Vol. 5, No. 1
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In 1 Kings 5, we read about a captain of the Syrian army named Naaman. Naaman was a great man in Syria. He was a very courageous man. But, Naaman had a bad disease known as leprosy. This disease made the skin fall off. It ate away slowly at the body.
The Syrians had invaded Israel and taken captives. Among those captives was a little girl who was taken to Naaman's house. She served Naaman's wife.
When the little girl knew about Naaman's problem, she told her master about the prophet in Israel who could cure his disease.
Word is taken to Naaman. The girl must have been a very good person, because when Naaman hears what she has said, he believes her. Naaman goes to Israel and meets with the prophet Elisha. It takes some persuading, but eventually Naaman does what Elisha tells him to do and Naaman is cured.
The little girl did not let circumstances change her belief in God. She knew that God was still in control of all things. She also did not allow her circumstances to make her bitter. She could have been happy that a mighty man of Syria was so sick. After all, he was responsible for invading her country and making her a servant. He was responsible for taking her from her parents. But, she did not think about these bad things. Instead, she was willing to do what she could to show him the true God.
Make sure that you always have the right attitude. Take opportunities to teach others about God. And, if any of this is hard to understand, ask an adult to help you.
You probably are familiar with the story of Ruth. She lived during the times of the Judges in the Old Testament. She lived in the land of Moab which was located southeast of the Dead Sea.
A Jewish man took Naomi, his wife, and his two sons to the land of Moab. The two sons married while in Moab. Ruth was one of the brides. The man and his two sons died so Naomi decided to go back to her hometown. Ruth went with her. Naomi even tried to get Ruth to stay in Moab, but Ruth insisted to go with her.
When they get back to Naomi's home, Ruth is sent to gather grain in the fields of Boaz. Boaz takes good care of Ruth and Naomi. After a short time, Ruth asks Boaz if he will take her as a bride. To do so, Boaz must go to the nearest relative of Naomi and ask him if he intends to marry Naomi and Ruth and keep the property of Naomi's husband. Under Old Testament Law, the nearest relative had this right. The relative says he does not want to keep the property nor to marry Naomi or Ruth. Boaz then obtains the property and marries Ruth.
In some ways, the story of Ruth is like what Christ did for the church. He had to be willing to purchase the church and have the ability to pay for it. Christ was willing to purchase the church. He did so with his own blood. He had to be willing to marry the bride. Jesus was willing to marry the bride, the church. Just as Ruth went to Boaz asking to marry him, the person wanting to be a Christian must come to Christ. The person must be willing to submit and obey Christ to be his bride.
In some parts of the world, people worship different gods than Almighty Jehovah. A person must be like Ruth, willing to leave his gods and worship Almighty God. He must be willing to live as a Christian and be willing to die as a Christian.
I am glad that God gave us the Bible so that we can read about Ruth. I am glad that he has told us about Jesus and the salvation that he brings. If any of this is hard to understand, ask an adult to help you. And, until next time, keep reading your Bible so that you will know how to marry Christ and how to stay his bride.