Marriage Keys Revealed in Names
by Eitan Shiskoff, Executive Director, Tents of Mercy Network

Boaz's parents were born in the United States, Rebecca's in the former Soviet Union. He grew up in the Galilean countryside; she was raised in the city. They met through the Tents of Mercy young adults' fellowship. Following a sweet courtship, they married this May in a beautiful wedding attended by several hundred guests from all over Israel.

I was privileged to perform the ceremony and shared these words while standing with them under the covering of the marriage canopy (chupah):

Together, you have an amazing, godly heritage that brings together two key Jewish people groups from opposite sides of the earth. Uniquely, your names are found in two of the greatest biblical love stories. By exploring the significance of the names of these two couples: Isaac and Rebecca and Boaz and Ruth, we can discover keys to God's blessing in the covenant of marriage, a lifetime of love and fulfillment.

Rebecca and Isaac were brought together by Eliezer ("the help of my God") to be part of the lineage of the Messiah.

1. Rebecca, your name means "yoked". Your attraction to each other will be a permanent bond. Foster it. Enjoy it. Invest in it.

2. Isaac speaks of laughter. Maintaining a sense of humor is vital to a growing, enjoyable relationship. Don't lose the ability to laugh, to see the lighter side of life's absurdities and your own foibles.

Boaz and Ruth were brought together generations later in an Israeli harvest field. Theirs was a union born of faith, not unlike yours, which made them one despite their differences in origin. Notably, their union also figures in world redemption, by bringing forth King David (their great grandson), thus inaugurating the line of King Messiah as the Son of David.

3. One of the interpretations of the name Boaz is "friend". Being friends, developing a vibrant lasting, ever-deepening friendship will make all the difference as your formerly separate lives combine, becoming a loving and supportive partnership.

Combining the four ingredients inherent in these names will make for an enduring feast.

We are standing under the chupah, where Heaven and Earth meet. May that ever be the reality of your relationship, and may it grow richer with every day. We love you!

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