Midnight at the Threshing Floor
Introduction: Michael Jerome Williams, Jr., was born in Memphis, Tennessee. He was one of 12 children born to Denise Oher, an alcoholic and crack addict. His father was frequently in prison. With such tough surroundings, he received little attention or childhood discipline.
He repeated first and second grade and was at 11 different schools during his first nine years. He learned that life was tough, having been placed in foster care at seven, and he went back and forth between foster homes and homelessness. His biological father was murdered in prison when he was a senior in high school.
His life was bleak and filled with disappointment, but in time a couple with a daughter and son attending the same school as him welcomed him into their home and eventually adopted him. They tended to his needs once they understood what he had been through and they hired a tutor for him, who worked with him 20 hours per week.
During this time he earned letters in track and basketball. In basketball, he averaged 22 points and 10 rebounds a game, earning All-State honors. He was also a state runner-up in the discus as a senior. During this time, he raised his GPA from 0.76 to 2.52.
After that, he went on to complete college and was signed into the NFL in 2008 under the name Michael Oher. Little things in life can truly produce immense changes in one’s direction. Today, we will look at a moment in time which set up events which will forever change the life of Ruth.
Though the outcome won’t be known as we finish today, the divinely orchestrated appointment will lead to a vow from Boaz that whatever the end result, it will be a favorable one for Ruth. It is times like these which demonstrate that even things which seem random never are. Michael Oher, in his own walk with Christ, has certainly found this to be true in his life.
Text Verse: ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
There are times when the outcome of something we must do may seem scary or overwhelming to face. It’s at times like these that we need to remember this proverb and cling to it. Ruth had seen Naomi return to Israel despite the many heartaches and losses she had suffered.
In witnessing Naomi’s implicit trust, Ruth learned also to trust implicitly. She trusted Naomi who trusted the Lord and her trust in the Lord has led her to where she will arrive at tonight, with a blessing and a promise of rest in the home of a kinsman redeemer.
We too have a Kinsman Redeemer and we too must trust the Lord that our redemption is ahead. We who have believed have entered His rest, though we wait on its fulfillment. Until that day, no matter what, let’s just keep trusting the Lord. He led Michael Oher this far and he will continue to lead us too. It’s a sure promise that we see pictured again and again in God’s superior word, so let’s turn to that word now and… May God speak to us through His word today and may His glorious name ever be praised.
I. Ruth’s Faithful Obedience (verses 6 & 7)
To get a clearer picture of what our first verse today includes, it would be good to go back and re-read the verses which precede it –
Then Naomi her mother-in-law said to her, “My daughter, shall I not seek security for you, that it may be well with you? 2 `Now Boaz, whose young women you were with, is he not our relative? In fact, he is winnowing barley tonight at the threshing floor. 3 Therefore wash yourself and anoint yourself, put on your best garment and go down to the threshing floor; but do not make yourself known to the man until he has finished eating and drinking. 4 Then it shall be, when he lies down, that you shall notice the place where he lies; and you shall go in, uncover his feet, and lie down; and he will tell you what you should do.” 5 And she said to her, “All that you say to me I will do.”
From this, we come to our first verse of the day:
6 So she went down to the threshing floor and did according to all that her mother-in-law instructed her.
Naomi would never have asked Ruth to do something she felt was inappropriate. Ruth knew this and she also felt an obligation through love to follow the instructions as they were given. Her love for Naomi led to her child-like obedience in how she conducted herself through this delicate ritual.
And yet, Naomi’s love for Ruth is also evident in searching for a place of rest for her daughter-in-law. If Ruth were to marry, there was nothing to guarantee that Boaz would build an addition on his house for Naomi. Although unlikely, she could be left in a lonely position through her actions.
But their mutual love is what is driving their decisions and actions as they go about fulfilling the hope-filled plan. And so the Bible records Ruth’s obedience in the words that she, “went down to the threshing floor and did according to all that her mother-in-law instructed her.”
