Wednesday, September 30, 2020

My Favorite Bible Characters And What I Have Learned From Them Part 12 – Simon the Cyrene


It was in the spring of the year AD 30 when a man from the north African city of Cyrene showed up in Jerusalem with his two young sons. He had come to observe the Feast of Passover in obedience to the Law God gave the Israelites through Moses.

Deuteronomy 16:16 directed all males to appear before the Lord at three major feasts each year … Passover was one of those feasts. It is uncertain if Simon’s wife had accompanied the family on this journey but it is reasonable to assume she did, just like Mary and most other Jewish wives accompanied their husbands and families to Jerusalem during these special holy days.

This year, however, was different. It had to be noticeable to anyone who’s heart was open to the Lord. Simon was on a collision course with destiny. Although he could not have known how this trip would change his life, he had to have felt something special. He was a man marked by God to play a significant role in the unfolding plan of God.

Simon the Cyrene, as he would be known and spoken of by scholars and peasants, was about to experience the opportunity of a lifetime, and his sons would stand as witness.

Very little is written about Simon the Cyrene. He has only one short verse repeated in only 3 of the Gospels: Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Yet, we know so much about him.

During the next few minutes, I hope Simon will change your life like he changed mine many years ago.

Let’s read that one verse from the book of Mark.

Mark 15

21 Then they compelled a certain man, Simon a Cyrenian, the father of Alexander and Rufus, as he was coming out of the country and passing by, to bear His cross.

It is evident that Simon is an important player in the plan of God. The writers of Matthew, Mark, and Luke were all inspired to ensure that we knew his name and to make certain we knew exactly which Simon this was.

  • ·        He was Simon the Cyrenian
  • ·        But of much greater identification, is the fact that he was the father of Rufus and Alexander

It is reasonable that the writers of Matthew, Mark, and Luke wanted to connect the readers in some personal way with this obscure man named Simon who was from a province in northern Libya. The Holy Spirit packs volumes of intended information and life changing revelation in every account noted in the scriptures. It is evident that the reason why the Holy Spirit inspired these writers to make this connection between Simon and his sons is because the church, in that period, knew his sons.

25 years later the Apostle Paul, writing his letter to the church in Rome, mentions what many scholars and what church tradition tells us is the family of Simon the Cyrene in his salutation by name. 

Romans 16:13 Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord and his mother and mine. 

We will connect these dots a little more in just a moment. For now, let me share 3 things I have learned from Simon the Cyrene that has helped me to shape my life over these past 40 years of service to Jesus.

1.   His family knew he was faithful. Simon was under the Jewish mandate from God to attend the Feast of Passover. However, he could have easily exempted himself from this yearly trip since it was more than an 1,100 mile trip to walk along the coastal highway or to take a ship as an alternative transport to Alexandria, Egypt and then up the coast to Joppa, making the rest of the journey on foot. This route was the most expensive. Nonetheless, Simon, not only obeyed the Word of God through Moses, but he also made provision to carry his family along.

a.   He was a good father.

b.   He believed in the value of carrying his children to church.

c.    He demonstrated his faith at great personal expense.  

d.   He was a rare and remarkable man.

e. There is no doubt Simon's faithfulness impacted and shaped the lives of his sons. Not only was Simon chosen by God, but evidently, so was his family. 

f. I believe the Holy Spirit intended to show us the kindness and inclusion God ordained to the man who helped Jesus carry His cross to Calvary. 

2.  He taught me to never complain when I am compelled to carry another man’s cross.

a.   It might be the cross of Christ.

b.   Jesus needs more help than we might imagine.

                                         i.    The help Jesus most often needs is physical.

                                        ii.    It could be embarrassing or costly in many ways.

                    iii. God does not first seek our permission before He upsets our plans. 

                                       iv.    Can you imagine being asked to carry the cross of Jesus in that moment, under those circumstances, and amongst that crowd?

c.    Simon the Cyrene did what Jesus could not do … a rare instance … (Joseph of Arimathea; Nicodemus)

3.  My intersection with Christ will be the only lasting legacy of my life.

a.   I am a man of destiny.

                                         i.    You may not know my prologue and you may not know my epilogue … there’s always more to a person’s story than what we realize … but we are all children of destiny.

                                        ii.    God was with me before you met me and He will be with me after we part.

b.   What I do for Jesus is what matters most.

c.    We are people of destiny.

                                         i.    Nothing happens by coincidence.

                                        ii.    We are chosen of God.

