Daniel 2:19–23 (CSB)
19 The mystery was then revealed to Daniel in a vision at night, and Daniel praised the God of the heavens
20 and declared: May the name of God be praised forever and ever, for wisdom and power belong to him.
He changes the times and seasons; he removes kings and establishes kings.He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding.
22 He reveals the deep and hidden things; he knows what is in the darkness, and light dwells with him.
23 I offer thanks and praise to you, God of my ancestors, because you have given me wisdom and power. And now you have let me know what we asked of you, for you have let us know the king’s mystery.
Ruth 1:1 (CSB) During the time of the judges, there was a famine in the land. A man left Bethlehem in Judah with his wife and two sons to stay in the territory of Moab for a while.
In this foreign land, the men died.
Ruth 1:3-5 (CSB) Naomi’s husband, Elimelech, died, and she was left with her two sons. Her sons took Moabite women as their wives: one was named Orpah and the second was named Ruth. After they lived in Moab about ten years, both Mahlon and Chilion also died, and the woman was left without her two children and without her husband.
Wages of sin is death--that is the effects of Genesis 3.
Yet, also, God determines the number of days of our lives:
Job 14:5 (CSB) Since a person’s days are determined and the number of his months depends on you, and since you have set limits he cannot pass,
Acts 17:24–27 (CSB)
24 The God who made the world and everything in it—he is Lord of heaven and earth—does not live in shrines made by hands.
25 Neither is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives everyone life and breath and all things.
26 From one man he has made every nationality to live over the whole earth and has determined their appointed times and the boundaries of where they live.
27 He did this so that they might seek God, and perhaps they might reach out and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.
God has determined how long we are to live on this earth. No promises of a long life but a promise of eternal life.
John 3:16 (CSB) For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.
Since Christ is not of this world:
John 8:21-24 (CSB) Then he said to them again, “I’m going away; you will look for me, and you will die in your sin. Where I’m going, you cannot come.” So the Jews said again, “He won’t kill himself, will he, since he says, ‘Where I’m going, you cannot come’? ” “You are from below,” he told them, “I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. Therefore I told you that you will die in your sins. For if you do not believe that I am he, you will die in your sins.”
And his kingdom is not of this world:
John 18:36 (CSB) “My kingdom is not of this world,” said Jesus. “If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would fight, so that I wouldn’t be handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.”
Neither are we of this world:
John 15:18-20 (CSB) “If the world hates you, understand that it hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own. However, because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of it, the world hates you. Remember the word I spoke to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours.
What is ours to do?
Mark 16:15-16 (CSB) Then he said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.
Ruth 1:6 (CSB) She and her daughters-in-law set out to return from the territory of Moab, because she had heard in Moab that the LORD had paid attention to his people’s need by providing them food.
Ruth 2:3 (CSB) So Ruth left and entered the field to gather grain behind the harvesters. She happened to be in the portion of the field belonging to Boaz, who was from Elimelech’s family.
How people meet is by God alone, that is to be sure. But don't just hyper-focus on meeting your future spouse--which is a good thing--and miss the relationships you have now and will have in the future. That is the sovereignty of God bring you together with your brothers and sisters in Christ.
1 Corinthians 10:16-17 (CSB) The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a sharing in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a sharing in the body of Christ? Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, since all of us share the one bread.
2 Corinthians 8:4 (CSB) they begged us earnestly for the privilege of sharing in the ministry to the saints,
Philippians 3:10 (CSB) My goal is to know him and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of his sufferings, being conformed to his death,
Heck, even in studying the Bible, we are not by ourselves:
Acts 17:11 (CSB) The people here were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, since they received the word with eagerness and examined the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.
Ruth 3:15 (CSB) And he told Ruth, “Bring the shawl you’re wearing and hold it out.” When she held it out, he shoveled six measures of barley into her shawl, and she went into the town.
Pay attention to the little details here.
