Ruth 2:1-23 Comments by Stephen Ricker
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The Lord be with You
Comments for Study 2

Ruth 2:1-23
Memory Verse: 4

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I. Ruth Begins Work (2:1-7)

>1. Who was Boaz? (1, 4)

* Ruth 2:1 "Now Naomi had a relative on her husband's side, from the clan of Elimelech, a man of standing, whose name was Boaz."

* Ruth 2:4 "Just then Boaz arrived from Bethlehem and greeted the harvesters, "The LORD be with you!" "The LORD bless you!" they called back.

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>If someone is known as "a man of standing" does it mean that they are a man of God?

* Matthew 23:27-28 "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men's bones and everything unclean. In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness."

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>2. What fundamental problem did Ruth and Naomi have even though they were in Naomi's hometown? (2)

* Ruth 2:2 "And Ruth the Moabitess said to Naomi, "Let me go to the fields and pick up the leftover grain behind anyone in whose eyes I find favor." Naomi said to her, "Go ahead, my daughter."

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>Why might no one come to Naomi's aid and what does that say about the times?

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>What system did God set up in Israel for such a situation? (Lev. 19:9-10)

* Leviticus 19:9-10 "'When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Do not go over your vineyard a second time or pick up the grapes that have fallen. Leave them for the poor and the alien. I am the LORD your God."

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>What can Christ followers learn? (Matt. 6:2-4; Gal. 2:10; Rom. 15:25-26)

* Matthew 6:2-4 ("So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you."

* Galatians 2:10 "All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do."

* Romans 15:25-26 "Now, however, I am on my way to Jerusalem in the service of the saints there. For Macedonia and Achaia were pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem."

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>3. Was her gleaning in Boaz field an accident? (3)

* Ruth 2:3 "So she went out and began to glean in the fields behind the harvesters. As it turned out, she found herself working in a field belonging to Boaz, who was from the clan of Elimelech."

* Psalm 119:132-135 "Turn to me and have mercy on me, as you always do to those who love your name. Direct my footsteps according to your word; let no sin rule over me. Redeem me from the oppression of men, that I may obey your precepts. Make your face shine upon your servant and teach me your decrees."

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>How did Boaz come to know Ruth? (5-6)

* Ruth 2:5-6 "Boaz asked the foreman of his harvesters, "Whose young woman is that?" The foreman replied, "She is the Moabitess who came back from Moab with Naomi."

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>How was her character revealed to Boaz? (7)

* Ruth 2:7 "She said, 'Please let me glean and gather among the sheaves behind the harvesters.' She went into the field and has worked steadily from morning till now, except for a short rest in the shelter."

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II. Boaz Show Kindness to Ruth (2:8-16)

>4. What ways did Boaz show kindness to Ruth? (8-9)

* Ruth 2:8-9 "So Boaz said to Ruth, "My daughter, listen to me. Don't go and glean in another field and don't go away from here. Stay here with my servant girls. Watch the field where the men are harvesting, and follow along after the girls. I have told the men not to touch you. And whenever you are thirsty, go and get a drink from the water jars the men have filled."

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>Why? (10-12)

* Ruth 2:10-12 "At this, she bowed down with her face to the ground. She exclaimed, "Why have I found such favor in your eyes that you notice me--a foreigner?" Boaz replied, "I've been told all about what you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband--how you left your father and mother and your homeland and came to live with a people you did not know before. May the LORD repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the LORD, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge."

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>How might Ruth feel by this? (Matt. 5:14-16)

* Matthew 5:14-16 "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."

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>5. Was Boaz kindness a source of pride for Ruth? (13)

* Ruth 2:13 "May I continue to find favor in your eyes, my lord," she said. "You have given me comfort and have spoken kindly to your servant--though I do not have the standing of one of your servant girls."

