Chapter 12: Story of Love - Radical

Chapter 12: Story of Love

The story of Ruth contains every element of a moving love story and provides a powerful example of the redeeming love of God. In this message on Ruth 3, Pastor David Platt explains how just as Ruth recognized her need for redemption, we too must recognize our need for Christ. After recognizing her need for redemption, Ruth chose to trust in the love of her redeemer. Christians today are called to do the same.

  1. Jesus alone has the right to redeem us.
  2. Jesus alone has the resources to redeem us.
  3. Jesus alone has the resolve to redeem us.

I want to set the stage for what is about to happen during our time together this morning. There’s a short story tucked away in the beginning of the Old Testament called the book of Ruth, and it is the love story of all love stories. Hollywood has absolutely nothing – the Twilight series has absolutely nothing on the book of Ruth. It has all the elements of a love story – tragedy, despair, hope, triumph, romance, all wrapped into one, and every single detail just comes together almost as if the author has designed it all for a purpose. 

Almost as if the author is pointing us to an even bigger story. What I want you to see this morning is how the story of Ruth ultimately points us to the story of Jesus, and then beyond that points us to our stories, represented all across this room. And so I want to pray for us, and I want us to pray that God would help us all across this room to see, feel, and know his love for us, maybe in an altogether new and fresh way. 

Even if you are here and not a Christian this morning, I pray that today might be the first time where your heart is opened to the love of God for you. Regardless of whether you’re a Christian or not a Christian; whether you are hurting or happy this morning; whether you feel lonely or you feel loved this morning; whether things are going in your life just like you planned, or nothing’s going in your life like you planned. I pray that regardless of the circumstances God’s love might meet you right where you are this morning. So let’s pray toward that end. 

God, on this Easter Sunday morning we pause to thank you for the love that you have shown us, and to ask you to help us all across this room to understand your love today in a powerful – maybe even an altogether new – way. Towards that end we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen. 

[Video playing] 

Female: I’m not especially significant in any way, but I have a story – God’s story through me. My name is Ruth. The story begins with my mother-in-law, Naomi. She and her husband Elimelech and their two sons lived in Bethlehem, and until the famine they lived a full and happy life. But as conditions got worse, they had no choice but to leave for Moab – my country. They were just making a new life when Elimelech died. Naomi poured her strength into her two sons. 

She found a wife for Chilion, named Orpah, and she found me. I married Mahlon, and we were happy for several years. Naomi accepted us like daughters – I think that she was just happy to have more women in the house. And Orpah and I loved her like our own mothers. But before we knew it, it was over. Chilion and my Mahlon died, and we were alone. Naomi’s only family was ripped away. She cried for months; her grief was overwhelming. 

Song: 

There is so much sorrow in my heart, 

And I’m trying so hard not to fall apart, 

But when all I feel is bitterness inside 

It’s hard to reason why God keeps me alive.

So long, familiar; 

So long, my whole life. 

It’s all gone, and I’m trusting you 

When hope is hard to find. 

I’m hopeless, I’m hungry, 

I’ve lost all that I love. 

Afflicted and broken, 

There’s nothing left to crush. 

I’m just a widow 

With no promise of a dream; 

God has spoken, 

And my name will leave with me. 

So long, familiar; 

So long, my whole life. 

It’s all gone, and I’m trusting you 

When hope is hard to find. 

And I’ve lost my love, 

I’ve lost my sons, 

I’ve lost my youth, 

And I’ve lost my hope. 

I’m losing my way, 

I’m losing my mind, 

I’m losing my faith, 

More and more with time. 

So long, familiar; 

So long, my whole life. 

It’s all gone, and I’m trusting you 

When hope is hard to find 

Female: Moab had become a place of heartbreak and bad memories. Naomi decided she wanted to go back home, and stories of God’s provision in Israel gave her the courage to travel alone. I’ll never forget the day that Naomi told us she was leaving. Mahlon and Chilion had just – and now she was leaving. She told Orpah and I to go back home to our own mothers; maybe we could get married again, start over. We all wept, knowing that this could be the last time we would spend together. 

Orpah said goodbye and went home, back to her own family, but I – I clung to Naomi. I couldn’t imagine her leaving me. I couldn’t imagine deserting her – this woman who had accepted me into her home; my mother. No. Wherever she was going, I was going too. Her family was now mine. Her God was now my God. Come what may, I was not leaving her side. When we finally made it to Bethlehem the entire town welcomed us. They remembered Naomi as a woman full of joy, but this was not that woman. She was bitter, tired, worn. She was a survivor of some of the worst possible circumstances. 