- moving people and families
- bring people together
- providing for their needs
All for what? To carry his exact purpose for his glory alone. And everything that happened prior to the birth of Christ was to bring about the birth of Christ.
Because Christ alone is our portion and our lot:
John 6:32-35 (CSB) Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, Moses didn’t give you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is the one who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” Then they said, “Sir, give us this bread always.”
“I am the bread of life,” Jesus told them. “No one who comes to me will ever be hungry, and no one who believes in me will ever be thirsty again.
Ruth 4:13 (CSB) Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. He slept with her, and the LORD granted conception to her, and she gave birth to a son.
God alone puts us together while we were in our mother's womb:
Psalm 139:13-14 (CSB) For it was you who created my inward parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will praise you because I have been remarkably and wondrously made. Your works are wondrous, and I know this very well.
And only in his sovereignty can a king be raised up:
Ruth 4:18–22 (CSB)
18 Now these are the family records of Perez: Perez fathered Hezron,
19 Hezron fathered Ram, Ram fathered Amminadab,
20 Amminadab fathered Nahshon, Nahshon fathered Salmon,
21 Salmon fathered Boaz, Boaz fathered Obed,
22 Obed fathered Jesse, and Jesse fathered David.
And only in his sovereignty can a Redeemer be raised up:
Matthew 1:1 (CSB) An account of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham:
Only in his sovereignty can a Savior be given to save his people from their sins:
Matthew 1:21 (CSB) She will give birth to a son, and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”
Psalm 22 (CSB)
For the choir director: according to “The Deer of the Dawn.” A psalm of David.
1 My God, my God, why have you abandoned me? Why are you so far from my deliverance and from my words of groaning?
2 My God, I cry by day, but you do not answer, by night, yet I have no rest.
3 But you are holy, enthroned on the praises of Israel.
4 Our ancestors trusted in you; they trusted, and you rescued them.
5 They cried to you and were set free; they trusted in you and were not disgraced.
6 But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by mankind and despised by people.
7 Everyone who sees me mocks me; they sneer and shake their heads:
8 “He relies on the LORD; let him save him; let the LORD rescue him, since he takes pleasure in him.”
9 It was you who brought me out of the womb, making me secure at my mother’s breast.
10 I was given over to you at birth; you have been my God from my mother’s womb.
11 Don’t be far from me, because distress is near and there’s no one to help.
12 Many bulls surround me; strong ones of Bashan encircle me.
13 They open their mouths against me— lions, mauling and roaring.
14 I am poured out like water, and all my bones are disjointed; my heart is like wax, melting within me.
15 My strength is dried up like baked clay; my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth. You put me into the dust of death.
16 For dogs have surrounded me; a gang of evildoers has closed in on me; they pierced my hands and my feet.
17 I can count all my bones; people look and stare at me.
18 They divided my garments among themselves, and they cast lots for my clothing.
19 But you, LORD, don’t be far away. My strength, come quickly to help me.
20 Rescue my life from the sword, my only life from the power of these dogs.
21 Save me from the lion’s mouth, from the horns of wild oxen. You answered me!
22 I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters; I will praise you in the assembly.
23 You who fear the LORD, praise him! All you descendants of Jacob, honor him! All you descendants of Israel, revere him!
24 For he has not despised or abhorred the torment of the oppressed. He did not hide his face from him but listened when he cried to him for help.
25 I will give praise in the great assembly because of you; I will fulfill my vows before those who fear you.
26 The humble will eat and be satisfied; those who seek the LORD will praise him. May your hearts live forever!
27 All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to the LORD. All the families of the nations will bow down before you,
28 for kingship belongs to the LORD; he rules the nations.
29 All who prosper on earth will eat and bow down; all those who go down to the dust will kneel before him— even the one who cannot preserve his life.
30 Their descendants will serve him; the next generation will be told about the Lord.
31 They will come and declare his righteousness; to a people yet to be born they will declare what he has done.