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June 21, 2021 1:00 am
Advertisers say that having more is what life is all about. We need more money, a bigger house, and nicer vacations. But having less can be a greater blessing. Having less means reaching out to those around you because you have to. Family and community mean much more when tough times come. As we face tough times, let’s learn important lessons from the life of a woman in the Old Testament.Click here to listen (Duration 25:02)
Reason for us. Jesus really is always saying more is what life is all about having less be a greater blessing having less means reaching out to those around you because you have to, as you face your tough times take some lessons from the life woman in the Old Testament from the Moody Church is with Sir helps us make it master loser, can we be certain that God will care for us when we hit bottom like the question is not as simple as it appears on the one hand, of course, God is with us no matter how much and how many times we hit bottom. But at the same time.
That doesn't mean that all of our life is going to come together as it did in the life of Ruth.
You know that because of Naomi. You actually have a genealogy that even goes to the New Testament that isn't always true, of course, God looks after his people in different ways but we can be assured of this.
He is with us to the end and the apostle Paul made sure that we understood that when he said that the love of God is with us and we won't be separated.
Despite all of the things that we can imagine life, death, Angels, principalities, powers the sword which of course refers to martyrdom nakedness total destitution. God is with his people to the and that's why think that this sermon series will be a great blessing to all who listen. It'll give you an opportunity realistically to apply the promises of God, but at the same time to understand that faith in Christ faith in his promises is often difficult, but possible in God stands up to what he has promised us for a gift of any amount. This series of messages can be yours.
Here's what you do go to RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 I'm going to be giving you that contact info again. Right now once you listen carefully to God's word but one of the things that God does during hard times is to expose our consumerism and our need to live large and he brings us down to a level of commitment and valuing those around us.
Did you know that 28% of all college students now live with their parents because of our economic challenges here in America people have to rediscover family. If you have a family you are full even if you're going through a hard time. There's another lesson that we must learn and that is that we discover the value of community, the value of community.
Now I'm summarizing here, but Naomi and Ruth they come back to the land. Naomi somewhere finds a place to live, I'm sure. And Ruth goes out in the fields.
She's willing to do anything. She goes out to the fields and she in the field is gathering grains that have been left over from the reapers and now develops a romance because a man by the name of Boaz who is that of the family of a lamb electric. He notices her and that he says some very beautiful things he finds out who she is and then verse eight of chapter 2, Boaz said to Ruth.
Now listen, my daughter don't go to glean in another field or leave this one, but keep close to my young women.
Let your eyes be on the field that they are reaping and go after them have not. I charge the young man not to touch you when you're thirsty, go and drink, etc. Handy says in verse 12, the Lord repay you for what you've done and a full reward be given you by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge. What a beautiful phrase and then he instructs the young men in verse 15 Jesus deliberately leaves some grain for this young woman to pick up. You know, don't take it all. Let her get some and as a result of that Naomi and Ruth are able to live. In fact, she takes the grain home and when you have grain you have bread and you know when times are tough. What you need is other people to help you. You need you need the encouragement of those who really even don't fit. I haven't made much of it but Ruth. After all, was a Moabitess, strictly speaking, there were some things that were said in the Old Testament about Moabites not being able and to enter into the sanctuary, etc. the question is whether or not the sons of Naomi should have even married these their wives Ruth and Oprah, or thought I should say you knew I was going to do that, didn't you and Deb and so what Boaz does and I know there's right romance involved here is he help them. Could I throw out a challenge to you today. Could you find somebody to help and when I say somebody let that be somebody who's poor somebody who may be of another race. Somebody who's been rejected, marginalized, who feels as if they don't belong, who are going to necessarily be sending out signals and saying here I am.
These help me would you reach out and help those who cannot help themselves with the community of God rise up when things are difficult and while I'm at it, we here at the Moody church have a fellowship bond and them. That is because the Fellowship committee gives out money to people who are in financial need and I'll just simply lay it on the line and tell you that it is essentially empty and the reason is we have more people making more requests, and this fund is investigated. That is to say, the committee investigates so that they're not giving out money frivolously so the point is this, that what we need in hard times is community. If you're going through a hard time don't don't to isolate yourself.
Don't say to yourself I'm into a difficult period of time and so what I need to do is to simply live alone and spend all of my time thinking about my fate. You need the body of Christ.
In a moment of need.
