Ruth 1:1-17 & 4:13-17

Ruth 1:1-17 & 4:13-17
NL 206


1:1 IIn the daysII when the judgesIII ruled,IV there wasV a famineVI in the land,VII

Notes on verse 1:1a

I {untranslated} = hayah. This is to be or become, to happen.
II “days” = yom. Root may mean being hot. This is the day in a literal or figurative sense. It can also mean birth, age, daylight, continually or other references to time.
III “judges” = shaphat. Same as “ruled” in v1:1. See note IV below.
IV “ruled” = shaphat. This is to judge, defend, pronounce judgment, condemn, or govern. It can refer to God judging or to human judges. This is pronouncing a verdict in favor or against so it implies consequences or punishment. It can also mean to litigate or govern as one with authority.
V “was” = hayah. Same as {untranslated} in v1:1. See note I above.
VI “famine” = raab. From raeb (to be hungry). This is hunger, death, or hunger from famine.
VII “land” = erets. Root may mean to be firm. This is earth, ground, field land, or country.

and a certain manVIII of BethlehemIX in JudahX

Notes on verse 1:1b

VIII “man” = ish. Perhaps from enosh (human, humankind, mortal); from anash (to be weak, sick, or frail). This is man, husband, another, or humankind.
IX “Bethlehem” = Beth lechem. From bayit (house, court, family, palace, temple); {probably from banah (to build, make, set up, obtain children; to build literally or figuratively)} + lechem (bread, food, loaf; food for people or for animals); {from lacham (to eat, feed on; figuratively, to battle as a kind of consumption/destruction)}. This is Bethlehem, meaning “house of bread.”
X “Judah” = Yehudah. Probably from yadah (to throw one’s hands into the air in a gesture of praise); from yad (hand). This is Judah, meaning “praised.”

wentXI to liveXII in the countryXIII

Notes on verse 1:1c

XI “went” = halak. This is go, come, walk. It is walk literally and figuratively and includes people and animals. It can be used figuratively for one’s moral life – how we walk according to God’s way or against it. It can also refer to the walk of life as in the course one’s life takes, the choices we make, etc.
XII “live” = gur. Properly, this is the act of turning off the road for any reason. So, it means sojourning, becoming a guest. It can mean being fearful since one is outside of home territory. It can also mean dwelling, living, or inhabiting if one has turned off the root to encamp for a longer duration. This word is where the Hebrew “ger” comes from, which is the word translated “stranger” or “resident alien.”
XIII “country” = sadeh. This is literally field, ground, soil, or land. It can be used to mean wild like a wild animal.

of Moab,XIV he and his wifeXV and twoXVI sons.XVII 

Notes on verse 1:1d

XIV “Moab” = Moab. May be from ab (father, ancestor, grandfather; father in a literal or figurative sense). This is Moab or Moabite. Name could mean “from her father” in reference to the incestuous relationship between Lot and his daughters. The name could also mean, more pleasantly, “seed of a father” or “desirable land.” See
XV “wife” = ishshah. Related to “man” in v1:1. From ish (see note VIII above). This is woman, wife, or female.
XVI “two” = shenayim. From sheni (double, again, another, second); from shanah (to fold, repeat, double, alter, or disguise). This is two, both, second, couple.
XVII “sons” = ben. Related to “Bethlehem” in v1:1. From banah (see note IX above). This is son, age, child. It is son in a literal or figurative sense.

The nameXVIII of the man was ElimelechXIX and the name of his wife Naomi,XX

Notes on verse 1:2a

XVIII “name” = shem. May be from sum (to put, place, set). This is name, fame, renown. A name was thought to indicate something essential about a person – something about their individuality. So, this word can also mean honor, authority, or character.
XIX “Elimelech” = Elimelek. 6x in OT– all in Ruth. From el (God, a god) + melek (king, royal). This is Elimelech, a name meaning “God is king” or “God of the king.”
XX “Naomi” = Noomi. From no’am (pleasantness, favor, delight, suitableness, grace); from naem (to be pleasant, beautiful, sweet, or agreeable in a literal or figurative sense). This is Naomi or Noomi, whose name means “pleasant” or “my delight” or “sweet.” See

and the names of his two sons were MahlonXXI and Chilion;XXII they were EphrathitesXXIII from Bethlehem in Judah.

