"Both Mahlon and Chilion died also, and the woman was left with neither her two sons nor her husband." —Ruth 1:5
Ruth's husband, father-in-law, and brother-in-law had died. All of these men had moved to Moab to escape death from starvation (Ru 1:1), but they only delayed death for ten years (Ru 1:4).
Ruth swallowed up death in victory (1 Cor 15:54) by her faithfulness to Naomi in obedience to God. She reversed the march of death by marrying Boaz, giving birth to Obed, and becoming the great grandmother of David (Ru 4:22). It was from David's family that Jesus came. Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life (Jn 11:25), the Conqueror of death.
How can we bring down the reign of death? We conquer death by being baptized into Jesus. In this way, we enter into the family of the living God, the Creator and Sustainer of life, and the Victor over death. We live our new life in baptism by faithful obedience to the Lord.
Ruth prefigures our baptismal victory over death. We defeat death by entering Jesus' family and living a new life of faithfulness and obedience to Him.
Prayer: Father, make me increasingly aware of being baptized into Jesus (Rm 6:3).
Promise: "You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, with your whole soul, and with all your mind." —Mt 22:37
Praise: Jesus, thank You for honoring Your mother as Queen of heaven. Alleluia!
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tapes Baptismal Promises on audio AV 83-1, AV 83-3, AV 84-1, AV 84-3 or our video series that starts with V-83.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Richard L. Klug, February 27, 2003
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 3, 2003