Joseph Prince - How To Meet Jesus In The Word
Are you all ready for the Word? Praise the name of Jesus. I'm so excited about what I'm gonna share today because this is one of my favorite subjects, these characters in this subject. We're gonna look at some of my favorites in the Bible. I love these characters, and I love this beautiful story because it unveils the loveliness of our Lord Jesus Christ. Now, there are many ways to approach this teaching, one of which I've done a number of years ago. Okay, the subject is on Boaz and Ruth, okay? But it's not according to what I've taught down through the years about the dispensational side of the teaching.
Now, the story of Ruth, or we call it the love story of Ruth in this title, was preached many years ago in a mid-week service. This is a dispensational teaching. It tells you what is happening to Israel today and how Israel, all right, for a while is suffering, but the Ruths, the Gentiles, are being blessed because we have met our heavenly Boaz. And the name Boaz, what a name. His name Boaz in Hebrew means in him. Whenever you find a bo in front it means in him, in, in that thing, all right? Boaz, where you find the az, Uzi, gun, strength, power. Boaz means in him is strength. And who is it speaking of? Jesus Christ, the story of the kinsman redeemer. Now, the kinsman redeemer, what is a kinsman redeemer? Before I go to the teaching itself, I want to share today on the devotional part and on the personal application.
Now, I know many of you are concerned about "Pastor Prince, when I read the Bible, I don't get much out of it". That's why I'm teaching this. There are different levels of learning the Word of God, and you'll find this in the story of Ruth. Ruth began at level zero, all right, a young believer. Her only job is to glean what others are harvesting. The reapers there, the harvesters of Boaz in this field, are like teachers of God's Word, the evangelists, the pastors, the teachers, they're the harvesters. They're harvesting the field. They're harvesting God's Word. They're winning souls, gather them into the garners because all the souls won is for the Lord, for Boaz. Amen, amen? And she's not even at that place yet. So, you are at the place, if you're wondering, "Pastor Prince, I don't understand how some of you get revelations from Scriptures and all that". Then you're at the level of gleaning. All right, rejoice, this message is for you. Let's start off. "There was a relative of Naomi's husband".
Now, there's a relative of Naomi's husband. He's a relative. "A man of great wealth". Wow, a man of great wealth and he's single. He's good-looking, single, the most available man in Bethlehem. "Of the family of Elimelech. His name was Boaz". Taking down notes? Put down "In him is strength". That's what the name means, Boaz. In him is strength. So Ruth, Ruth write down friend. All right, we are friends to Israel today. Do you know that, okay? We are friend to our mother-in-law, Israel. "So Ruth the Moabitess said to Naomi, 'Please let me go to the field and glean heads of grain". Now glean, she didn't say, "I'm going there to be a harvester". She humbled herself. She know her place. All right, she know her place. She say that, "You know whatever, I'm going to church". How many know that this is the field of God, all right?
Now listen, why am I sharing all this with you? 'Cause all the Bible is about Jesus. Today, I'm gonna share with you how when you open the Scriptures, when you read the Word, whether it's your Bible in your hand or through the daily devotional, okay, you will see how it all plays out. You will meet not a formula. You will meet not a technique, but you will meet the person. I'm gonna show you how she actually started out gleaning, but met Boaz, all because she wanted to glean. If you have a heart, "I'm gonna go to church," all right, "I'm gonna get whatever I can. I don't understand everything Pastor Prince says, lah. You know? But sometimes I get something". If you do that, all right, guess what? You're on your way to meet Jesus, amen, and he will meet you at the point of your need. Are you ready?
So, if you are one of those that says, "You know Pastor Prince, I really don't understand much, you know, Bible and all that," then you are where Ruth is. She knows nothing about the traditions of Israel. She's a Moabitess, all right? So, here we have, all right, this man Boaz introduced. "So Ruth the Moabitess said to Naomi, 'Let me go," notice what she says, "in whose sight". She's going to glean and try to find food in this field. In our case, we are teaching on the Bible. It's a personal application, no more dispensational here, all right? Notice she fully expect not to meet a formula or a technique. She fully expect to meet a person. How do I know? Because the last part says, "Glean heads of grain," verse 2, "after him in whose sight I may find favor". She doesn't know who the person is, but she's going to the field to meet this person to find favor with. She confessed favor.
