Before we talk about how this book is a part of your history, it occurs to me that there was something we read today that might have caused you to raise your eyebrows a bit.
Do you remember what it was? It was when Boaz was sleeping on the threshing floor and Ruth came in to lie at his feet. Did that seem a bit like she was being improper? Like maybe she was throwing herself at him?
It wasn’t, really. According to Hebrew law, when a man died, his closest relative was to take his wife as his own. Since Ruth’s mother-in-law, Naomi, was not aware of a closer relative than Boaz, she must have told Ruth that Boaz was to be her husband, since Ruth’s husband had died.
So actually, Ruth’s actions that night were somewhat restrained, since she laid by Boaz’s feet instead of lying next to him in a more seductive manner.
And Boaz, this man of integrity, carefully restrained himself as well, even taking care to have her leave before anyone should see Ruth there. He knew that there was a closer relative that had first right of refusal, and he didn’t want Ruth’s good name compromised.
These were, without a doubt, good and honorable people.
And now, you have probably figured out how this book is relevant to you, but in case you haven’t here it is. Ruth, although adopted into the family through this marriage, and not even of Jewish heritage, is part of the genealogy of Jesus. The human part of Jesus was descended from her. Therefore, since believers are adopted into the family, we are descended from Ruth, too, in a spiritual sense.
And just as she has an eternal impact on the human family through her adoption, we can too. What are you doing that will last for eternity?