7 And after Boaz had eaten and drunk,
This is exactly what Naomi had specified, that she should not make herself known, meaning her intentions, until after Boaz had eaten and drunk. It’s an obviously-understood maxim to most people. Another person will normally be more well-disposed to a matter after having first eaten. In the book of Esther, before requesting an especially important matter from the King of Persia, Esther first invited him to a banquet, knowing that this would make the chance of him granting her request more favorable. Likewise, one should never go shopping before eating a meal unless they have a very fat wallet.
People tend to act more impulsively and without great thought before a meal than they do after one. Naomi understood this in her directions to Ruth. Ruth in turn trusted Naomi’s directions and carefully followed them.
7 (con’t) and his heart was cheerful, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain;
The word here translated as “cheerful” is yatav. It signifies something good, well, glad, or pleasing. Thus his mood and his disposition after a long day of work was that of a refreshed laborer. Ecclesiastes speaks of the work of a laborer and how it affects his sleep –
“The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, Whether he eats little or much.” Ecclesiastes 3:12
If the sleep of a laboring man is sweet even if he eats little, how much more sweetly will he sleep after he has had a good meal. Boaz was well-fed and well-filled and probably on a soft bed of the stalks which had been separated from the grain.
There, at the end of the heap of grain, he probably sweetly slept and maybe he dreamt of that beautiful young woman who came to glean each day in his fields…
7 (con’t) and she came softly, uncovered his feet, and lay down.
Again, Ruth followed Naomi’s directions exactly as given. Naomi’s direction for her to wait until he was asleep was certainly an intended precaution, not because she didn’t trust either Boaz or Ruth, but because she understood human nature.
To come to him after a meal and yet before he slept is the time of man’s greatest weakness in regards to his natural inclinations, but that quickly fades as the minutes and hours pass from a light sleep to the deep sleep which causes the brain to become foggy. The natural inclinations for companionship are replaced with the natural inclinations for more sleep.
Naomi, a widow who had borne two children understood these things well enough to know them intimately. Ruth, obediently followed her directions and came softly. The Hebrew word used here is lat and indicates secrecy or a mystery. In other words, she crept in, maybe on tippy toes, in order to not disturb his slumber.
Upon her arrival, she uncovered his feet and lay down. In these actions, neither she nor Naomi who recommended them, have done anything wrong or even mildly inappropriate. Ruth is offering of herself to a person who has the right to redeem her. She is doing this under the provisions of the law and culture of the land.
I know that there is nothing better for people
Than to be happy and to do good while they live
Following the Lord and worshipping under the church steeple
And to the Lord praises and honor to give
That each of them may eat and drink
And find satisfaction in all their toil
This is certainly the gift of God, so let us think
To honor Him, and to Him always remain loyal
II. A Midnight Meeting (verses 8-10)
8 Now it happened at midnight that the man was startled,
The Hebrew here uses the term bakhatsi halaylah (1:18), “in the middle of the night.” Until this point, he was unaware of anything that had come about, and was instead in his deeply-sweet slumber. But at some point, there in the middle of the night, he was startled. The word used to describe this is kharad.
This wasn’t merely a light startle, but he was truly afraid as one would be when they didn’t know whether it was a lion or a man with an axe there at his feet. The same word was used for the first time in Scripture to describe Isaac’s reaction when he realized that whoever he blessed wasn’t the son he thought he had blessed –
“Then Isaac trembled exceedingly, and said, ‘Who? Where is the one who hunted game and brought it to me? I ate all of it before you came, and I have blessed him—and indeed he shall be blessed.'” Genesis 27:33
In response to Boaz’ fear, we read the following…
8 (con’t) and turned himself;
This word is laphat. Here, it is a reflexive form of the verb which means to grasp with a twisting or bending motion. In other words, he bent forward and grasped as if in an instinctive self-defense motion. Instead of finding a large predator or a strong-armed foe, he realizes it is something entirely different…
8 (con’t) and there, a woman was lying at his feet.