She was uncertain and worried, and I was a stranger in their land, but her God of provision was now my God. He had provided before and I was trusting hard that he would take care of us again.

 

Song: 

It happened on the day that I Least expected any sign 

Of providence. 

I found myself in a foreign place, And my soul had never hurt this way, But I have confidence. 

And all life becomes a better plan. I searched the crowd to find his place. All seems uncertain. 

The spotlight falls and the music dies, But then he whispers in my mind Back behind the curtains. 

‘Cause I was made to find 

A refuge in only one place 

In this life – 

Under the wings of God 

Is where I find my strength to rise, ‘Cause I found favor in his eyes. Something I could never earn; A shelter in this raging storm, And nothing can shake me 

When I’m under the wings of God 

I’ve left behind all that I know To feel rejected and alone, 

As if I’m nothing. 

So many questions fill my head, The roads to darkness see up ahead, But this mind’s not changing. 

‘Cause I was made to find 

A refuge in only one place 

In this life – 

Under the wings of God 

Is where I find my strength to rise, ‘Cause I found favor in his eyes. Something I could never earn; A shelter in this raging storm, And nothing can shake me 

When I’m under the wings of God. 

Under the wings of God 

Is where I find my strength to rise, ‘Cause I found favor in his eyes. Something I could never earn; A shelter in this raging storm, And nothing can shake me 

When I’m under the wings of God.

 

Female: And we were under the wings of God, but our trip used up all of our resources. I desperately wanted to provide for this woman who had taken such good care of me. I heard that if you find favor with any of the landowners that they would allow you to follow the workers as they gather grain and pick up any of the leftovers. I found a certain field and got permission from the workers, and it was hard work, and sometimes even humiliating, but I was so thankful for the opportunity. 

Later that day the owner appeared. I hadn’t asked his position, and I was worried that he would find me presumptuous and even kick me off his land. He walked towards me and I lowered my head, anticipating his anger. But instead, he was kind and he spoke softly to 

  1. He told me to continue gathering in his field. He offered me rest and water. I had the boldness to ask him why he was treating me so kindly, and he had heard of Naomi and our situation. He knew I was taking care of her and he wanted to help. His name was Boaz. I was allowed to gather grain all day. 

Boaz invited me to eat my meals with him and with his workers, and when I got home to Naomi we were both in awe at the amount of grain that I had gathered. When I began telling her of Boaz and his kindness, she said that he was her relative, and she called him our kinsman-redeemer. Before we had our trust in God, but now we had proof. He was looking out for us; he was providing. He had the entire story written out. Our job was to trust. 

Song: 

I’m closer than you can see; 

My love is greater than you know. 

Feel the wave of my mercy, 

My arms are open. 

And I already know who’s gonna save you; 

I already wrote the end of the story. 

You were made for me, and I’ll never leave you, 

In the end, it’s all for my glory. 

Your life is my melody, 

Part of a song that I am singing. 

In the dark it’s hard to see 

There will be redemption in the morning. 

And I already know who’s gonna save you; 

I already wrote the end of the story. 

You were made for me, and I’ll never leave you, 

In the end, it’s all for my glory. 

Please me and wait 

As I cover you with my garments. 

Can’t you see you are my clay, 

And I’m the potter and you’re carrying my fingerprints. 

And I already know who’s gonna save you; 

I already wrote the end of the story. 

You were made for me, and I’ll never leave you, 

In the end, it’s all for my glory.

 

And I already know who’s gonna save you; 

I already wrote the end of the story. 

You were made for me, and I’ll never leave you, 

And in the end, you will be happy. 

In the end, you will be with me. 

In the end, it’s all for my glory. 

Female: Each day I went to Boaz’s field. His servant girls became my friends as we talked and worked together. But Naomi wanted more for me than the little life we had built together. She knew she couldn’t care for me forever. She expressed her desire for me to marry Boaz. She laid out a detailed plan. And though I agreed out of respect for Naomi and her wishes, I won’t deny my growing excitement at the possibility. 

That evening I followed the plan and customs that Naomi had laid out for me and expressed my interest to Boaz. He looked at me with those kind eyes, but he told me there was another kinsman who was closer in relation to Naomi, and he would speak to him immediately. I waited for what seemed like an eternity; I didn’t know whether to be eager, embarrassed, or hopeful. The next day, with excitement in his voice, he told me that I would be his wife. Now God has not only given me a husband, but a son – an heir to this incredible story. And I am in awe. 

