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Bible Commentaries
Ruth 3

Everett's Study Notes on the Holy ScripturesEverett's Study Notes

Verses 1-18

Predestined for Rest: God’s Glorification (Naomi and Ruth Find Rest) The fourth phase of Naomi’s and Ruth’s redemption is the rest that they find when Ruth marries Boaz. Ruth 3:1 to Ruth 4:22 focuses upon Ruth’s marriage to her redeemer Boaz, and the ultimate fruit of birth of King David, Israel’s redeemer.

Communal Sleep in Ancient Times In the ancient world, families generally sleep together in the home (Luke 11:7), unlike modern times where each individual enjoys a private bedroom. [14] Smaller homes probably had no bedrooms, and any room could accommodate sleeping. [15] Thus, Ruth’s approach to Boaz while he was sleeping on the threshing floor was not an entrance into his privacy, but rather, an approach closer to him in a communal sleeping arrangement (Ruth 3:1-18).

[14] Charles Warren, “Bed,” in A Dictionary of the Bible Dealing with its Language, Literature, and Contents Including the Biblical Theology, vol. 1, ed. James Hastings (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1908), 262.

[15] Charles Warren, “House,” in A Dictionary of the Bible Dealing with its Language, Literature, and Contents Including the Biblical Theology, vol. 2, ed. James Hastings (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1909), 434.

Luke 11:7, “And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee.”

Ruth 3:7 And when Boaz had eaten and drunk, and his heart was merry, he went to lie down at the end of the heap of corn: and she came softly, and uncovered his feet, and laid her down.

Ruth 3:7 “and she came softly, and uncovered his feet, and laid her down” - Comments - Perhaps Ruth was counselled by Naomi to use this method in order to wake up Boaz without waking up those around him. This action of removing the covering on someone's feet would mean that the feet would become cold and uncomfortable during the night, resulting in Boaz waking up.

Ruth 3:9 And he said, Who art thou? And she answered, I am Ruth thine handmaid: spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsman.

Ruth 3:9 “spread therefore thy skirt over thine land maid” Comments - To spread a skirt over one is, in the Eastern culture, a symbolical action denoting protection. Thus, this action symbolically meant that a garment was cast over one being claimed for marriage. We read in Ezekiel that God spread his skirt over Jerusalem as an act of marriage.

Ezekiel 16:8, “Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time was the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee , and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith the Lord GOD, and thou becamest mine.”

Ruth 4:3-4 Comments The Law of Redemption - The act of redeeming a piece of land in behalf of a near kinsman was given in the Law of Moses (Leviticus 25:25; Leviticus 25:47-55).

Leviticus 25:25, “If thy brother be waxen poor, and hath sold away some of his possession, and if any of his kin come to redeem it, then shall he redeem that which his brother sold.”

Leviticus 25:47-55.

Ruth 4:7 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.

Ruth 4:7 Comments - The custom of removing one’s shoe and giving it to his neighbour was prescribed in the Mosaic Law (Deuteronomy 25:5-10). Why was a shoe used? Perhaps because this leather shoe carried a permanent and unique imprint of the owner's foot. Therefore, it served as a signature or fingerprint of that individual. The one given this sandal had proof that the shoe that he possesses once belonged to a particular individual.

Deuteronomy 25:9, “Then shall his brother's wife come unto him in the presence of the elders, and loose his shoe from off his foot, and spit in his face, and shall answer and say, So shall it be done unto that man that will not build up his brother's house.”

Ruth 4:10 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.

Ruth 4:10 Comments - Ruth is figurative of God grafting in the Gentiles to the natural vine and cutting some of them off, like Noami’s husband and two sons were cut off because of unbelief, evidenced by leaving the nation of Israel and looking to another nation to provide their needs.

Ruth 4:13 So Boaz took Ruth, and she was his wife: and when he went in unto her, the LORD gave her conception, and she bare a son.

Ruth 4:13 Comments - Just as Ruth became the bride of her redeemer, we have become the bride of Christ, our redeemer.

Ruth 4:17 And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi; and they called his name Obed: he is the father of Jesse, the father of David.

Ruth 4:17 Word Study on “Obed” PTW says the name “Obed” means, “servant.”

Ruth 4:21 And Salmon begat Boaz, and Boaz begat Obed,

Ruth 4:21 “Salmon begat Boaz” - Comments - According to the genealogy in Matthew’s Gospel, Salmon married Rahab (Matthew 1:5). Most scholars agree that this individual could very well have been Rahab the harlot (Joshua 6:25).

Matthew 1:5, “And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat Jesse;”

Joshua 6:25, “And Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive, and her father's household, and all that she had; and she dwelleth in Israel even unto this day; because she hid the messengers, which Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.”

Ruth 4:22 And Obed begat Jesse, and Jesse begat David.

Ruth 4:22 “Jesse begat David” - Comments - A missionary once visited my church in the mid-1980’s and said the Lord spoke to her and said that Jesse would have never been anything without David; but David would have never been anything without Jesse. This lady missionary, who was recently staying home to care for her elderly mother, had asked the Lord why she was not being able to go back out into the mission field. The Lord spoke the above words to her, explaining that her mother was a part and reason for her ministry. [16]

[16] Alethia Fellowship Church, Panama City, Florida, mid-1980’s

Bibliographical Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Ruth 3". Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghe/ruth-3.html. 2013.
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