9 Then Boaz said to the elders and all the people, “You are witnesses today that I have bought from the hand of Naomi all that belonged to Elimelech and all that belonged to Chilion and Mahlon.
Boaz calls on both the elders and the crowd to be witnesses.
10 Furthermore, I have acquired Ruth the Moabitess, the widow of Mahlon, to be my wife in order to raise up the name of the deceased on his inheritance, so that the name of the deceased will not be eliminated from his brothers or from the court of his birth place; you are witnesses today.”
Then Boaz says, “Next, and more importantly, I have acquired Ruth the Moabitess, the widow of Mahlon. By marrying Ruth, children can be produced who will continue the family line, and inherit their families’ land.
Granted Ruth’s petition, back in chapter 3 verse 9 when she asked Boaz to “spread your garment over your servant, for you are a redeemer.”-when she’d proposed marriage to him. It has provided both the security and reward for Ruth. Naomi had prayed in chapter 1 verse 9 May the Lord grant that you may find a place of rest, each one in the house of her husband.” And affirmed her need for security, in verse 3:1 when she said “My daughter, shall I not seek security for you, that it may go well for you? Boaz had also prayed for Ruth in chapter 2 verse12 12 May the Lord reward your work, and may your wages be full from the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge.”, acknowledging that her refuge is in the Lord, the God of Israel.
11 And all the people who were in the court, and the elders, said, “We are witnesses. May the Lord make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, both of whom built the house of Israel; and may you achieve wealth in Ephrathah and become famous in Bethlehem. 12 Moreover, may your house be like the house of Perez whom Tamar bore to Judah, through the descendants whom the Lord will give you by this young woman.”
This is another blessing or prayer in the book of Ruth that is fulfilled. It’s the story of Ruth that binds the family of David to Bethlehem in the Old Testament. It’s why we’re not surprised later when Samuel goes to Bethlehem to find David and anoint him king. And of course, it’s because David was from Bethlehem that Mary and Joseph go there to pay their taxes and it’s there where Jesus is born, fulfilling prophecy-Micah 5:2.
They bless her saying, may your house be like the house of Perez whom Tamar bore to Judah, through the descendants who God will give them. Ruth and Boaz’ children will be legitimate, because Boaz is doing his duty to produce an heir for the house of Elimelech. The Bethlehemites were of the tribe of Judah, and were also of the house or family of Perez. Tamar was also a foreigner, one of another nation, as Ruth was.
God cares about all of the Ruth’s of the world. All of those who are outcast, and poverty-stricken, and foreigners are cared about as much by God, as the native sons of Israel, and will be accepted by His grace, on the basis of faith in Him.
We talk and sing about Jesus as our redeemer, but many of us don’t know exactly what that means.
This Hebrew word Goel is the root word behind many of these words that we’ve said are key words in the book of Ruth. The words kinsman, redeem, redeemer, close-relative, closest relative, buy, bought, and redemption all come from this root which means to redeem, avenge, revenge, ransom and to do the part of a kinsman—to redeem his kin from difficulty or danger. And as we’ve seen the last two weeks, it carries with it the idea that it is a duty or privilege to do this for a near relative.
Exodus 6:6 Say, therefore, to the sons of Israel, ‘I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the labors of the Egyptians, and I will rescue you from their bondage. I will also redeem you with an outstretched arm, and with great judgments. And so, we see that God is going to rescue the Israelites from slavery—buy them back as it were.
Now God had made a covenant, a promise with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (also known as Israel) and their descendants forever and promised them 2 things. First, a seed through which the nations of the earth would be blessed along with Israel. And of course, this is the Messiah, the Lord Christ Jesus, who would save us all from our sins. The second promise was the permanent possession of the land of Canaan.
So, in our verses in Ruth today, we find Boaz acting as this kinsman-redeemer, following God’s law as to the way things should be done, and fulfilling all of the roles of the kinsman redeemer.
So, God has provided for redemption of the land when it’s sold off, and redemption of the people when they’re sold off.
If we go back to Exodus 12, we see that God commanded each household to slaughter an unblemished male lamb, and as it says in verse 7 7 Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel [l]of the houses in which they eat it. And as the destroyer came through Egypt and looked at each house to kill the firstborn, God said in verse 13 13 The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will come upon you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt. Which is why we call this memorial feast Passover
Paul makes the point that Jesus is our Passover lamb to the Corinthians in 1 Cor 5:7 when he urges them to stop sinning and 7 Clean out the old leaven so that you may be a new lump, just as you are in fact unleavened. For Christ our Passover also has been sacrificed. The prophet John the Baptist recognized Jesus in John 1:29 saying “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” We find Peter referring to Jesus as a “lamb without blemish or defect” in 1 Peter 1:19.
And so we see that Jesus is our Passover lamb, the One by whose death Redemption is accomplished.
And just as Boaz was met the criteria to be Ruth’s kinsman redeemer, Jesus meets the criteria to be OUR kinsman-redeemer.
1.The one who was to be the redeemer he had to be eligible to redeem. He had to be a near kinsman. Because Jesus came to earth as a little baby. He is mankind’s near-kinsman.
2.The one who was to be the redeemer had to be able to redeem—have the means to redeem. Jesus is qualified to be called One “without blemish” because His life was completely free from sin (Hebrews 4:15). And because God was His father through the Immaculate Conception, He was qualified to be the redeemer because He was not born with original sin, as all of us were.
3.The one who was to be the redeemer had to be willing to redeem—he could choose to redeem or not to redeem. And Jesus chose to go to the cross. In Hebrews 12:2, we are reminded that Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. As Titus 2:14 tells, us: Jesus gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, eager for good deeds.
And it’s when we realize our need for Him as Redeemer-that we need someone to rescue us, to save us, to buy us back from where we have fallen, that He reveals Himself as our Redeemer, our Messiah.
We can be forgiven, justified, redeemed. But there’s only one way—through the one way that God has provided. Through Jesus.
Like the Israelites, we are redeemed from death by the blood of a lamb. Like the Israelites we are redeemed from slavery to sin. Like the Israelites, we are have faith in God’s Word, and following it are justified by our faith.