                                      iii.    I believe everyone feels that they are special in some way … it’s because we all are.

Does your family know that you are faithful?

·        Do they see and hear your pray?

·        Do they experience you trusting God?

·        Do you take your family on spiritual adventures?


Wouldn’t it be nice if one sentence written about our lives would change the lives of so many for generations to come? 

I encourage you to not complain when compelled to carry a burden which rightly belongs to Jesus. He may need your help more than you realize. 

Sunday, September 27, 2020

I Am Barabbas


Matthew 27:15-24

Today is “Yom Kippur” or the Day of Atonement.

Yom = The Day

Kippur = To Atone

Yom Kippur = The Day of Atonement

The Day of Atonement is the one day of the entire year that the high priest would make a sacrifice to make amends for the sin for all of Israel.

This had a very specific ritual that ultimately led to the sins of the people being forgiven:

      Two goats are brought before the high priest to cast lots on. One would be presented as “Lord’s goat” and the other presented as the “scapegoat.”

      A scarlet rope made of wool was placed around the neck of the lord’s goat and another scarlet rope tied around the horns of the scapegoat.

      The high priest then would kill Lord’s goat and catch its blood in a bowl.

      That blood of the sacrifice would be taken to the Holy of Holies and sprinkled on the mercy seat of the Ark of the Covenant.

      The high priest would then go to the scapegoat and lay his blood soaked hands on its head and confess the sins of the people.

      The scapegoat would then be led into the wilderness where it was released.

This was an image of Jesus:

      Jesus became both the sacrifice and the scapegoat on our behalf.

      Just as a scarlet rope was tied around both goats, a scarlet robe was placed on Jesus before He would be crucified (Matthew 27:28).

Matthew 27:28 (ESV) - “And they stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him,”

      The sacrificial goat was then taken into the tabernacle which was in the shape of a cross to be killed.

      The blood of the goat was then taken to the Holy of Holies and sprinkled on the mercy seat which was the top of the Ark of the Covenant. In the same way, Jesus who is our ultimate High Priest, presented His own blood in the Holy Place to our father in Heaven, securing our redemption once and for all (Hebrews 9:11-12).

Hebrews 9:11-12 (ESV) - But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.

      In the same the sins of Israel were confessed upon the scapegoat, Jesus who was innocent, bore all of our sin and it was so that it would be remembered no more (2 Corinthians 5:21).

2 Corinthians 5:21 (ESV) - “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

There were two goats but only one offering.

One goat was put to death while the other goat was set free.

We see this same situation played out in the Gospels.

Matthew 27:15-24 (NLT)

“15 Now it was the governors custom each year during the Passover celebration to release one prisoner to the crowd—anyone they wanted. 16 This year there was a notorious prisoner, a man named Barabbas. 17 As the crowds gathered before Pilates house that morning, he asked them, Which one do you want me to release to you—Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?” 18 (He knew very well that the religious leaders had arrested Jesus out of envy.) 19 Just then, as Pilate was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent him this message: Leave that innocent man alone. I suffered through a terrible nightmare about him last night.” 20 Meanwhile, the leading priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas to be released and for Jesus to be put to death. 21 So the governor asked again, Which of these two do you want me to release to you?” The crowd shouted back, Barabbas!” 22 Pilate responded, Then what should I do with Jesus who is called the Messiah?” They shouted back, Crucify him!” 23 “Why?” Pilate demanded. What crime has he committed?” But the mob roared even louder, Crucify him!” 24 Pilate saw that he wasnt getting anywhere and that a riot was developing. So he sent for a bowl of water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, I am innocent of this mans blood. The responsibility is yours!”

Pontius Pilate presented two men before the crowd. He asked for one to be set free and the other to be put to death. One was Jesus the Messiah and the other was Barabbas.

Early manuscripts of Matthew name him “Jesus Barabbas,” ensuing that his name could have been Jesus as well. 

Also, the name “Barabbas” (Bar = son, Abba = Father) means “son of abba” or “son of the father.”

Therefore, you have two Jesus’; one whose name means “son of the father” and the other who actually is “son of the father” in heaven.

In the OT you had two goats, in Matthew 27 you have 2 men.

One Jesus is the Messiah, the truth, the innocent one.

The other, Barabbas, was bound and locked up. He was guilty of murder and was sentenced to death row, awaiting the day of his judgement.

Both men were brought out before the crowd who was asked which one they wanted to set free.

They chose Barabbas.