So, when you come to the Bible, always know this, you gotta meet Jesus. "So Ruth, the Moabitess said to Naomi, 'Please let me go to the field and find favor in this person.'" She said, go. Next verse, "Then she left, and went and gleaned in the field after the reapers". So, she was behind the reapers. Okay, the reapers harvested. She came behind them and picked up whatever they dropped. She picked up whatever they dropped, okay, this barley harvest. "And she happened to come to this part of the field. Now behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem, and said to the reapers", Look at this boss and you tell me whether he has a good relationship with his employees or not. He says, "'The Lord be with you!' And they answered him, 'The Lord bless you!'" Amen. No strikes in his field. They love him. Why? Because he's a picture of our Lord Jesus Christ.
You know something? Of all the people here, only his name is mentioned. Always remember this, none of the reapers named are mentioned. Even the next one, "Then Boaz said to his servant who was in charge of the reapers, 'Whose young woman is this?'" He noticed Ruth. All right, so he asked the servant in charge of the reapers. Even the servant's name is not mentioned. Who do you reckon this servant is, the unnamed servant? The Holy Spirit, because the Holy Spirit doesn't call attention to himself. The Holy Spirit always calls attention to Jesus Christ. So, the most wealthy bachelor, this cool, handsome bachelor called Boaz looked at her and said, "Whose young woman is this"? Next verse. "The servant who was in charge of the reapers answered and said, 'It's a young Moabite woman who came back with Naomi from the country of Moab. And she said, Please let me glean and gather after the reapers among the sheaves.' So she came and has continued from morning until now'". What a hard-working girl. What a hard-working girl. No amen. What a hard-working girl.
"So she came and has from morning until now, though she rested a little in the house". All right, so the servant, the Holy Spirit notices you. Even though you're a young believer, you don't understand much, what you're doing basically is like this. All right, you go to care group and you pick your gleaning, whatever is dropping. All right, you spend time over coffee with some people from our church, all right, they've been longer than you as a believer. And they share things you don't understand fully, but you are gleaning. Whatever you get, you are gleaning. Are you gleaning? All right, "Then Boaz said to Ruth, 'You will listen, my daughter, will you not? Do not go to glean in another field, nor go from here, but stay close by my young women.'" Don't go to another field, he says. Next verse, "Let your eyes be on the field which they reap, and go after them. Have I not commanded the young men not to touch you"?
Okay, he's falling in love with her already. Girls, when guys talk like this, all right, ah, you know. "And when you are thirsty, go to the vessels and drink from what the young men have drawn". Wow, he's so gracious to her. He tells her, "Don't go to another field, lest you'll be molested, you know? Don't go to other fields". He knows there are bad people out there. All right, watch this. She came, watch the stages, I love this stage, she came as a gleaner. Even though you understand, don't even come as a reaper. You know, those who have been some time in God's Word, they know the field. They know how to rightly divide the Word. They know the typology. They know the Greek. They know the Hebrew. She's not among the reapers. These are the reapers who know all these things, right, in the church. She came as a gleaner, trusting in God's favor. It rhymes, huh?
All right, and then as she went on, she found the reapers. And after the reaper, she found the master. Yo, man, check it out. All right, so write this down. First, gleaning, then the reapers, then the masters himself, amen? So, gleaning, reaping, then meeting the master, the owner of the field. "She fell on her face, bowed down to the ground, and said to him, 'Why have I found favor in your eyes?'" Now, falling on her face, bowing down to the ground, seriously, all right, is worship. Once you see Jesus, your heart falls. And I can't begin to tell you that how every time we encounter Jesus, we are humbled. He who owns everything, all right, came down to be a servant. Don't you think that's awesome? All right, next verse. Are you enjoying this so far? "And Boaz answered and said to her, 'It has been fully reported to me, all that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband, and how you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth.'"
Most likely he found out from the servant, okay? The Holy Spirit always tells Jesus, all right, the good things you have done. He never tells Jesus the bad things you have done. Have you noticed that? All right, amen? Amen? So, the Holy Spirit talks about Jesus, his glory, his beauty to all of us. And then he even tells God the Father in Jesus about you, okay? That's the work of the Holy Spirit. So, this is how Boaz knew. "How you have left your father and your mother and the land of your birth, and have come to a people whom you did not know before. The Lord repay your work, and a full reward be given you by the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge". What a God. What a God who repays us and gives us a full reward for taking refuge under his wings, when actually it's a privilege for us to take refuge under his wings. But here, he rewards you. He gives you, not a partial reward, but a full reward for taking refuge under his wings, amen. Praise the Lord.