The translation here is lacking. Rather than a mundane, “and there” it should be translated “behold!” or maybe a more modern “whoa!” Instead of whatever he may have expected, he came across the entirely unexpected, “a woman was lying at his feet!”
9 And he said, “Who are you?”
Suddenly realizing that there is minimal threat and that it is a woman who is lying at his feet rather than a man or beast ready to attack, he adjusts his mind and asks her directly who she is. It is that moment when one realizes safety but a state of confusion still rules the moment.
9 (con’t) So she answered, “I am Ruth, your maidservant.
This first response brings to clarity the who, but not the why. She says, anokhi rut amatekha – “I am Ruth your maidservant.” In essence, she allows him to momentarily grasp that it is the young lady who has gleaned and worked diligently in his fields and to whom he had been so generous.
9 (con’t) Take your maidservant under your wing,
Following up her identification, the words she uses here will take careful explanation to fully understand. Literally she says, “and spread therefore your skirt over your handmaid.” It is a proverbial expression which implies marriage and her request is that it be him who would perform that duty for her.
She has been sent by Naomi to request that this ancient right be fulfilled by Boaz. The right had a unique symbol by which it was claimed, that of wings. Naomi had said she would look for a place of rest for Ruth. Marriage is that place of rest and it is represented by being under the husband’s wings, or under his skirt.
In essence, the covering of the man is the covering of the woman. The word for “wing” here is kanaph and can be translated as wing, garment, skirt, edge, extremity, etc. It is the same word that Boaz used in the previous chapter when he said this to Ruth –
“The Lord repay your work, and a full reward be given you by the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge.” Ruth 2:12
She is calling that to reminder, understanding that Jehovah the Lord often works through human representation. Just as the High Priest of Israel was a human mediator, and as the Judge of Israel or a prophet of Israel represented the Lord, she also understood that a husband was the representative of the family before the Lord.
She was asking to come under his wings because she had come under the wings of Jehovah. In Ezekiel 16, the same terminology is used by the Lord concerning His relationship with Israel –
“‘When I passed by you again and looked upon you, indeed your time was the time of love; so I spread My wing over you and covered your nakedness. Yes, I swore an oath to you and entered into a covenant with you, and you became Mine,’ says the Lord God.” Ezekiel 16:8
The rite of marriage is a resting place. God equated his relationship with Israel to marriage. In the Old Testament, He is the loving Bridegroom of his people, but that symbolism translates into the New Testament as well in our relationship with Christ.
He, the embodiment of Jehovah the Lord, had called Israel and they had continuously failed to respond as He relayed to them on Palm Sunday, just a few days before they crucified Him –
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing!” Matthew 23:37
In understanding Ruth’s words now, and who she and who Boaz picture, the story takes on a wonderful portrait of the unfolding events of redemptive history. Each verse is being used to show us marvelous hints to ponder and then to hopefully recognize what God is doing throughout history.
The Pulpit commentary translates Ruth’s words as an affirmative statement, “And thou hast spread thy wings over thy handmaid, for thou art kinsman.” In essence, even though she placed herself under his covering, she says it as if it were “his.own.deliberate.act.”
In other words, it would be as if she said, “Me lying here under your garment demonstrates the true relationship in which we already stand. You are my kinsman and therefore I am yours if you wish.” She is offering herself to him while stating that he already has the rights to her because of his relationship to her.
It is her consent to a right that he possesses, which is based on her consent. If you think for a moment as Ruth being you and Boaz being Jesus, it will make sense. Jesus is our Kinsman and He possesses the right to redeem us. When we offer ourselves to Him, it is because He possesses that right of redemption.
He has potentially spread His wings over us by joining with humanity. He actually spreads them over us when we exercise our right to allow Him to do so. It is a picture of God’s offering and our free-will to accept that offering. Without being presumptuous, we could say “You have redeemed me, therefore, redeem me.”