Jesus not only became the sacrificial goat, but He also became the scapegoat. All of our sin, guilt and shame was placed upon Jesus and He carried them all the way to the cross and into death. 

But as for Barabbas, he walked away free.

Imagine being in the shoes of Barabbas. Knowing that he was guilty, locked up in a prison cell, awaiting the judgement that he knew he deserved; death. Any day now he will be pulled from his cell and most likely crucified for his crimes.

The cell opens. He is walked outside to the roar from a crowd yelling “crucify Him! Crucify Him!” Imagining the entire time those words were meant for him. He is bound in chains imagining this was the moment that he would carry his cross to his death.

But then all of a sudden, the chains are unlocked and taken off and is being told that he was free. As he looks to the side he sees what seems to be an innocent man who takes his lashing, his beating, and takes up the cross that was meant for him and walks it to His death. Barabbas might be the only person who could say that Jesus literally carried his cross.

In that moment, Barabbas was given the freedom that Jesus deserved. Jesus bore his guilt, and shame, and disgrace and death that Barabbas deserved. Barabbas received the freedom and life that Jesus deserved.

Doesn’t this sound familiar??

It is because, I am Barabbas!!…..

Without Jesus, we are guilty of sin, locked up in a spiritual prison.

We were bound in chains, helpless to get free. We were sentenced to death, awaiting the judgement that we deserved. We had no hope of redemption; we were lost. Yet in an instant, someone took our place and took upon our sin, took all of our guilt and shame and took it to the cross!

Thank you Jesus!!

Jesus was the answer for Barabbas

Jesus was the answer for the disciples

Jesus was the answer for You

Jesus was the answer for Me

Jesus was the answer for all of us

Jesus is the answer TODAY

1.        Remember the Cross - Remember that Jesus took our penalty and we walked away free. Be thankful for the cross, and let it never become common to us. Jesus died for us so that we can live for Him. The best way to remember what Christ did for us on the cross is by living for Him.

2.        Pray for our nation - Yesterday a national day of prayer was held on behalf of our country. Our nation needs us to pray for God to intervene.

3.        Choose Jesus - Jesus is the answer! No matter the situation, Jesus is sufficient. Let us not lean on our own knowledge or opinions; let’s choose Jesus in every situation.

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

My Favorite Bible Characters And What I've Learned From Them Part 11 - Jochebed


 The history and situation in Egypt among the Hebrews …

·        It’s about the year 1580 BC

·        The children of Israel have been in Egypt for over 350 years.

·        It had been generations since Jacob had brought 70 people to live in Egypt as welcomed guests of the Empire by invitation.

·        Now there were between 600,000 and 2 million (depending on whether the census counted families or only men able to go to war)

·        After the death of Joseph, almost 300 years earlier, the Israelites had fallen in to disfavor and were now considered slave labor to the Egyptians.

·        The Bible says there arose a new king in Egypt who became increasingly concerned about the slave population outnumbering the slave owners.

·        The king decided to develop a strategy to control the number of births among these undesirables.

·        He shrewdly sold this idea to his government who put his plan into action.

·        What was his plan … free late term abortions paid for by the state.

·        In other words … Margaret Sanger’s early 20th Century promotion of eugenics, which inspired her to create Planned Parenthood even after being prosecuted for her book Family Limitation under the Comstock Act of 1914.

o   Sanger popularized the term “birth control”

o   Sanger was a member of the Socialist Party of America and won the Humanist of the Year Award in 1957 and inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 1981.

o   Most recently, July 21, 2020 disavowed by Planned Parenthood when they were questioned on eugenics.

“The removal of Margaret Sanger’s name from our building is both a necessary and overdue step to reckon with our legacy and acknowledge Planned Parenthood’s contributions to historical reproductive harm within communities of color.”  - Planned Parenthood

Exodus 1

7 But the children of Israel were fruitful and increased abundantly, multiplied and grew exceedingly mighty; and the land was filled with them.

8 Now there arose a new king over Egypt, who did not know Joseph.

9 And he said to his people, “Look, the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we;

10 come, let us deal shrewdly with them, lest they multiply, and it happen, in the event of war, that they also join our enemies and fight against us, and so go up out of the land.”

11 Therefore they set taskmasters over them to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh supply cities, Pithom and Raamses.

12 But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew. And they were in dread of the children of Israel.

13 So the Egyptians made the children of Israel serve with rigor.

14 And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage—in mortar, in brick, and in all manner of service in the field. All their service in which they made them serve was with rigor.