Notes on verse 1:2b

XXI “Mahlon” = Machlon. 4x in OT– all in Ruth. Perhaps from chalah (properly, this is to be worn; hence, being weak, sick, or afflicted; it can also mean to grieve or, positively, to flatter or entreat). This is Mahlon or Machlon, a name meaning “sick” or “sickly” or “man of sickness” or “man of entreaty.” See
XXII “Chilion” = Kilyon. 3x in OT– all in Ruth. From killayon (failing, destruction); from kalah (to end, be finished, complete, prepare, consume, spent, or completely destroyed). This is Chilion or Kilyon, a name meaning “coming to an end” or “man of finality” or “wasting away” or “pining” or “consuming.” See
XXIII “Ephrathites” = Ephrathi. 5x in OT. From the same as apher (covering, ashes, bandage); {from the same as epher (ashes or dust – properly something strewn)} OR from ephrath (Ephrath or Ephrathah; a female name and the name of several places, including Bethlehem; may mean “fruitfulness,” “exhausted,” “worthless,” or “fruitful”); {from parah (to bear fruit, grow, be fruitful, increase; bearing fruit in a literal or figurative sense)}. This is Ephraimite or Ephrathite, someone in the lineage of Ephraim. See

They wentXXIV into the country of Moab and remainedXXV there. But Elimelech, the husbandXXVI of Naomi, died,XXVII and she was leftXXVIII with her two sons. 

Notes on verses 1:2c-3

XXIV “went” = bo. This is to enter, come in, advance, fulfill, bring offerings, enter to worship, attack. It can also have a sexual connotation.
XXV “remained” = hayah. Same as {untranslated} in v1:1. See note I above.
XXVI “husband” = ish. Same as “man” in v1:1. See note VIII above.
XXVII “died” = mut. This is to die in a literal or figurative sense. It can also refer to being a dead body.
XXVIII “was left” = shaar. Properly, this is swelling up i.e. being left over, a remnant, remaining, being redundant.

These tookXXIX MoabiteXXX wives; the name of the oneXXXI

Notes on verse 1:4a

XXIX “took” = nasa. This is to lift in a broad sense, literally and figuratively. So it could be to carry, take, or arise. It could also be bring forth, advance, accept.
XXX “Moabite” = Moabi. Related to “Moab” in v1:1. 16x in OT. From Moab (see note XIV above). This is Moabite or Moab. See
XXXI “one” = echad. Perhaps from achad (to unify, continue on a path; figuratively, to gather one’s thoughts). This is the number one, first, united. It can also be alone, altogether, a certain, a few.

was OrpahXXXII and the name of the otherXXXIII Ruth.XXXIV

Notes on verse 1:4b

XXXII “Orpah” = Orpah. 2x in OT– both in Ruth. From the same as oreph (back of the neck – also used for stiff-necked; the back more generally in a literal or figurative sense); from araph (to behead, tilt down, break a neck; figuratively, to destroy). This is Orpah, a name that may mean “mane” or “drip” or “cloud” or “neck” or “submitted.” See
XXXIII “other” = sheni. Related to “two” in v1:1. See note XVI above.
XXXIV “Ruth” = Ruth. 12x in OT. From raah (to associate with someone, cultivate) OR from reuth (a female neighbor, a mate, friend, another); {from ra’ah (to tend a flock, pasture, or graze; to rule or to associate with someone; figuratively, ruler or teacher)} OR from raah (to see, show, stare, think, view; to see in a literal or figurative sense). This is Ruth, a name meaning “friendship” or “friend” or “associate” or “vision” or “view” or “beauty.” See

When they had livedXXXV there about tenXXXVI years,XXXVII bothXXXVIII Mahlon and Chilion also died, so that the womanXXXIX was left without her two sonsXL and her husband.

Notes on verses 1:4c-5

XXXV “lived” = yashab. This is to sit and so to remain and so to dwell. It is sitting for any reason – as a judge, in order to ambush, or just sitting quietly. Causatively, this can mean settling or marrying. This can also mean continue, endure, or establish.
XXXVI “ten” = eser. Perhaps from asar (to tithe, render a tenth of). This is ten or -teen. While 7 is symbolically the number of perfection, ten is also symbolically a number of perfection (but to a lesser degree than 7 is).
XXXVII “years” = shanah. From shana (to change, alter). This is a year, age, old. It can also mean yearly.
XXXVIII “both” = shenayim. Same as “two” in v1:1. See note XVI above.
XXXIX “woman” = ishshah. Same as “wife” in v1:1. See note XV above.
XL “sons” = yeled. From yalad (to bear, bring forth; can mean to act as midwife or to show one’s lineage). This is something born – so, offspring, youth, fruit. It is the same word used in Isaiah 9:6 “for a child will be born to us.”