That's the way God arranged it or something else that I find interesting in the text and that is that Tim, we discover the opportunity to witness and evangelism. This is a beautiful story. Ruth is converted to the God of Israel. She said that when she was asked to leave Naomi, your God shall be my God, don't you love it and the words I'm leaving the gods of Moab and your God is going to be mine. Just think of Ruth. She jump through all kinds of hoops. First of all, there was the racial who she was a Moabitess not a Jew us, the religious, who she had to leave behind her pagan gods and except a brand-new religion. A brand-new God, the true God, I might add, just like some of you. You need to leave behind.
Possibly the religion in which you were born and you need to jump through that hoop and accept God as he is revealed to us in Jesus Christ. Ruth believed in the Jewish God, under whose wings she had found refuge and then culturally and all you have different language barriers have different issues. Now Naomi was not the best witness Naomi was somewhat having a pity party.
She felt sorry for herself. She was angry at God. She explained that to her daughter-in-law's before they even got to Bethlehem and yet there was something in Naomi that attract Ruth to Naomi's religion. I'm always gratified to know that God doesn't expect this to be perfect that even in our imperfections and our sins and our failures.
God can use us right there and oftentimes he does it in very hard and difficult times.
What I like to do now is to give you and by the way.
Evangelism always takes place in most instances, on the basis of meaningful relationships. You know it's not because people listen to sermons is not because they come to church though we invite people to come to church and they come to trust Christ. But in most instances, it is meaningful, caring, personal relationships that lead people to saving faith in Christ. But now we come to the bottom line we come to the real purpose of all of this. Why was this book of Ruth included in the Bible. That's a good question. Will you say it's an interesting romance. It's an interesting story because Ruth and Boaz end up being married and you can read that story on your own, though you do need some help in terms of the customs of that time, but Tim is like God told this story know there's another reason because all of the Old Testament has what we call salvation history. God is moving forward.
His plan of redemption and this little jewel of the book inserted in the midst of a difficult time of Israel's history helps us to understand God's real purpose and having it included in the Scriptures in order to understand why we turn to the end of the book on the Ruth and Boaz are married and verse 14 of chapter forces. Then the women said to Naomi, Blessed be the Lord who is not left you this day without a Redeemer. That's Boaz and may his name be renowned in Israel.
He shall be to you I restore life and are sure of your old age for your daughter-in-law who loves you who is more to you than seven sons that's a wonderful remark in light of the fact that the value of sons in Old Testament times, has given birth to him. That is, to the child then Naomi took the child and laid him on her lap and became her nurse. That might mean that she formally adopted the child or grandchild and the women of the neighborhood gave them a name. It's also interesting. You think that Boaz and Ruth would have some say in it, but the women they gave their opinion and apparently the family voted and agreed, and they named him Obed and then lo and behold to see if there he was the father of Jesse, the father of David.
Verse 22 Obed father Jesse, and Jesse fathered David think about this moment.
Naomi gets dish hold the grandchild open it and in holding that grandchild she is greatly blessed sure that you got over her bitterness. She is greatly blessed.
But then Naomi dies.
Obed grows up Mary's and Obed has a son and he is going to call him Jesse.
Then Jesse grows up and he has a son he marries and has a son, lo and behold, one of his sons is called David and because David is in the kingly line and the promises of God given to David for a kingdom and so forth.
And because Jesus Christ on his human side. I know that he was virgin born but on the human side is genealogies his legal genealogy goes back to David and Ann who shows up in the genealogy of Jesus in Matthew chapter 1, but Ruth, Naomi, dies not knowing any of this. All that she is is she is glad that she can hold the baby in her arms and then I'm sure somewhat after that, she dies, does she see God's hidden purpose to move along redemption history. What if God in heaven were to say Naomi to tell you this day and I'm using my imagination Naomi you member how difficult it was for you when you were there and Moab. Your husband dies two sons die. You have of course the story of your loneliness, your despair, how bitter you were. Because the hand of the Almighty was against you and you remember all that you know what I had in mind I wanted a Moabitess in my genealogy. Jesus might say because I wanted to prove right from the get go that the gospel is not just for the Jews. It's for Moabites and it's for ammonites and it's for all the other people that are in the Matthew one genealogy and that's why you suffered but you didn't know that and you became bitter because you didn't trust me to believe that I knew what I was doing my purposes are so much higher than yours and I say to you today that God in heaven has multiple purposes that you and I know nothing about. We may know about those purposes someday, but we don't know about. Now in this life, but if we could only see God's ultimate purpose. Oftentimes, only after we die, we would say oh so that's why I went through this trial. That's why I went through this difficult all so that's what God was doing, but there's no way for us to know that now all that we see as we have bills to pay. We have relationships that are broke. But if we trust God, we will discover in the and that even through famine and heartache. God has a purpose that he is working and he is not left us without a witness the other day someone sent Rebecca this quotation it says when you are going through a trial and you don't know where God is. Always remember that a teacher is silent during an exam or a test. Of course he's there dozens of purposes that you and I know nothing about. If only we would trust some of you need to forgive God is a God does need forgiveness. I understand that but you're bitter with God you are bitter you are angry you are in America because the Almighty has dealt harshly with you brought calamity and your life's past week on the radio. There is a testimony of a woman who who was so angry virgin the whole time and then angry. You know Mr. Wright is supposed to come along.
