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  • Writer's pictureJan Weihl

Impact of Relationships (Ruth 1)

Does God care about our relationships? Does it matter to God who we join ourselves to in marriage and in close friendship?

The story of Ruth shows us that God does care about our relationships. But the selection criteria He gives us is not race or nationality, but faith alone in Christ alone.

2 Corinthians 6:14 Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness?

Ruth was a Moabite. Moab was the nation east of Israel on the other side of the Dead Sea. Moab oppressed Israel during the period of the judges and would not let the Israelites pass through their land during the exodus from Egypt. So Moabites were not allowed to worship at the tabernacle.

Yet God selected Ruth, a Moabite, because Ruth chose to worship the one true God.

Instead of staying in Moab where she could have hope for a future, Ruth selflessly took her mother-in-law, Naomi, back to Israel, worked in the fields to support her, and worshiped Naomi’s God.

Ruth 1:16 But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or turn back from following you; for where you go, I will go, and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God.

Ruth’s selfless love for Naomi and willingness to obey God got the attention of Boaz, Naomi’s kinsman-redeemer.

Boaz married Ruth and she, a Moabite, became the great grandmother of King David and an ancestor of Jesus.

So not only did Boaz redeem Ruth for the selfless love she showed to Naomi, God redeemed Ruth, a Moabite, when He chose her to be an ancestor to Jesus. Her willingness to love and obey God was what mattered, not her nationality.

God chose the Israelites to be His chosen people to bring us the lineage of the Messiah and an understanding of His laws. But God chose Ruth, a Moabite, to show us His love for those love God with all their heart and selflessly love others.

God cares about our relationships because those relationships impact how we love God and how we love others. So to protect us, God instructs us to never be unequally yoked whether in marriage or close friendship. But His selection criteria is faith alone in Christ alone, not race or nationality.

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