Ruth: Introduction, part 2; the spirit of Ruth's great-grandson David.

Class Outline:

Title: Ruth: Introduction, part 2; the spirit of Ruth's great-grandson David.


The book of Ruth ends with a wonderful surprise, the genealogy of Christ.  


RUT 4:18 Now these are the generations of Perez: to Perez was born Hezron,


RUT 4:19 and to Hezron was born Ram, and to Ram, Amminadab,


RUT 4:20 and to Amminadab was born Nahshon, and to Nahshon, Salmon,


RUT 4:21 and to Salmon was born Boaz, and to Boaz, Obed,


RUT 4:22 and to Obed was born Jesse, and to Jesse, David.



The New Testament begins with the genealogy of Christ. Matthew introduces Jesus' genealogy as a means of stating immediately the Jesus was the fulfillment of the entire Old Testament. His genealogy is a theme of fulfillment since promises were made to two of His ancestors, Abraham and David that involved Him.


As the contents of the book of Ruth leads to the threshold of David's birth and his history, the spirit of the book also leads to David's spirit, as in the Psalms.



David wrote 73 psalms, roughly half of the collection. David's heart was filled with love for God and so it was filled with poetry. You don't have to write poetry to have a heart filled with it; you just have to see the glory of God in everything around you and then your world will be filled with imagery of God.


The Psalms lead us into the imagery and the beauty of the Gospel.


PSA 16:1 A Mikhtam [epigram or short inscription] of David.


Preserve me, O God, for I take refuge in Thee.


That the writer David's life is in danger we can see from verse 10: "For Thou wilt not abandon my soul to Sheol; Neither wilt Thou allow Thy Holy One to undergo decay."


This one of the prophecies used by Peter in Act 2 at Pentecost in describing the resurrection of Christ. As with the book of Ruth, which leads us to the threshold of David's life, and thus David's poetry, this Psalm begins with death and ends with life, as does the existence of all who believe in Christ.


PSA 16:2 I said to the Lord, "Thou art my Lord; I have no good besides Thee." [You are my highest good]


PSA 16:3 As for the saints who are in the earth, They are the majestic ones in whom is all my delight.


PSA 16:4 The sorrows of those who have bartered for another god will be multiplied; I shall not pour out their libations of blood, Nor shall I take their names [false gods] upon my lips.


"bartered" has the sense of wooing and fondling as if acquiring a wife. It is what people desire that is not God and so are their idols.


PSA 16:5 The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and my cup; Thou dost support my lot [large possession].


PSA 16:6 The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places [measuring lines marking good land]; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me.


The gift and the Giver are the same. His inherited land comes through his lineage. The blessing of salvation and home in heaven comes by lineage, from David to Jesus.


PSA 16:7 I will bless the Lord who has counseled me; Indeed, my mind instructs me in the night.


PSA 16:8 I have set the Lord continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.


PSA 16:9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely.


PSA 16:10 For Thou wilt not abandon my soul to Sheol; Neither wilt Thou allow Thy Holy One to undergo decay.


Parallel in the NT: body, soul, and spirit cared for by the Lord.


1TH 5:23-24

Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.


Naomi despaired of her future. She wanted people to call her "bitter." God had preservation in mind. David is in danger of death and he knows that the Lord was continually before him and at his side and so his heart would not be shaken.


The faithfulness of God in the past gives us hope for the future. If I am experiencing Rut 1, I need to believe that Rut 4 will come.


In verse 10, we can assume that David is referring to not dying or not going to Sheol, the grave, and thus has his hope that the Lord will deliver him from physical death. The Holy Spirit had an additional reference in mind, and that was the resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is the way the Holy Spirit inspires Peter to use it over a thousand years later at Pentecost, the church's first day, and Paul used it when preaching the gospel to the synagogue at Antioch a number of years later.


PSA 16:11 Thou wilt make known to me the path of life; In Thy presence is fulness of joy; In Thy right hand there are pleasures forever.


