What We Have Come To (continued)
And that was all in this strange mysterious urge of God in her heart. He was urging her firstly in the direction of redemption, of being purchased, and then married, joined to Christ through redemption; we sung it tonight, that is why we sung this hymn, redeemed and purchased with His blood, redeemed and sanctified. A Moabitess outside of the pale is an unclean thing in Israel; redeemed and by union with this great Israel; redeemed and by union with this great Israelite, sanctified. You see the picture? The urge of the Spirit of God upon you contains this: your redemption from the ban, from the condemnation, from the judgment that lies upon all who are outside of Christ, redemption!
Oh, wonderful story, purchased! You are brought with a price, purchased and joined to the Lord, the Lord Christ. All that is in the urge, in the constraint, in that something that is making you desire, long, wistful, saying, 'Oh that I knew all that in my own life and experience.' Yes, that is a work of the Spirit of God, urging you in the direction of redemption and union with His Son.
And then next, there is more, there is more to follow: "Thou art come unto a people that thou knewest not heretofore" (Ruth 2:11). Yes, you say, that is the Old Testament, a beautiful Old Testament story, a beautiful edict of long ago. But is there anything now to correspond to that? The answer, of course, must be in whether you agree that the Old Testament belongs to now Or does it only belong to long ago when it was written? No, of course not, it belongs to us now. It is contemporary, it is right up-to-date, and everybody who comes to Christ finds that it is the most up-to-date document in existence.
Well then, have we got something in the New Testament that corresponds to, and is illustrated by Ruth the stranger, Ruth the alien, Ruth under condemnation, bring brought into redemption and union with Christ? Yes we have got it, here it is, let me read it to you:
"Wherefore remember, that once ye, the Gentiles in the flesh, who are called uncircumcision, by that which is called circumcision, in the flesh, made by hands; that ye were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of the promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus ye that once were far off are made nigh in the blood of Christ. For He is our peace ..." (Ephesians 2:11-14)
(continued with # 39)