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Woman to Woman…Ruth

Welcome back to the Woman to Woman Series.  We are making our way through Matthew 1 and today we will be looking at Ruth. She is the only lady listed in the Mathew 1 that has her own book in the Bible.

Ruth is the daughter-in-law of Naomi who left Bethlehem with her husband to live in Moab because there was a famine. Naomi had two sons and one of them married Ruth. Sadly, Naomi and her daughters-in-law, Ruth and Orpah all lose their husbands and Naomi decides to return to her homeland.

Ruth refuses to leave her mother-in-law and chooses to go with her to a land the she doesn’t know, to live with people who serve a God she is not familiar with. The book of Ruth is full of so many treasures. But before I share some of the gems found in her story, I would love to have you read the book of Ruth on your own first.  Here is a link to get you there…RUTH

Now that you read the story of Ruth, let’s dig in and look at some hidden treasures…

Gem #1: Ruth is a Moabite and that piece of information is where we will find our first hidden gem. Do you remember the story of Lot in Genesis? Lot ends up hiding with his daughters, after his wife is turned to stone, while running from Sodom and Gomorrah. His daughters get him drunk and sleep with him so that they will not be without children. Both of them become pregnant and the eldest daughter names her son “Moab” and he becomes the father of the Moabites. This angers God and in Deuteronomy 23 it states that the Moabites are excluded from the assembly. In other words, no Ammonite or Moabite or any of their descendants may enter the assembly of the Lord, not even in the tenth generation. (Scholars say that the term 10th generation is another way of saying forever). Ruth is a Moabite which means she has been excluded from the assembly of God. But by the grace of God, she is named in the lineage of Jesus. That just goes to show us all that there is no end to God’s forgiveness and redemption.

Gem #2: Boaz is a Kinsman Redeemer. Let me give you a little explanation.

As you read in the book of Ruth she meets Boaz, a rich landowner and relative of Naomi. He is strong and powerful and I think it was love at first sight. Naomi knows that Ruth must find a home for herself and someone to provide for her and when she realizes that Boaz has found favor in Ruth, she instructs her about what to do.

She tells Ruth that Boaz is a family member (a Kinsman). Next she instructs Ruth to wash and perfume herself and to go where he will be. Naomi also tells her to not let Boaz see her until he has had food and drink. Ruth is obedient and does exactly what Naomi tells her to do. She quietly goes to Boaz and uncovers his feet.  He wakes to find a woman lying at his feet and he asks, “Who are you. (I am guessing it must have been very dark or maybe she had her head covered.)

Ruth tells Boaz who she is and asks him to spread the corner of his garment over her because he is her

“Kinsman Redeemer”. A Kinsman Redeemer is a male relative who, according to various laws, had the privilege or responsibility to act for a relative who was in trouble, danger, or need of vindication. Just as Boaz is Ruth’s Kinsman Redeemer, Christ is our Kinsman Redeemer.

Christ identifies Himself with us and He redeemed us because of our need. (Jesus is not only our redeemer from sin He is also kinsman to us). We are part of the family of God and Jesus understands our struggles. He is truly able to help us in our time of need. Like Ruth found her Kinsman Redeemer, we have found ours.  Just as Ruth was covered by Boaz’s garment, as a sign that he would redeem her and protect her, we have been covered by the blood of Christ.

Gem #3: Ruth’s grandson would become the great-grandfather of David, a man after God’s own heart and a hero to the people of Israel. Not only was she no longer excluded from the assembly of God, she is now counted by name in the lineage of Jesus.

The story of Ruth is such a beautiful story of God’s grace and provision. I hope you have enjoyed the beautiful treasures that are found in the story of Ruth. You are worthy to call yourself a child of God and you are deeply loved by Jesus who laid down His life for you.

Next week we will look at Bathsheba.

Have a blessed day.

Shares are welcomed and I would love to hear your thoughts on todays’ post. 

For more daily encouragement and Heartfelt Ramblings order you copy of Simply Blessed (31-day devotional) from Amazon or Barnes and Nobel and christianbooks.com

 

 

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Woman to Woman…Rahab

Welcome back to the Woman to Woman series.  So far we have looked at Abigail and now we are making our way through the women of Matthew 1. This week we are looking at the second woman in Matthew 1, Rahab, who unlike Tamar she was actually a prostitute.

