RUTH’S LOYALTY - JEWISH LOYALTY - OUR LOYALTY
Boaz meets Loyal Ruth
As part of the Messianic Jewish community world wide, we encourage all, young or old to affirm their commitment to the Messiah, and to the Messianic Jewish community your involved with. On Shavuot we look to the Book of Ruth because Ruth's fidelity is symbolic of the loyalty expected of the entire Jewish communities in Messiah world wide. We also look to Torah and to the people of Israel, with our faithfulness to stand and serve them, for love alone.
Ruth and Orpah accompany their widowed mother-in-law, Naomi, into the desert on the way back to Bethlehem (the house of bread). Naomi felt that the only place she would be able to leave her daughters-in-law was on the open road, since it was a custom to accompany the departing relative or guest for a distance prior to their parting. Naomi says to Ruth and Orpah: "Turn back each of you to her mother's house. May God deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me." (Ruth 1:8)
Orpah reluctantly agrees to remain in her native land (Moab), but Ruth had refuses to leave Naomi, and proclaims: "Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God, my God. Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. Thus and more may Yahvah do to me if anything but death parts me from you." (Ruth 1:16-17) These are strong words of faith, words of love, words of the Spirit of grace speaking through Ruth.
Why is Ruth's statement so significant?
Ruth uses the holy Name of the LORD (Yahwah), the Yud Hey Vav Hey in her statement to Naomi rather than the more commonly quoted Elohim. Biblical scholars point out that this is the only time Ruth ever evokes the name LORD whereas Naomi and Boaz use it quite frequently in a medley of blessings. This bold dramatic commitment by Ruth to her mother-in-law is extremely significant because with no fanfare or knowledge about her future fate, she allies herself with aging Naomi and her people, Israel. By calling God, Yahwah, Ruth was probably connecting with Naomi by evoking Elohim Ha rachamim "The God of Compassion," who by the Holy Spirit, was made known to her. Ruth was seeking to continue her compassionate relationship with Naomi, God, and the Jewish people, and this is made plain by the above text. These words are some of the strongest words of LOVE in the Hebrew Bible, except for God's words.
As the Messianic and Hebrew Roots communities world wide widens, today we can learn much from the commitments that we are making to our God and our local community. The Torah suggests that we as the community of Believers, accept our future in God without always knowing what He will bring. By faith we do stand on a road to home, the city that Avram was looked for.
In Parashat (Torah portion) "Lech L'cha," Avram left his father's home and his birthplace to go to a Land that God says, "I will show you." (Genesis 12:1). In taking this chance, Avram exhibited both FAITH in God and the HOPE for establishing a future Messianic community someday. For Avram looked for a CITY which had foundations, whose Builder and Maker is God. So too, Ruth has FAITH that Naomi would lead her into a life of promise, not only to KNOW God, but to the people with whom Naomi will bring her into contact.
We too, must take risks and allow ourselves to venture into uncharted waters by the Spirit of the Living God. By summoning up the courage of Ruth and the determination of Avram, we to can join together (Come into Unity) on the holiday of Shavuot to affirm the Body of Messiah World Wide. It is Ruth's willingness to be a doer, followed by her involvement in the life she has chosen that ultimately brought her a child, family and friends, and it was all done by the Hand of the LORD.
What we need to do is take time to look at our own lives, decide what risks we will take for the good of the community were in. Then go out and perform those "good acts" that are very necessary to solidify our own commitment to God. As Yacov (James) said,
"But one who looks intently at the perfect Torah, the Torah of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer, but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does." James 1:25
So do take a long look at who YOU are in the Body of Messiah. If you were not born Jewish, look at your "Hebrew reflection in your Messiah face" and decide to act the way Ruth did when she looked into her mother in-laws face on that road out of Moab. She loved her as her own soul. Then with wholehearted faith in your commitment to the Messiah and His Body, become a DOER of the "WORD" for the glory of God and the community of faith your planted in.
Shavuot is the time to allow the HOLY SPIRIT'S FIRE to fall on you, then you can pass that FIRE to your local community by serving them, like Ruth did. However, anytime is the right time with God, so let today be the day, the time, for your commitment to be renewed in all things of the Holy Spirit.
We say, Come Holy Spirit Come!
Devoted Ruth, a picture of the true Church of Messiah Yeshua.