Can Christians kneel at an elder’s grave or celebrate Halloween? Answer the questions below and then click "OK" to send your answers. What was really going on between Ruth and Boaz that night on the threshing floor? The fact is that by this point in the book, Ruth is no longer desperate. For more fun Bible quizzes like this, visit www.HopeFromTheBible.com/bible-quizzes. 2 Ruth meets Boaz. Title: Ruth and Boaz Word Search Created Date: 2 Now Boaz, with whose women you have worked, is a relative of ours. Scholars are divided over this question. Far from it. In my first post in response to this question, I answered the claim most commonly advanced in support of this interpretation. See also Ruth 2:8-9. Also see Ruth 4:1-12, "Boaz said to the elders, and to all the people, 'You are witnesses this day, that I have bought all that was Elimelech’s, and all that was Chilion’s and Mahlon’s, from the hand of Naomi..." Ruth 4:9 (WEB), "So the near kinsman said to Boaz, 'Buy it for yourself.' And there is no reason to believe that she would, not after seeing God provide for her when she stepped out into the unknown, first leaving her home country, and then bravely gleaning in the fields. How long did Ruth glean from Boaz's fields? 31. The poetry absolutely stands out there. Boaz praises Ruth as a “woman of noble character” and ensures that she leaves before dawn so that no one will get the wrong impression. Some might argue that this passage in Ezekiel is a “smoking gun” that proves the expression “spread the corner of one’s garment,” for its part, is a euphemism for sexual activity:  “When I looked at you and saw that you were old enough for love, I spread the corner of my garment over you and covered your naked body.”  But we need to understand this statement in the context of Ezekiel’s parable, in which the woman is represented as naked because she was abandoned as a baby and has never been cared for or provided for. What did it mean to spread the corner of your garment over someone? Seven Questions About the Story of Ruth. The poetry absolutely stands out there. So Ruth “set out and went and gleaned in the field after the reapers, and she happened to come to the part of the field belonging to Boaz, who was of the clan of Elimelech. Question: "Why did the first kinsman redeemer refuse to marry Ruth?" Ruth was a Moabite woman had come to Israel as the widow of an Israelite man. First, I’ve heard it said that since the threshing floor, where a successful harvest was celebrated, was notorious in ancient times as a place of drunkenness and immorality, we should only expect sexual activity there between Boaz and Ruth. Boaz talks with the closer kinsmen, who declines, and Ruth becomes Boaz’s wife. So there is no need for Ruth to resort to desperate tactics. She had returned with her mother-in-law, Naomi, who had also lost her husband. But Boaz is a ‘man of standing’ who’s in an adequate position to help out financially in this way.”, This explains why Boaz is the right husband for Ruth. Then go and uncover his feet and lie down. A better understanding of Hebrew idiom and Israelite customs shows that Ruth is not having sexual relations with Boaz when she “uncovers his feet.”  I’ll continue to address the claims that are made in support of a sexual interpretation of this passage in the book of Ruth in my next post. Ruth 3:6 (WEB), "Now, my daughter, don’t be afraid; I will do to you all that you say; for all the city of my people does know that you are a worthy woman. The hope is that, as the law intends, a, This explains why Boaz is the right husband for Ruth. 3 Wash, put on perfume, and get dressed in your best clothes. In other words, this is a symbolic act. But this also means that as young widow, Ruth is sacrificing the opportunity for a new love match with a man closer to her own age. I have two questions for your, a little more in depth. Answer: In Ruth 3:4, Naomi encouraged Ruth to go to Boaz at night, saying, “When he lies down, note the place where he is lying. I don’t think this language is actually taken from an ancient Israelite marriage ceremony. The sexual interpretation of this episode reflects an inadequate understanding of Hebrew vocabulary and idiom, of the thematic development of the book of Ruth, and of ancient Israelite customs. The story of Naomi, Ruth, and Boaz in the book of Ruth in the Bible teaches us that God loves to bless his people. Wings are spoken of as a covering, and a place of safety in the O.T. on Did Ruth seduce Boaz to get him to marry her? Q. I see that you are posting about Ruth on your blog. Why did Ruth and Orpah make different decisions? And behold, Boaz came from Bethlehem. 3) Which of Naomi's two daughters-in-law insisted on going with Naomi back to Israel? Any insight on this? He says, “I’ve been told all about what you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband—how you left your father and mother and your homeland and came to live with a people you did not know before.”. (Part 2), Did Ruth seduce Boaz to get him to marry her? and you became mine.”