So what does she do she goes and lives her own way and ends up in all kinds of heartache and brokenness in trouble but she said I was mad at God.
Everybody else seems to be blessed. I'm left out. I am marrow don't call me by my name, because the Almighty has done harshly with me.
That was Naomi's take. God was saying Naomi don't you understand that your bitterness was actually to be a blessing if you had had faith to believe that and to trust me, God knows what he's doing in the midst of the greatest heartache, the taking away of people sons of Naomi the heartache of financial stress. God's is just trust me and don't be better. You're meant to be a blessing. I'm going to pray in a moment, and I'm going to ask those who have been designated as per partners would you get up right now and take your places in the aisle in a moment were going to be singing together.
If you have a need we have only a very brief time to pray but you can connect.
You can give to God.
Your need and a prayer of trust in the midst of hardship. The per partners will continue to pray for you all week. Let us see the glory of God. Even in that which we do not understand. Let's pray together.
Father, help us to understand that your purpose is so much greater than what we can see to genuinely believe that you are here for us. For those today father who need to release their feelings of pain and anxiety and perhaps even bitterness, to believe that you are in the midst of heartache. Show them today. Your glory if only we can trust you. In Jesus name we ask a man. This is has dilutes her and I don't mean to imply that trust is easy.
Oftentimes we have to fight against Satan who puts doubt in our minds. But if we are persistent and if we believe God is going to show himself strong even in the midst of situations which appear to be hopeless, but on the other side we will once again see the providence of God. I believe that this series of messages titled famines, deserts and other hard places will be a great blessing to you. That's why we are making this resource available to you. It's our way of helping you in your Christian walk. Of course when these resources are yours. You can listen to them again and again share them with your friends because as we together hold our hands, figuratively speaking, we are saying that together as the body of Christ.
We want to be faithful to the end want more information. Of course you can go to RTW offer.com.
By that I mean for a gift of any amount.
These messages can be yours RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337.
Perhaps I gave that to you too quickly, so let me say it again.
RTW offer.com or call us at 1-888-218-9337 thanks in advance for helping us because together we are making a difference helping you make it all the way to the finish line once again for you to ask Pastor Luzerne question about the Bible or the Christian life. The church is divided about how God currently treats the nation of Israel, which has been looking into this and wants your take on an issue. Dr. Luther asks do you believe in replacement theology that is that the church replaces Israel and that God no longer has any special plans for the Jewish nation amidst the answer is no, I do not believe in replacement theology and you're absolutely right replacement theology says that the church actually takes the place of Israel in God's economy and God is totally finished with the nation Israel but you know when you read the Old Testament and you might want to read.
For example, Jeremiah 33 and other passages where it says so clearly that as long as sun and moon endure the nation of Israel shall remain before me and then think of it this way. Think of the words of the angel to Mary, he shall be great, he shall be called the son of the highest. The Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David, and he shall rule over the kingdom of Judah, etc. now has that been fulfilled. I don't think so. And yet Jesus is going to be sitting on the throne of David. I interpret that to mean ruling from Jerusalem some day and so I don't believe in replacement theology. There are other implications to this. I could go on a long time but just read the prophets of the Old Testament read the continual repetition of God is saying again and again. I will bring a remnant back into the land. Then ask yourself is this been fulfilled now because even after the Activities after Israel has been so disciplined by God. You still have those promises. So I believe in a future fulfillment for Israel. Thank you Mitch for your question.
Thank you Dr. Luther if you'd like to hear your question answered. Go to our email@example.com and click on ask Pastor Luzerne or call us at 1-888-218-9337 that's one thing they make 218-9337 you can write to us run into when 1635 N. LaSalle Boulevard Chicago 6061 possible to go from great blessing times trial. That's what happened to Jesus, who was led by God into the wilderness time lessons we can learn from the desert devil, and you this is Dave Ellis and her running to win is sponsored by the teacher