Then she startedXLI to returnXLII with her daughters-in-lawXLIII from the country of Moab, for she had heardXLIV in the country of Moab that the LordXLV 

Notes on verse 1:6a

XLI “started” = qum. To arise, stand, accomplish, establish, abide. This is rising as in rising against, getting up after being sick or asleep, arising from one state to another, becoming powerful, or rising for action. It can also be standing in a figurative sense.
XLII “return” = shub. To turn back, return, turn away – literally or figuratively. Doesn’t necessarily imply going back to where you started from. This is also the root verb for the Hebrew word for repentance “teshubah.”
XLIII “daughters-in-law” = kallah. Perhaps related to kalal (to complete, perfect). This is bride or daughter-in-law and the term is used before and after marriage.
XLIV “heard” = shama. This is to hear, call, consent, or consider. It implies listening intelligently, giving attention, and, because of these two factors, obedience and action are often implied.
XLV “Lord” = YHVH. Related to {untranslated} in v1:1. From the same as YHVH (the name of the God of Israel, the self-existent and eternal one, the tetragrammaton; pronunciation has been lost to time so “Lord” is generally used in its place); {from havah (to be, become) or hayah (see note I above)}. This is a secondary spelling of the Lord, the name of the God of Israel. It has the same meaning.

had consideredXLVI his peopleXLVII and givenXLVIII them food.XLIX 

Notes on verse 1:6b

XLVI “considered” = paqad. This is to attend to or visit – can be used for a friendly or violent encounter. So, it can be to oversee, care for, avenge, or charge.
XLVII “people” = am. From amam (to darken, hide, associate; creating shadows by huddling together). This is people or nation. It can be used specifically for a tribe, collectively of troops or armies, or figuratively to refer to a flock of animals.
XLVIII “given” = natan. This is to give, put, set, offer. It is to give literally or figuratively.
XLIX “food” = lechem. Related to “Bethlehem” in v1:1. See note IX above.

So she set outL from the placeLI where she had been living,LII she and her two daughters-in-law, and they wentLIII on their wayLIV to go backLV to the land of Judah. 

Notes on verse 1:7

L “set out” = yatsa. This is to go or come out, bring forth, appear. It is to go out in a literal or figurative sense.
LI “place” = maqom. Related to “started” in v1:6. From qum (see note XLI above). This is a standing, which is to say a spot or space a place. It can also refer to a locality or a physical/mental condition. HaMaqom is also a Jewish name for God – the place, i.e. the Omnipresent One.
LII “living” = hayah. Same as {untranslated} in v1:1. See note I above.
LIII “went” = halak.  Same as “went” in v1:1. See note XI above.
LIV “way” = derek. From darak (to tread, march, to walk. Can also mean affixing a string to a box since one needs to step on it to bend it in the process; so also an archer). This is a road as a thing that is walked on. Can be used figuratively for the path that one’s life takes or how one chooses to live one’s life.
LV “go back” = shub. Same as “return” in v1:6. See note XLII above.

But Naomi saidLVI to her two daughters-in-law, “GoLVII backLVIII eachLIX of you to your mother’sLX house.LXI

Notes on verse 1:8a

LVI “said” = amar. This is to speak, say, answer, command, promise, report.
LVII “go” = halak. Same as “went” in v1:1. See note XI above.
LVIII “back” = shub. Same as “return” in v1:6. See note XLII above.
LIX “each” = ishshah. Same as “wife” in v1:1. See note XV above.
LX “mother’s” = em. This is a mother as binding a family together or a breeding female animal. It could be mother in a literal or figurative sense.
LXI “house” = bayit. Related to “Bethlehem” and “sons” in v1:1. See note IX above.

