Ruth

Starting March 10th, we're embarking on our newest sermon series: 
Ruth: A Redemption Story. 

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We live in a culture that privileges anything that is new. Commercials dazzle us with the newest medications, newest technology, and the newest vacations. When we listen to music, we can feel a subtle disappointment if an “old” song comes on. Even at church, we can find ourselves recoiling at a song chosen for corporate worship that is so “old”—like, at least five or six years old. However, sometimes we are utterly blown away by the freshness of an old thing that is newly discovered.

The book of Ruth is an old story, but it is not an irrelevant story. In fact, Ruth is one of the most beautiful literary stories that continues to pay dividends to the most modern audiences. The story is a masterpiece of suspense, irony, tragedy, hope, and redemption. Ruth touches on many experiences common to everyone. 

One of the prominent themes of the book of Ruth is to show how the difficulties and calamities of life can be understood in light of the sovereignty and providence of God. Naomi, Ruth’s mother-in-law, says, “the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. I went away full, and Yahweh has brought me back empty…the Almighty has brought calamity upon me” (Ruth 1:20–21). Can what Naomi said actually be true? Does the Almighty bring calamity? Yes, and yes. But another question emerges: is God’s bitter providence the last word on the matter?

As we will see, the book of Ruth seeks to provide an answer to that very question. Through the story of Ruth, God’s eternal purposes shine like stars upon the darkness of pain and calamity. We all, at some point, have asked whether or not God’s unfailing love (His hesed) can be trusted in the midst of the pain He has dealt us. In the end, the book of Ruth stands out as a truly remarkable story of redemption.

Our hope and prayer is that this old story would refresh us as we encounter the truth of God’s unfailing love, even in the midst of bitter circumstances. Though times may feel hopeless, and our outlook may seem bleak, the book of Ruth is a beautiful reminder that God is our Redeemer! Let us prayerfully and eagerly study the book of Ruth: A Redemption Story.

- Pastor Larry & Pastor Phil

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