Here we are at the end of our study of the book of Ruth. I hope you have enjoyed it and have a new love for this beautiful story. I never tire of going through this story. Who doesn’t enjoy a love story with a happy ending?
13 So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son.
14 And the women said unto Naomi, Blessed be the LORD, which hath not left thee this day without a kinsman, that his name may be famous in Israel.
15 And he shall be unto thee a restorer of thy life, and a nourisher of thine old age: for thy daughter in law, which loveth thee, which is better to thee than seven sons, hath born him.
16 And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it.
17 And the women her neighbours gave it 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.
18 Now these are the generations of Pharez: Pharez begat Hezron,
19 And Hezron begat Ram, and Ram begat Amminadab,
20 And Amminadab begat Nahshon, and Nahshon begat Salmon,
21 And Salmon begat Boaz, and Boaz begat Obed,
22 And Obed begat Jesse, and Jesse begat David.
So much of human joy, sorrow, hope, fear, longing is often distilled in a single verse in the Bible. In Ruth 4:13 we read that Boaz and Ruth were married and conceived a baby. It sounds so simple – and yet.
There was the joy of the wedding celebration. After that the settling into married life, the hope of a new life, the confirmation that their hopes were indeed fact, the months of gradually growing more awkward and uncomfortable day by day, the hours of labour and birth with the sweet joy of a son at the end of it.
Ruth has seen an amazing change in her “status” since we started studying this book. First she was a “foreigner” (2:10), then a “handmaid” (2:13), and finally a “wife” (4:13). She has gone from someone to be avoided to someone well beloved by all. Surely the Lord has given her a “full reward” (2:12) in her husband and son.
I thank God every day for the husband and children He has blessed me with. There were many times as a young adult that I thought I would never be married or have children. I can say that God has blessed me more than I ever dreamed. Ephesians 3:20, “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think…”
Our focus now shifts back to Naomi. We started the story with her tragedy, but we end it with her triumph. Her neighbours who witnessed her sad, bitter return now sing the praises of God who has blessed her beyond anything she had hoped for.
This baby will now restore Naomi fully to the joy in life she previously had. And Ruth, this beloved daughter-in-law who lovingly and loyally followed Naomi back to Bethlehem with no hope of anything, is compared to seven sons. High praise indeed from a culture that placed a high value on even one son.
Naomi who came home “empty” (1:21) now has her arms full of a baby boy to care for. Her neighbours gave him the name of “Obed” which means “worshipping”.
And now we learn that Obed was King David’s grandfather making Ruth King David’s great-grandmother! Think about Ruth’s pledge to Naomi in chapter one. It’s beautiful and moving – King David inherited her way with words as the Psalms testify to.
Generations later Jesus was born from this line through his mother Mary. God’s abundant grace at work – a Moabite – someone Israelites generally despised – is a part of the genealogy of Jesus. God has worked everything according to His plan. But He could only work this plan because Ruth was willing to place her trust in Him.
Trust God – you will never regret it!