Though my life didn’t take the journey I would’ve had or chosen now I can’t imagine it any other way. Through my sadness, loss, loneliness, and uncertainty God gave me incredible joy, provision, and a family. He brought me from barrenness to blessing; from sorrow to satisfaction – his wonderful plan of a redeemer who loved me. 

Song: 

I see your smile 

And it’s so much sweeter after all that I’ve been through; 

And when we laugh 

I get a glimpse of forever, and I praise God that I found you. 

And any time someone asks me 

How it all unfolded, I tell them 

Such incredible chances 

Make for marvelous love. 

And just like the sun lights up the moon, 

This love is a reflection of more than just me and you. 

Our lives were less than ordinary – 

While I couldn’t see past tomorrow, God was making history. 

Oh my, what a beautiful story of love. 

Unexpected mercy 

Is the greatest thing to find when you’ve been broken many times. 

And my soul found joy; 

For the first time in a while I felt like singing. 

And any time someone asks me 

How it all unfolded, I tell them 

Such incredible chances 

Make for marvelous love.

 

And just like the sun lights up the moon, 

This love is a reflection of more than just me and you. 

Our lives were less than ordinary – 

While I couldn’t see past tomorrow, God was making history. 

Oh my, what a beautiful story. 

Just like the sun lights up the moon, 

This love is a reflection of more than just me and you. 

Our lives were less than ordinary – 

While I couldn’t see past tomorrow, God was making history. 

Oh my, what a beautiful story – 

Oh my, what a beautiful story – 

What a beautiful story of love. 

[End video] 

The Story of Ruth And Ephesians 1:7—8

So what in the world does the story of Ruth have to do with Easter Sunday? And even deeper, have to do with every single one of our lives in this room? I want to invite you take that notes page out again, and I provided some verses on the page there. The story of Ruth really comes down to two main points, and they’re epitomized in this one small verse tucked away in the middle of Ruth chapter 3 in the Bible. It happened on a night when Ruth went to Boaz in the middle of the night. Nothing impure at all, but they came face to face with one another, and this is their conversation. 

“He [Boaz] said, ‘Who are you?’ And she answered, ‘I am Ruth, your servant. Spread your wings over your servant, for you are a redeemer’” (Ruth 3:9). Now, background on that word redeemer. As you heard in the story, Ruth and Naomi had both lost their husbands, and neither of them had children – no one to carry on their line. No heir. They had no family. And not just no family – they had no food; no one to provide for them. But God had set it up among the Israelites in that day where for a situation like this, someone who is a close relative – you heard the word kinsman, a near kinsman – could redeem someone in Naomi and Ruth’s position. 

She realized the need for her redemption. 

And that word redeem literally means to purchase and restore. To restore them, to provide for them, to take care of them, which would obviously involve a price. And so the picture is Ruth goes to Boaz and says, “You are our redeemer.” Now here are the two points. Ruth, first of all, realized the need for her redemption. She knew that she needed a redeemer, so she approached Boaz – a bit forcefully – and said, “You can redeem me.” The only problem is Ruth was not the most likely of candidates for redemption. Her past was not clean. Ruth was a Moabite, and Moabites and Israelites had a history. 

It all went back and started when an Israelite man had an incestuous relationship with his daughter – that’s where the Moabites started. And it didn’t get much better after that. They were known for immorality and idolatry. They indulged in human sacrifices. They were known in particular for sexual immorality. There was one point when Moabite women seduced Israelite men into immorality and adultery and idolatry, and as a result, 24,000 Israelite men died. Like when that happens, you don’t go near Moabite women ever, ever, ever again.

And so here’s Ruth, a Moabite, living in a land of Israelites – a Moabite woman. Her past was not clean and her future was not certain. It was anything but certain. Ruth was guaranteed nothing – not just because she was a Moabite, but because she had no family, no heir, no source of provision. Even her mother-in-law Naomi was in the same boat here. If they did not have someone come and redeem them, they would be left without any family – left to starve, possibly, with no heir to carry on their line. She knew the need for her redemption. 

She trusted the love of her redeemer. 

And second, she trusted the love of her redeemer. Ruth knew that Boaz loved her. It was clear from the start, really. When she just so happened to find herself in Boaz’s field, and he just so happened to walk up and see her. Amidst all the other people in the field, Boaz looks and sees this Moabite woman. And what he does is he seeks after her. He goes past all of the other people in his field and comes up to her and speaks, the scripture says. The story says he speaks tenderly to her. 

