RUTH...THE "WOMB"...PART 9
TEXT: RUTH 1:16-18
"And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:/ Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the LORD do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me:/ When she saw that she was stedfastly minded to go with her, then she left speaking unto her."
I have not stopped wondering about Ruth as far as her commitment to her husband and mother in law is concerned. In her we see a paradigm for both a wife and a daughter in law. Christian sisters should take serious lesson from Ruth. To my mind, this young woman sees Naomi as her personal responsibility. She was not bent on following her for any reason than simply to take care of her at her old age. She saw Naomi as a woman who needed protection, love and constant encouragement. So Ruth sacrificed her life to see to this mission. She abandoned her life ambition of a home with children to care for an old poor widow in a foreign land.
This woman foreshadowed a true disciple: she has said no to herself! She put herself aside. All her dreams and desires were poured into the wellbeing of Naomi. The prospect of getting a husband was not the motive for her following. No man can place his finger on any thing as a motive for this kind of selfabandonment on the part of Ruth. Naomi did all she could to persuade her to find a seemingly better life for herself but she quietly rebuked Naomi by saying: "Intreat me not to leave thee, or return from following thee...thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God..." This is death. This is the highest risk in the Bible...no man had ever done this kind of thing in the whole old testament before now.
However, this risk taken for Naomi placed on her the duty of making this commitment worthwhile. From thenceforth, the onus was on Naomi to see to the happiness of Ruth. This act of Ruth, made Naomi fully responsible for the fulfilment of Ruth destiny.
We shall never know the full extent of God's care and be truly happy in Christ until we surrendered all on the alter of the course of Christ. Lips service is common in our time. Christianity is measured by how much a man gives not by how much he receives. It is not aquisitorty but sacrificial. Christianity is a daily life of being pieces on the alter; is a daily burnt sactifice. Here we see commitment to a mere man. How committed a man is to his fellow man would determine how he would be to God. Ask yourself at the end of the day: "what have I sacrificed today for my fellow man!" A simple token to a bigger may be noticed by God. Standing up from a seat in a very crowded place for a tired individual is praiseworthy.
When a man throws his life on God like this, he pulls the whole power of heaven on his side. There is nothing that "unties" the hand of God like absolute commitment to Him. A man that dumps his entire life on the lap of God is a very dangerous man: God can do any thing to save him. God is a "debtor" to some persons. Isaiah says: "To which of my creditors have I sold you?" This shows that God is indebted to some persons. So the Bible says: "He that gives to the poor lend to his maker" Whenever a man stretch out his hand to give to the needy, he does that to God: he is lending to God, as it were, God becomes his "debtor. Do you wonder why some just call on God and He responds at once while some cry blood from their eyes just for one dollar and no response at all?
There is no better way to mobilise the army of heaven against our enemies than Ruth's kind of commitment to the church of God. Let our commitment to the course of Christ graduate to a type that indebts our "Naomi" to us. Look at Ruth 3:1. "Then Naomi her mother in law said unto her, My daughter, shall I not seek rest for thee, that it may be well with thee?" Ruth had no rest, the duty for this rest on Naomi. So she sought for rest for Naomi. This obligation was place on her from the very day Ruth threw her life away for Naomi.
Emeka Joe Uzosike