God Will Never Leave Us Nor Forsake Us
16 But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God. 17 Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.”
There is something very special about loyalty. It can’t be bought, and it is highly sought after by most people. We may have good friends, but when our circumstances become bleak, will they scatter? Ruth, a Moabite, was different from most people. She clung to Naomi and loved her dearly. She pledged herself to Naomi in a way most of us would not do. Even the disciples (with the exception of John, and possibly Peter) scattered when Jesus was arrested.
Ruth displayed for us the loyalty that God has for us. God has said numerous times in His word that He was with us:
And God said, “I will be with you. And this will be the sign to you that it is I who have sent you: When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.”
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.
It takes great patience to persist in a friendship. Ruth had this patience with Naomi. She stood by Naomi through good and bad. Even when Naomi changed her name to Mara (which means bitter), Naomi never left her and was her constant companion.
God has unimaginable patience with us. We have been given a down-deposit when we accepted Christ of the continual companionship of the Holy Spirit. He is very loyal. We have also been told not to grieve Him. The Holy Spirit stays with us regardless of where we go, what we do, or how we think. We should always remember His love for us as we stumble through life, tripping over sin and falling flat on our face. The good news that this is the perfect position from which to humbly seek God in repentance.
But it isn’t duty that Ruth felt that bound her to Naomi. It was friendship. Ruth saw the Godliness of Naomi and wanted to be her friend. Her friendship with Naomi was so powerful that she pledged herself as Naomi’s companion. God has been treating us like a friend even before we come to His Son. Through the lens of eternity, God sees us as we will be, not as we are, and treats us that way now.
Jesus died on the cross for sinners who hadn’t even been born yet by our reckoning of time. But to Jesus, He sees the end from the beginning, and treated us as His most precious friends, dying for us on the cross. And just like Ruth, who said that even death could not separate her from Naomi, Jesus conquered death so that we could be with Him.
A Qualifying Question
Let’s ask ourselves a question: Are we being as faithful and loyal to God as He is to us in our friendship with Him?
A short prayer of preparation:
Father in Heaven, You have shown me through Your word just how faithful and loyal You are. You have never broken any of Your promises. I thank You for Your patience in my life as I seek to honor and obey You. Forgive me of my sins, and help me to turn to You and Your ways as You reveal them to me. Help me to be loyal and faithful to You in all that I think, say, and do, that Your character would be on display as a light on hill. Remember me as I walk in the world, for my feet keep getting dirty with the attitudes, thoughts, desires, and ways of those who do not know You. Wash me in Your Word and in the precious perfect blood of Your Son, that I may be washed clean and renewed. This I ask in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.