Faith Rewarded

And Ruth the Moabitess said to Naomi, “Let me go to the fields and pick up the leftover grain behind anyone in whose eyes I find favor.” Naomi said to her, “Go ahead, my daughter.” So she went out and began to glean in the fields behind the harvesters. As it turned out, she found herself working in a field belonging to Boaz, who was from the clan of Elimelech. (Ruth 2:2-3)

Ruth, a worshiper of Moabite gods, lands up in Israel along with her mother-in-law Naomi. Though a stranger to the land of covenant she had strong faith in the God of her husband. She had discovered the difference between her gods and the God of Israel which motivated her to sacrifice her family and relatives for the sake of being with her mother-in-law.

Results of a Wrong Step

Naomi, being a part of God’s Covenant people, was not so strong in her faith that a food shortage made her persuade her husband to trust in human wisdom. Naomi regretted the loss of her husband and sons and perhaps realized her mistake in leaving the land and stepping out of God’s will. Though her name meant “pleasant” Naomi accepts the name ‘Mara”, meaning “bitter”, as the consequences of her mistake was gnawing away her joy.

Rewards of Right Faith

Ruth, on the contrary, exhibited inner joy and motivation to work hard to care for her mother-in-law. She was guided by the Lord to the field of Boaz, a relative of her husband, a wealthy man of good repute and high social standing. There Ruth finds not just food and safety, but God’s graciousness through Boaz. Her faith in the God of Israel was beginning to be rewarded.

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