15 Then the king of Egypt spoke to the Hebrew midwives, of whom the name of one was Shiphrah and the name of the other Puah;

16 and he said, “When you do the duties of a midwife for the Hebrew women, and see them on the birthstools, if it is a son, then you shall kill him; but if it is a daughter, then she shall live.”


·        Kill the babies, destroy the hope.

·        Herod tried this when Jesus was born.

·        Destroy the family, destroy the future of those people.



17 But the midwives feared God, and did not do as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the male children alive. 

18 -21       God blessed the Hebrews and the Midwives

22  So Pharaoh commanded all his people, saying, “Every son who is born you shall cast into the river, and every daughter you shall save alive.”

Exodus 2    Amram      Jochebed          Miriam               Moses

1 And a man of the house of Levi went and took as wife a daughter of Levi.

2 So the woman conceived and bore a son. And when she saw that he was a beautiful child, she hid him three months.

3 But when she could no longer hide him, she took an ark of bulrushes for him, daubed it with asphalt and pitch, put the child in it, and laid it in the reeds by the river’s bank.

4 And his sister stood afar off, to know what would be done to him.

Exodus 5:1-10 The rest of the story


1.   She saw a future when others had no hope.

a.   Conceived a child

b.   She didn’t go with the status quo.

2.   She did all she could for as long as she could.

a.   She protected her child for as long as she could.

b.   Take what you have, start where you are, and do the best you can.

3.   She trusted God with her greatest treasure.

a.   She prepared an ark to the saving of her household, just like Noah.

b.   She pushed Moses and released him into the hands of God.




Sunday, September 20, 2020

Courageous Conversations


Shana Tova!

We are in the best season of the year. This is the New Year on God’s calendar. Rabbis teach the God created the heavens and the earth on Rosh Hashanah. It is the Feast of Trumpets and the time of the year when Jesus was born in Bethlehem. According to the Old Testament, next Sunday will be the Day of Atonement and following close behind will be the Feast of Tabernacles. This season of the year holds such promise.

As well, I believe this is the time of year when Jesus will return. And I am not the only one who is looking for Messiah to come.

On August 3, just over a month ago, this article appeared in Israel Today.

Israeli Rabbi Says He’s Already Holding Meetings With Messiah

Israel’s biggest rabbis are all afraid to leave the country lest they miss Messiah’s coming


A recent interview on Israeli radio again featured prominent rabbis explaining that the Messiah is just about to reveal himself. Rabbi Yaakov Zisholtz on Sunday told religious broadcaster Radio 2000 that Rabbi Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky recently told him that he (Kanievsky) is already in direct contact with the Messiah.

Of course the Rabbis are looking for the first coming of Messiah and the Church is looking for His return. Jesus had something to say about this in Matthew 24.

Matthew 24

23  “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There!’ do not believe it.”

26  “Therefore if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it.”

27  “For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.”

Matthew 24:44  “Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.”

This message scares some people but not us. This is meant to excite and invigorate every Born-Again Believer with that heightened sense of spiritual enthusiasm that makes you feel like you are right on the edge of the most wonderful thing in the world. And we are! Just think about it. Jesus said:

Earlier in this discourse, Jesus said something that is worth mentioning this morning in light of all the current trouble in our streets, with our upcoming presidential election, the process of confirming the next Supreme Court Justice, the targeting and shootings of our law enforcement officers and their families, the political divisions, the racial tensions, the school closures, Covid19, China, Russia, the last and the next hurricanes … anyway … when talking with His disciples about the end of the age, Jesus said:

Matthew 24:13  “But he who endures to the end shall be saved.”

That’s all we need to hear … “Endure” … Jesus, is there anything else I can do about all this junk going on in America and the world? Well wait … perhaps we need to take a closer look at what that word endure means.

If I can paraphrase the meaning of this word as it is intended to be understood in this scripture I would say;

Endure means: Don’t back up; don’t back down; be brave, courageous, and calmly but firmly stand your ground while holding fast to your faith in Jesus.

There is another place in the Bible where the verb form of this root word is translated into a noun and becomes our English word endurance. It is in the book of Hebrews, chapter 10.

Hebrews 10

35  Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward.

36  For you have need of endurance …

You need the strength to not back up, not back down, but be brave, take courage and calmly but firmly stand your ground while holding fast to the faith you have in Jesus. You’re gonna need this! We will read why in a moment but first, allow me to explain one more Greek to English word that may have a little more punch than you might imagine at first read.

