Tag Archive: truth


Ruth

We have been looking at Ruth recently on Sunday mornings and three over-arching themes continually speak to me.

The first theme is grace.

We know that Elimelech led his family to Moab because of a famine.  It seems reasonable to think that he was trying to ensure their survival but if we speculate about his reasoning and impute motive beyond that, we risk becoming judgemental over issues about which the text is silent.  What we do see is the clear, overwhelming, all-defying grace with which God treats Naomi and Ruth.  How he works all their experiences together for good.  How He provides for them.  He provides food, family and a future for them.  He gives them gifts of amazing grace and through them, He eventually gives us Jesus.

The second theme is social justice.

The book of Ruth reminds us that God loves the poor and the marginalised.  Boaz is a man who lives out the righteous requirements of the law, who enacts justice and loves mercy.  God’s law provides for the needs of the poor and the foreigner.  Boaz welcomes Naomi and Ruth, he ensures that they are protected and provided for.  His actions model for us what it means to live righteously.  They speak to the pressing social needs of our society and to the plight of refugees and asylum seekers that fill the pages of newspapers, television and social media screens.  Boaz models the life that God intends for us to live – as individuals and as His church.

The third theme is redemption.

Boaz redeems Ruth and Jesus redeems us.  Our inheritance has been ensured – our righteous standing with God, our Spirit-filled kingdom life, in His presence, part of His family, partakers of His divine nature.  Crucified, buried, resurrected and ascended with Jesus, seated with Him in heavenly realms, we have become children of God.  Not because we have earned or deserved it, not because we have achieved it, but because Jesus paid the price of redemption for us, shed his blood and died for us.  We were bought at a price.

Out of His endless grace, because He loved us when we had nothing, God redeems us in Jesus.

What a wonderful book Ruth is.

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The unstoppable Jesus

This morning in our meeting, we sang a song which asked the question, “Who can stop our God?” and I was led to think about how His plans and purposes cannot be thwarted.

When men from the East asked, “Where is the one born King of the Jews?” Herod’s slaughter of the innocents could not stop Him.

Temptations from Satan could not stop Him.

The traps, questions and plotting of religious leaders could not stop Him.

False accusations, lies and a secret trial could not stop Him.

Flogging, mocking, beating, the Roman authorities and the cries of the crowd could not stop Him.

Jesus was determined to go to the cross.

Where death could not stop Him.

A stone across the entrance to His tomb and a Roman guard could not stop Him.

As He ascended into heaven, to sit at the right hand of the Father, nothing could stop Him.

Today, nothing can stop Jesus pouring out His Spirit, His love, grace, mercy and forgiveness.

When He returns, riding out of heaven with an army of angels to establish His kingdom in all its fullness, nothing will stop Him.

Jesus is unstoppable.

Oh yes!  Having lost 15 lbs in the last couple of months, my body is officially in great condition.  Apparently, I have the body of a man 15 years my junior.  When you’re in your early forties, knowing that you’re in the kind of shape more typical of a man in his mid twenties is certainly a boost to your ego.  At least, it boosted mine.

So there we have it. 

This morning, feeling awake and ready for anything, I carefully stepped onto my Wii fit board and took my daily body test.  The results were emphatic. 

When I told a friend about that later on today he smiled and said, “It’s a good job the Wii doesn’t have eyes.”  Because we both know that if it did, it would have come to a very different conclusion.  And tomorrow, when I walk on the spot for 20 paces and try to stand still for 60 seconds, the results may well be very different indeed. 

Yeah, I know.  My post title and opening paragraph misled you.  But you’re still reading aren’t you?  And that’s the funny thing about the truth.  Sometimes only telling part of the truth makes for a much better story.  It paints us in a much better light.  It helps to achieve exactly what we want to achieve when maybe the whole story wouldn’t quite do the trick.

But it doesn’t make it right, does it?

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