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“And she said (Naomi to Ruth), behold thy sister-in-law is gone back unto her people, and unto her gods: return thou after thy sister-in-law. — “but Ruth clave unto her”
The book of Ruth is a very small book in the Old Testament but the impact of the story is pivotal in how we as women of the older generation are to be an example of a godly woman to the younger generation, and in GOD’s eyes. Naomi and Ruth, both widowers, not only survived – but also thrived – during extreme hardships.
Ruth was the model godly woman who stands out in contrast to the general background of the Judges Era, a period of immoral degeneracy and oppression. She is an example of moral and spiritual strength and a living illustration of the blessings GOD showers on those who live in faithful obedience to HIM.
Her story is one of love, purity and commitment. Ruth was a Moabitess woman, yet her complete loyalty to the Israelite family into which she has been received by marriage and her total devotion to her desolate mother-in-law mark her as a true daughter of Israel and worthy ancestress of David.
Hi Friends of S.T.A.C.I.E. Foundation,
I’m truly honored that you are reading our blog posts. I want to share something I wrote a few years ago as a contributing writer to a women’s bible study called Woman2woman – The Naomi and Ruth Experience – based on the Book of Ruth. The study is published by Deborah Ross.
This study is broken down into four series and twenty eight lessons. Spiritual Warfare is one of three lessons I wrote for the study. It was very humbling to pen the words GOD spoke to my heart, so I hope you enjoy it.
Woman2woman – The Naomi and Ruth Experience
Even as Christian’s, we experience attacks from Satan and his horde of demons. While many conflicts may appear to be a struggle between flesh and blood, the true battle originates from principalities, powers, rulers of the darkness of this world and spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:12)
In our own strength, we are powerless to overcome Satan’s wicked schemes. Alone, we cannot protect our mind, our will, our emotions or even our body against the dark forces of evil. Satan does not want us to persevere for the Kingdom of God and so he continually attempts to weaken us. His ultimate evil plan is to defeat us.
The good news is that, as we recognize our human insufficiency and whole-heartedly rely on the Lord’s power and strength, He gives us the tools (spiritual armor) and favor need to fight and conquer all satanic foes. We must fight the good fight of faith by trusting God’s Word in spite of what we see, feel or think. His Word is to always be elevated higher than any lie, ambush, scheme or offense that comes our way.
Have you ever felt like you were under spiritual attack?
I hope you will take a moment to ponder this question and allow yourself to think about your situation and the root of the cause.
Then think about how you were able to work through and ultimately overcome this situation.
How you ever been overcome by the spirit of fear?
Fear is an awful place to go and live for any amount of time. When fear overcomes you, you have the power to shed light on the darkness, exposing it for the lie it is, by calling on Jesus name, silently or out loud and BOLDLY! He will come and overpower this ugly spirit in the blink of an eye for fear cannot live in GOD’s .
Joshua 24: 14-15
14 “Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve Him in sincerity and in truth and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt, and serve ye the LORD. 15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom you will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD,”
A DEEPER LOOK
When faced with onslaughts of fear and uncertainty, we can become discouraged isolated and fatigued. We can find ourselves trapped in a whirlwind of chaos and confusion. When we are not on guard, Satan will take advantage of us.
Jesus said if we follow Him, we would face many trials. He didn’t say we might face trials; He said we would. Even so, He also promised His children that He would never leave us nor forsake us. Christ conquered evil and death on the cross at Calvary, so we can have confidence in knowing the war has been won and as believers, we are on the winning side!
In Joshua 24:14-15, what four things did God tell Joshua and all the people of Israel to do in preparation for victory?
- Fear the LORD!
- Serve Him in sincerity and in truth!
- Put away the gods which your fathers served!
- Choose you this day whom you will serve!
10 “Finally my brethren, be strong in the LORD, and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of GOD, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities , against powers , against the rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of GOD, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having your lions girt (belt) about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; 15 And your feet shod (footwear) with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of GOD: 18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
WORKING IN YOUR LIFE
Just as we dress each morning before beginning our day, we should also ask GOD to cloth us in His Armor. Ephesians 6:11 states that we are to put on the whole armor of GOD because each piece of this spiritual armor is vital for being an overcomer. When of offense, violation, conflict, bad report, evil thought or some other oppressive hindrance seeks to overtake us , we can find ourselves asking, “What do I do? What do I say? How do I react? Our spiritual armor not only protects us, but also reminds us of how to respond so that we don’t fall prey to the devil’s demise (fear, bondage, torment and even death).
