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Thoughts and Commentary on Today's Reading:Returning to the story of Ruth today, let's look for the
spiritual lessons in her experience with Boaz, who was her kinsman-redeemer. (Yes, there's a lot of lessons there!)
Refreshing the story from Ruth chapter 2, let's look at the characters of the story, and how they apply to us:
Ruth 2:1-3 – So Ruth (the Gentile) asked permission (requested of the Israelite woman (God’s true people among the Jews) that she might glean (gather in spiritual information for food) in the field (place of harvest). With blessing upon her, she happened (by God’s providence) to glean (gather in spiritual information) from the field (place of harvest) of Boaz (“In him is strength”), the Next of Kin (Christ Yahshua).
In the story of Ruth and Boaz, we find the principle of the kinsman-redeemer, which is a picture of Messiah.
It was the provision of Torah to keep the estate in the family (tribe) by marrying the widow of a family member. In this case, Elimelech. Deuteronomy 25:5-6. This Levirate Marriage would bring children to Naomi, by this law. Naomi, past child bearing, passes the marriage privilege on to her Moabite ex-daughter-in-law.
Immediately, Boaz notices Ruth and begins caring for her:
He asks, “Who is she?” - Ruth 2:5
He encourages her to only glean grain from his field by saying, “Stay here and do not go to other fields.” - Ruth 2:8
He invites her to “Help yourself to the water jars.” - Ruth 2:9
We experience these things also. The Holy Spirit immediately identifies those who have a heart for Yahweh and Truth. God invites us to only gather Truth from His Field and He draws us to stay. He offers us the Water of Life.
Naturally when one compares the wealthy and important man, Boaz, with the insignificant, nearly-a-beggar, girl Ruth, it is hard to comprehend how he can be interested in developing a relationships with her. Similarly, when we look at Christ and His chosen Bride, we are amazed:
He is wealthy: He created and owns all the land.
We are poor.
He is much older: He is Eternal.
We are children in wisdom and knowledge.
He is from Heaven.
We are from spiritual “Moab” – being naturally sinners, cursed, and the enemies of Yahweh.
He gives to meet our needs from mercy the wages of Grace.
We don't deserve His Provision. We deserve the wages of sin, which is death - Romans 6:23.
Boaz is a Shadow-picture of Christ:
Ruth: She bowed to the ground and said, “Why have I found favor that you should notice me, since I am a foreigner?”
Boaz: Your mother-in-law has share all that you have done for her, and have left your own land to come to a people you have not known before. Ruth 2:10-11
Christ does for us a similar thing as Boaz
Like Ruth, we say: Who am I You should be mindful of me, seeing that I am a sinner. Psalm 8:4; Mark 9:13.
Christ: The Holy Spirit bears witness that we have followed after righteousness.1Timothy 6:11-12.
Naomi instructed Ruth how to approach Boaz:
Wash yourself (cleanse your heart of self & sin)
Dress your best (robe of Christ’s righteousness)
Anoint yourself (fragrant influence and the anointing of the Spirit)
Wait ‘til his work is done (His work in the fields of Israel)
Lie at his feet on the threshing floor (place of separation of the wheat from the tares).
If he covers you, you are sealed (by the kinsman-Redeemer).
In Ruth 3:9, Ruth is at the feet of Boaz.
She said to him, "spread the corner (kanaph) of your garment over me for Thou art my kinsman redeemer" In the NKJ it says, "Take your maidservant under your wing, for you are a close relative.“
The kanaph is the border of the garment. It is the part which the woman with the issue of blood touched when she touched the hem of Messiah's Robe and was healed.
In other words, Ruth said, "Take me under your wing (kanaph)."
In Ezekiel16: 8 Yahweh speaks to Jerusalem and likewise says, "so I spread My Wing (kanaph) over you and covered your nakedness," and in Psalm 91 we are able to "abide under the shadow of the Almighty" and "under His wings (kanaph)."
As a shadow-picture of Christ, Boaz responds by covering Ruth.
Ruth 3:12-15 – Boaz binds his word with an oath: “As Yahweh lives,” he will redeem her. Then he sends her away before dawn with her wrap filled with 6-measures of barley. Boaz is a moral man. He not only would not touch Ruth in the night, he would avoid the appearance of evil (1 Thessalonians 5:22)Boaz is also a generous man. He give Ruth 6-measures of barley, a gift to Naomi.
Even the barley in the story has spiritual application.
Sehoraw (Hebrew) – plant, or grain
Bar (Hebrew) – corn, grain, barley, any grain
Barley is the first grain to ripen and be “harvested.”
It represents those who are overcomers, sealed, and filled with Pentecost’s Spirit (Latter Rain power) to “finish the work.”
Wheat matures in the summer, and represents those who come into truth by the message of Pentecost.
The Grape harvest comes just prior to Tabernacles; these are the wicked, drunk with the wine of Babylon.
The first scripture relevant to the study of barley is in Leviticus 27:16 which says, “a homer of barley seed at fifty shekels of silver.”
Fifty is the number of Pentecost and Jubilee.
Pentecost on the 50th day after First Fruits
Jubilee on the 50th year.
Pray to be “filled with all the fullness of God,” Ephesians 3:19
Pentecost is coming around again... We need to seek the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, manifesting in the Latter Rain. We need to ask of our kinsman-Redeemer that He will cover us with His kanaph. Ask, seek, knock, and we will receive.