28 May The Book of Ruth: More Than A Love Story
Being a great love story in the Bible, The Book of Ruth has a deeper meaning. The story starts out with Naomi and her family recently moving in the country of Moab due to a famine in Bethlehem. The first person to die is Elimelek, her husband. Then her two sons (Mahlon & Chilion) died 10 years after they married Moabite women (Ruth & Orpah). With no men in the household, Naomi decides to go back to Bethlehem. Ruth decides to follow her but Orpah decides to go back to her household. Ruth starts living among the Hebrews and has won favor over Boaz, a relative of Naomi. Ruth and Boaz gets married and continue the genealogy leading to King David.
Now let’s first examine the names in this story.
Bethlehem means House of Bread.
Moab means from father. This was given to the name to one son of Lot’s daughters.
Elimelek means My God is King
Naomi means pleasantness. This is why after she lost her husband and sons she asked to be called Mara, which means bitterness.
Mahlon means poor or sickly.
Chilion means wasting away or destruction.
Ruth means friend.
Orpah means back of neck.
Boaz means in him there is strength.
The Hidden Meaning
After knowing the meaning of all the names in the story, The Book of Ruth becomes an allegory. The story is about how Jesus Christ redeems the world through the Jewish people. The hidden story starts with Israel (Naomi) being spiritual dry (famine in Bethlehem). Once Israel became spiritual dry, they turn themselves over to sin (Moab) including rejecting & killing Jesus Christ. In return God becomes dead in their hearts (Elimelek’s death). The Jewish people becomes poor in the spirit and wasting away thus becoming bitter.
Our Relationship with Jesus Christ
Naomi & Ruth returning back to Bethlehem represents the Jewish people and Gentiles sharing a similar interest in salvation from God. Orpah represents sinners who heard the gospel and reject it, remaining in their paths to destruction. Naomi representing the Jewish people and Ruth representing Christians. Boaz represents Jesus Christ. When Boaz and Ruth ate bread dipped wine vinegar (Ruth 2:14), this represents Christians doing communion. Communion is a remembrance of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. – 1 Corinthians 11:26. Boaz marrying Ruth to redeem’s Naomi from poverty and Ruth from widowhood represents Jesus Christ blessing both Christians and the Jewish people as the Lord and Savior. Boaz and Ruth represent Jesus Christ and the church. Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. – Revelation 19:7.