The book of Ruth has been called an ancient ‘biblical Cinderella story’ in which Ruth finds her prince: a rags-to-riches fairy tale. It is a wonderful short story. Many people throughout the ages have been touched by the sweetness and kindness so evident in the episode. Yet, there is much of Christ in the commentary.
John Currid looks at key themes within the book: the cost of obedience, the sovereignty of God, faithful living and redemption. The background is laid out—in the time of the Judges—as a time of degeneracy in the history of Israel. The focus then moves to one family within Israel, their move to Moab, the sadness there, the return home and God’s wonderful working to turn bitterness into joy. The author uses his great knowledge of Hebrew to enhance the reader’s understanding of the book.
“First, God’s covenant law is no longer the standard; rather, the people are doing what is best in their own eyes. Secondly, the unity intended among Israel as God’s covenant people has broken down into individualism. People are simply trusting in themselves.” (Page 17)
“A leitwort often provides keen insight into the sense of a passage. In verses 6–22 of Ruth chapter 1 the verb ‘to return’ occurs twelve times. While this verb is commonly used in Hebrew of a person changing a course of action and physically returning to a place, it is also often employed of a spiritual renewal. Frequently it is used in the Old Testament for a person who repents and turns back to God (e.g., Hosea 3:5; 6:1; 7:10). So its repeated appearance in our text probably indicates that the characters are not only returning to the land of promise, but they are turning to Yahweh.” (Page 30)
“‘In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes’ (Judg. 21:25).” (Page 16)
“was overcome with fear. He had never expected war to be like this. And so” (Page 117)
“Naomi is a great example to us of one who is gracious in the midst of her own suffering. Although she is desperate and dispirited, she nevertheless encourages others—she even calls a blessing on others from her position in the depths of the valley of death and darkness.” (Page 35)
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