[6 Lesson Course] Gleaning in the Fields With Ruth
By Dr. Noel Forlini Burt. The Church has often assumed the book of Ruth to be a rural little love story, an Ancient Near Eastern version of a Hallmark movie. A young, grieving widow travels to a foreign country and marries a wealthy, handsome landowner. The story ends with them holding a baby, living happily ever after. Nothing could be further from the truth. In reality, the book of Ruth teases out ancient Israelite tensions about foreignness and prejudice. It deals with the themes of scarcity and lack, barrenness and bereavement, overflowing generosity, and especially, questions about who God is in the midst of suffering. While we are much removed from its ancient customs, the book of Ruth has much to teach us thematically and theologically about life with God and with neighbor.