Journey in the Word

Karen Ingrid Clark

Ruth: Loss to Legacy

Leave a comment

Week Three – Day 2WK03D02

Read Ruth 3:6-9                                SOAP  Ruth 3:8-9

What is a “redeemer”, as seen in this passage?

So she went down to the threshing floor and did just as her mother-in-law had commanded her. And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain. Then she came softly and uncovered his feet and lay down. At midnight the man was startled and turned over, and behold, a woman lay at his feet!He said, “Who are you?” And she answered, “I am Ruth, your servant. Spread your wings[a] over your servant, for you are a redeemer.”

O – Ruth obeyed Naomi’s instructions, trusting that this “different” method of getting Boaz’s attention would work.  She waited until he had eaten and was full, and he had laid down to sleep.  She must have waited until he was sleeping, as he didn’t notice her until midnight.  And behold, there was a woman sleeping at his feet, under the cover of his blanket.  “Who are you?”, he asked.  She answered, “I am Ruth, your servant.  Spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer.”

Ruth’s actions were ones of submission, not of overt sexual promiscuity.  She was literally asking for a “covering” or protection of a go’el, or kinsman-redeemer.  She was putting herself under the protection of the legal status that a go’el would provide. This was a custom of the day, that still is included in some middle eastern cultures – to place a corner of a garment over the woman, to demonstrate the protection that marriage provides.

Was Ruth being “forward” in doing this?  I think not.  It was Naomi’s (and therefore hers as kin) right to ask for their kinsman-redeemer to protect them.  Did they know if there was a “closer” kinsman?   Maybe not.  But this action allowed Boaz to follow through in seeing if HIS place was to be their redeemer.

A – Do I willingly place myself under the protection of God’s wings?  This is in two places.

Although I am not a part of the middle eastern culture, I am in a marriage.  Do I willingly place myself in his protection?  After almost thirty years of single parenting, this is a new place for me.  And as I think back over the past 20 months of marriage, I think that placing myself willingly under Paul’s protection has been one of the easier adjustments.  Maybe moving to a new place, new area of the country, without family and friends, has made that adjustment easier.  But, after those years of “independence”, it is a “different” way of living life.  But, like Boaz, Paul has made his role as husband one that he takes seriously, and with thought.  So, placing myself under his protection is a blessing for me.

Am I as willing to place myself under God’s protection?  To allow Him to lead and guide?  Sometimes I chaff under this, wanting to run ahead of His plan and protection, just like a little child who runs ahead of parents when walking through a park.  Most of the time, it is in thought, not necessarily in action.  But I also get impatient, wanting circumstances to “work out” and to make the way clear.  I have to learn, and am learning, to wait…. To be patient, to allow Him to work.  THAT’S hard work!  But, may I learn to rest in the covering of His wings – the best place for me to be!

P – Father God, work in my heart.  Help me to willingly place myself under Your protection, under Your wings.  Help me to rest there, patiently waiting for You to work, and then to guide me.  Thank You for Your protecting care over the years.  Thank You for placing me under the protection of marriage of a godly man.   Help me to live under his protection, in a place that You have designed.  Thank You for Your loving care.

From Precept Austin:  *Ruth immediately made her objective clear when she requested, “Spread the corner of your garment over me.” She was using the accepted idiom meaning “Marry me”—other passages in which the same expression is used are Ezek 16:8Dt 22:30 and Mal 2:16. No doubt the idiom reflected the custom, still practiced by some Arabs, of a man’s throwing a garment over the woman he has decided to take as his wife. The gesture is a symbol of protection as well as a declaration that the man is willing to enter into sexual consummation with his chosen partner.

