“Then the women said to Naomi, ‘Blessed be the Lord, who has not left you this day without a close relative; and may his name be famous in Israel’” (Ruth 4:14)
The story of Ruth is that of a kinsman redeemer and the word translated “close relative” means one that is able to redeem an inheritance in the covenant promise of God. This is what Boaz did for Ruth.
When we pray we do not know how or when the Lord will answer. In the verse above the women of Bethlehem expressed their heartfelt desire that Naomi’s grandson (Ruth and Boaz’s son) would be famous in Israel. They could never have dreamed how that prayer would be answered. This child, Obed, Naomi’s grandson, became the grandfather of King David and generations later his descendants were Joseph and Mary. Mary was the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ.
How did this come about since Naomi had left the land of Israel and Ruth was a Moabite? The Moabites were descendants of Lot, Abraham’s nephew. Lot preferred the worldly things to godly things but about 500 years later Ruth reversed that.
Ruth had married a son of Naomi while Naomi was in the land of Moab. In the ten years of that marriage she had no children but she grew to love Naomi and the Lord, Naomi’s God. She refused to leave either Naomi or the Lord and returned to Israel with Naomi. There she met a ‘close relative’ (kinsman redeemer) named Boaz whom she married in accordance with the Law. Their marriage soon produced a son, Obed, who would receive the inheritance that came through his grandfather, Elimelech, Naomi’s husband.
The history of the people in the book of Ruth encapsulates the plan of redemption that God has for mankind and the earth and explains why God took on humanity. God had given Adam dominion over the earth but he surrendered it, including mankind, to Satan. The story of the Bible is God’s plan to redeem and restore the earth and man to His intended place.
By way of the cross the price of redemption was met. The eternal Son of God who is also the Son of Man in One Person shed His own blood that we might be redeemed. Being both God and man Jesus is the ultimate Kinsman Redeemer.
The women who blessed Naomi had no idea of the magnitude of the Lord’s response to their prayer. We should never underestimate the Lord’s response to our prayer either.