In Ephesians 6:10-18, What are the 6 pieces of armor that Christians should put on each day in prayer?
- Lions girt (belt) of truth
- Breastplate of righteousness
- Feet shod (footwear) of peace
- Shield of faith
- Helmet of salvation
- Sword of the Spirit (GOD;s word)
What are the other two things that verse 18 tells us to do once we have suited up for victory?
- Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.
Are there any pieces of GOD’s armor that are currently missing from your spiritual attire?
REAL LIFE EXAMPLES
One day, a mother of two girls picked up the phone to hear the shocking news that her oldest daughter had just been murdered and her youngest daughter had been flown to a trauma hospital. The policeman on the other end of the line said that she was not expected to live. As she drove to the hospital, that mother became consumed by a grief so heavy she felt shrouded in utter darkness. Fear and hopelessness had attacked her mind, threatening to overtake her. As this mother sat by her younger daughter’s beside, instead of slipping into despair, she began to pray.
She poured her heart out to GOD, begging Him to spare her wounded daughter’s life. She refused to let those hopeless thoughts reign in her mind. In the stillness of that prayerful moment, she felt the peace of Christ enter the ICU room. She knew the peace that surpasses all understanding had taken hold where fear and despair had been. The next morning, the doctor’s confirmed what this peace filled mother already knew: her youngest daughter would fully recover.
As Christian’s, we are called by JESUS CHRIST and vested with HIS love and Spirit of Grace, to love our enemies. On January 29, 2008, by GOD’s divine Spirit of Grace – nine years to the day – GOD brought that mother to a place where she was able to forgive the perpetrator. Forgiveness was the necessary ingredient for sanity of that mother’s mind. – This real-life example is a true testimony from the contributing writer, Lorraine Whoberry.
MAKING IT HAPPEN
Even in death, Christian’s win the victory! Paul said to live is Christ and to die is gain. – Philippians 1:21 While there may be times in which we will have to walk through the valley of the shadow of death in order to reach the glorious mountaintop of GOD, we must remember, we are never alone. Through all our struggles, there is always hope! We can always depend on GOD the FATHER, JESUS CHRIST and the power of the HOLY SPIRIT to carry us through the fiercest storms.
Is there a storm in your life that you need to ask the LORD to carry you through?
Let’s pray now. Lord, we come humbly before you, seeking Your strength, wisdom, power and grace as we hold tightly to your hand. This storm I’m walking through threatens to pull me under. Lord, I am claiming Your victory over all that is evil, unjust and unwarranted. For God has not given me a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Because you O’ Lord have conquered all death and evil, I can rise above my circumstances, and proclaim Your victory. Thank You Lord for loving me unconditionally. Amen
20 “Now unto him that is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.”
Psalm 91:14 says to set our love upon GOD and HE will set us on high and deliver us. As we call out the names of GOD (as we remember HIS character in a prayer of faith), Psalm 91 gives us the promise of hope to overcome, be delivered from, and to be protected from all the forces of evil. The devil is the one who is out to kill, steal and destroy, but JESUS came to make a way for us to have life more abundantly – even while on earth (John 10:10). Meditate on Psalms 91 every day until you begin to grasp the fullness of GOD’s promise to protect, guide and deliver HIS children.
NAOMI & RUTH REFLECTION
Naomi, Ruth and Orpah’s lives all took a drastic and sudden change upon becoming widowers. This prompted them to leave their current home. Naomi’s husband died suddenly. Shortly thereafter, both sons also died. Suffering such tremendous loss and heavy grief, Naomi and Ruth returned to Bethlehem-Judah, the homeland of Naomi. This was spiritual warfare. Had GOD forsaken them? Absolutely not! Even though Naomi and her daughters-in-law suffered devastating circumstances, Naomi didn’t turn her back on GOD, but instead, trusted wholeheartedly with obedience and faith. In due season, GOD rewarded both Naomi and Ruth with complete fullness. Ruth became the great-grandmother of King David, Israel’s greatest King – the lineage of CHRIST JESUS. Orpah, however, went back to her pagan ways and returned to her sinful culture.
Thank you again. This study is available for purchase by emailing us at email@example.com. The cost is $15.00 + tax and shipping. All proceeds benefit the S.T.A.C.I.E. Foundation.
May GOD keep you and bless you in HIS amazing grace,