. Ruth Bible Study Guide – 4 Free Online Lessons With Discussion Questions. Why did the first kinsman redeemer refuse to marry Ruth? This, Boaz recognizes, is a “greater kindness,” an even more significant personal sacrifice than the one she’s already made by leaving her homeland. Arguments have continued to be added to the original claim that the phrase “she uncovered his feet” is a euphemism for sexual activity, so let me address two more of those arguments in this final post. Boaz acquiesces, willingly takes Ruth as his wife, and together they bear a son named Obed who became the grandfather of David, the forefather of Jesus. In the ancient oral culture, this would make the saying memorable and repeatable (kind of like an advertizing slogan today). Ruth 3:14 So she lay at his feet until morning, but got up before anyone could be recognized; and he said, “No one must know that a woman came to the threshing floor.” Boaz protected Naomi’s honour, as shown above. This page is also available in: हिन्दी (Hindi) In the Bible,the story of Ruth and Boaz can be found on the book of Ruth.Ruth, a Moabite woman, was married to an Israelite man named Elimelech who was sojourning with his parents in the land of Moab.Unfortunately the man, his brother, and father died in the land of Moab. Wasn’t the Messiah supposed to be named Emmanuel? 2) Who in Elimelek's immediate family did NOT die in Moab? Perhaps you were brought here by a search engine or by a link to one of the posts. Ruth 3:11-12 (WEB), "[Boaz] took ten men of the elders of the city..." Ruth 4:2 (WEB). Bible Quiz on Ruth. 6) Who asked Boaz to fulfill his role as kinsman redeemer? Related quizzes can be found here: Ruth Quizzes There are 95 questions on this topic. The passage also says that some significant time later (“in the middle of the night”), Boaz woke up and discovered Ruth “lying at his feet.”  This clearly refers to a location, and it suggests strongly that “feet” means literally feet throughout the passage. Naomi, Ruth, and Boaz show a sincere trust in Yahweh’s care and protection. Is not Boaz our relative, with whose young women you were? Why can't I feel God's presence in my life? Wash therefore and anoint yourself, and put on your The book of Ruth ominously warns us of the dangers an unprotected young woman faced during the period of the judges, but it also introduces Boaz as a God-fearing man who respects and protects women. Who was Ruth in the Bible? How long did the baby Jesus stay in the manger in the stable? Here goes: 1) Having translated the book of Ruth, I’m curious about the poetic lines that Ruth recites to Naomi when she makes her pledge in chapter 2. So the commandment in the law of Moses for a close relative to marry a widow, even if he was already married himself, was a compassionate provision for her needs and those of her current and future children and dependents. Boaz responded favorably, but he knew of an even closer male relative who would be first in line to redeem Ruth … If Jesus gave up his divine attributes to become incarnate, how was he able to do miracles? See, he is winnowing barley tonight at the threshing floor. (Part 1). She lived with _____. [Some questions on the text are here.] He will tell you what to do.”. Was Naomi happy that Ruth would be … Quiz on the Book of Ruth. What was really going on between Ruth and Boaz that night on the threshing floor? Let me begin in this post with the claim that the statement that Ruth “uncovered his feet” is a euphemism meaning that she had sexual relations with Boaz. 33. For example, when Sheba son of Bikri foments a rebellion against David, he shouts in poetry: We have no share in David, Is that right? 7) Where did Ruth go to tell Boaz that he was her kinsman redeemer? This was true generally of the threshing floor after harvest in the pagan world, and perhaps even in much of Israel during the period of the judges, in which the book of Ruth is set, when “everyone did as they saw fit.”. When they first meet, Boaz explains why he is showing her such favor. This interpretation has spread farther and wider than I’d ever imagined. The two women were destitute when they arrived back in Bethlehem, but now, after the barley and wheat harvests, they have plenty of food to make it through the winter. Some see this in contexts such as Isaiah’s vision of the seraphim, who covered their faces with two of their wings and their “feet” with two other wings. In response to my first two posts about it, someone contacted me to say that they’d recently heard it in Christian circles over on the other side of the world! "It happened in the days when the judges judged, that there was a famine in the land. Was Jesus the “angel of the Lord” who appeared to the shepherds? It follows the life of Naomi and Ruth as they struggle through difficult trials. The specific incest laws that follow use this same idiom. Q. And also you shall purposely pull out for her some grain from the bundles and leave it that she may glean, and do not rebuke her” (Ruth 2:15, 16). Why was Ruth so loyal to Naomi? Bible like in the Psalms. It’s surprising that Bibles don’t format them this way: Entreat me not to leave you Q. When she finished eating and got up to return to work, Boaz said to his servants, “Let her glean even among the sheaves, and do not insult her. 1) Why did Elimelek and his wife and two sons leave Bethlehem to go to Moab? "She answered, 'I am Ruth your handmaid. Realizing Boaz is Ruth’s kinsmen redeemer, she tells Ruth to take