All right, I'm bringing this to a close. Next verse, "Then she said, 'Let me find favor'". See, she knows, she has read by book, amen, "Unmerited Favor". She said, "Let me find favor". I mean favor is her only plea. "Let me find favor in your sight, my lord; for you have comforted me, and have spoken kindly to your maidservant, though I am not like one of your maidservants". You see I'm not like, I hear this sometimes, there are people like, "Pastor Prince, I'm not like your leaders, you know? Get revelation in the Bible. I'm not", This message is for you. "I'm not like one of your". You know? Then you are like Ruth. Guess what? None of the reapers married him. None of the maidens that drew the water and all that married him. Ruth did, okay? By the way, it's spoken kindly. I like the word spoken kindly because you must remember that Jesus speaks kindly.
The word "kindly" here is literally in the Hebrew, speak to the heart, speak to the heart. And the amazing thing about God's Word, he always speaks to your heart. He speaks to your heart, okay? "So now Boaz said to her at mealtime". Mealtime. "Pastor, mealtime coming yet, pastor"? Okay, okay. Mealtime. Singaporeans love mealtime. Boaz said to her, "Come here". That's closeness, "Come here, and eat of the bread, and dip your piece of bread in the vinegar". Now, you know how you get vinegar? It's wine, sour wine. So, you see the bread, you see the wine. New Creation Church, what is this a picture of? Communion. Noontime when the sun is really hot and you start feeling the heat, come near to Jesus. He's gonna prepare a table in the presence of your enemies, and he's gonna feed you. Here we see the Communion. "So she sat beside the reapers".
Wow, she's a gleaner, not supposed to sit beside the reapers but because he says, "Come here. Come here, Ruth, sit down here". Place of honor. All the reapers saw the favor she had. And watch this. "And he passed parched grain to her". Oh, parched grain. Underline that in your Bible, "parched grain". You know what's parched grain? Roasted grain. Now, they were harvesting what? Barley. Barley bread is actually food of the poor. Jesus multiplied the five loaves. Those are barley bread, all right? Food for the poor, food for the common people. But back then, wheat, wheat is actually food for the rich. And this roasted grain here is actually wheat. He passed to her roasted grain.
And do you remember Israel? They ate in the 40 years wandering in the wilderness. They ate what? Manna. Manna is a picture of Jesus in his lowliness. He came as a man, the picture of his earthly life. But remember when they came into the Promised Land, you know what they ate? Joshua 5, verse 11, "They ate of the produce of the land on the day after the Passover, unleavened bread". I'm sorry, I should have showed you the next verse before this. It says that the moment they came into the land, the manna ceased. The manna ceased. No more manna. Forty years manna was falling, but when they came to the land, the manna ceased. And they ate what? The produce of the land, all right, after the Passover unleavened bread and parched grain on the very same day. So, parched grain are deep truths, truths like what the apostle Paul reveals here.
So, look at her progress. Yo, from gleaning whatever she can understand, she takes, all right, to the part where she learns from the reapers. All right, and finally the Lord himself gives her the deep truths. The deep truths are found in the New Testament in Pauline Epistles, gives her the revelation of grace, revelation of righteousness, revelation of the finished work. How you like it if Jesus himself feeds you, right? But do you see the procedure? All right, never mind, start where you are, gleaning first, because you'll end up sitting in his presence.
Next, go back. Verse 14 here, "She ate and was satisfied, and kept some back". Now, she ate until she was satisfied. You understand? After she was satisfied, the word kept some back is not very clear. Actually it means she had leftovers. We have, in the Father's house, more than enough okay? There is no lack. Don't bring the mentality of the world in this place. God doesn't understand scarcity. All right, let me bring this to a close. Last part, verse 15, "And when she rose up to glean, Boaz commanded his young men, saying, 'Let her glean even among the sheaves, and do not reproach.'" Now, she got up. She rose up to glean, okay? You met the master. He gave you the best food. Now, you get up, right? You already have plenty to bring back to your mother-in-law.