Her story begins in the book of Joshua. Joshua sent two men secretly to go and view the land, especially Jericho. When they got to the city they came to the house of Rahab and they lodged with her. The King of Jericho came to her house and told Rahab to bring the men out who had entered her home. Rahab told the king that the men were there but they had left and that if he hurried, he would find them and over take them.

After the king and his men left Rahab who was hiding the men says,

 I know that the Lord has given you the land, and that the fear of you has fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land melt away before you. For we have heard how the Lord dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt”. Joshua 2:9

Rahab knew this God they served. She acknowledged what He could do and that He was the one true God. That was a statement of her faith in God. I love her boldness in what she says next. She says, “Because I have dealt kindly with you, please deal kindly with me”. She then goes on to ask that they would save her family. They make an oath with her and tell her that when they come back to the land, no harm will come to her or her family as long as they do not leave her house.

In order to leave without being caught, the men lower themselves with a rope through the window. Not just any rope, a red rope or a scarlet cord. It was a symbol of her lifestyle, a glaring reflection of her sin for all to see. Ever heard of the red-light-district? It has the same meaning. With the cord that showed her sin, she saved the men of God.

Before they left the men told her to gather her family into her house and when they came into the land to hang the scarlet cord in her window. In a class I took at Portland Bible College, my professor mentioned that she had to go and get her family. He pointed out that they most likely did not associate with her. Still, she cared so much for them she risked her life to save them.

The cord and her faith in whom God would save not only her, but her whole family. I don’t think it is a coincidence that the cord that saved her is the same color as the blood that saves us.

Rahab was a Gentile and a prostitute but she was credited for her faith. 

By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies. Hebrews 11:31

Besides being an example of what it means to have faith, Rahab is also the perfect example of God’s love being big enough to forgive our sin no matter what it is. It is my hope that you too will have the faith of Rahab and that you will always remember that God is so much bigger than the mistakes you may have made. When we leave our past in the past and put our faith in God we will find forgiveness and a new beginning.

Rahab would in time marry Solomon. They had a son named Boaz. Boaz would become the kinsman redeemer in the life of the woman we will look at next week. Her name is Ruth. To read Rahab’s whole story read Joshua 2

Shares are welcomed and I would love to hear your thoughts on todays’ post. 

For more daily encouragement and Heartfelt Ramblings order you copy of Simply Blessed (31-day devotional) from Amazon or Barnes and Nobel and christianbooks.com

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Don’t Go Through Life Naked…By Susan Mead

There is a culprit…

And he comes to steal, kill and destroy each one of us, yet many of you are totally unaware of him, his timing, tactics and tendencies to take you out when you are down. It is time to take him out of your life.

In today’s world, where a generation – or two – is more absorbed and intrigued by the paranormal than the supernatural power of God, it is harder than ever for us to realize – or communicate – there is a culprit with an agenda to steal, kill and destroy us. Yes, all of us.

How can this be, you ask? We pray to God when we remember, if we remember, or dare I ask, if we even know to pray to the God of all creation?

For many of you have unwittingly created a standing invitation to the enemy with wide-open access points. Like open doors to your homes, there are open doors to your souls.

Here’s the deal. The enemy loves an open invitation to step into your life, wreaking havoc. And the one who enters may be that sneaking thief, that serial killer, or that defiant destroyer of old – with a legion of foul fiends – laughing at the easiness with which they distract, deceive and destroy you…and others you dearly love.

When was the last time you heard prayer for protection on the playground, at the ballpark, over the speaker at school, on TV, or in the halls of justice? When was the last time you EXPECTED an answer, an immediate answer, to the prayer, if you heard one prayed?

Yet there is a book that answers your growing desire to be shielded from the enemy of your life. The very best book is the Bible – the very Word of God, yet Don’t Go through Life Naked: How to Clothe Yourself in God’s Power focuses on scripture with new insight and revelation that is easy to implement.