a bath, put on some perfume, and to go down to the threshing floor while the men go to sleep. Rather, he’s speaking about second and greater kindness that Ruth is now doing for Naomi. Q. Darkness, light, and water in the Genesis creation account. Ruth “uncovered” Boaz’s feet, pulling back his garment, specifically so that she then could ask him to “spread his garment” over her, meaning to assume the responsibility for her care, as her husband. This is a self-test on the Book of Ruth. Then he could choose what he would do. As you note, this was a real estate transaction. Ruth 2:10 (WEB). “To get enough money to live on, Naomi is selling the portion of the fields around Bethlehem that belonged to her late husband Elimelek. We see in Ruth an example of the virtuous woman of Proverbs 31. Let me begin with the one about Boaz. Visit our library of inductive Bible studies for more in depth inductive studies on this and other books of the Bible you can use in your small group. How was Jesus from the line of King David if his real father was not Joseph? If he did have another wife, which is possible (although again, not mentioned in the book, so we should not assume it), this would raise the further question of polygamy. I've heard the interpretation that she seduced him in order to get him to marry her. The precise age difference between Boaz and Ruth is unknown. Given the marriage themes in the book, I have wondered if they might have been part of the ancient Israelite marital vows or something similar. Boaz says, “This kindness is greater than that which you showed earlier.”  Since he clearly expects Ruth to know what he means, he must be referring to something that the two of them have talked about before. To respond to this second question of yours, you’re right, Ruth’s words to Naomi really do stand out as Hebrew poetry, in parallel couplets. In other words, when Ruth and Boaz meet again on the threshing floor, he’s not speaking at all about a “kindness” that she has just done for him, sexual or otherwise. Question: "What did it mean to spread the corner of your garment over someone?" Every man to his tent, Israel! Naomi saw immediately what had happened, and encouraged Ruth to keep on working in Boaz’s fields. Upon arriving in Bethlehem, Naomi sends Ruth to glean in the fields of Boaz, a wealthy relative of Naomi to whom they, through a series of divinely appointed circumstances, appeal as their go el. A certain man of Bethlehem Judah went to live in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons." and there will I be buried. Did Ruth seduce Boaz to get him to marry her? on Did Boaz already have another wife when he married Ruth? We are studying Ruth 3 for Sunday, August 18. Why do Matthew and Luke seem to disagree about the circumstances of Jesus' birth? Here are my notes on the text: BACKGROUND AND CONTEXT: After the opening of… Ruth 2:3 (WEB). What we do know about Boaz, as we’re told when we first meet him, is that he’s a “man of standing,” prosperous and influential. “May the Lord do so to me and more also if even death parts me from you!”. 9) How many elders of the city did Boaz gather, along with others, at the town gate to witness the negotiation for Naomi and her land and Ruth? Before you attempt to answer the questions below you should read these chapters in the Bible and answer the questions at the end of each chapter found at the website www.DoingGood.org. Ruth is trusting in God. What happens to people who never hear about Jesus? However, to know what Boaz really means by this, we need to consider his entire statement. After they got married, Ruth had a son named Obed, who became the father of Jesse, who became the father of David. Boaz has allowed her to glean on such generous terms, in fact, that Naomi has been amazed by how much grain she has brought home. But grace overruled; and Naomi directed Ruth, this Moabitess, to her kinsman redeemer, and told her to lay herself at the feet of Boaz [Ruth 3:4]. The young woman was left with Naomi, her mother-in-law. (Clicking on a category will display all of the posts it, in a continuous scroll with the most recent at the top.). When does Ruth become aware that Boaz is their near-kinsman? So while the wine is indeed flowing freely at this harvest celebration (the book tells us that when Boaz went to sleep, his “heart was merry,” and this was no doubt true of the others), this deep sleep only makes it possible for Ruth to slip in unobserved and enact the symbolic proposal ritual. Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld, “Ruth in Boaz’s Field,” 1828. Israelite law allowed a near kinsman to purchase the land so that parcels would remain in the same family. But we should not expect this of Boaz’s threshing floor. Ruth obeys, and in verse 9 she tells Boaz, “I am your servant Ruth. Similar symbolism is used, in a different context, when Jonathan makes a covenant of friendship with David:  he gives him his robe to show that he will provide for him (along with his weapons to show that he will protect him). It was still a tribal community. BARLEY BETHLEHEM BOAZ ELIMELECH FIELDS FOOD GRAIN HARVEST MARRY MOAB NAOMI RUTH. And although the events and the actions and the details seem distinctly strange to our twenty-first century way of thinking, nevertheless, here God providentially overrules all of this for the well-being of his people. © 2020 Hope From The Bible | Header designed by. How old was Joseph when he married and when he died? What is the story of Ruth and Boaz? A second argument I’ve heard in favor of a sexual interpretation of the threshing floor episode is that Ruth was in desperate circumstances but powerless, so we can’t blame her for using sex, the only tool at her disposal, to ensure her survival. Ruth 3:9 (WEB), "[Ruth] went down to the threshing floor, and did according to all that her mother-in-law told her." She is featured in the book of Ruth, even though many Bible scholars claim Boaz or even Naomi, Ruth's mother-in-law, are the lead characters of that story.Still, Ruth emerges as a chaste woman, a welcome contrast to the ugly behavior in the book of Judges, which precedes her account. Having translated the book of Ruth, I’m curious about the poetic lines that Ruth recites to Naomi when she makes her pledge in chapter 2. (The opposite is true: people have taken Ruth’s words and turned them into marriage vows.) While it’s possible that Boaz did have another wife (in this culture, this wouldn’t have kept him from marrying Ruth), it doesn’t say anywhere in the book that he did, so we shouldn’t assume this. Before Tristan and Isolde, before Romeo and Juliet, and even before Mr. Darcy and Miss Elizabeth of Pride and Prejudice, there were Boaz and Ruth.Their love story, dating from approximately 1000 BC, is still powerfully relevant in the twenty-first century. A Study of Ruth and Boaz in the Bible. I’ve encountered it before, and that’s why in my study guide to Joshua-Judges-Ruth I explain that “by lying down next to Boaz at night,” Ruth is only “symbolically proposing marriage to him,” and that “all of this is done honorably, within the customs of this culture.”. 29. Ruth 4:8 (WEB), "So Boaz took Ruth, and she became his wife; and he went in to her, and Yahweh gave her conception, and she bore a son... they named him Obed." What questions did Naomi ask Ruth about her gleaning? The hope is that, as the law intends, a goel (family guardian) will ‘redeem’ this property, buying it from Naomi, but also on her behalf, so that she has both the money from the sale and the field’s produce year by year. What is a levirate marriage? In a follow-up post, “Was Ruth inviting Boaz to contract a marriage by consummating that marriage?” I address a variation on the modern sexual interpretations of the threshing floor episode. In the next several posts I’ll respond to this interpretation by addressing the various claims it’s based on. Why is it so difficult to reconcile the mind and heart regarding faith in Jesus Christ? Ruth is both a professor (“your God will be my God” 1:16) and possessor who returned to Bethlehem with Naomi (1:19). on Why does Ruth speak in poetry when she pledges loyalty to Naomi? This is in keeping with his characterization in the book as a godly and honorable protector, and so it is quite unfair to him to assert that he took advantage of Ruth when no one was looking. What does it mean to say that Jesus is the Messiah? When we first meet him, he greets his harvesters in the name of the Lord. I think this view is based on the fact that Boaz seems to be a wealthy and presumably middle-aged man. (Part 3), Did Ruth seduce Boaz to get him to marry her? . Given the marriage themes in the book, I have wondered if they might have been part of the ancient Israelite marital vows or something similar. But the story of Ruth explains how God provided for them and blessed them. What is a kinsman redeemer? They lived together in a humble situation, and Ruth would go to the fields each day to glean food in the fields during the harvest. Boaz confronted the other relative with this law, and after the relative refused to marry Ruth, Boaz agreed to marry Ruth, and to buy the estate of Ruth's deceased husband. Where did John the Baptist get the idea of water baptism, and why was Jesus baptized? What are your thoughts about this? Or were they clothed and covering their actual feet, in a sign of reverence? Why would the Magi have wanted to worship the king of the Jews? Let me now address another claim that is made in favor of a sexual interpretation of this episode. Ruth : Quiz Questions This category is for questions and answers related to Ruth, as asked by users of FunTrivia.com. 1 One day Ruth’s mother-in-law Naomi said to her, “My daughter, I must find a home for you, where you will be well provided for. Did God cause or permit Absalom to have sexual relations with David’s concubines? What did Jesus mean by "night is coming, when no one can work"? and where you lodge I will lodge; your people shall be my people, Answer: The book of Ruth largely focuses on the relationship between Ruth and Boaz. So Ruth is not using sex to catch a new husband. The words can be left to right, up and down, or diagonally. It’s actually with a view towards Ruth’s long-term marriage prospects, not towards their own short-term survival, that Naomi sends Ruth to the threshing floor. (Part 3), on Did Ruth seduce Boaz to get him to marry her? Her words are loving, kind and respectful, both to Naomi and to Boaz. 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