Recently I spoke to 50 college students on the OT book of Ruth.
The text represents a tender portrayal of Israel at her best, welcoming a Moabite woman into the fold of a Jewish family legacy.
Ruth is a redeemer, of sorts, for the widow Naomi, but ultimately the recipient of the redeeming work of Boaz, the “guardian-redeemer” of Naomi’s clan.
All this redeemer language looks forward to the Messiah of the NT, the One on whom students seemed so riveted on this particular Wednesday evening in the forests north of Grand Rapids, Michigan.
I had the privilege of serving as the messenger, calling students forward to commit (or re-commit) their lives to the ultimate Redeemer, Jesus of Nazareth.
The Spirit called. They came to the front and stood with me in front of their peers as we prayed our prayers of consecration.
Afterward a slavic student turned to me with a tearful hug. “God wouldn’t let me go. I ran from him him . . . He stayed with me . . . ”
Then an unexpected reminder of my true context. He was tall, international, articulate, and caught me off-guard. “Do you think it was ‘justice’ for an innocent man, Jesus, to be killed for others? For animals in the OT to be sacrificed by the millions? How can this be just?”
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Thank you for sending me as a missionary to college students. They are truly the future of our world.
p.s. I hope you’ll check out my new book, Faith Unexpected: Real Stories of People Who Found What They Never Imagined. Written for our friends who’ve lost touch with God or never knew God in the first place.
Also great for first-time church visitors and “Alpha” participants.