Women in the Bible: Ruth
Ruth is Loyal to God and to Her Mother-In-Law
Ruth is a widow and foreigner who remains faithful to her mother-in-law, Naomi. She leaves her family to follow Naomi to Israel. The reason for her loyalty to her mother-in-law is a mystery, since Naomi is a bitter woman at this time. However, Ruth also expresses a devotion to God.
When they return, she goes out to glean grain, at great physical risk, so she and Naomi will have some food. The young widow finds favor with Boaz, who knows of her fine reputation.
Naomi sets about to find another husband for her widowed daughter-in-law, targeting Boaz and developing a strategy to bring that about. The result is capturing Boaz’s attention. He sets out to make Ruth his wife, deftly dealing with another possible suitor.
Boaz and Ruth marry. She has her first child, Obed. Obed is the father of Jesse, the father of David. That makes her the great grandmother of King David and a direct ancestor of Jesus.
Let’s review: Ruth’s loyalty to her mother-in-law and God rewards her. She marries again, is saved from poverty, and has a son. As a result, she’s later honored by Matthew who includes her in the family tree of Jesus, one of only four women mentioned.
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical spirituality, often with a postmodern slant. He seeks a fresh approach to faith and following God through the lens of scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.