In the many psalms that David wrote we find the spirit of love for the God of Israel. We also find much imagery of death and life, tragedy and blessing, struggle and peace, failure and forgiveness. Israel's great king, forerunner of Israel's only King, breathes the spirit of God and sprang from the unlikely but life saving union of Boaz and Ruth, who are symbolical of Israel and the Gentile world.


One of the key words in Ruth is checed, lovingkindness, steadfast love, and covenant love. David writes of it in Psa 36.


Before he writes of checed, David writes of transgression as if it is alive. His warning, is to not live in Judges or in Gibeah, but to live in Ruth, in Bethlehem.


PSA 36:1 For the choir director. A Psalm of David the servant of the Lord.


Transgression speaks to the ungodly within his heart; There is no fear of God before his eyes.


The wickedness of the children of the world is in their heart and it is due to their alienation from God.


Transgression is personified and it speaks to the ungodly with all the solemn purpose of a friend and philosopher, so as to set itself within his heart in the place of God and of the voice of his consciousness.


Know your enemy. David understands this as much as anyone. Transgression is like a living thing that snuggles up to you and tries to convince you that he is your friend. In the next couplet, David warns us that it uses flattery, just as Satan did in the Garden of Eden.


PSA 36:2 For it [transgression] flatters him in his own eyes, Concerning the discovery of his iniquity and the hatred of it.


Flattering words are pleasing to everyone. We must be careful to note who is using them.


The next line is a little trickier. Surely the ungodly do not hate their iniquity. They have befriended it. Rather, the transgression, here shown poetically as alive, has its own hatred. It hates God, it hates God's people, and ultimately it only uses people and actually hates all people. The flattering words of transgression convince the person to hate as it does, and so the two, the heart and the transgression become one in a wicked marriage.


It implies that the flattering words of transgression incite him to turn into an object of hatred everything that he ought to love, and to live and move in hatred as his own proper element.


Hatred of all that should be loved is the ultimate self-centeredness. It is the love of self alone. There is no love of others, of God's people, or of God. It is the ultimate destruction and it is the ultimate loneliness.


PSA 36:3 The words of his mouth are wickedness and deceit; He has ceased to be wise and to do good.


PSA 36:4 He plans wickedness upon his bed; He sets himself on a path that is not good; He does not despise evil.


It seems like David starts a whole new poem in vs. 5, but he is calling the wicked to partake of the lovingkindness of the Lord. It is a call to redemption as is the transformation from Judges to Ruth. Yet he does not address it to the wicked, but to the Lord, as if he is inviting to wicked to also address the Lord, which would be better than a conversation with David.


David knowingly writes of this in Psa 32.


PSA 32:10 Many are the sorrows of the wicked;

But he who trusts in the Lord, lovingkindness shall surround him.


PSA 32:11 Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, you righteous ones,

And shout for joy, all you who are upright in heart.


PSA 36:5 Thy lovingkindness, O Lord, extends to the heavens, Thy faithfulness reaches to the skies.


"skies" - myqjV- shachaqiym = thin cloud, layer of dust, or the heavens. God's lovingkindness lies like a thin vapor all over the earth.


PSA 36:6 Thy righteousness is like the mountains of God; Thy judgments are like a great deep. O Lord, Thou preservest man and beast.


One of the wonderful things about poetry is its imagery. Would we look at a mountain and think of the righteousness of God? Maybe from now on we will. The mountain is symbolic of being immovable.


When we think of the great deep of the ocean or deep fissures in the earth that we dare not enter, we might think of those aspects of God which are incomprehensible and unsearchable. This is God's judgments. Why do some believe and embrace God and some do not? Why do some come to love ungodliness instead of coming freely to God and receiving reconciliation and forgiveness? Theologians and teachers have offered their own reasons over the years, from Calvinism to Arminianism, to Lordship salvation, to Gnosticism, and on and on. But no one knows. They might as well try to swim to the deepest bottom of the ocean (the lowest we know of is 36,000 feet below sea level).