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“I will do for you all that you request, for all the people of my town know that you are a virtuous woman. Now it is true that I am a close relative [“near kinsman,” KJV]; however, there is a relative closer than I. …If he will perform the duty of a close relative for you-good; let him do it. But if he does not want to perform the duty for you, then I will perform the duty for you, as the Lord lives” (Ruth 3:11-13)

Who was the redeemer in the book of Ruth? The nearest of kin. The redeemer must be not only one who was near of kin, but he must be the nearest among those who were near. Therefore Boaz could not step into the place of redeemer until, by another stepping out of place, he became really the nearest. That is the point made in the second chapter of Hebrews.

In Ruth, you remember Naomi’s husband had died. The inheritance has fallen into the hands of others. When she came back from Moab, it had to be redeemed. This is the story also in the second chapter of Hebrews. Adam had an inheritance, the earth, and he lost it, and he himself was brought into bondage. In the gospel in Leviticus, if one had lost his inheritance, it could be redeemed; but only the nearest of kin could redeem (Lev. 25:25, 26, 47-49).

We need a redeemer! But only he who is nearest in blood relationship can perform the office of redeemer. Jesus Christ is nearer than a brother, nearer than anyone. He is nearest among the brethren-nearest of kin. Not only one with us, but He is one of us, and one with us by being one of us.

In all points of temptation, wherever we are tempted, He is ourselves right there. In all points in which it is possible for me to be tempted, He stood right there against all the knowledge and ingenuity of Satan to tempt me. And thus comprehending the whole human race, He stands in every point where any one of the human race can be tempted. In Him we are complete against the power of temptation. In Him we are overcomers. “Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (Jn. 16:33).

Jones, General Conference Bulletin, 1895, pp. 232,233

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