Don’t Go through Life Naked has been designed to help you resolve your daily battleground questions and help you equip or re-equip your war room with powerful prayer strategies and tactics. This book is for people who feel overwhelmed, outwitted and under resourced for the good fight of faith. Your faith is there – yet so is the enemy! And he’s gotta go…

Remember, Jesus himself tells us in Revelation 16:15, “Look, I will come as unexpectedly as a thief! Blessed are all who are watching for me, who keep their clothing ready so they will not have to walk around naked and ashamed.”

Are you ready?

About Susan B. Mead:

With over 22 years in corporate American, 2 million airline miles under her belt, 2 Christian Literary Awards on the shelf, an MBA and a Certificate of Ordination hanging on the wall, as well as a Doctor of Theology candidacy in process, Susan B Mead shares her expert teachings on business, grief, spiritual warfare and relationships. A master storyteller and award winning, best selling author, Susan leaves audiences motivated to live a life free of regrets even though she has done the hardest thing any parent can do – bury her youngest son, Kyle.

Susan has been described as a solid, comforting voice in a messy world. Whether speaking to business professionals, women’s conferences, industry leaders or writer’s workshops, Susan’s insightful wisdom inspires audiences, empowering them to make healthy mental u-turns to help them find calm in the chaos.

Connect with Susan on her website at SusanBMead.com where she writes each Friday, on Facebook and Twitter where she posts daily inspiration or on Amazon where her award-winning book, Dance With Jesus: From Grief to Grace and her newest book, Don’t Go Through Life Naked: How to Clothe Yourself in God’s Power, is available.

Are you looking for a free mini-course to deepen your faith? Text DanceWithJesus (all one word) to 444-999, then reply with your email to receive 6 days of Biblical encouragement.

 

A heartfelt thank you to Susan for sharing with us today.  To order her books simply click on the book titles above. Have a Simply Blessed day.

 

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Woman to Woman…Tamar

Tamar, the is 1st woman listed in Matthew:1 (The Genealogy of Jesus). Tamar was the daughter-in-law of Judah. She was married to his oldest Son Er who was evil in the sight of God and put to death. By Levirate rights/law Er’s brother Onan must take her for a wife and once again she finds herself treated in a disrespectful way.

Levitate Rights: Tamar Had these rights but was not allowed to claim them for herself because of what Onan did to her. The law said if a married man died without children, it was the duty of the brother or other near relative to marry the widow. The son of the union would be reckoned to be the son of the first husband. Onan knew if he made a child with her, that child would get an inheritance that was the right of his brothers child. With his brother gone, he and his children would be able to claim the right of the first-born. That meant he used Tamar for sex but Scripture says that he let his semen spell on the ground. For a Jewish woman it meant disgrace and people thought being childless was a punishment from God.

God than puts Onan to death because of how he treats Her. She was promised to be married to Judah’s 3rd son who was very young. Tamar is now left waiting for the third son to grow up. Two husbands have died for treating her so poorly.  One used her. She had no children, and that was looked down on. Now she is waiting for a boy to grow up and she is not sure he will become her husband.

Eventually Judah’s wife dies and Tamar takes matters into her own hands. She dresses as a prostitute and sits by the road waiting for Judah to pass. He thinks she is a prostitute and has sex with her. He promises her a payment but she asks for his signet, cord and staff to hold until payment is brought. They are Judah’s seal. In other words they are ancient version of our personal ID. They are how he would prove his identity and now she has them in her hands. Judah sends a friend with her payment in exchange for his things. She is gone… 3 months later she is pregnant and Judah wants her burned for her sin. Judah asks her by whom are you pregnant? “By the man whom these belong, I am pregnant” she says, as she shows him his possessions.

Tamar got justice for herself. According to the law she had rights but her means of achieving those rights were extreme and not my right to judge. She fought for her inheritance and in her we see how important it is for us to also fight for what is ours. By that I mean our spiritual inheritance. We are daughters of the one true God, heirs in Christ and we should let nothing take that from us. God rewarded Tamar’s tenacity and determination with the birth of sons. One became an ancestor of King David, Israel’s great hero. She is counted in the genealogy of Jesus. You my sister are also worthy to call yourself part of God’s family.

To see Tamar’s full story, read Genesis:38

Until next week,

May you be Simply Blessed.

For more daily encouragement and Heartfelt Ramblings order you copy of Simply Blessed (31-day devotional) from Amazon or Barnes and Nobel and christianbooks.com

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