In the story of Ruth, Naomi and Ruth went to Bethlehem to make a fresh start in their lives. As a widow, Ruth needs a kinsman-redeemer in order to have a man to take care of her. However, that she was a Moabitess makes her chance to be accepted by an Israel slim. By God’s perfect will, Ruth met Boaz – a relative of Naomi, and a wealthy man in Bethlehem who owns the field in which Ruth was working. Since the time they met, Ruth found favor in the sight of Boaz, and he extended grace upon her. As the story goes on, Ruth proposed to Boaz to become her kinsman-redeemer.
Even if Ruth is a Moabitess and a poor widow, it turned out at the end of the story that Boaz accepted here and married her. Indeed, even in reality, marital love is a satisfying and challenging thing in life. Marriage is a union of two sinners who are saved by grace. There are times when I don’t feel like talking to my husband; there are times when I get tired of doing things for him; and there are times when my patience have already gone out when arguing with him. Nevertheless, marital love is meant to be unconditional like the love Boaz extended to Ruth.
I am to love my spouse even if he doesn’t deserve it in some ways. Besides, I also don’t deserve to be loved since I too am not perfect. True love is giving off my own self (my rights, my time, etc.) for the other without any reservation or condition.
Moreover, the story of Boaz gives a clear comparison with Jesus Christ – the perfect Kinsman-Redeemer to those chosen by His grace. To become qualified to purchase us, He humbled Himself by becoming like us (Philippians 2:6-8). He was wealthy with righteousness, and like Boaz, He was willing pay the price of our redemption. The story reminds me of how undeserving I am, and how God deliberately and richly poured out His grace for my salvation.
Hindson, Ed. Courageous Faith: Life Lessons from the Old Testament Heroes. Tennessee: AMG Publishers, 2003.