Text: Ruth 2
Hymn: 555, Salvation unto Us Has Come
Kretzmann Commentary: Ruth 2
Bonus Bumper: Tennessee Ernie Ford, Bringing in the Sheaves
In the past when I heard the story of Ruth I had never noticed how Naomi put two and two together. She knew the family of Elimelech, but she wouldn’t have thought to ask unless Ruth brought home a larger than normal amount of grain.
555 is one of my favorite hymns. Written by Paul Speratus, you will be hard-pressed to find a hymn that teaches more doctrine and delivers more good news than “Salvation unto Us Has Come. It even tells us why, when good works don’t save us, why we still do them. Great stuff.
Thanks to Anna and John Baseley for singing, and to Cantor Jake Weber for accompanying.
- Salvation unto us has come
By God’s free grace and favor;
Good works cannot avert our doom,
They help and save us never.
Faith looks to Jesus Christ alone,
Who did for all the world atone;
He is our one redeemer.
- What God did in His Law demand
And none to him could render
Caused wrath and woe on every hand
For man, the vile offender.
Our flesh has not those pure desires
The spirit of the Law requires,
And lost is our condition.
- It was a false, misleading dream
That God his Law had given
That sinners could themselves redeem
And by their works gain heaven.
The Law is but a mirror bright
To bring the inbred sin to light
That lurks within our nature.
- From sin our flesh could not abstain,
Sin held its sway unceasing;
The task was useless and in vain,
Our guilt was e’er increasing.
None can remove sin’s poisoned dart
Or purify our guileful heart–
So deep is our corruption.
- Yet as the Law must be fulfilled
Or we must die despairing,
Christ came and has God’s anger stilled,
Our human nature sharing.
He has for us the Law obeyed
And thus the Father’s vengeance stayed
Which over us impended.
- Since Christ has full atonement made
And brought to us salvation,
Each Christian therefore may be glad
And build on this foundation.
Your grace alone, dear Lord, I plead,
Your death is now my life indeed,
For you have paid my ransom.
- Let me not doubt, but truly see
Your Word cannot be broken;
Your call rings out, “Come unto Me!”
No falsehood have You spoken.
Baptized into Your precious name,
My faith cannot be put to shame,
And I shall never perish.
- The Law reveals the guilt of sin
And makes us conscience-stricken;
But then the Gospel enters in
The sinful soul to quicken.
Come to the cross, trust Christ, and live;
The Law no peace can ever give,
No comfort and no blessing.
- Faith clings to Jesus’ cross alone
And rests in him unceasing;
And by its fruits true faith is known,
With love and hope increasing.
For faith alone can justify;
Works serve our neighbor and supply
The proof that faith is living.
- All blessing, honor, thanks and praise
To Father, Son, and Spirit,
The God who saved us by his grace;
All glory to his merit.
O triune God in heav’n above,
You have revealed your saving love;
Your blessèd name we hallow.