Daily Devotional 7-27-20

TRANSCRIPT

Hi, everyone. In my Bible reading recently, I came across an amazing and inspiring passage of Scripture I’d like to share this morning. It’s from the book of Ruth in the Old Testament. It’s a popular passage, occasionally read at weddings and it testifies to the remarkable faith of a young woman named Ruth who decided to follow her mother-in-law, Naomi, back to the holy land of Judah. Terrible misfortune had come upon Naomi while living in the land of Moab. Her husband died, both of her sons died, and she decides to move back to the land of Judah because she had heard that God was blessing that land with food.

After urging both of her daughters-in-law, who were widows at that point, to return to their own home and families, one of the daughter-in-laws declines and pleads with Naomi to let her follow and come along. Here’s Ruth’s reply in Ruth 1:16-18 (NASB), “Do not urge me to leave you or turn back from following you; for where you go, I will go, and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God. Where you die, I will die, and where I will be buried. Thus may the Lord do to me, and worse, if anything but death parts you and me. When she saw that she was determined to go with her, [Naomi] said no more to her”.

What an amazing passage. Ruth has determined to leave her old way of life, her family, her culture, and to follow Naomi. But really it’s more than just following a person. Ruth essentially embraces the God that Naomi had been worshiping. She steps also out by faith to follow in God’s leading, wherever that might be. And she also embraces God’s people.

I’m reminded of Jesus’s words in Matthew 19:29 (NASB), where he says, “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or farms for My name’s sake, will receive many times as much, and will inherit eternal life.” Naomi’s life hadn’t gone unnoticed all those years in Moab. Ruth was drawn by the spirit of God, to Naomi’s faith in God.

20th century Christian writer and apologists C.S. Lewis once said “How little people know who think that holiness is dull. When one meets the real thing, it’s irresistible.” I don’t know about you, but I’m inspired by this passage in several ways.

First, I need to be aware that God brings people to my life who are going to spur me on to greater faith and holiness. We shouldn’t avoid those people. Keep an eye out for them, how God brings them into your life. They’re a blessing. Thank God for those people.

Secondly, you notice in this passage that Ruth stepped out of her comfort zone, leaving family and culture to become part of God’s family. How about you? Are you a follower of Jesus, or are you still in process?

Lastly, being a follower of Jesus can result in extreme sacrifice and suffering. We need to be prepared for this. Psalm 34:19 says, “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all.”

This book has an incredible, great ending, and I’d encourage you to just take a chance and just read straight through the book of Ruth. It’ll be a blessing to your life. I’d like to close with this benediction from 2 Thessalonians 3:16 (NASB). “Now may the Lord of peace Himself continually grant ups in every circumstance. The Lord be with you all!”

Have a great day.