Ruth and Boaz Marry
Open Your Bible
Ruth 4:13-17, Isaiah 43:1-13, Luke 1:67-79
While the heading of this section in the Bible is about Boaz and Ruth, it is a bit curious to me why their names only appear once in these four verses. Perhaps it is because, as I’ve read and reread this book, I have come to believe that the biblical story in the book of Ruth is also the story of her mother-in-law, Naomi. The marriage and childbearing of Ruth and Boaz are the compelling central actions in the story, when the major plot points are resolved. But the plot points the author of Ruth wraps up are also those of Naomi: the Lord has not left her without a redeemer, the son of Ruth and Boaz. Her grandson will care for her in her old age. The women of the city sing over Naomi with joy.
As we look back through the book, we see over and again that Naomi is left helpless, with no way to change her future. She is widowed with no sons to support her financially or give her status in the community. The family line had ended when her sons died. And yet, we see sacrifices from both Ruth and Boaz in this story that reflect to us the kindness and faithfulness of God toward Naomi, and toward us.
This passage illustrates the role that Christ plays as our kinsman redeemer, saving us from our helpless state of sin. Like Naomi had no hope of redeeming her life, land, and line without a redeemer, we have no hope of healing, salvation, and restoration into the family of God without a redeemer.
This story of Ruth and Naomi and Boaz is true; it happened, and it taught the people of its time what it looked like to show deep faithfulness and kindness and to fulfill the laws God gave to His people. As modern readers, we see how it is also our story: the story of helpless people, dependent on the grace and work of God to redeem us reminds us that our redemption is secure: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are mine” (Isaiah 43:1).
I love that Naomi’s story ends beautifully and redemptively. I’m grateful for stories like hers that show us how God takes tragedy and rebuilds from ashes in this life. But we know that doesn’t always happen; there are many stories in Scripture and in our lives that don’t end that way.
Some stories may not end with a life restored and flourishing here in this life, but because of the redeemer who would come from the line of Boaz and Ruth, we are guaranteed it in eternity. The baby that restored hope to Naomi was but a foreshadow of Jesus, who would come to give us all hope eternal.