May the LordLXII dealLXIII kindlyLXIV with you, as you have dealt with the deadLXV and with me. The LordLXVI grantLXVII

Notes on verses 1:8b-9a

LXII “Lord” = YHVH. Related to {untranslated} in v1:1 & “Lord” in v1:6. See note XLV above.
LXIII “deal” = asah. This is to make, do, act, appoint, become in many senses.
LXIV “kindly” = chesed. From chasad (being good, kind, merciful; may mean bowing one’s neck as is done in the presence of an equal for courtesy’s sake; so, if one in a superior position is treating you like an equal, that is what is captured here). This is favor, goodness, kindness, loving kindness, pity, reproach, or a good deed. When done by God to humanity, this is mercy/loving kindness. When done by humanity to God, it is piety.
LXV “dead” = mut. Same as “died” in v1:3. See note XXVII above.
LXVI “Lord” = YHVH. Same as “Lord” in v1:8. See note LXII above.
LXVII “grant” = natan. Same as “given” in v1:6. See note XLVIII above.

that you may findLXVIII security,LXIX each of you in the house of your husband.” Then she kissedLXX them, and they wept aloud.LXXI 

Notes on verse 1:9b

LXVIII “find” = matsa. This is to find, catch or acquire. It can also mean to come forth or appear. Figuratively, this can mean to meet or be together with.
LXIX “security” = menuchah. From manoach (resting place, quiet, home); from nuach (to rest, calm, camp, free, place, remain, satisfy, settle, station, or wait; implies settling down in a literal or figurative sense). This is resting place, consolation, ease, quiet. It is the same word in Psalm 23:2, “he leads me beside the still waters.”
LXX “kissed” = nashaq. This is to kiss in a literal or figurative sense. It can mean to touch, rule, or equip with weapons.
LXXI “wept aloud” = nasa + qol + bakah. Literally, “lifted up their voices and wept.” Nasa is the same as “took” in v1:4. See note XXIX above. Qol is a sound, used often for human voices. Also used when God speaks or angels, animals or instruments. It can be a cry or a noise, thunder or earthquakes and so on. Bakah is to weep, complain, or lament.

10 They said to her, “No, we will return with you to your people.” 

11 But Naomi said, “Turn back,LXXII my daughters.LXXIII Why will you goLXXIV with me? Do I still have sonsLXXV in my wombLXXVI that they may becomeLXXVII your husbands? 

Notes on verses 1:10-11

LXXII “turn back” = shub. Same as “return” in v1:6. See note XLII above.
LXXIII “daughters” = bat. Related to “Bethlehem” and “sons” in v1:1 & “house” in v1:8. From ben (see note XVII above). This is daughter in a literal or figurative sense.
LXXIV “go” = halak. Same as “went” in v1:1. See note XI above.
LXXV “sons” = ben. Same as “sons” in v1:1. See note XVII above.
LXXVI “womb” = meeh. This is inward parts, belly, heart, womb, intestines, vastness. It can also be figurative for sympathy.
LXXVII “become” = hayah. Same as {untranslated} in v1:1. See note I above.

12 Turn back, my daughters, goLXXVIII your way, for I am too oldLXXIX to haveLXXX a husband. Even if I thoughtLXXXI there wasLXXXII hopeLXXXIII for me,

Notes on verse 1:12a

LXXVIII “go” = halak. Same as “went” in v1:1. See note XI above.
LXXIX “am too old” = zaqen. From the same as zaqan (beard or chin – the beard represents old age). This is to be old or grow old.
LXXX “have” = hayah. Same as {untranslated} in v1:1. See note I above.
LXXXI “thought” = amar. Same as “said” in v1:8. See note LVI above.
LXXXII “there was” = yesh. This is being, existence, or substance.
LXXXIII “hope” = tiqvah. From qavah (to wait, look, gather together, bind together, collect; figuratively, to expect). This is literally a cord used to attach things. Figuratively, it’s expectation, hope, what you long for.

even if I should have a husband tonightLXXXIV and bearLXXXV sons,LXXXVI 13 wouldLXXXVII you then waitLXXXVIII until they were grown?LXXXIX

Notes on verses 1:12b-13a

LXXXIV “tonight” = layil. Properly, this refers to light twisting away. It is used for night or midnight. Figuratively, this can mean adversity.
LXXXV “bear” = yalad. Related to “sons” in v1:5. See note XL above.
LXXXVI “sons” = ben. Same as “sons” in v1:1. See note XVII above.
LXXXVII “would” = lahen. 2x in OT – both in Ruth. From hen (lo! Behold! If, though; an expression of surprise). This is on account of, therefore.
LXXXVIII “wait” = sabar. 8x in OT. This is to look, inspect, wait. It can imply watching for in a hopeful and patient manner.
LXXXIX “were grown” = gadal. This is to grow up, become great, become wealthy – to advance. The root meaning may be to twist in the sense of the process of growing.

Would you then refrainXC fromXCI marrying?XCII No, my daughters, it has been far moreXCIII bitterXCIV for me than for you,

Notes on verse 1:13b

XC “refrain” = agan. 1x in OT. This is to shut in, prevent, refrain.
XCI “from” = bilti. From balah (to grow old, wear out, consume, waste, enjoy, fail, decay). This is nothing, not, lest, or except. From its root, it means “a failure of” – used for negative particles.
XCII “marrying” = hayah + ish. Literally, “having husbands.” Hayah is the same as {untranslated} in v1:1. See note I above. Ish is the same as “man” in v1:1. See note VIII above.
XCIII “far more” = meod. Perhaps from the same as uwd (firebrand, a poker). This is very, greatly, exceedingly. It can also mean vehemence, force, abundance.
XCIV “been…bitter” = marar. 13x in OT. This is to be bitter, embittered, weep, troubled.

because the handXCV of the LordXCVI has turnedXCVII against me.” 14 Then they wept aloud again. Orpah kissed her mother-in-lawXCVIII goodbye, but Ruth clungXCIX to her.

Notes on verses 1:13c-14

XCV “hand” = yad. This is hand, ability, power. Hand in a literal sense, but also what one can do or the means by which one does it.
XCVI “Lord” = YHVH. Same as “Lord” in v1:8. See note LXII above.
XCVII “turned” = yatsa. Same as “set out” in v1:7. See note L above.
XCVIII “mother-in-law” = chamoth. 11x in OT. From cham (father-in-law); perhaps from the same as chomah (a wall – a wall as used for protection). This is mother-in-law – in particular, a woman’s mother-in-law.
XCIX “clung” = dabaq. This is to follow closely or abide fast, to cling or be joined together. Figuratively, it can mean to catch something by chasing after it, to overtake, or to stick. A man clings to his wife in Genesis 2:24, Shechem was deeply attracted to Dinah in Genesis 34:3, Ruth clung to Naomi in Ruth 1:14, Solomon clung to his foreign wives and concubines in 1 Kings 11:2. It is also used of a tongue sticking to the mouth, pursuing or overtaking as in battle, and also clinging to God.

15 So she said, “Look,C your sister-in-lawCI has gone backCII to her people and to her gods;CIII return afterCIV your sister-in-law.” 

Notes on verse 1:15

C “look” = hinneh. Related to “would” in v1:13. From hen (see note LXXXVII above). This is to draw attention, show suddenness or surprise, or to emphasize the importance of the coming statement. See! Lo! Behold!
CI “sister-in-law” = yebemeth. 5x in OT. From the same as yabam (brother-in-law); from yabam (to do what was expected of a man whose brother dies – to marry her widow). This is brother’s wife or sister-in-law.
CII “gone back” = shub. Same as “return” in v1:6. See note XLII above.
CIII “gods” = elohim. Related to “Elimelech” in v1:2. From eloah (God, a god); from el (see note XIX above). This is most commonly used as a name for God. Technically, it’s in the plural, i.e. gods. It can also mean great, mighty, judge, or ruler.
CIV “after” = achar. From achar (to remain behind, linger, continue, be behind, or delay; can also imply procrastination). This is after or the last part, following.

16 But Ruth said,

“Do not pressCV me to leaveCVI you,
    to turn back from followingCVII you!
Where you go,CVIII I will go;CIX
    where you lodge,CX I will lodge;
your people shall be my people
    and your GodCXI my God.

Notes on verse 1:16

CV “press” = paga. This is to meet or happen, whether unintentionally or of violence. It can also be plead, spare, reach, or intercede.
CVI “leave” = azab. To loosen, relinquish, permit, forsake, fail, leave destitute.
CVII “following” = achar. Same as “after” in v1:15. See note CIV above.
CVIII “go” = halak. Same as “went” in v1:1. See note XI above.
CIX “go” = halak. Same as “went” in v1:1. See note XI above.
CX “lodge” = lun. This is to stop – usually to lodge for the night. It can imply dwelling, enduring, or staying permanently. Figuratively, it can mean being obstinate, particularly with one’s words – to complain.
CXI “God” = Elohim. Same as “gods” in v1:15. See note CIII above.