9 (con’t) for you are a close relative.”
When Boaz was first introduced into this story, a different word was used to describe him as a “relative.” That word was mowda, a male relative. That denotes someone who is intimately acquainted and thus a near relative.
However, the word used in this verse for “close relative” is goel. It is a kinsman redeemer as prescribed by the law. In essence, it is “one who enforces a claim which has lapsed” and thus a person who “re-claims.” The verb of this word can be used in the redeeming of a house or property after it has been sold and even for an Israelite that sold himself into slavery.
The goel had the right to reclaim the property or the person. In the case of Ruth, if Boaz turned down the redemption, both he and Ruth would suffer disgrace. Knowing this, Naomi would never have sent Ruth out in this way unless she was absolutely certain that Boaz would agree.
This is all the more sure because in Ruth’s words, she acknowledges that Boaz has this right, but she uses no definite article. He is not “the” goel, but “a” goel. As there are others who could perform this duty, it would be unnecessarily humiliating to both of them for no reason at all.
Unless there was some certainty that he would favorably respond, both Naomi and Ruth would never have gone through with any of it. What they have done is honest, lawful, and tenderly emotional. The elegant ritual we have been allowed to witness shows the purity, love, and noble actions of Ruth. And these in turn are acknowledged and testified to by Boaz when he speaks…
10 Then he said, “Blessed are you of the Lord, my daughter!
The response of Boaz here vindicates Ruth’s actions as being pure and noble. No hint of accusation and no note of condemnation is given. Instead, he explains that she is truly blessed of the Lord. Jehovah Himself has smiled upon her actions.
But Boaz also remains content to call her “my daughter.” Nothing has been settled yet and nothing will be settled through his words during this night. And so he says nothing to yet stir her emotions or give hint that she is any closer to him than she was before she came to the threshing floor. And yet, at the same time, he continues with his praise of her and her actions…
10 (con’t) For you have shown more kindness at the end than at the beginning,
This term used by Boaz is like saying “You have been faithful from square one, but your faithfulness has grown all along.” She married into a family of Israel and was willing to forsake the gods of her land. When her husband died, she remained faithful to her mother-in-law and the God of Israel whom Naomi worshipped.
But these things occurred when times were tough. People will always draw closer to one another and to God during the tough times, but when things become better, those close connections often drop by the wayside. Families separate and worship of God is left behind in the midst of a more prosperous existence.
Ruth was exceptional in that she stuck it out through the hard times and continued to stay in the good. In the fields of Boaz, there were many young men whom she could have followed. Naomi could have asked for the right to redemption personally. Ruth hinted that to her once before, but when Naomi excused herself from that position, Ruth willingly accepted the responsibility.
She instead committed to her husband’s family and name and declined to seek a new marriage outside of that. In essence, as Michaelis paraphrases this verse –
“The kindness which thou art showing to thy husband, now that he is gone, is still greater than what thou didst show to him while he lived.” Michaelis
In using the term goel when referring to Boaz, she was respectfully considering the duty which she owed to her dead husband’s name and memory. Boaz realized this and certainly was even more struck by the nobility of her actions, especially considering his age.
He was a contemporary of her father-in-law, Elimelech. What may have seemed repugnant to some women in making such an offering to such an old man was considered the right and honorable course of action by Ruth.
10 (con’t) in that you did not go after young men, whether poor or rich.
In Ruth, Boaz sees that she deliberately refrained from any young men as the plural indicates. The entire spectrum is included – whether handsome and poor, ugly and rich, or even handsome and rich, she completely shut out personal desires for either wealth or physical pleasure.
Instead, she devoted herself to Naomi and she has now devoted herself to the memory of her dead husband. And yet, it is apparent from Boaz’ words, that she was young, beautiful, and vibrant. Those physical qualities could have brought her into the favor of any willing man, but she instead kept away from such possibilities.
Though many trials and temptations may come my way
I pray for strength to remain faithful to You, O God
Grant me the ability to turn and walk away
From any form of sin which lies ahead on the path I trod
Oh, that I would be faithful to Your word!
