Reading Ruth is kind of like engaging in a “Where’s Waldo” book. No, I’m not on the lookout for some skinny dude in a striped red shirt with a beanie on. Instead, I’m actively trying to spot Jesus. In particular, I’m looking for Jesus in the character of Boaz, Ruth’s kinsmen-redeemer. It’s a great way to engage the brain in a story that is so familiar. It’s a also a great way to prime the pump of wonder and worship. This morning I’m captured by what could be seen as a Triune connection, as I’m reminded afresh that I am under His wings.
As I’m reading, I’m first noticing the familiar connections. Boaz is a “worthy man” (2:1), a man of impeachable character. Jesus too. Boaz is a wealthy man, he owns the field (2:3). So too, my Savior owns the cattle on a thousand hills. Boaz came from Bethlehem (2:4). Yup, so did Jesus. Boaz is a blessed man who takes notice of the least of these (2:19). Oh, that the Lord of heaven would take note of specks of creation is wonder for wonder. You get the idea.
But that Boaz is intricately linked as Jehovah’s active agent on earth? That’s something I’m not sure I’ve ever hovered over before.
“The LORD repay you for what you have done, and a full reward be given you by the LORD, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge!” ~ Boaz to Ruth
(Ruth 2:12 ESV)
He said, “Who are you?” And she answered, “I am Ruth, your servant. Spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer.” ~ Ruth to Boaz
(Ruth 3:9 ESV)
Boaz commended Ruth for her faithfulness to Naomi and for her faith in the God of Israel. She had followed her mother-in-law but she believed she could find refuge in a heavenly Father. Under His wings she had come to take refuge.
Then Ruth says to Boaz, in effect, you be God with skin on. Would you spread your wings over me? I trust in you as a redeemer.
Okay, is Jesus not there, too? Isn’t that what He did? God in flesh come to redeem and cover us with His blood, and spread over us a garment of righteousness?
Some translations say, “Spread your cloak over me.” Accurate translation. But what it fails to highlight is that “cloak” is the exact same word as “wings”. The wings of the Almighty are the corner of the garment of the Redeemer. To be at the Redeemers feet, covered by His skirt, is to rest in the secure refuge of the God Who Is.
Drop you jaw! Bow your knee. Close your eyes. And put your face to the floor!
Then she fell on her face, bowing to the ground, and said to him, “Why have I found favor in your eyes, that you should take notice of me, since I am a foreigner?” ~ Ruth to Boaz
(Ruth 2:10 ESV)
How prophetic was Ruth in chapter 2? The favor she had recognized then was nothing compared to the favor she would know under her Redeemer’s wings in chapter 4. And the “why?” of favor would be her meditation and delight for as long as they both were together.
Us too. Under His wings! Such favor. Amazing grace! Why?
O’ what a Savior!
To Him be all glory!