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Ruth 3:6-9

Verses covered in this passage:

  • Ruth 3:6
  • Ruth 3:7
  • Ruth 3:8
  • Ruth 3:9

The book of Ruth follows the story of a Moabite woman named Ruth who marries an Israelite man who later dies, leaving her a widow with few resources. While the easy route would have been to return to her family and find a Moabite husband, Ruth commits to remain with her Israelite mother-in-law and joins her on the journey back to her home in Israel. Ruth is a model of courage and character, as she continually works to provide for herself and her mother-in-law. Boaz, a relation of Ruth’s late husband, enters the scene and provides for Ruth, taking note of her character and care for her mother-in-law.

 

Ruth is an incredible example to us as someone who forsook an old life for a new one, lived courageously and faithfully, and was greatly rewarded in the end.

 

The book of Ruth also presents the idea of a kinsman-redeemer, a close relative or relationship that is able to provide immense, immeasurable benefits to another person. Boaz serves as a kinsman-redeemer, and also sacrifices for the benefit of Ruth and her mother-in-law Naomi. Boaz and Ruth are both rewarded for their faithful service by being the great grandparents of King David. That places them in the direct lineage of  Jesus Christ, who serves as a kinsman-redeemer for all of mankind.

 

Ruth is ultimately an example of a godly wife (Ephesians 5:22-24) and also of the relationship all believers should have with Christ. She was virtuous and faithful while serving others. She was subject to Boaz and submitted herself to his leadership. Boaz also made a great sacrifice which provided immeasurable benefit to Ruth. This kind of marriage is a picture of our relationship with Christ. Christ is our leader and ultimately our redeemer and savior, who sacrificed himself for us. Our faithfulness to him is for our good. Just as Ruth’s sacrifices and faithfulness to Boaz resulted in him acting as her kinsman-redeemer and providing her great reward, so our faithfulness and submission to Christ will result in our reward (Revelation 3:21).


Naomi devises a plan for Ruth, at an opportune time, to inform Boaz that he is a close relative of Naomi and obligated by an Old Testament custom to care for Ruth and her. In the midst of these plans, this chapter vividly demonstrates God’s care for those who trust in Him.


Ruth does exactly as Naomi told her.

Ruth now executes the plan flawlessly. She went down to the threshing floor and did according to all that her mother-in-law had commanded her.  As the plan unfolds, Ruth observes when Boaz had eaten and drunk and his heart was merry. Then after he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain Ruth takes action, just as Naomi instructed. Ruth came secretly, and uncovered his feet and lay down. Ruth quietly lays at Boaz’s feet without him noticing.  

It seems clear that Boaz was sound asleep when Ruth laid down. Boaz did not notice Ruth until the middle of the night. Ruth might have lain there for several hours. It is interesting to contemplate what she might have thought while she waited, wondering what was about to take place. We do know that she stayed there until she was noticed.

Boaz’s reacts when he wakes and realizes someone is there. We are told that the man was startled and bent forward; and behold, a woman was lying at his feet.  Boaz asks the most reasonable question conceivable for being startled awake in the middle of the night by someone lying at your feet: “Who are you?” Ruth answered, I am Ruth your maid. So spread your covering over your maid, for you are a close relative.

The word translated “covering” is most often translated “wing” as it is in Ruth 2:12, which reads:

May the Lord reward your work, and your wages be full from the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to seek refuge.

Ruth requests to come under the protection of Boaz. Boaz had commended Ruth for seeking protection under the wings of the God of Israel. Now Ruth requests to also come under the protective wings of Boaz. Her explanation for you are a close relative makes it clear that she is requesting he take her as wife under the kinsman redeemer custom.

Biblical Text

6 So she went down to the threshing floor and did according to all that her mother-in-law had commanded her. 7 When Boaz had eaten and drunk and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of grain; and she came secretly, and uncovered his feet and lay down. 8 It happened in the middle of the night that the man was startled and bent forward; and behold, a woman was lying at his feet. 9 He said, “Who are you?” And she answered, “I am Ruth your maid. So spread your covering over your maid, for you are a close relative.”

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