Who Wrote It? Reverend Arie Leder on Ruth and Esther: Wise Living Far from Home

By Josh DeGroot

December 30, 2016

Have you ever finished reading your daily Today devotion and wondered what inspired the author’s thoughts and reflections? If so, our “Who Wrote It” feature is just for you. Listen to this podcast interview and follow along with the transcript below to learn more about this month’s author and what he hopes you might take away from this series.

Josh DeGroot – Welcome to todaydevotional.com’s Who Wrote It, where we get to know our Today authors better and understand the inspiration behind their writing. Joining me on the line is the man who kicks off the new year with his January devotionals, Professor Arie Leder. Arie, thanks for joining us.

Arie Leder – You’re welcome. Thank you.

Josh DeGroot – The beginning of the year goes back, literally, to the beginning – two Old Testament books and the stories of Ruth and Esther; so tell us why you decided to write about these two women for your Today devotions.

Arie Leder – I decided to do these two books called Ruth and Esther for a variety of reasons. First of all, because they urge us…both of these books…they urge us to do good and be wise. Ruth demonstrates loyalty to God’s Word, and Esther really talks about being wise in the face of threatened destruction; and then secondly, because I like to work through a whole book for Today – a month of Today devotionals; it is kind of difficult to do a whole month on Ruth or on Esther, so I decided to do both of them.

Josh DeGroot – I liked the particular devotion of the 31st, entitled: Same Old, Same Old; because you are right. Sometimes we make these resolutions and then by the end of the month, it is back to the same old thing. What do you think is the best way for us to avoid these same old, same old, as far as our spiritual walk, and how can we experience newness and wisdom daily?

Arie Leder – That, of course, is the age-old problem of Christian spirituality, and I think what we have to recognize is that newness is not something we do, but what God has given us; and the continuing self-disciplined attention to the good that we have received, and the bad that we tend to fall into time and time again.

Josh DeGroot – What do you want people to learn from these devotions this month?

Arie Leder – The importance of working out, spiritually that is, working out our received identity; the identity we have received in Jesus Christ; and as that identity can be sharpened as iron sharpens iron in terms of loyalty to the Word as the book of Ruth demonstrates, and how we respond as Christians, wisely and shrewdly, in an increasingly hostile culture – increasingly hostile to the Church.

Josh DeGroot – Professor Arie Leder, thanks for joining us and thank you for kicking off the year with your devotionals.

Arie Leder – Thank you.

Josh DeGroot – I am Josh DeGroot, and together lets refresh, refocus, renew at todaydevotional.com.

About the author — Josh DeGroot

Josh DeGroot is a graduate of Columbia College in Chicago. Josh began as a sound engineer with Back to God Ministries International in July 2008. In addition to the "Who Wrote It?" interviews for Today, Josh works on almost every audio project produced by Back to God in the US. He also writes and produces episodes for our sister ministry, the children's program, Kids Corner. Josh lives in Alsip, IL with his wife. They are expecting their first child.

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