17 Where you die, I will die,
    and there will I be buried.CXII
May the LordCXIII doCXIV thusCXV to me,CXVI

Notes on verse 1:17a

CXII “buried” = qabar. This is to bury or inter. It could also refer to the person who does the burying.
CXIII “Lord” = YHVH. Same as “Lord” in v1:8. See note LXII above.
CXIV “do” = asah. Same as “deal” in v1:8. See note LXIII above.
CXV “thus” = koh. Perhaps from ki (that, for when, certainly) + hu (he, she, it). This is like this, thus, here, now.
CXVI {untranslated} = koh. Same as “thus” in v1:17. See note CXV above.

    and moreCXVII as well,
if even deathCXVIII partsCXIX me fromCXX you!”

Notes on verse 1:17b

CXVII “more” = yasaph. This is to add, increase, continue, exceed.
CXVIII “death” = mavet. Related to “died” in v1:3. From mut (see note XXVII above). This can be death, deadliness, the dead, or the place where the dead go. It can be used figuratively for pestilence or ruin.
CXIX “parts” = parad. This is to divide, break through, scatter, sever, stretch, to spread oneself, or to be out of joint.
CXX “from” = bayin. From bin (to discern, consider, attend to; distinguishing things in one’s mind or, more generally, to understand). This is among, between, interval.

4:13 So BoazCXXI tookCXXII Ruth, and she became his wife. When they cameCXXIII together,

Notes on verse 4:13a

CXXI “Boaz” = Boaz. Perhaps from azaz (to be strong in a literal or figurative sense, overcome, be impudent). This is Boaz, a personal name as well as what one of the pillars at the Temple was called. It means “quickness” or “in strength” or “by strength” or “in him…is strength.”  See
CXXII “took” = laqach. This is to take, accept, carry away, receive. It can also have the sense of take a wife or take in marriage.
CXXIII “came” = bo. Same as “went” in v1:2. See note XXIV above.

the LordCXXIV madeCXXV her conceive,CXXVI and she bore a son.CXXVII 

Notes on verse 4:13b

CXXIV “Lord” = YHVH. Same as “Lord” in v1:8. See note LXII above.
CXXV “made” = natan. Same as “given” in v1:6. See note XLVIII above.
CXXVI “conceive” = heron. 3x in OT. From harah (to conceive or be pregnant – can be literal or figurative). This is conception, being pregnant, or giving birth.
CXXVII “son” = ben. Same as “sons” in v1:1. See note XVII above.

14 Then the women said to Naomi, “Blessed beCXXVIII the Lord,CXXIX who has not leftCXXX you this day without next-of-kin,CXXXI 

Notes on verse 4:14a

CXXVIII “blessed be” = barak. This is to kneel, to bless. It is blessing God as part of worship and adoration or blessing humans to help them. It can be used as a euphemism to say curse God.
CXXIX “Lord” = YHVH. Same as “Lord” in v1:8. See note LXII above.
CXXX “left” = shabath. This is to rest, stop, repose, cease working. By implication, it is to celebrate.
CXXXI “without next-of-kin” = gaal. This is to redeem someone or something according to kinship laws. So, it could be acting on a relative’s behalf to buy back their property, to marry one’s brother’s widow, etc. This could be more briefly translated as to redeem, acts as kinsman, or purchase. As a noun, it could be deliverer or avenger.

and may his name be renownedCXXXII in Israel!CXXXIII 15 He shall be to you a restorerCXXXIV of lifeCXXXV and a nourisherCXXXVI of your old age,CXXXVII

