II. Deception: Trying to Hide Our Mistakes. 1:6-18
A. The Testimony of Naomi. v6-15
1. God visited His faithful people in Bethlehem, but not His disobedient daughter in Moab!
2. Naomi had received reports of the Lord's blessings upon those at home: the famine had ended, there was bread for all.
3. How sad it is when God's people only hear about His blessings, and do not experience them because they are not where they ought to be!
4. The repeated plea of the prophets was for God's people to turn from their sins and return to the Lord.
5. Naomi's decision was right, but her motive was wrong.
a. She was primarily interested in food, not fellowship with God.
b. She was returning to her land, but not to her Lord.
c. She didn't want her daughters-in-law to come with her.
1) Why would she want to have them stay in a land where false gods were worshipped rather than coming to the place where the true God blesses?
2) Because they were living proof that she and Elimelech had disobeyed God in allowing their sons to marry outside of the nation of Israel.
3) They would be an embarrassment to her in Bethlehem and among her friends and family.
4) Naomi was trying to cover up her disobedience rather than confess and repent.
5) Pr. 28:13a, "He that covereth his sins shall not prosper..."
6. Naomi blamed God for her sorrow and pain.
B. The Testimony of Orpah. v11-14
1. The two daughters-in-law had started out with Naomi, but she stopped them and urged them to return to Moab.
2. Naomi even prayed that the Lord might find them new husbands and give them rest.
3. Note: There is little value in the prayer of a backslidden child of God.
4. Naomi reasoned with them and was able to convince Orpah to go home.
5. Orpah made the wrong decision, she left the scene and is never mentioned again in Scripture.
C. The Testimony of Ruth. v15-18
1. Naomi was trying to cover up, Orpah had given up, but Ruth was ready to stand up!
2. She refused to listen to her mother-in- law's pleas to return to Moab.
3. The reason, we find out later, is that she had come to trust in the God of Israel.
4. Ruth's statement here is one of the most magnificent confessions found anywhere in Scripture.
a. She confessed her love for Naomi and her desire to stay with her even unto death.
b. She confessed her faith in the true and living God and her decision to worship Him alone.