“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. Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. Thus may the Lord do to me, and worse, if anything but death parts you and me.” – Ruth 1:16-17 (NASB)
This story demonstrates remarkable loyalty and worth reading in context. There’s not space here to go into it entirely. We find some contrasts as we read the story, Ruth’s sister-in-law, Orpah choses to return to her heritage which was idolatry and worship of the false gods, Chemosh and Molech, to whom children were sacrificed. Ruth wants nothing of that life. Naomi, her mother-in-law has demonstrated her faith in the true God and has won Ruth’s loyalty and desire for it. Yahweh God is who Ruth wants to serve. She is willing to give up her past, any family she has back in Moab in order to live the life of Naomi, no matter what that will be. Our promise is in Ruth’s declaration. God has put that love and desire and faith in Ruth’s heart. But there is a much larger promise that is being fulfilled through Ruth’s choice. A wealthy man of importance named Boaz marries Ruth and they have a child named Obed. Obed became the father of Jesse, and Jesse the father of David. Ruth, a Moabitess became part of the line of the promised Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth.