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The Scriptorium

Waiting

God works on His schedule, and He call us to wait. Ruth 3.16-18

The Promise of Redemption (6)

Opening Prayer: Psalm 27.1-3
The LORD is my light and my salvation;
Whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the strength of my life;
Of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked came against me
To eat up my flesh,
My enemies and foes,
They stumbled and fell.
Though an army may encamp against me,
My heart shall not fear;
Though war may rise against me,
In this I will be confident.

Sing Psalm 27.1-3

(Joanna: Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise)
Lord, You are our Light and our Savior most dear!
You guard us with might; therefore, whom shall we fear?
Though evil surround us, our enemies fall;
no harm shall confound us when on You we call.

Read Ruth 3.16-18

Preparation
1. What was Naomi’s counsel to Ruth?

2. Why did she counsel her thus?

Meditation
Naomi knew that Boaz was a man of his word (v. 18). She did not hold out empty promises to Ruth, but only what she could: Boaz would settle this matter, one way or another, right away. We see in Ruth’s explanation just how great was the magnanimity of Boaz. In giving her the six measures of grain, he had Naomi’s welfare in mind as well as Ruth’s (v. 17).

We cannot rush the justice of God; we must learn to wait on Him until all His plans and promises comes to pass. Ruth would have to wait and see how matters would work out. All she knew was that whatever God intended for her, it would be for her blessing.

Let’s not miss the faith of Naomi in this passage. She has been the one urging the action forward in the previous two chapters, and for much of this one. Now, however, she knew she must wait for the grace and justice of God to work according to His protocols and plans. Like Boaz, Naomi would not take the will of the Lord into her own hands; she’d learned the hard way not to travel that path. She and Ruth would have to wait and see the way that God would work through the elders of the city to accomplish the blessing of God for her. 

Treasure Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
Boaz continued following the Law of God: He would go to the nearest kinsman redeemer about Ruth. And he did not send Ruth away empty-handed; he abundantly provided for her and Naomi (Deut. 24.19).

God was leading Boaz to help Naomi redeem the years that she had lost. When she first returned to Bethlehem, the summary of her life was this: “I went out full, and the LORD has brought me home again empty” (Ruth 1.21). God, through Boaz, was giving her hope for the future. Much like Jesus did with Peter after his denial of Him (Jn. 21.15-22). With God, there is always hope for a new beginning. “Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness” (Lam. 3.22, 23).

And Naomi insisted that Ruth wait to see what would happen about the next step in her future. “Sit still, my daughter, until you know how the matter will turn out…” (vs. 18). She was teaching her a very important lesson that, indeed, she had learned the hard way: The best way to live your life is to live it God’s way. Do what God recommends: “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Ps. 46.10)

Active obedience. Obedient waiting and stillness.
“The LORD is good to those who wait for Him,
to the soul who seeks Him.
It is good that one should hope and wait quietly
for the salvation of the LORD” (Lam. 3.25, 26).

Reflection
1. What does it mean to “wait” on the Lord? Why is it important that we learn this discipline?

2. How does waiting on the Lord prepare us to exalt Him in every aspect of our lives?

3. Boaz kept the Law, thus obeying God and blessing the people around him (cf. Matt. 22.34-40). What does his example teach us about why we should keep God’s Law?

This narrative may encourage us to lay ourselves by faith at the feet of Christ: He is our near Kinsman; having taken our nature upon him. He has the right to redeem. Let us seek to receive from him his directions: Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? Matthew Henry (1662-1714), Commentary on Ruth 3.14-18

Lord, I wait on You! Lead me step by step today as I…

Closing Prayer: Psalm 27.7-14
Seek the Lord and the glory of His face (2 Cor. 4.6). Seek His way for you this day, and wait on Him to lead you in His smooth path.

Sing Psalm 27.7-14
(Joanna: Immortal, Invisible, God only Wise)
Hear, Lord, when we cry and be gracious, we pray!
Lord, do not deny us Your favor this day!
Our help, our salvation, though others may fall,
preserve our good station when on You we call.

Lord, teach us; Lord, lead us because of our foes!
Hear, Lord, when we plead for release from their woes.
Had we not believed all Your goodness to see,
our heart sorely grieved and in turmoil would be.

Wait, wait on the Lord; persevere in His grace.
Hold fast to His Word; seek His radiant face.
Be strong, set your heart to abide in His Word;
His grace He imparts; therefore, wait on the Lord.

T. M. and Susie Moore

Listen to our summary of last week’s study in Ruth by clicking here. You can download all the studies in the Ruth series by clicking here.

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Except as indicated, all Scripture are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. All quotations from Church Fathers are from Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1-2 Samuel: Ancient Christian Commentary Series IV, John R. Franke, ed, General Editor Thomas C. Oden (Downers Grove: Inter Varsity Press, 2005). All quotations from Matthew Henry are from Matthew Henry Concise Commentary, E-text version Copyright (c) 1996, 2002 Hendrickson Publishers, Inc. All Rights Reserved. All quotes from Earl Radmacher are from The NKJV Study Bible, copyright ©1997, 2007 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (Williston: Waxed Tablet Publications, 2006) (available by clicking here).

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT.
Books by T. M. Moore

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