And that I would never displease You with the life I live
Help me to bring honor and glory to You my Lord
In this one life which to me You did give
Thank You for Your kind hand of grace upon me
And thank You for looking after Your other children, each of us
I know that it is a gift which is granted for all eternity
And it came through the precious shed blood of Jesus
III. A Woman of Virtue (verses 11-13)
11 And now, my daughter, do not fear.
There is no doubt that her voice was trembling as she spoke. Boaz’ words are given as an assurance that he has found her actions appropriate and that she can now rest easily. He won’t attempt to defile her, he won’t attempt to shame her by saying she came as she did to him, and he won’t allow her dead husband’s name to remain in the unhappy state of being cut off.
And again in his words of comfort, he calls her “my daughter.” Though he has responded favorably, he has not responded in a way which yet acknowledges that he will be the one to fulfill her request. It will be fulfilled, and she should not fear in that regard, but he has not yet changed his words of relationship to her. She’s still a younger lady that is not yet his; hence, the term “my daughter.”
11 (con’t) I will do for you all that you request,
In verse 4 from last week, Naomi said this as she instructed Ruth –
“Then it shall be, when he lies down, that you shall notice the place where he lies; and you shall go in, uncover his feet, and lie down; and he will tell you what you should do.” Ruth 3:4
However, Boaz now says, “I will do for you all that you request.” The words of Ruth to Boaz are those very things which Boaz has agreed to. Here we can see how the hand of the Lord guided the events of Ruth’s life. Her words, which were the desire of her heart, will be fulfilled through this meeting with Boaz.
11 (con’t) for all the people of my town know that you are a virtuous woman.
These words actually say “for all the gate of my people know…” The word translated “town” is sha’ar, a “gate.” The gate of a city then is similar to the courthouse today; it represents the city. Those who sat at the gate were the elders and judges of the city. They would render their decisions there for probably many reasons.
If someone was to be expelled from the city, they would simply toss him out the gate. If a person were to be commended or punished, the gate would be the perfect spot to do so because those coming in and out of the city would see it as it took place.
Another reason is that anyone who wanted to go into the city would have to meet with their approval. And likewise, if someone wanted to leave, they could determine that he wasn’t an escaping criminal or some type of defector from the community.
An interesting example of the last type is found in Jeremiah 37. He was instructed by the Lord to buy a piece of property from his uncle, which he did. On his was out of Jerusalem to go and claim his property, he was accused of being a defector to the enemies –
“And it happened, when the army of the Chaldeans left the siege of Jerusalem for fear of Pharaoh’s army, 12 that Jeremiah went out of Jerusalem to go into the land of Benjamin to claim his property there among the people. 13 And when he was in the Gate of Benjamin, a captain of the guard was there whose name was Irijah the son of Shelemiah, the son of Hananiah; and he seized Jeremiah the prophet, saying, ‘You are defecting to the Chaldeans!’ 14 Then Jeremiah said, ‘False! I am not defecting to the Chaldeans.’ But he did not listen to him.'” Jeremiah 37:11-14
Paying attention to the many times such incidents occur in the Bible will give a clear picture of Boaz’ words to Ruth. The elders and judges of the town, picturesquely called “the gate of my people,” were well aware of the noble character of Ruth since her arrival in Israel.
She would have been seen faithfully leaving alone early in the morning with an empty basket in order to go out gleaning. And she wouldn’t have been seen again for many long, hot hours. Upon her return, her basket wasn’t only full of grain, but it had been threshed and winnowed. She had done this difficult work instead of bringing it home to Naomi.
And as she walked in, she would be alone once again, not laughing with boys. Likewise, for them to be aware of her nature meant that she was respectful to the elders as she passed through the gate. If any made a pass at her, she would have carefully said, “I need to get home to take care of Naomi” and she would have passed along.