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>Should Jesus' kindness be a source of pride to us? (Rom. 11:17-24)

* Romans 11:17-24 "If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root, do not boast over those branches. If you do, consider this: You do not support the root, but the root supports you. You will say then, "Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in." Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid. For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either. Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off. And if they do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. After all, if you were cut out of an olive tree that is wild by nature, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more readily will these, the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree!"

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>6. How did Boaz continue in his kindness to Ruth? (14)

* Ruth 2:14 "At mealtime Boaz said to her, "Come over here. Have some bread and dip it in the wine vinegar." When she sat down with the harvesters, he offered her some roasted grain. She ate all she wanted and had some left over."

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>Why might the men want to embarrass her? (15)

* Ruth 2:15 "As she got up to glean, Boaz gave orders to his men, "Even if she gathers among the sheaves, don't embarrass her."

* Matthew 6:2 "So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full."

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>How did Boaz ensure that she should no be embarrassed? (16)

* Ruth 2:16 "Rather, pull out some stalks for her from the bundles and leave them for her to pick up, and don't rebuke her."

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III. Ruth Returns to Naomi (2:17-23)

>7. Could Ruth be considered lazy? (17)

* Ruth 2:17 "So Ruth gleaned in the field until evening. Then she threshed the barley she had gathered, and it amounted to about an ephah."

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>How much did he harvest?

* "ephah" -An ephah was about 3/5 of a bushel or 22 liters. The Hebrew is like the English ephah in that is is a dry measure of grain. It is one-tenth of a homer and equal to one bath of liquid (Ezek. 45:11). It is also equal to 10 omers (Ex. 16:36). Thus it is about 40 liters, though we do not have enough information to make precise estimates.

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>8. What did Naomi notice that perhaps Ruth didn't? (18-19)

* Ruth 2:18-19 "She carried it back to town, and her mother-in-law saw how much she had gathered. Ruth also brought out and gave her what she had left over after she had eaten enough. Her mother-in-law asked her, "Where did you glean today? Where did you work? Blessed be the man who took notice of you!" Then Ruth told her mother-in-law about the one at whose place she had been working. "The name of the man I worked with today is Boaz," she said."

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>9. What can we learn from Boaz? (20)

* Ruth 2:20 "The LORD bless him!" Naomi said to her daughter-in-law. "He has not stopped showing his kindness to the living and the dead." She added, "That man is our close relative; he is one of our kinsman-redeemers."

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>What is a "kinsman-redeemer? (Lev. 25:25-28)

* Leviticus 25:25-28 ""'If one of your countrymen becomes poor and sells some of his property, his nearest relative is to come and redeem what his countryman has sold. If, however, a man has no one to redeem it for him but he himself prospers and acquires sufficient means to redeem it, he is to determine the value for the years since he sold it and refund the balance to the man to whom he sold it; he can then go back to his own property. But if he does not acquire the means to repay him, what he sold will remain in the possession of the buyer until the Year of Jubilee. It will be returned in the Jubilee, and he can then go back to his property."

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>How is Jesus our "kinsman-redeemer? (Gal. 3:13-14; and 1 Peter 1:18-20; Isaiah 54:5, 59:20)

* Galatians 3:13-14 "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit."

* 1 Peter 1:18-20 "For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake."

* Isaiah 54:5 "For your Maker is your husband-- the LORD Almighty is his name-- the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth."

* Isaiah 59:20 "The Redeemer will come to Zion, to those in Jacob who repent of their sins," declares the LORD."

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>10. What did Ruth tell Naomi? (21)

* Ruth 2:21 "Then Ruth the Moabitess said, "He even said to me, 'Stay with my workers until they finish harvesting all my grain.'"

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>What advice did Naomi give? (22; Titus 2:3-5)

* Ruth 2:22 "Naomi said to Ruth her daughter-in-law, "It will be good for you, my daughter, to go with his girls, because in someone else's field you might be harmed."

* Titus 2:3-5 "Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God."

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>How did Ruth respond? (23)

* Ruth 2:23 "So Ruth stayed close to the servant girls of Boaz to glean until the barley and wheat harvests were finished. And she lived with her mother-in-law."

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