Let’s read this again.

Hebrews 10:35 Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward.

The word “confidence” is translated from the Greek word “parrhesia” which means:

Parrhesia: (copied from the Online Bible Greek/English Lexicon)

1) freedom in speaking, unreservedness in speech

1a) openly, frankly, i.e without concealment

1b) without ambiguity or circumlocution

1c) without the use of figures and comparisons

2) free and fearless confidence, cheerful courage, boldness, assurance

3) the deportment by which one becomes conspicuous or secures publicity

So, the Holy Spirit, and the Word of God, is informing us that we should not cast away our ability to boldly speak the unquestionable truth in a public setting without ambiguity and with complete confidence, not backing up and not backing down, while holding fast to our faith in Jesus Christ.

That covers everywhere from the town hall to Facebook and from the jobsite to the classroom. We cannot afford to water down the truth.

Let’s finish reading this passage so you can hear from the Holy Spirit this morning and not just from me.

Hebrews 10

35  Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward.

36  For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:

37  “For yet a little while, And He who is coming will come and will not tarry.

38  Now the just shall live by faith; But if anyone draws back, My soul has no pleasure in him.”

39  But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.

Hebrews 11:1 ¶  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

God is not just talking about the faith you have He is talking about the kind of faith you live. Faith is more than a feeling, faith is a force.

Are you confident that what you believe and want is what God wants? Are you certain you are hearing the whole truth or only one side of the issues at hand? What does God want? Who would you ask to find out? Are you open to examining your views by the Spirit and the Word of God?

Before Jesus finished telling His disciples what could be expected at the end of this age, He gave us a sure sign:

Matthew 24:14  “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.”

Whoo-Hooo!!! Do you see the picture … can you see what Jesus is saying … Jesus is describing the Church in power, preaching the Gospel for a witness to all nations, and then the end will come! It gets me stirred-up every time I read this passage and hear Jesus describe the end of the age.

While chaos and wars and pestilence and famine and problems on every side cover the world, the Born-Again Believers who make up the Church of Jesus Christ will be preaching stronger, growing faster, going farther; will be more powerful and more productive than ever. Our message about Jesus will be supernaturally carried on the wings of angels if necessary, to cover the world as a witness to all nations before the end can come.

We must boldly and courageously proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the Truth of God’s Word in every way possible. Jesus is the only hope for America. No president, no political party, no new Supreme Court Justice can save America without Jesus. Here are three things we must do in these next six weeks.

1.   Discover and confirm the truth that you are willing to support.

a.   It will take a journey in personal prayer with an open Bible.

b.   It must agree with God’s Word, Will and Way.

c.    You will find peace when you find the will of God.

2.   Pray for America and against the demons who are stirring the pot.

a.   If we bind the devil in prayer, much of the darkness will clear.

b.   God will hear our prayers and send us the answers.

c.    Participate in the September 26 national prayer and return …

3.   Boldly and confidently share the truth you have found with others.

a.   In private

b.   In public

c.    With cheerfulness and without hatred, malice, or slander

d.   Be more for what you are for, instead of what you’re against.

e.   Without fear and with calm assurance knowing

f.    The just shall live by their faith and remember

g.   Faith is not just something you have, it’s something you live.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

My Favorite Bible Characters And What I Have Learned From Them Part 10 – Boaz


About 1150 and 1200BC, during the times when the Judges ruled in Israel, before they had a King, a Hebrew man took his wife and two sons and moved from Bethlehem in Judah, around the Dead Sea to the east, to live and work in the land of Moab because of a famine. We are not sure if the famine was caused by weather or if it was the result of the bands of outlaw Midianites who were constantly raiding the towns in the land of Israel.

At any rate, the two sons grew old enough to take wives for themselves of the Moabites. In the process of time the older father died and so did his two sons. This left the mother, Naomi, and the two daughters-in-law, on their own. Soon Naomi decided it was best for her to return to Bethlehem where hopefully she could find some measure peace and comfort of life among her own people. She requested her two widowed daughters-in-law, Orpah and Ruth, to remain behind in Moab where at least they had some chance of a future.

Orpah kissed Naomi good-bye but Ruth clung to her. Ruth vowed that she would never leave Naomi to provide for herself and would gladly face death than to abandon her. So, these two poor widowed ladies returned to the area around Bethlehem not knowing what would befall them. This all happened during the time of the barley harvest along about mid to late March, immediately after the Feast of Passover.