Now, watch this. "When she rose up, Boaz," probably not in her presence, "commanded the young men, 'Let her glean even among the sheaves.'" Now the sheaves you must understand. You know what the sheaves? It's not the field. The sheaves is the place where all the harvested produce are all tied, you know, in bunches. That's the sheaves. They're all in sheaves, tied in bunches, all right? And that's the place where you find a lot of droppings of the wheat, right? It's the best place to go, but gleaners are not supposed to go there. They're supposed to go in the field behind the harvesters. But you know what? The place of great produce, that's what Boaz says to the man.
"Don't reproach her. Let her go to the sheaves". And this happened after she ate and was satisfied and had plenty left over. You think that satisfies God? It satisfies you. You think that satisfies God? No, he want to keep on giving you if it's okay with you. He wants to keep on giving. Notice when she rose up, did he stop giving? No, he told the men, "Hey guys, not only that, also," verse 16, "let grain from the bundles fall purposely", let them fall, "Guys, guys, guys come together. Guys, I don't want her to hear this, okay? Now understand, I told her she can glean from the sheaves there. Another thing, you purposely drop them, okay? Every time she walk behind, you purposely drop more and more. Understand or not"? "Yes, boss". "Okay". All right, now, "Let grain from the bundles fall purposely for her; leave it that she may glean, and do not rebuke her".
Oh, what a Savior. What a Lord, amen. What a redeemer. Thank you, Jesus! You don't realize every day, some of you don't even read the Word of God, but you know what? God has dropped handfuls on purpose for you. Many a times you hear something, you meet someone and someone shared something that you heard and it refreshes you. You get blessed. Or you watch something and then, you know, all of a sudden even the movie you watch, you see Jesus all of a sudden, you know? It's God dropping handfuls on purpose 'cause, every day we have handfuls on purpose. Don't say you're lucky. Give praise to our heavenly Boaz, amen. Go on, verse 17, all right, "She gleaned the field until evening, and beat out what she had gleaned, it was about an ephah of barley".
All right, ephah of barley is ten-day supply, ten-day supply. That's a whole lot for a gleaner. She started out thinking that she'll take only one-day supply at the most or even half-a-day supply, end up with ten-day supply. Yeah, wow is the word. Ten-day supply. "She took it up and went into the city, and her mother-in-law saw what he had gleaned". The mother-in-law took one look at what she had gleaned, all right, this ten-day supply. "She brought out and gave to her what she had kept back after she had been satisfied". Even the leftover food, the roasted grain for the mother-in-law. And this is what her mother-in-law said, next verse, "Where have you gleaned today? Where did you work? Blessed be the one who took notice of you," all right? "So she told her mother-in-law, 'The man's name is Boaz.' Then Naomi said", and this is the last verse, we close, "Then Naomi said to her daughter-in-law, 'Blessed be he of the Lord, who has not forsaken His kindness to the living and the dead!'"
You know why these people are so blessed or not? Every time they hear something good happen, they always end up in worship. And all the people said? "Who has not forsaken his kindness". The word "kindness" is hesed. Naomi is aware of grace, hesed. "And Naomi said to her, 'Ruth, this man is a relation of ours, one of our close relatives.'" The word there is go'el, kinsman redeemer. All of a sudden she saw it, and you know the rest of the story, amen? Praise God. Kinsman redeemer, why? He's a relative, he's rich, and now he's willing. And the rest of the story tells us about... you know, get that CD series. It will help you so much to understand what Jesus has done for us in a beautiful love story called Ruth. Why must we be bought? Why must Jesus buy us from the market of literally condemnation, guilt, hell, where Satan is the slave master? Jesus bought us out. Do you know the curses of Deuteronomy 28? It ends, you know how it ends, the curses? It ends like this, the last verse of the verses in Deuteronomy 28. It's a long list. It ends with this, "No one will buy you. No one will buy you".
Did you hear that? The curse is that even after you're sold as a slave, what a terrible curse, nobody wants to buy you. Now, that's a picture of all of us, mankind, before the met the Lord. But look at Galatians 3:13, "Christ has redeemed us". You know what's redeemed? Buy us back, buy us out of the prison of condemnation and hell. Hallelujah, amen. "From the curse of the law". And he has bought us out from the curse of the law which is condemnation, which is our punishment, which is disease, sickness, which is part of the punishment. He has redeemed us from the curse of the law. No one wants to buy us, but Jesus did. Hallelujah. Jesus did. Praise the Lord. Our kinsman redeemer, "That the blessing of Abraham might come on all of us". Give him praise! Hallelujah. Thank you, Jesus!