Ruth chapter 4

Boaz goes to the city gate. The descendants of Ruth.





VERSE 1. Now Boaz went up to the gate and sat down there. Behold, the near kinsman of whom Boaz spoke came by. Boaz said to him, “Come over here, friend, and sit down!” He came over, and sat down.

Boaz went up to the gate. The city gate was where people transacted their business and civic affairs.

Boaz is about to do a very bold thing.


VERSE 2. Boaz took ten men of the elders of the city, and said, “Sit down here,” and they sat down.

ten men of the elders of the city. These ten would serve as witnesses. Why he chose ten is not stated.


VERSE 3. He said to the near kinsman, “Naomi, who has come back out of the country of Moab, is selling the parcel of land, which was our brother Elimelech’s.


VERSE 4. I thought I should tell you, saying, ‘Buy it before those who sit here, and before the elders of my people.’ If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if you will not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know. For there is no one to redeem it besides you; and I am after you.” He said, “I will redeem it.”

If you will redeem it. To redeem it means to purchase it.


VERSE 5. Then Boaz said, “On the day you buy the field from the hand of Naomi, you must buy it also from Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of the dead, to raise up the name of the dead on his inheritance.”

you must buy it also from Ruth. He must also take Ruth as his wife, to wife to perpetuate the family of the deceased man.

The first male child of such a marriage would be the legal son of Mahlon and grandson of Elimelech.


VERSE 6. The near kinsman said, “I can’t redeem it for myself, lest I endanger my own inheritance. Take my right of redemption for yourself; for I can’t redeem it.”

I can’t redeem it for myself. The kinsman refuses his right of purchase. He fears that his own estate might be endangered.


VERSE 7. Now this was the custom in former time in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning exchanging, to confirm all things: a man took off his sandal, and gave it to his neighbor; and this was the way of formalizing transactions in Israel.


VERSE 8. So the near kinsman said to Boaz, “Buy it for yourself,” then he took off his sandal.

he took off his sandal. By this act the unknown kinsman renounces his legal right, both to the field of Elimelech and to marriage with Ruth.

After this, the unknown kinsman moves out of the scene and into forgotten obscurity.


VERSE 9. Boaz said to the elders and to all the people, “You are witnesses today, that I have bought all that was Elimelech’s, and all that was Chilion’s and Mahlon’s, from the hand of Naomi.


VERSE 10. Moreover, Ruth the Moabitess, the wife of Mahlon, I have purchased to be my wife, to raise up the name of the dead on his inheritance, that the name of the dead may not be cut off from among his brothers and from the gate of his place. You are witnesses today.”

Ruth the Moabitess. Boaz refers to Ruth as a foreigner. He does not conceal this fact. He respects her as a person.


VERSE 11. All the people who were in the gate, and the elders, said, “We are witnesses. May the LORD make the woman who has come into your house like Rachel and like Leah, which both built the house of Israel; and treat you worthily in Ephrathah, and be famous in Bethlehem.

NASB translation. All the people who were in the court, and the elders, said, “We are witnesses. May the LORD make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, both of whom built the house of Israel; and may you achieve wealth in Ephrathah and become famous in Bethlehem.

wealth. The Hebrew word is חַ֣יִל (“khayil”). It means valor, worth, ability.

Ruth is an eshet chayil, a woman of valor.

How interesting that the English word “wealth” is a translation of the Hebrew word valor.

The people in the Bible idealize being a “person of valor.” But in our day, we idealize being “wealthy.”


VERSE 12. Let your house be like the house of Perez, whom Tamar bore to Judah, of the offspring which the LORD will give you by this young woman.”

the offspring. Or “seed.”




VERSE 13. So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife; and he went in to her, and the LORD enabled her to conceive, and she bore a son.

she became his wife; and he went in to her. They had not engaged in sexual relations until this moment.

This is the instant when they become married.


VERSE 14. The women said to Naomi, “Blessed be the LORD, who has not left you today without a near kinsman. Let his name be famous in Israel.


VERSE 15. He shall be to you a restorer of life and sustain you in your old age; for your daughter-in-law, who loves you, who is better to you than seven sons, has given birth to him.”


VERSE 16. Naomi took the child, laid him in her bosom, and became nurse to him.

laid him in her bosom. She takes the child as her own.


VERSE 17. The women, her neighbors, gave him a name, saying, “A son is born to Naomi”. They named him Obed. He is the father of Jesse, the father of David.

They named him Obed. This word means “worshipper.”

Ruth gives birth to Obed, who is the father of Jesse, who is the father of King David. She is the great grandmother of King David!

And Matthew names Ruth in the direct lineage of the Messiah!

Matthew 1:5. Salmon became the father of Boaz by Rahab. Boaz became the father of Obed by Ruth. Obed became the father of Jesse.

Scholars say that there is every indication that, as tradition has always held, this book contains true history.


VERSE 18. Now this is the history of the generations of Perez: Perez became the father of Hezron,


VERSE 19. and Hezron became the father of Ram, and Ram became the father of Amminadab,


VERSE 20. and Amminadab became the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon became the father of Salmon,


VERSE 21. and Salmon became the father of Boaz, and Boaz became the father of Obed,


VERSE 22. and Obed became the father of Jesse, and Jesse became the father of David.


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Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.