2008-08-11 - Ruth
Installment 4 ~ The Jewish Perspective
The Jewish Perspective
What I always find sad, is how close the Jewish scholar can come to the truth,
without ever hitting the mark. Take, for example, the words of Scherman:"
- The closing tragedies of the Book of Judges: the concubine in Giv'ah and
the Idol of Michah, were - indelibly inscribed in Jewish though because they
are more than tales. They are expressions of what can occur when
'there is no king in Israel, every man does what is right
in his own eyes.' As such, they are timeless and eternal. The Jew
in every age must know what his fate can become if he refuses to accept authority
and leadership. Ruth is of a piece with those other illustrations of what
can happen when there is no vested authority in Israel. Megillas Ruth, too,
begins with a cryptic phrase 'in the days when the Judges
judged.' The prophet, in three Hebrew words captures the attitude
of an era. As the Talmud interprets, it indicates that the people judged,
criticized, flouted their judges. Under such conditions authority breaks
down. When that happens, there is famine ... physical and spiritual.
When that happens, even so great a man as Elimelech - learned, honored, wealthy
- can cast off his responsibility to his people and flee to the fields of
Moab. Seen in this light, the story of Ruth as the background of - the kingship
of the House of David takes on a new perspective. Ruth, princess of Moah,
might never even have seen a Jew, much less married one, had it not been
for the lapse of Elimelech and the Jewish people. Because there was relative
anarchy, a family from Bethlehem went to Moab and set in motion a chain of
events that resulted in a princess from Moab becoming - the mother of Jewish
royalty, matriarch of the family that produced David, bearer of God's glory
on earth, and will ultimately produce Mashiach who will lead Israel and all
mankind to the spiritual splendor intended by God when He said - "let there
be light!'" 1
So near, and yet so far.
All hail, King Jesus!
All hail Emmanuel,
King of Kings,
Lord of lords,
Bright Morning Star.
And throughout eternity
I'll sing Your praises,
And I'll reign with You
throughout eternity. 2
Comments or Questions?
Podcasts of Studies in Matthew can be found at
Zlotowitz, p. xxi-xxii.
Moody, Dave, "All Hail, King Jesus," Maranatha Music Praise
Chorus Book, 3rd Edition, Word, Inc., Nashville, TN, 1993, #1.