Thursday, September 16, 2010

Preamble to the Ruth Studies

In the Old Testament is the little book of Ruth. Its humble size belies the great importance that God has given to this book. It will be the focus of this blog to tell the story of Ruth and to dig into the depths of this book as seen through the many faceted doctrines that are in this book and to expose the many concepts that God wants us to see.

There are many stories inside the book of Ruth but there are two essential stories involved in the book. The first story is the story of Ruth. Ruth is a Moabitess and by the Word of the Law of God no Moabitess can enter into the camp of Israel for ten generations. Deuteronomy 23:3-6 So for the story of Ruth to make it into the Jewish Bible is a miracle. What makes this story a miracle is that it is the story of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The law says that a Moabitess cannot come into the camp of Israel for ten generations. The gospel states that anyone who is born again is no longer a Moabitess but a Jewess by faith. When Ruth chose to accept the God of Naomi as her God (this God was the pre-incarnate Son of God the One we know of as Jesus the Christ – see Exodus 3:14 and John 8:58) then she no longer was a Moabitess according to the law and when the law examined Ruth it found her to be a new creature in Christ and no longer under condemnation of the law of God. This gospel message was available from the foundation of the world according to Revelation 13:8.

The second major theme in the book of Ruth is that of the Messiah. It is important to remember that the God of the Old Testament is not so much the Everlasting Father but the Everlasting Son of God. The God of Ruth is the I Am spoken of in Exodus 3:14 and His name was claimed by Jesus Himself in John 8:51-58. Once we can accept the fact that the Pre-Incarnate Son of God was the God of the Old Testament then many of the confusing concepts of the Bible become plain and straight forward. Then His gospel that He presented to all sinners would be clearly known because of how we know Jesus and His desire to save all sinners. Jesus did not come to save New Testament sinners only but any and all sinners. There is no sin so dark that Jesus can make it white in His blood. Jesus extended His gospel to all sinners including Abraham Galatians 3:6-9 and to Israel itself Hebrews 4:2. Then because Ruth is converted we know that the gospel was in effect when Ruth claimed it for herself in her confession in Ruth 1:15-18.

Another major aspect of the Messianic components of Ruth is that Ruth was the great, great, great Grand Mother of Jesus Himself. Matthew 1:5. As we have just seen Ruth was incorporated into the very lineage of Messiah. I believe that God did this to show us that the human nature of Jesus passed through many channels to reach Him in 5-4 BC at His birth. Jesus has many interesting people in His lineage including Ruth the Moabitess who became a Jew by faith in Jesus. So functionally Jesus has a portion of Ruth’s gene pool in His human nature.

In addition to the fact that Messiah came from the lineage of Ruth it is also clear that Jesus experienced Ruth’s fleshly nature through Ruth’s great-grandson David. Romans 1:3 states that “Concerning His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh.” So Jesus not only had the flesh of David, but He also had the flesh of Ruth, David’s Great Grand Mother and the flesh of Abraham, the Father of the Faithful. Hebrews 2:16.

So with this introduction to Ruth I would like to start this series and take you, the reader, through many Bible studies based on the experience of Ruth and her precious descendent Jesus of Nazareth. May God bless you with a renewed faith in His gospel story.

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