Boaz had prayed in Ru 2:12 that Ruth might be rewarded by the Lord under whose wings she had taken refuge. Ruth now essentially asked Boaz to answer his own prayer, for “garment-cover” and “wing” are the same word in Hebrew. Ruth’s reason for this action is expressed in her appeal to Boaz as a “kinsman-redeemer.” That is a legal status. Under Jewish law, then, her request was not particularly unusual.* (

I am Ruth you maid – She uses the Hebrew word ‘amah (0519) which is applied both to literal slaves and to those who figuratively call themselves by this term as an expression of humility and submission.

Ruth reminded Boaz of his own words, and requested him to become the fulfiller of his own prayer. The word for corner is the same as that for `wing’ in Ru 2:12 (note) Ruth reminded Boaz of his own words, and requested him to become the fulfiller of his own prayer.

To raise the skirts of a woman’s garment is a symbol of insult and disgrace Jer 13:2226Nah. 3:5, whereas to cover her with one’s skirt was a token of matrimony. No doubt the idiom reflected the custom, still practiced by some in the Middle East, of a man throwing a garment over the woman he has decided to take as his wife, and symbolizing protection as well as fellowship.

Fruchtenbaum comments that spreading the covering referred to…

the corner of the garment, and it refers to the fact that a man spreads this over his wife, as well as himself (Dt. 22:30Dt 27:20). (Ibid)

In the present context, kanaph refers to the edge of a garment or bed-clothing flap. We find a similar use in Deuteronomy where God directs His people to

make yourself tassels on the four corners of your garment with which you cover yourself (Dt 22:12)

Ruth’s words about Boaz taking her under his wing suggest that in her mind, she was entering into betrothal to marry Boaz. Betrothal was the first stage of marriage in which a couple contracted to marry each other.  Betrothal in ancient Israel (at the time of Christ) lasted for a year and was as binding as marriage, being dissolved only by divorce. Should the man to whom a girl was betrothed die, in the eyes of the law she was a widow. During the actual marriage ceremony, the groom’s relatives cover the bride with the groom’s garment, indicating that from then on, she was under his protection (“his wing”).

In an earlier encounter Boaz had offered a prayer for Ruth,”May the LORD reward your work, and your wages be full from the LORD, the God of Israel, under whose wings (kanaph = translated covering in Ru 3:9 – note) you have come to seek refuge.” (Ru 2:12note)

The word wings was a symbol of protection, as with baby birds which run under their mother’s wings to escape the birds of prey. God used Boaz as the vessel to answer his own prayer in behalf of Ruth. It was customary for a Jewish husband to cover his new wife with the end of his tallit (Heb., prayer shawl) to signify that she was under his protection. Accordingly, Ruth was asking Boaz to accept his responsibility as kinsman and to take her as his wife. The modern Jewish marriage ceremony takes place under a “huppah/chuppah” (a canopy — sounds like “kanaph“) in the presence of two lawful witnesses.

All Things New – Believe – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9sOBaJejIt4

You say that I am new

But I just feel old

If You’re alive in my heart

Why does it beat this cold

When the shame’s so real

And my faith is a ghost

When the sun won’t rise

And I’m all alone

 

Help me  believe that I am a new creation

Help me believe that I’m something more

Than the past that I’ve been carrying

Help me to know that I am Yours

I need to hear your voice speak louder

Than these lies that call my name

‘Cause I wish that I was strong but I am so weak

 

Help me believe I have been redeemed and my debt is paid

No matter how I feel on the worst of days

So when it’s hard to breathe

When I fall apart Speak Your Truth so clear

To my doubting heart

 

Help me believe that I am a new creation

Help me believe that I’m something more

Than the past that I’ve been carrying

Help me to know that I am Yours

I need to hear your voice speak louder

Than these lies that call my name

‘Cause I wish that I was strong but I am so weak

 

Help me believe that I am loved

Help me believe that’s enough

And let my heart find rest in your promises

GOD Help me believe that I am a new creation

Help me believe that I’m something more

Than the past that I’ve been carrying

Help me to know that I am Yours

I need to hear your voice speak louder

Than these lies that call my name

‘Cause I wish that I was strong but I am so weak

Help me  believe Help me believe

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s