Ruth was younger and so she took it upon herself to go out to the fields and glean what was left for the birds and the beggars. Each day she was faithful and found enough food for her and Naomi to eat. The Bible says that Ruth happened to come to the portion of fields belonging to a man named Boaz who was a near relative of her late father-in-law and her late husband. The Bible calls him a near-kinsman.

Ruth 2 NKJV

4 ¶  Now behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem, and said to the reapers, “The LORD be with you!” And they answered him, “The LORD bless you!”

5  Then Boaz said to his servant who was in charge of the reapers, “Whose young woman is this?”

6  So the servant who was in charge of the reapers answered and said, “It is the young Moabite woman who came back with Naomi from the country of Moab.

7  “And she said, ‘Please let me glean and gather after the reapers among the sheaves.’ So she came and has continued from morning until now, though she rested a little in the house.”

8  Then Boaz said to Ruth, “You will listen, my daughter, will you not? Do not go to glean in another field, nor go from here, but stay close by my young women.

9  Let your eyes be on the field which they reap, and go after them. Have I not commanded the young men not to touch you? And when you are thirsty, go to the vessels and drink from what the young men have drawn.”

10  So she fell on her face, bowed down 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?”

11  And Boaz answered and said to her, “It has been fully reported to me, all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth, and have come to a people whom you did not know before.

12  “The LORD repay your work, and a full reward be given you by the LORD God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge.”

What a good man. Boaz not only appreciated Ruth working so hard to take care of her mother-in-law, but he also encouraged Ruth to realize that without regard as to her past life, she had now come under the wings of the Lord God of Israel and in doing so, she would certainly find refuge.

15  And when she rose up to glean, Boaz commanded his young men, saying, “Let her glean even among the sheaves, and do not reproach her.

16  “Also let grain from the bundles fall purposely for her; leave it that she may glean, and do not rebuke her.”

The King James calls these bundles which were let fall for Ruth, “Handfuls of Purpose”. 

That day Ruth took home more than she and Naomi would be able to eat all week. Of course this caught Naomi’s attention. Naomi inquired of Ruth where she had gleaned, and Ruth told her the whole story of the day including how she met a man named Boaz. Naomi replied:

20  Then Naomi said to her daughter-in-law, “Blessed be he of the LORD, who has not forsaken His kindness to the living and the dead!” And Naomi said to her, “This man is a relation of ours, one of our close relatives.”

You can read the whole story and find Ruth ended up marrying Boaz, this man chosen for her by God.

·        Scholars agree that Boaz is a type and shadow of the Bethlehem born Messiah who takes to Himself a Gentile bride, Ruth, who is a picture of the New Testament Church.

·        Boaz was nice to Ruth … Ruth cared for Naomi’s welfare … Naomi appreciated Ruth and promoted her …

·        The good guys in this story were not lazy or selfish, greedy, or jealous, but rather they cared for one another and were kind to each other.

·        Both Ruth and Boaz demonstrate that they loved God and loved others.

·        They were both willing to be inconvenienced for others.

·        I have a grandson named Boaz … he is growing up to be a man just like this Bible character.

·        This couple is a picture of covenant relationships God has purposed for people along the way.

·        You will find nothing more powerful than the uncommon courtesies of just being kind to others, friends, neighbors, strangers and yes, even your enemies. This is a part of the Kingdom Culture.

Overlaying our life on the life of Boaz, we realize similarities of principle and truth:

o   We have been blessed.

o   We have received an inheritance.

o   We have a future.

o   Our children and children’s children will be important to the Kingdom of God.

o   We should be people of honor.

o   We should obey the rules.

o   We should care about and protect others.

o   We should be strategic.

o   We should teach the next generation by command and by example.

So much can be learned from this man. Here are but three things I have learned from Boaz:

1.  Boaz rode through his fields - he did not have to. He told Ruth, I have observed you and I know about you. The Bible says that the righteous man regards the life of his beast and that he knows the estate of his flock. I have learned to check up on things and my things know that I love them and care about them. Those that have been with me a long time, know that I am only checking to see if they need. 

2.  I have learned to do things the right way. There is a right way and a wrong way to do something, even when its God’s will to do something. There is still a right way to do it.

3.  I have learned that I want my children’s children’s children to play their part in the plan of God.

Ruth 4

21  Salmon begot Boaz, and Boaz begot Obed;

22  Obed begot Jesse, and Jesse begot David.