Think of it: the lord of the harvest field seeking after this Moabite woman. Not only seeking her out, but saving her from harm. It was common in situations like this for women in these fields to be mistreated, and so Boaz says to her, “I’m going to take personal responsibility to make sure that you are protected in this field.” And then in what’s an incredible scene in the second chapter of this story, not only has he sought her out and saved her from harm, but Boaz serves Ruth at his table. 

He invites her to sit there at the table with him and his friends for a nice, romantic meal over roasted grain. And not only is she sitting there, but he – the lord of the harvest – is serving her – the Moabite woman – at his table. And he sends her back to Naomi that day with more grain than she ever could’ve imagined having, and says, “You come back to my fields and you will be provided for, and you will be protected.” 

And so that’s what had happened leading up to that picture in Ruth chapter 3, but the problem was still there. She still needed a redeemer. She was still without family and without guarantee of food. And so she comes to Boaz – now here’s the deal. In order for someone to redeem another, there were certain qualifications that had to be met. Not just any person could redeem another person’s family. Three qualifications in particular that Boaz had to meet in order to be able to redeem Ruth and Naomi. 

First, he must have the right to redeem her. The law said you had to be a near relative, a near kinsman. And the closer relative you were to the deceased husband, the greater right you had to redeem. So first he must have the right to redeem. Second, he must have the resources to redeem. There was a redemption price, and even deeper than that, to purchase this family’s property, but then to provide for this family. There was a cost involved, and somebody had to have the resources to provide that way. 

He must have the right to redeem, he must have the resources to redeem, and third, he must have the resolve to redeem her. Simply put, he had to want to redeem her, and that was the key, because right after they have this conversation in Ruth 3, and Ruth said, “You, our redeemer, spread your wings over your servant. Redeem me.” Boaz looks at her and says, “Actually, there is another guy who is a closer relative who has the right to redeem you. And so I will go to him as soon as possible and find out if he will redeem you. And if he wants to, then he will. But if he doesn’t want to, I will absolutely redeem you.”

And it sets the stage for this climactic scene in the fourth chapter of the story of Ruth, where Boaz and this other random guy come face to face with one another. And Boaz looks at him and says, “There is a close relative, Naomi, whose husband has died, and you have the right to redeem her. Do you want to?” 

And the guy looks back at Boaz – this random guy – he says, “Yes, I will redeem her.” And you’re reading the story, and your heart just sinks, and you think, “Oh, Boaz, you blew it, man.” Like Ruth’s about to get on the horse with this other random guy and ride off – like no! And that’s when Boaz speaks up, and he says, “Oh, one more detail I forgot to tell you. See, Naomi has a daughter-in-law named Ruth, and just a small detail about her – she’s a 

Moabite. You remember them?” And the guy looks back at Boaz and says, “They’re all yours, bro.” 

He says, “I will not take responsibility for them and I will not redeem them. And then Boaz steps up – this is one of those moments where you can like hear the orchestral triumph in the background of the scripture as Boaz steps forward and says, “I will redeem her.” And he brings her into his family. They’re married. But even that’s not the climax of the story, because Ruth and Boaz have a son, whose name is Obed. 

The Story of Jesus Through Ephesians 1:7—8

At a very, very dark time in Israelite history, Obed becomes a glimmer of light, because Obed, the end of the story tells us, will become the father of Jesse, and Jesse will become the father of King David – the most important king for the Israelites in Old Testament history. But even that’s not the end of the story, because you get to the first chapter in the New Testament, and the first chapter in the New Testament tells us that Ruth had a son named Obed who had a son named Jesse who had a son named King David. 

And King David is the one through whom – his line – would come Jesus. And so the story of Ruth is written on the pages of human history ultimately to point us to the reality and the story of Jesus. And that’s where we pick up – you’ve got Ephesians chapter 1 written in front of you. Listen to the language the New Testament uses to describe Jesus. 

“In him [Jesus] we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us” (Ephesians 1:7—8). This love story just jumped to a cosmic scale. This is no longer a story of redemption with a woman in a field and a land owner. Now it’s a world, filled with people whose past is not clean. A world filled with you and I and everyone else in all history, all of us stained with sin. 

And not only stained with sin, but suffering under the effects of sin. A room tonight where every single one of us in some way is familiar with pain and hurt and regret and loneliness and fractured relationships, broken marriages and all the effects of sin that surround us. An entire world separated from God, experiencing the reality of that separation on a daily basis, having rebelled against the authority of God. 

