A missional reading of the book of Ruth

freshexpressionsJohn Scheepers’s fresh expressions blog features a nice reflection on a missional reading of Ruth, building on the work of Darrell Guder.

His starting point is a quote from Guder’s The Continuing Conversion of the Church:

 “Scripture is appropriately read and interpreted as the Spirit-empowered testimony that equips God’s people for their mission…”

What, he wonders, would it look like if we read the book of Ruth this way? He highlights his reading under four headings:

1. God’s mission is universal in scope.

2. God’s mission is particular in execution.

3. God’s mission is integrally linked to covenant faithfulness.

4. God’s mission has an integral call for the care of widows and the vulnerable.

Read the post in full

Mission, migration and the book of Ruth

In an article entitled, ‘Bible heroine crosses cultures’ Bible Society’s recent supporters newsletter has a wonderful story of the Bible and mission in action. They recently co-funded a production of the story of Ruth that was used to engage with asylum communities in the UK:

It started when Bible Society’s Arts Development Officer Luke Walton suggested to a theatre company the possibility of exploring the Old Testament story.

‘We didn’t know the story of Ruth,’ said No Nonsense Theatre’s Artistic co-Director Lisa O’Hanlon. ‘The first time we read the biblical account we weren’t enthusiastic at all. Yet when we explored the Jewish history and looked at the Christian perspective, it became clear many women share her story today.

‘But it wasn’t until we involved the asylum community that this story really came to life. As the women who’d been forced to flee their own countries walked past our picture board portraying famine, grief, displacement and alienation, they each remarked, “That’s my story”.

It’s a beautiful account of  some of the ways in which the Bible can build bridges, express human experience, and connect. Here is a link to the whole article: Bible Heroine Crosses Cultures article