Anyone attending the gates and seeing her day by day during the harvest season, would by now know that she was a model of integrity and hard work. And so Boaz uses the term khayil to describe her. It is the same word the Bible used to describe him when he was first introduced into the narrative in verse 2:1.
There is no single word that we have to accurately translate khayil, but rather it includes many aspects of a person – moral, physically willing to work, honorable, respectful, and so on. It is the word that Solomon used to describe a woman of noble character in Proverbs 31. In that, he spent 21 full verses to describe such a woman.
That same word was used by Boaz to describe Ruth now, a woman who would become Solomon’s great, great grandmother. It is possible that the family stories about his long dead ancestor Ruth were what inspired him to write those words about the woman of noble character!
This lovely and virtuous woman was an ideal match for the noble and virtuous man named Boaz. Just as the gate was the logical place for all legal transactions it was also a place which could testify to the soundness of the actions of Ruth. It is to the gate, and to those same people that he is referring to, that Boaz will soon go to settle the matter which has been presented to him.
12 Now it is true that I am a close relative; however, there is a relative closer than I.
Boaz acknowledges that he is, in fact, a goel and that he can perform the duties that she has requested. However, he is also a khayil, a man of virtue. It would be wrong for him to exercise his right without first granting the right to a kinsman closer than he was, and there was one closer.
His own personal desires, which are perfectly evident from the story, were less important than obedience to the law, customs, and culture in which he existed. The symbolic act, which Ruth engaged in by covering herself and requesting a goel, was an act that pertained to the rights of the family first and foremost.
His personal emotions could not interfere with what is just and right before the law. Again as I ask from time to time, is anyone seeing Jesus in these words and concepts? If so, then who is the nearer relative? Why has God given us this beautiful story? Or is it just a beautiful story without any greater beautiful picture?
13 Stay this night, and in the morning it shall be that if he will perform the duty of a close relative for you—good; let him do it.
The old saying, “Love is quick-witted” applies here. In a short conversation in the dark of night, Boaz developed a plan to ensure the law would be met, that Ruth’s integrity would be preserved, and that both of them, if able, could get a little more rest.
Or at least she could. Boaz would certainly mull over the next day’s affairs, carefully deciding what he should do, where he should do it, and what he should say. His first thought is of Ruth and her protection, asking her to stay the rest of the night.
At the late hour, only trouble-makers or wild animals would be out and she could be harmed. And the guards at the gate would be far less friendly, especially to an unaccompanied young woman. This thought is seen in the Song of Solomon –
“The watchmen who went about the city found me.
They struck me, they wounded me;
The keepers of the walls
Took my veil away from me.” Song of Songs 5:7
Boaz wants to keep her from such troubles at this late hour. The second thought is again for Ruth. It is that she would be cared for by his introduction of her request to the nearer goel. He would ensure that her matter was immediately brought up to him and that she would be tended to.
In this verse, is an interesting anomaly that occurs only a few times in the Old Testament. Hebrew letters are always written the same size, but there are several exceptions of smaller or larger letters being used. It is unsure exactly why they occur, and so only speculation can be made, but the first letter of this verse, the letter lamed, is larger than the rest.
The letter lamed indicates a shepherd’s staff which is used to move and direct sheep and to protect the sheep from predators. The meaning of the letter is “to” or “toward moving something”‘ and so it is often used as a prefix to nouns meaning “to” or “toward.” It is also signifies authority as it is the sign of the shepherd.
Interestingly, Dr. Lightfoot has noted that as there is a special mark over a word in the story of Lot’s oldest daughter lying with her father and then there is a special mark in this verse in the story of Ruth going to the bed of Boaz, the larger lamed.
Both relate to one another, and both together point at the great providence of God in bringing light out of darkness. He notes that Ruth is a mother of Christ out of the incest of Lot, but Lot’s oldest daughter is as well. It appears that both of these special marks are given to lead us “to” Jesus who is the Shepherd of His flock.
