One of the most beloved stories of all time is that of Cinderella. I would imagine that most people can connect with the emotions of this fairy-tale. There are many renditions of this piece of literature over the years, but Ever After, is certainly my Sheri’s absolute favourite. I mean one year for her birthday, she told so many people about this film that she ended up with three copies as gifts. The story of this afterthought in life becoming royalty as the prominent love interest of the prince is overwhelming.
There are many Biblical comparisons to this adventure and many like to equate it to Esther, which certainly bears some similarities, but I think the book of Ruth captures this story of Redemption even better. It is here that we explore another name of God, Jehovah Go’el (Lord my Redeemer).
See in the book of Ruth, we have Naomi who leaves for a foreign land with her husband and two sons who die there. Many years later she returns empty handed with only the loyalty of Ruth, her daughter in-law, coming back with her. These women lost everything. Noami even tells people to start calling her Mara, meaning bitter, for this is how she viewed how the Almighty had dealt with her. Ruth was now a widowed foreigner in a strange land, left to glean leftovers of the fields to survive. A true afterthought in society, not much more than a slave, just like our Cinderella.
Then the story shifts, Boaz comes into the picture as a foreshadowing of our God. He becomes the outcast’s Go’el. He restores the rights of another and redeems Ruth. She becomes a mother in the line of ancestors of our Saviour, Jesus. Let’s learn more of this name of Jehovah.
The term Go’el comes from the Hebrew root word lig’ol (meaning to redeem). Go’el is a term that denotes a person who as the nearest blood relative of another is charged with the duty of restoring the rights of another, avenging his wrongs. This goes back to Leviticus 25:48-49 “48 after he is sold he may be redeemed again. One of his brothers may redeem him;”, and Numbers 5:8 “But if the man has no relative to whom restitution may be made for the wrong, the restitution for the wrong must go to the Lord for the priest, in addition to the ram of the atonement with which atonement is made for him.”. [Deuteronomy 25:5-6 & Numbers 35:9-30 states additional duties of the go’el.]. Go’el’s not only redeem slaves and enact justices, but in Ruth’s case raised up a seed for her dead family who became an heir.
Further in Isaiah 47 God references himself as the Redeemer (Go’el) of Israel. This means that he is the next of Kin blood relative with the responsibility to enact justice on those who have wronged you. In addition, it implies that one will be moving onto something greater. As we were all sold into the slavery of sin, the importance of a Go’el becomes ever so much more important. This person (Go’el) has the rights to redeem that person out of slavery. Who better fulfills this then our Saviour at the cross where he paid the price for our freedoms and made us heirs of God. Galatians 4:4-5 “But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.”. and Titus 2:14 “Who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.”
Our Jehovah is a mighty Redeemer. He brings us freedom and promotion. He lifts up out of the wallows of the pains of life and the bitterness that knocks on our doors. He sees when we are wronged and defenseless. He comes in the fierce protective nature of a father and enacts justice on our behalf. We can count on it, we can take it to the bank that Jehovah won’t decline his responsibility as Go’el in our lives. He instead defends our honour by putting his name on the line for us undeserving peasants, making us of royal blood. Have you ever needed someone to stand up for you? Speak on your behalf when you had no voice, been falsely accused, or your character assassinated? You need to look no further, Jehovah Go’el in here.
Here is how we pray the name of Jehovah Go’el. I thank you Lord that you are my Redeemer this day. That you have set me free from the bondages of sin and everything that I have been captive to in my life. Free from addictions, fear, abuse, anger, unforgiveness…I thank you that you see me in my afflictions and come to my aid. That you stand up for me when no one else does. That you have made me an heir of God. I pray that you will enact justice on my behalf where injustice has prevailed. You are a good God and thank you that you are restoring to me that which was lost and providing restitution for me.