The Book of Ruth, part 15, Prophetic Measures
Jun 18, 2019
The ephah of barley that Ruth gleaned from Boaz’ field represented a Pentecostal measure of the Holy Spirit. An ephah is ten omers (Exodus16:36) but only a tenth of a homer (Ezekiel 45:11). Ezekiel 45:10-12 prophesies that the Kingdom of God will have just weights and measures.
The prophet was referring to the law in Deuteronomy 25:13-16. In verse 15, the Hebrew word translated “measure” is ephah, which the translators of the Greek Septuagint rendered as metron. The same is true in Ezekiel 45:11, where again the Greek word metron was established by the rabbis as the equivalent of ephah.
Measuring Truth and the Holy Spirit
Thus, John the Baptist testified of the Messiah in John 3:34,
34 For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God; for He gives the Spirit without measure [metron].
In other words, according to John, the Messiah’s word of truth was to be anointed by the Spirit “without measure.” While many may speak the words of God, they, like Paul, “prophesy in part” (1 Corinthians 13:9), because they yet “see in a mirror dimly” (1 Corinthians 13:12). Their words are not necessarily incorrect, but rather their words set forth incomplete truth.
He implies that the Messiah’s portion of the Spirit was to be greater than an ephah. There are three measures of the Holy Spirit. We are given the first measure (omer) of the Spirit through Passover when we are begotten by the Spirit. We are given a second measure (ephah) of the Spirit through Pentecost, when we receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The final measure (homer) is given through Tabernacles, when we receive the Holy Spirit without measure.
Because all three measures are established biblically, everyone receives a just reward in his or her measure of the Spirit, for each is given according to the progression from conception to birth. Those who are content with a smaller measure of the Spirit in their spiritual life are not defrauded by receiving only an omer or an ephah of the Spirit. An ephah is ten omers, but a homer is 100 omers. The number 100 signifies fullness or completeness.
Many evangelical and fundamentalist believers are resistant even to an ephah (Pentecostal portion), being content with an omer. Pentecostals rejoiced to see an ephah measured out to them, but many have no vision of Tabernacles. When the revelation of the feast of Tabernacles was given to the Church in the Latter Rain movement (1948-1952), most of the Pentecostal denominations rejected it and thereby blinded themselves to the revelation of Tabernacles.
The Requirement for Spiritual Maturity
Eventually, in order to come fully into the image of Christ, all must progress to the full measure of the Spirit, if only in the coming age. The Great White Throne judgment will reveal to all the true nature of God, along with His plan to save all mankind, for at that time every knee will bow and every tongue will confess (exomologeo, “profess”) Him as their Lord (Philippians 2:10, 11). The Greek word means “to acknowledge openly and joyfully.”
In another place, Paul says in Romans 14:11 that “every tongue will give praise to God,” which is the equivalent of declaring Him to be Lord to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:11).
Their profession of faith will grant “justification of life to all men” (Romans 5:18). Their praise and confession of Jesus as Lord will be made by the power of the Holy Spirit, for 1 Corinthians 12:3 tells us that “no one can say, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ except by the Holy Spirit.” Hence, not only will all men be justified, but all will also be filled with the Spirit. They will receive two measures of the Holy Spirit at that time—the measure of Passover and the measure of Pentecost.
However, even this is not the final measure of the Spirit, for they must yet learn the discipline of the “fiery law” (Deuteronomy 33:2 KJV) by which they may come to a place of spiritual maturity. Hence, during that age of divine judgment, the “fiery law” will ingrain their revelation into their lives through practical discipline as they live under the authority of the overcomers who rule and reign with Christ.
In my view that final age will last 42,000 years, or another six great “weeks” of history. Time will end only at the end of 49,000 years, when the Creation Jubilee is declared at the start of the fiftieth millennium. At that time, the “grape harvest” of creation will be fully trodden out and will receive the third and final measure of the Spirit, so that God can be “all in all” (1 Corinthians 15:28).
When Ruth brought an ephah of barley back to Naomi, on account of the generosity of Boaz, she was prophesying (inadvertently, no doubt) of a Pentecostal portion of the Spirit. This being the time of barley harvest (Ruth 2:23), her gleanings were gathered during the time that the people were counting the omer for the 50 days leading to Pentecost. Her ephah measured a greater portion than the average Judahite in Bethlehem was then measuring and counting. Yet the omer and the ephah were but differing measures.
Her measure during this time was ten times that of the others who were counting a mere omer. Even so, she still did not have the full measure (homer), which would signify the feast of Tabernacles and the fullness of the Spirit. Her story gives us a progression of events leading to the birth of her son, Obed, which properly overlays with the birthing of the sons of God on the first day of Tabernacles in prophecy. That event is reserved for a last page of her story.
When we understand how the law of weights and measures have prophetic applications, we are able to see how this small detail adds to our understanding of the overall divine plan.