13 (con’t) But if he does not want to perform the duty for you, then I will perform the duty for you, as the Lord lives!
Boaz’ third thought is for Ruth as well. If the nearer goel doesn’t desire to fulfill the duty, then he will step in and fulfill it instead. And he confirms his words with a vow, khai Yehovah! It is untrue that vows shouldn’t be made, but if they are to be made they are only to be done so in the name of the Lord.
Deuteronomy 6:13 says, “You shall fear the Lord your God and serve Him, and shall take oaths in His name.” Any lesser vow is tantamount to idolatry and any vow made in the Lord’s name is inviolable; it must be performed. Boaz has sworn in the name of the Lord and so he will fulfill.
*13 (fin) Lie down until morning.”
Finally, Boaz’ words again are for Ruth’s concern. Not only is she to stay the night, but she should lie down until morning. There is no need for her to lose sleep, but to rest quietly and not fret. The vow has been made; she should be at peace.
This is where we end today, with the promise of action by Boaz on Ruth’s behalf. Whatever happens, she will be taken care of and the name and memory of her dead husband and his family line will be secure. A kinsman will redeem her.
We like Ruth are actually alone and destitute in this world. No matter how much we think we might have, even if our basket is overflowing now, there are no guarantees that it will continue. Ruth understood this, but often we fail to see it. When, not if, the basket is empty, it will too late to call out for redemption.
God, in his word says “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” If you have never thought it all through, maybe today you should. Tomorrow may never come. And so please allow me a moment to explain to you how you can claim your right of redemption because of the work of the Redeemer…
Closing Verse: “The Lord redeems the soul of His servants, And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.” Psalm 34:22
Next Week: Ruth 3:14-18 (Six Measures of Barley) (9th Ruth Sermon)
So you know, this past year, Michael Oher signed a $20 million dollar contract with the Tennessee Titans. Not bad for an often homeless boy who nobody seemed to want. How much more do you think the Lord wants you and will bless you as you seek Him!
The Lord has you exactly where He wants you. He has a good plan and purpose for you. He knows your trials, troubles, and woes and He is there with you through them. So cling to Him and let Him do marvelous things for you and through you.
Midnight at the Threshing Floor
So she went down to the threshing floor
And did according to all
That her mother-in-law instructed her
At the time of nightfall
And after Boaz had eaten and drunk
And his heart was cheerful as well
He went to lie down at the end
Of the heap of grain to sleep for a spell
And she came softly, uncovered his feet
And lay down under the corner of his sheet
Now it happened at midnight
That the man was startled, to be sure
And turned himself; and there, ending his fright
A woman was lying at his feet; hard to figure
And he said, “Who are you? Tell me this thing
So she answered, “I am your maidservant Ruth
Take your maidservant under your wing
For you are a close relative, this is the truth
“Blessed are you of the Lord, My daughter!, he said
For you have shown more kindness at the end
Than at the beginning, instead
In that after young men you did not go
Whether poor or rich, you did not do so
And now, my daughter, do not fear
I will do for you all that was requested by you
For all the people of my town here
Know that you are a woman of virtue
Now it is true that I am a close relative, one cannot deny
However, there is a relative closer than I
Stay this night, and in the morning light
It shall be that if he will perform the task
Of a close relative for you, as is right
Good; let him do it, for this is what you ask
But if he does not want to perform the duty for you
Then I will perform the duty for you, it is true
As the Lord lives! Lie down until morning
Until the day dawns anew
Ruth has sought a kinsman to redeem
And she has found a man willing to do so
Whether it will be Boaz or another it would seem
That the new day the truth will show
We too have a Kinsman willing to redeem each of us
He is near to us because He is also a Man
And yet none other than the Lord God, Jesus
Such is the wisdom of God’s glorious plan
Let us come to Him and let Him His garment spread
Willingly over each one of us
For He is Christ the Lord, our Savior and our Head
He is the Incarnate Word – our glorious Jesus
Hallelujah and Amen…