“Now Boaz said to her at mealtime, "Come here, and eat of the bread…she ate and was satisfied, and kept some back.” (Ruth 2:14)
In the coolness of the shelter, Boaz prepared a table and food was abundant. As she rested, Ruth’s hunger was satisfied and she arose refreshed. However, this “time of refreshing” would never have come if Ruth had not turned away from Moab and chosen The Lord God of Israel.
Through the entire meal, Boaz kept his eye on Ruth. He witnessed her kind interaction with his workers and couldn’t help being captivated by her sparkling, raven-colored eyes, her timid giggle and blushing smile. This was a young woman of quality and integrity, a rare find indeed.
Before she left the table, Ruth tucked some of her leftovers away for later, and then quickly returned to gleaning.
Boaz was aroused from his thoughts when Ruth abruptly returned to work. He immediately commanded his reapers to let Ruth glean wherever she wanted, “even among the sheaves”. This meant she didn’t have to stick to the corners, stay behind the reapers, or try to beat the other gleaners to any missed stalks. Ruth could freely go into the harvest and reap until sundown.
Boaz then shocked his workers even more by instructing them to “let grain from the bundles fall purposely for her”. Why was he so generous and what made this gleaner so special?
If we are able to see the symbolism, we know the answer to those questions.
Ruth, the young, beautiful gentile, represents the church.
Boaz is Ruth’s savior from Bethlehem.
As the church of Jesus Christ, our Savior also prepares a table. When we turn from our sin and partake of His sumptuous fare, He satisfies our longing, hungry soul, and brings a time of refreshing like no other. (Psalm 23:5; Psalm 107:9; Acts 3:19) We just need to believe Him and claim His promises for our own.
As Boaz watched Ruth, so too, our God watches us. “The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their cry.” (Psalm 34:15)
Boaz used four simple, but extremely generous words to refer to where Ruth would glean, “even among the sheaves”.
We too are allowed and even commanded to gather “even among the sheaves”. Jesus said, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.” That means like Ruth, we don’t stick to the fringe areas, because the fields are white for harvest. (Mark 16:15; John 4:35)
Remember, only we bring the message of eternal life and if we do not lose heart, we shall reap (Gal. 6:9).
Then from God’s abundance, blessings will fall for them and us, on purpose.