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The Scriptorium

Down Payment

A gesture of care and commitment. Ruth 3.14, 15

Ruth 3 (5)

Opening Prayer: Psalm 28.1, 2
To You I will cry, O LORD my Rock:
Do not be silent to me,
Lest, if You are silent to me,
I become like those who go down to the pit.
Hear the voice of my supplications
When I cry to You,
When I lift up my hands toward Your holy sanctuary.

Sing Psalm 28.1, 2

(Angel’s Story: O Jesus, I Have Promised)
I cry to You, our Savior, O, be not deaf to me!
Lord, speak to me with favor, lest I should dying be.
Hear now my supplications when for Your help I cry.
Receive these, my oblations, before Your throne on high.

Read Ruth 3.14, 15


1. What did Boaz do to provide for Ruth?

2. How much barley did he give her?

It’s not clear whom Boaz was instructing in verse 14 about Ruth’s presence on the threshing floor. Perhaps it was an attendant (the verb is singular and masculine). Nor is it clear why the instruction was necessary. Perhaps it was merely a precaution for Ruth’s sake.

The grain Boaz gave to Ruth can be seen as a token of Boaz’ commitment (v. 15). Certainly nothing like this was required. It was a down payment of greater blessings to come. There may be some significance to his measuring six measures (besides the fact that her shawl may not have held any more). Like the six days of God’s working, rest from labors followed on the seventh. Perhaps Boaz meant to signal to Ruth that, while the labor of his hands would provide for her for now, the true rest she sought would only come with the justice provided by God’s Law.

Note again the simplicity of Ruth’s faith. She did as she was instructed by those whose faith was more mature and who had authority over her. She did not have to know the full outworking of events to obey. Ruth’s faith worked for the next step and the next step; this is the way we grow in our relationship with the Lord – one step of obedience at a time. 

Treasure Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
“The integrity of the upright will guide them…” (Prov. 11.3).

“Righteousness guards him whose way is blameless…” (Prov. 13.6).

“Then he said, ‘Do not let it be known that the woman came to the threshing floor’” (v. 14). Boaz continued to care for Ruth and for her reputation and her livelihood. And Ruth continued to trust Boaz and Naomi for guidance in her new life and new homeland. What was true for Ruth is true for us now. We live in God’s Kingdom and can trust Him completely. And His Kingdom functions in much the same way now as it did then. The truths then are just as true now. The expectations then, are the same now – trust and obedience

“Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for ‘God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’ Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you” (1 Pet. 5.5-7).

Indeed, “this is the way we grow in our relationship with the Lord – one step of obedience at a time.”

1. What must you do to make sure you can follow Jesus one step at a time?

2. What can you learn from Boaz about being a channel of God’s grace to your world?

3. We are called to the Kingdom and glory of God. What does that mean for you as you launch out into your Personal Mission Field each day?

Ruth had done all that was fit for her to do, she must patiently wait the event. Boaz, having undertaken this matter, would be sure to manage it well. Much more reason have true believers to cast their care on God, because he has promised to care for them. Matthew Henry (1662-1714), Commentary on Ruth 3.6-13

Lead me each step of the way today, O Lord, and I will…

Closing Prayer: Psalm 28.6-9
Call on the Lord to strengthen, shield, and shepherd you in the activities of the day. Commit your day to the Lord, to glorify Him in every next step.

Sing Psalm 28.6-9
(Angel’s Story: O Jesus, I Have Promised)
Blessed be the Name of Jesus, for He will hear our prayer.
His strength protects and shields us with mercy and with care.
In You our heart rejoices; You help us by Your Word.
To You we raise our voices to praise and thank You, Lord.

Our strength are You, O Savior, our strong defense and sure.
Anointed with Your favor, we rest in You secure.
Save us, and bless us, Jesus, upon us turn Your face.
With shepherd’s care, Lord, keep us forever in Your grace.

T. M. and Susie Moore

We’re in the process of moving, so our Scriptorium series on Luke will resume April 17. All the studies in Ruth are available for free in our bookstore by clicking here. Order a copy for yourself and a friend, and work your way through this great book together.

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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 the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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