The Book of RUTH
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Boaz Marries Ruth

Then went Boaz up to the gate, and sat him down there: and, behold, the kinsman of whom Boaz spake came by; unto whom he said, Ho, such a one! turn aside, sit down here. And he turned aside, and sat down. And he took ten men of the elders of the city, and said, Sit ye down here. And they sat down. And he said unto the kinsman, Naomi, that is come again out of the country of Moab, selleth a parcel of land, which was our brother Elimelech's:

And I thought to advertise thee, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know: for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it.

Then said Boaz, What day thou buyest the field of the hand of Naomi, thou must buy it also of Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance. And the kinsman said, I cannot redeem it for myself, lest I mar mine own inheritance: redeem thou my right to thyself; for I cannot redeem it.

Now this was the manner in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning changing, for to confirm all things; a man plucked off his shoe, and gave it to his neighbour: and this was a testimony in Israel. Therefore the kinsman said unto Boaz, Buy it for thee. So he drew off his shoe.

And Boaz said unto the elders, and unto all the people, Ye are witnesses this day, that I have bought all that was Elimelech's, and all that was Chilion's and Mahlon's, of the hand of Naomi.

Moreover Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, have I purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead upon his inheritance, that the name of the dead be not cut off from among his brethren, and from the gate of his place: ye are witnesses this day. And all the people that were in the gate, and the elders, said, We are witnesses.

The LORD make the woman that is come into thine house like Rachel and like Leah, which two did build the house of Israel: and do thou worthily in Ephratah, and be famous in Bethlehem: And let thy house be like the house of Pharez, whom Tamar bare unto Judah, of the seed which the LORD shall give thee of this young woman. (Ruth 4:1-12)

The Book of RUTH

The Book of Ruth is an inspiring love story, which demonstrates God's providential care. The name of the author is not given, but traditionally the book is credited to Samuel. The Book of Ruth was originally part of the Book of Judges. However, by New Testament times was included on a scroll with four other books that were read publicly at the feasts of Israel. These books were known as the Five Megilloth (scrolls) and were arranged in the following order: Song of Solomon, Ruth, Lamentations, Ecclesiastes, Esther. The Book of Ruth was read at the Feast of Harvest (Pentecost) because much of the story is set in the harvest fields.

Ruth is one of the four women named in the genealogy of Jesus (Matt. 1:5). The genealogy at the end of the book is very important because it shows that God chose Ruth, a woman from the heathen land of Moab, to be an ancestor of King David.

The story of Ruth probably took place during the time of Gideon (ca. 1130 BC.). The famine mentioned in Ruth seems to correspond to the oppression by the Midianites and Israel's subsequent deliverance (Ruth 1:1, 6, cf. Judg. 6:3, 4). Jewish tradition holds that Ruth lived at the same time as Eli the priest. Since she was at least the great-grandmother of David, she must have lived around the twelfth century B.C..

Several laws and customs were involved in the proceedings, which led to the marriage of Boaz and Ruth. According to Deuteronomy 25:5, if a woman's husband died and she was left without children, her husband's brother was required to marry her so that there could be an heir to carry on the name of the man who had died. Since Ruth's deceased husband, Mahlon, had no other living brothers, she would most likely have remained unmarried.
However, Naomi and Ruth decided to sell the land that belonged to Elimelech, Mahon, and Chilion. The historian Josephus explains that in this case, the nearest kinsman would customarily have the first option to buy the land, but he would also be expected to marry Ruth (Antiquities V 9. 4.).
The nearest kinsman to Ruth refused to buy the land because in raising up heirs to Mahlon he would have marred his own inheritance (Ruth 4:6). In other words, any children born to him and Ruth would be the heirs to all his fortune, making it impossible for him to give an inheritance to those of his own family name.  [Source for Introduction of chapter: Hebrew Greek Key Study Bible KJV edited by Spiros Zodhiates, Th.D. AMG Publishers, Chattanooga, TN 37422]

Ruth 1
Ruth 2
Ruth 3
Ruth 4
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