Not only a world where everyone’s past is unclean, but where we have a future that is uncertain. How can a world in sin be reconciled to a God who is holy? That’s the question. It is the most important question in all of history. How can sinful men be reconciled, restored to a holy God? It is the question that every single major religion attempts to answer. And this is where we see most clearly that Jesus Christ is set apart from every major religion or every major religious leader. 

Ephesians 1:7—8 Says Jesus alone has the right to redeem us.

Think about it with me: He alone – Jesus alone – has the right to redeem us. You remember in order to redeem you had to be a near kinsman. You had to be close and familiar as a relative to that kinsman. And it makes sense – in order to restore this person to this person, someone – the restorer – must be familiar with both people. It makes sense. So in order to restore sinful men and women to a holy God, one must be familiar with both, and this is where we see the uniqueness of Jesus. 

Number one: He is divine over us; He is God. He is God in the flesh. He is divine over us, and He is human like us. He is God and man. This is the reality of who Christ is, and the wonder, the beauty of what Christ has done. In order to redeem us, God has come to us. He is not far off from us, disconnected from our lives and all that we experience; He is familiar with us. No one else can make that claim. He alone has the right to redeem us. 

Jesus alone has the resources to redeem us. 

Jesus alone has the resources to redeem us, in two ways. First, He has power over sin. Yes, He is like us in every way. The Bible says He’s like us in every way except one – He is without sin. And it makes sense yet again; in order to save us from our sin, one must have no sin. If one has sin that He needs to be saved from, then how can He save us? And no other person has made or come close to proving that claim. You look at major religious leaders – whether it’s Mohammed or Gandhi or even someone like Mother Teresa, and they all admitted they were sinners. 

Jesus stands apart as the sinless one. But that’s not all. He not only has power over sin – what is the payment of sin? Death – and so the one who has power over sin must also by necessity to be able to defeat the payment of sin and to conquer the payment of sin. And this is where we realize Jesus not only has power over sin – He has authority over death. Who else in all of history can have their lungs stop breathing and their heart stop beating for days, only to decide, “I am coming back to life,” and do so. 

Jesus alone has the resolve to redeem us. 

Every other major religious leader in the past or present has died or will die. There is only one on the pages of human history who is alive, and His name is Jesus. He alone has the resources to redeem us; no one else. He has the right to redeem us. He alone has the resources to redeem us. And Jesus alone has the resolve to redeem us, and this is where it gets really personal, ladies and gentlemen. He seeks us as his own. 

The Story of Our Lives … 

Feel the wonder of this! You and I are Ruth. We are in the field with nothing in us to draw him to us; stained with sin, past unclean. And think of it – the God of the universe steps off his throne in glory and comes to you. He seeks after you. He does not say, “Find your way to me.” He seeks us as His own. He saves us by His mercy. We are in a dangerous position; an eternally dangerous position in our sin before a holy God, because God – don’t miss this – God is infinite in His goodness, which means He possesses holy wrath against sin, and expresses holy judgment against sin. That is evidence of his goodness. 

It is good that God is dead set against anything that hurts us. And so in His goodness and His holiness, He is set to pour out wrath upon sin and judgment upon sin, which puts us in a very eternally dangerous position, because we stand in our sin before a holy God who is set to pour out wrath and judgment upon sin. Who will save us? Someone who comes along and says, “Try to live a better life. Follow these steps. Walk down this path.” The reality is any path we walk down or steps we follow, we will take our sin with us.

We need someone who can take the payment of our sin in our place, and that’s exactly what Jesus has done on the cross. The sinless one has stood in the place that you and I deserve to stand, and taken the wrath and judgment that you and I deserved to receive. 

One preacher said it’s as if you and I were standing in front of a dam 10,000 miles high and 10,000 miles wide, filled with water. And in an instant, that dam was let loose, and that water came rushing like a torrent toward you. And right before that water was about to overtake you, the ground in front of your feet opened up and swallowed up every last drop. 

So in the same way – in a much, much greater way – Christ on the cross took the full torrent of the wrath of God due sin and the judgment of God upon sin. He took it all upon himself. The infinite wrath of a holy God He took upon Himself. He drank down every single last drop, turned that cup over, and cried out, “It is finished.” And He saves us by His mercy, and He says “You are protected in my field,” so that He might – get this – serve us at His table. 

