“God in Unexpected Answers” [Unexpected: The Story of Ruth]
Texts: Ruth 2:1-23
June 16/17, 2012
Pastor Matt Erickson
"May the Lord repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the Lord,
the God of Israel under whose wings you have come to take refuge." (Ruth 2:12)
- ‘Luck’ in timing
- ‘Luck’ in location
- ‘Luck’ in human connections
- God’s ways and human luck
- A foreigner – “Ruth the Moabite”
- A woman of no standing – “who came back with Naomi”
- A poor gleaner
- Loyalty to Naomi
- Humble, brash courage with the workers and Boaz
- A godly Israelite – “The Lord be with you!”
- A man of noble standing – “a man of standing from the clan of Elimelek”
- A wealthy landowner
- Generous protection and provision
- Welcoming the stranger
- The ‘guardian-redeemer’
Living into Unexpected Answers
- Like Ruth
- Like Boaz
- Like Naomi
- This weekend we are continuing our series on Ruth entitled “Unexpected” with a look at Ruth, chapter two. Whether you are on your own or in a small group, take time to read it out loud.
- The story of Ruth continues here in chapter two with the introduction of a pivotal character, Naomi’s distant relative Boaz. How is Boaz described? How does Boaz compare with the men mentioned thus far in the story?
- There are five times in the book of Ruth that the phrase “Ruth the Moabite” is used. Chapter two in particular is book-ended with this phrase as seen in verses 2 and 21. This implies that Ruth’s ethnic identity is important to the events. How might Ruth’s ethnicity have been significant in the events in chapter two?
- Compare Boaz’s generosity with the requirements of Old Testament laws about gleaning fields, refer to Leviticus 9:19-20; 23:22; and Deuteronomy 24:19-22. What do you notice?
- How would you describe Ruth’s response to Boaz through the course of this chapter, particularly in verses 8-13?
- Observe Naomi’s response to Ruth in verses 18-23. What has changed with Naomi in comparison to Ruth 1:20-21? [For background on the role of the ‘guardian-redeemer’ see Deuteronomy 25:5-10 and Leviticus 25.]
- Name one specific way that you can respond to God from the message and study this week. Write it down, reflect on it, and put it into practice this week. If you are in a small group, discuss this with one another.
Next week we will look at Ruth 3:1-18. Let God speak to you during this next week by reading these verses ahead of time.