJV
18 Now this is the genealogy of Perez: Perez begot Hezron; 19 Hezron begot Ram, and Ram begot Amminadab; 20 Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon; 21 Salmon begot Boaz, and Boaz begot Obed; 22 Obed begot Jesse, and Jesse begot David.
Verses 18-22 contain an abbreviated 10-person genealogy. Perhaps the 10 names stand in contrast to the 10 infertile years in Moab. In this kind of genealogy, person 7 and 10 occupy the most important position. Number 7 is Boaz (cf. v.11b). Number 10 is David.
The Moabites were not to enter the congregation of the Lord “even to the tenth generation” (Deut. 23:3). But the little Book of Ruth closes with a ten-generation genealogy that climaxes with the name of David!
Never underestimate the power of the grace of God.
Conclusion:
A. Be willing to be the answer to your own prayers.
B. Be devoted to Jesus.
C. Be willing to pay the price for obedience.
D. Trust the Lord to bless you.
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