So that we sinners, having rebelled against the authority of God, would be invited to feast at the table of God with eternal pleasures at His right hand; not just to sit there, but to be served by Him. To every teenager in this room, running after the pleasures this world has to offer, I urge you to see that the God of the universe has invited you to His table to feast on pleasures that everything this world offers put together cannot even begin to compare with. 

To every college student in this room who’s running after the pursuits this world has to offer, I invite you to see that the God of the universe has invited you to His table to pursue infinite delight in his glorious greatness, and to settle for anything less is not just wrong, it is ridiculous. To every businessman and businesswoman in this room, running after the plaudits and promotions that this world has to offer you, I invite you to see that the God of the universe has invited you to sit at his table and receive an eternal inheritance that is worth more than any salary you’ll ever make in Birmingham, Alabama. 

To every single man or woman, every married man or woman longing for, aching for relationship that heals, that doesn’t hurt; that lasts, that can bring confidence and you can count on and be satisfied in, I invite you to see that the God of the universe has invited you to his table as His bride – eternal bride. And He will never fail you. He will never fail to satisfy the deepest longings of your heart. 

To every parent or grandparent in this room longing for a family of peace and security and joy, realize that the God of the universe has invited you to His table as His family, as sons and daughters, to be served by Him – Jesus is a good redeemer. He is the only redeemer, 

which is where the story of Jesus now intersects with the story of every single one of our lives in this room. This is the ultimate love story. 

Romans 3 says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified [it means reconciled or restored] by his grace as a gift, through the [here it is again] redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation [that word literally means that God put him forward as one who would turn aside his wrath] by his blood, [and here’s the key phrase] to be received by faith (Romans 3:23—25). Love is not realized until it is received. 

Can you imagine Boaz stepping forward and saying, “Ruth, I will redeem you.” Can you imagine Ruth looking back into Boaz’s face and saying, “No. I don’t need you, Boaz. I do not want you. I will do this on my own.” It would make no sense to look in the face of the only one who has the right and the resources and the resolve to redeem you, and say, “No.” And so I ask every single person in this room – not the person beside you, in front of you, behind you. Right where you are sitting, I ask you this question: Will you reject this redeemer, or will you receive this redeemer? 

Will you reject his love, or will you receive his love? That is the question that determines your eternity. You say, “How do I receive it?” We receive it by faith. And what does that mean? To put it in the context of the story, I would ask you, do you – first and foremost, do you realize the need for your redemption? Do you realize that in your sin you are separated from a holy God, and apart from his redemption you have nothing to turn to? You have a past that is unclean, and a future that is dangerously uncertain. 

The reality – feel the weight of this – the reality, not one of us is guaranteed the next minute, the next 60 seconds; the reality that any moment you may find yourself standing in your sin before a holy God, and at that point it will be too late to look for a redeemer. Do you realize the need for your redemption? Are you willing to put aside your pride and your independence, and to come face to face with the fact that you need a redeemer? 

And then will you trust the love of your redeemer? Will you say to Jesus, “I need you to spread your wings over me, for you are my only redeemer?” Here’s what I want you to do. I want us not to move, put stuff away, this or that. I want to invite you just to bow your heads in an attitude of prayer with me, and I want to go just immediately here – not to move, put things away. Bow your heads, close your eyes with me. I ask you to do that just to focus. I wish I could have this conversation with every single person in the room tonight. 

I want to ask you in the quietness of this moment – I do not know the circumstances of your life or the condition of your heart. But I want to ask you tonight, do you realize the need for your redemption? Are you willing to put aside your pride and your attempts to 

make it on your own? Do you realize that you need someone to restore you to God? And will you then trust in the love of your redeemer? As you come face to face at this moment with the only one who has the right, the only one who has the resources, and the only one who has the resolve to redeem you, will you reject him or will you receive him? 

And I want to urge you in the quietness of this room right now to receive him. In your heart, right now, to say, “I need your redemption – the redemption that can only come in Jesus, who died on the cross to save me from my sin and is risen from the grave in victory over sin. I need you to redeem me, to restore me, to reconcile me, to bring me to the table, not just now, but for all of eternity.” And when you say that in your heart, in this moment, this holy moment right now that could change everything in eternity for you – when you say, “I trust the love of my redeemer,” then the God of the universe looks upon your life and says, “Redeemed.” 

Redeemed – not because of anything you have done or could ever do, but redeemed because of what Christ has done on your behalf, and brought into relationship with him to walk with him and to enjoy him for all of eternity. Will you receive him? I pray that right now you would say “yes.”

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

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