Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Our Comfort and Our Hope

“But Boaz answered her, ‘All that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband has been fully told to me, and how you left your father and mother and your native land and came to a people that you did not know before.  The Lord repay you for what you have done, and a full reward be given you by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge!’  Then she said, ‘I have found favor in your eyes, my lord, for you have comforted me and spoken kindly to your servant, though I am not one of your servants’,”Ruth 2:11-13.
“Remember you word to your servant, I which you have made me hope.  This is my comfort in my afflictions, that your promise gives me life.  The insolent utterly deride me, but I do not turn away from your law.  When I think of your rules from of old, I take comfort, O Lord,” Psalm 119:49-52.
From of old, Yahweh set a measuring line for justice.  In a stroke of wisdom He declared that human flesh must encounter a restoration.  All losses should be restored by our next of kin; our own brethren.  The risen Lord, who has once become our incarnate brother, has been empowered to restore all of humanities losses since He has also taken their punishment and wiped their sins away. 
 My hope rests on this measuring line, this law, of justice.  My hope is vitally attached to its execution.   Jesus Christ has become my closest kin that He might restore the losses I incurred at the hand of another, perhaps even my own foolish hand.   There is no sinful reason for me to be excluded from receiving the fullness of just and righteous restoration.  I am no long a Moabite pursing personal rights in my homeland.  I an a foreigner seeking refuge in Israel while humbly serving the cause of others.  It is all my hope that the risen Lord will notice.  It is all my hope that the Son of God will grant me Israelite rights… .that He will fulfill His promise to consider me His next of kin.  Selah: He is all my hope.
Boaz caught sight of a Moabite, a foreigner, who relinquished her rights.  She laid down her powers by which she could regain control of her life in her native homeland.  She lowered her heart and body to servitude.  She faithfully served Naomi’s need… .and her service became known.  
“Keep righteousness and do justice, for soon my salvation will come, and my deliverance be revealed,” Isaiah 56:1.
Keep gleaning wheat for Naomi.  For soon you will see that Yahweh does not let your service pass by.
This is the Eternal Hope of the Cross-Bearer: our service gathers in His eyes.  He sees us.  He promises to reward us.  We lose nothing in our service.  The Great Goel has guaranteed the full restoration of our earthly lives.  In eternal history, all things are renewed.
The Cross-Bearers hope is in this eternal renewal and reward that, for now, bears full witness within our spirits.  As we glean for Naomi we know that for every thread of barley offered to another, a hundred-fold will be poured into our bellies.  There are no losses in the New Israel; this homeland to which we have run.  Our comfort is in His spoken judgement that for every lose, stolen or sacrificial, He will restore… .He will reward.
“Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word,” 2 Thessalonians 2:16.
Keep gleaning…
“Blessed be the God and Father or our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God, For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.  If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer.  Our hope for you is unshaken for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort,” 2 Corinthians 1:3-7.
Keep gleaning.  Keep pursing restoration for others….

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