Naomi Hatches a Plan
Naomi Hatches a Plan
Ruth 3:1-6 1 Then Naomi her mother in law said unto her, My daughter, shall I not seek rest for thee, that it may be well with thee? 2 And now is not Boaz of our kindred, with whose maidens thou wast? Behold, he winnoweth barley to night in the threshingfloor. 3 Wash thyself therefore, and anoint thee, and put thy raiment upon thee, and get thee down to the floor: but make not thyself known unto the man, until he shall have done eating and drinking. 4 And it shall be, when he lieth down, that thou shalt mark the place where he shall lie, and thou shalt go in, and uncover his feet, and lay thee down; and he will tell thee what thou shalt do. 5 And she said unto her, All that thou sayest unto me I will do. 6 And she went down unto the floor, and did according to all that her mother in law bade her.
Verses 1-4 – The barley harvest is over. This presents a little problem. Once the barley harvest is over, there is a time lapse before the wheat harvest kicks in, so Ruth will not be gleaning for probably a number of weeks. She will have no reason to go to Boaz’s field, and therefore she is not likely to see him unless if by chance she bumps into him in town or in the market. Highly unlikely. However, Naomi being the shrew woman that she is. She has had enough time to ponder over what must be done once the barley harvest is over. She off course having grown up in Bethlehem is accustomed to the times and seasons when reapers go into the field. She is also aware of the average duration of the barley harvest, the wheat harvest, and the grape harvest. Naomi has a plan. Naomi knows exactly what to do in order for Ruth to make known to Boaz that she is available. She is available for him so as to be married to him.
It may seem a bit scheming on Naomi’s part, but she is allowed and justified in doing this because of the law and customs concerning that of a kinsmen redeemer which Boaz was – specifically the role of a kinsman redeemer as it relates to the marrying of a childless widow.
Deuteronomy 25:5-10 5 If brethren dwell together, and one of them die, and have no child, the wife of the dead shall not marry without a stranger: her husband’s brother shall go into her, and take her to him to wife, and perform the duty of an husband’s brother unto her. 6 And it shall be, that the firstborn which she beareth shall succeed in the name of his brother which is dead, that his name be not put out of Israel. 7 And if the man like not to take his brother’s wife, then let his brother’s wife go up to the gate unto the elders, and say, My husband’s brother refuseth to raise up unto his brother a name in Israel, he will not perform the duty of my husband’s brother. 8 Then the elders of his city shall call him, and speak unto him: and if he stand to it, and say, I like not to take her. 9 Then shall his brother’s wife come unto him in the presence of the elders, and loose his shoe from his foot, and spit in his face, and shall it be done unto that man that will not build up his brother’s house. 10 And his name shall be called in Israel, The house of him that hath his shoe loosed.
As a foreigner from the land of Moab, Ruth is not aware of all the laws and customs observed by the Israelites. She has probably picked up some along the way having been married to an Israelite, but the in-depth knowledge of the Laws given to Moses – Ruth does not have an idea. She is solely dependent upon the advice that her mother-in-law will give her, and being the obedient humble daughter-in-law that she is – she will hearken unto all that Naomi tells her.
What Ruth does here is totally appropriate. There is nothing inappropriate about what she does. This was the custom of the day between the woman and the man. Ruth wanted to make her intentions known to him, although for Naomi to instruct her as to what she was to do to make her intentions known to Boaz may seem a bit forward and previous in doing so. There was a slight possibility – albeit very slight possibility that it might be misunderstood by Boaz. However, Boaz was a mature man. He was a prudent man. A wise man. A God fearing man. A man of the Word. A single man. Boaz knew exactly what Ruth was doing and as such, he did not misinterpret her intentions.
Verse 5 And she said unto her, “ALL that thou sayest unto me I WILL do”.
Verse 5 – Is a lesson for me personally. I cannot speak for another, because I only know about myself. It’s the word all that struck me. How many times have I been told to do something – all of it, and I falter? I may do some. I may do it partially………….but all? When the LORD speaks a specific Word to me that I know that I know – how willing am I to do all that He tells me to? Partial obedience is still disobedience. When it comes to the Almighty, it is all or nothing. There is no room for partial disobedience. When the Prophet Samuel gave a Word to king Saul from the LORD, Saul only partially obeyed the Word of the LORD spoken to him by Samuel the Prophet. That partial obedience cost Saul the kingdom.
1 Samuel 15:19-23 19 Wherefore then didst thou not obey the voice of the LORD, but didst fly upon the spoil, and didst evil in the sight of the LORD? 20 And Saul said unto Samuel, Yea, I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and have gone the way which the LORD sent me, and have brought Agag the king of Amalek, and have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. 21 But the people took of the spoil, sheep and oxen, the chief of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice unto the LORD the thy God in Gilgal. 22 And Samuel said, Hath the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. 23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the Word of the LORD, He hath also rejected thee from being king.
The LORD told Saul to totally annihilate the Amalekites and destroy all the spoil of the land. Do not allow one soul to live. Saul partially obeyed the Word that he heard from Samuel. It cost him dearly. It cost him the kingdom. How often do we know the LORD has spoken to us about something, but we have selective choosing of the bits that we will do and the bits that we conveniently forget the LORD has spoken to us about? I know I am 100% guilty of selective choosing.
Verse 6 – And she went down unto the floor, and did according to all that her mother-in-law bade her
Ruth assures Naomi that she will hearken unto her advice and all that Naomi has told her she will do. After all, Naomi is only seeking the best for her faithful obedient daughter-in-law who left all behind to follow her to a land she knew not of.