Taking the Epistle

A biblical journey through the epistles

Have a blessed Shavuot all my Jewish friends

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Today is Shavuot in the Hebrew calendar and I wish to convey special greetings to any Jewish readers looking in today. I like this observance due to two parts of the modern observance; the five parts of the observance are as follows:

    1. Akdamut, the reading of a liturgical poem during Shavuot morning synagogue services

    2. Chalav (milk), the consumption of dairy products like milk and cheese

    3. Ruth, the reading of the Book of Ruth at morning services (outside Israel: on the second day)

    4. Yerek, the decoration of homes and synagogues with greenery

    5. Torah, engaging in all-night Torah study.

I identify with the reading of the book of Ruth and the study of the scriptures, (who couldn’t do with some quality time in the word of God?) not being Jewish myself my understanding of the festival is based on what I have read up on about this date in the calendar. If we have any readers who have experienced the festival then please fill in any blanks I have missed.

I love the book of Ruth, Ruth dealing with her own grief of losing her husband, has the option to go back to her own family and be cared for as a widow, instead she chooses to love her mother in law and align herself with her stating

 

“But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or to return 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.” (Ruth 1:16 ESV)

 

Talk about choosing the less trodden path, she aligns herself with Naomi who couldn’t offer her a husband to give an heir to carry on the family name and she chose Naomi, her place she was headed (Bethlehem) and her religion, serving the one true God. She was a proselyte to the Jewish faith.

The story goes that she finds her “kinsmen redeemer” an honorable man called Boaz, he favored and protected her when she was providing for Naomi, Ruth goes to Boaz and stake a claim on the threshing floor, Boaz is honest and states that he must also settle a matter with a man who was a closer relation than he, (3:11-13) Boaz obviously loves Ruth with the zeal that he pursues her. He redeems Ruth (4:1-12) in the custom of the day and then fulfills his promise and marries Ruth (4:13-17)

This is a vital story in the history of the children of Israel as Boaz was King David’s great grandfather and vital to Christians as through the line of David we got our redeemer Jesus of Nazareth. (Matthew 1, Luke 1) I love this redemption story and I remember where I was without my redeemer.

I love this as Boaz shows his love for Ruth in the same way that God showed his love for us. Boaz pursued Ruth, made sure that he did everything correctly and honorably, he then redeemed her in love. God showed his love for us in verse 8 of the fifth chapter of Romans

…but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8 (ESV)

I pray that regardless of where you are today, that you need a redeemer if you are still in your sins. It is no coincidence that you are reading this and I pray that you answer the stirring in your heart. That redeemer is Jesus Christ. Jesus said in the Gospel of John

John 14:1 (ESV) “Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.” 5 Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me

There is one way to heaven, by committing your life to Jesus Christ.

I pray that you are blessed and please leave any comments below
TTE

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