Notes on verses 4:14b-15a

CXXXII “be renowned” = qara. This is to call or call out – to call someone by name. Also used more broadly for calling forth.
CXXXIII “Israel” = Yisrael. Related to “Elimelech” in v1:2 & “gods” in v1:15. From sarah (to persist, exert oneself, contend, persevere, wrestle, prevail) + El (see note XIX above). This is Israel, meaning God strives or one who strives with God; new name for Jacob and for his offspring. This refers to the people and to the land.
CXXXIV “restorer” = shub. Same as “return” in v1:6. See note XLII above.
CXXXV “life” = nephesh. Related to naphash (to refresh or be refreshed). This is soul, self, person, emotion. It is a breathing creature. Can also refer to appetites and desires.
CXXXVI “nourisher” = kul. This is to hold in. So, it can be to contain, measure, guide, or feed. It can also mean to be able to or sustain.
CXXXVII “old age” = sebah. 19x in OT. From sib (to have gray hair, become old). This is being gray or old.

for your daughter-in-law who lovesCXXXVIII you, who is moreCXXXIX to you than sevenCXL sons,CXLI has borne him.” 

Notes on verse 4:15b

CXXXVIII “loves” = aheb. This is to love, beloved, friend. It is to have affection for sexually or otherwise.
CXXXIX “more” = tob. From tob (to be pleasing, to be good). This is good, beautiful, pleasant, agreeable, bountiful, at ease. This word is used for goodness as a concept, a good thing, a good person. This can refer to prosperity and welfare as well as joy, kindness, sweetness, and graciousness. So, this is ethically good, but also enjoyably good.
CXL “seven” = sheba. This is seven or by sevenfold. It can also be used to imply a week or an indefinite number. Symbolically, this is the number of fullness, sacredness, perfection.
CXLI “sons” = ben. Same as “sons” in v1:1. See note XVII above.

16 Then Naomi tookCXLII the childCXLIII and laidCXLIV him in her bosomCXLV and became his nurse.CXLVI 

Notes on verse 4:16

CXLII “took” = laqach. Same as “took” in v4:13. See note CXXII above.
CXLIII “child” = yeled. Same as “sons” in v1:5. See note XL above.
CXLIV “laid” = shith. This is to place, set, bring, appoint, consider, bring, array or look.
CXLV “bosom” = cheq. Root may mean to enclose. This is bosom in a literal or figurative sense. So, this could be arms, lap, or midst. It can also be care or cherish.
CXLVI “nurse” = aman. This is to believe, endure, fulfill, confirm, support, be faithful. It is to put one’s trust in, be steadfast. Figuratively, this is to be firm, steadfast, or faithful, trusting, believing, being permanent, morally solid. This is where the word “amen” comes from.

17 The women of the neighborhoodCXLVII gaveCXLVIII him a name, saying, “A sonCXLIX has been born to Naomi.”

Notes on verse 4:17a

CXLVII “women of the neighborhood” = shaken. From shakan (to settle down in the sense of residing somewhere or staying there permanently; to abide or continue). This is resident or neighbor. It is related to mishkan, the Hebrew word for “tabernacle.”
CXLVIII “gave” = qara. Same as “be renowned” in v4:14. See note CXXXII above.
CXLIX “son” = ben. Same as “sons” in v1:1. See note XVII above.

They namedCL him Obed;CLI he became the fatherCLII of Jesse,CLIII the father of David.CLIV

Notes on verse 4:17b

CL “named” = qara + shem. Literally, “called his name.” Qara is the same as “be renowned” in v4:14. See note CXXXII above. Shem is the same as “name” in v1:2. See note XVIII above.
CLI “Obed” = Obed. 10x in OT. From abad (to work, serve, compel; any kind of work; used causatively, can mean to enslave or keep in bondage). This is Obed, a name meaning “worshiper” or “serving” or “servant” or “slave.” See
CLII “father” = ab. Related to “Moab” in v1:1 & “Moabite” in v1:4. See note XIV above.
CLIII “Jesse” = Yishay. Related to “there was” in v1:12. Perhaps from ish (man); {perhaps from enosh (human, humankind, mortal); from anash (to be weak, sick, or frail)} OR from the same as yesh (see note LXXXII above). This is Jesse, a name which means “my husband” or “the Lord exists.” See
CLIV “David” = David. From the same as dod (beloved, love, uncle); the root may mean to boil, which is used figuratively to describe love. So, this implies someone you love such as a friend, a lover, or a close family member like an uncle. David’s name likely means something like “beloved one.”

Image credit: “Ruth and Naomi” by Suzanne Moore Copyright 2010, The Saint John’s Bible, Saint John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Photo edited to 16×9 format. See license information here.

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