Ruth 1:7
Why she went forth out of the place where she was, and her two daughters in law with her; and they went on the way to return to the land of Judah.
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(7) Her two daughters in law with her.—Both clearly purposing to go with Naomi to the land of Israel (Ruth 1:10), not merely to escort her a little way. Naomi had obviously won the affections of her daughters-in-law, and they were loth to part with her, since such a parting could hardly but be final.

1:6-14 Naomi began to think of returning, after the death of her two sons. When death comes into a family, it ought to reform what is amiss there. Earth is made bitter to us, that heaven may be made dear. Naomi seems to have been a person of faith and piety. She dismissed her daughters-in-law with prayer. It is very proper for friends, when they part, to part with them thus part in love. Did Naomi do well, to discourage her daughters from going with her, when she might save them from the idolatry of Moab, and bring them to the faith and worship of the God of Israel? Naomi, no doubt, desired to do that; but if they went with her, she would not have them to go upon her account. Those that take upon them a profession of religion only to oblige their friends, or for the sake of company, will be converts of small value. If they did come with her, she would have them make it their deliberate choice, and sit down first and count the cost, as it concerns those to do who make a profession of religion. And more desire rest in the house of a husband, or some wordly settlement or earthly satisfaction, than the rest to which Christ invites our souls; therefore when tried they will depart from Christ, though perhaps with some sorrow.Marriages of Israelites with women of Ammon or Moab are nowhere in the Law expressly forbidden, as were marriages with the women of Canaan Deuteronomy 7:1-3. In the days of Nehemiah the special law Deuteronomy 23:3-6 was interpreted as forbidding them, and as excluding the children of such marriages from the congregation of Israel Nehemiah 13:1-3. Probably the marriages of Mahlon and Chilion would be justified by necessity, living as they were in a foreign land. Ruth was the wife of the older brother, Mahlon Ruth 4:10. Ru 1:6-18. Naomi Returning Home, Ruth Accompanies Her.

6, 7. Then she arose with her daughters-in-law, that she might return from the country of Moab—The aged widow, longing to enjoy the privileges of Israel, resolved to return to her native land as soon as she was assured that the famine had ceased, and made the necessary arrangements with her daughters-in-law.

No text from Poole on this verse. Wherefore she went forth out of the place where she was,.... What part of Moab she had dwelt in, and now removed from, is not said; it is called the country or field of Moab, she returned from; hence some have thought, that she and her husband, and her sons, did not live in any of the cities of Moab, but in a field; either because the Moabites would not suffer them to dwell in their cities, only allowed them to pitch their tents in their fields; or they chose to dwell there, that they might as much as possible avoid conversation with them, and be preserved from their idolatry, and other corruptions:

and her two daughters in law with her; who, out of respect to her, accompanied her some part of the way, as relations and friends usually did:

and they went on the way to return unto the land of Judah; they went along with her to the border of the land of Judah, in her return thither; for returning can only be said of her with any propriety, because her two daughters had never been there; that was not the country from whence they came, and therefore could not be said to return thither.

Wherefore she went forth out of the place where she was, and her two daughters in law with her; and they went on the way to return unto the land of Judah.
7. to return] Strictly only appropriate to Naomi, cf. Ruth 1:22 etc.; the author unconsciously reveals that he is writing from Palestine.Verse 7. - And so she went forth out of the place where she was. There is no attempt on the part of the writer to localize the spot. And her two daughters-in-law with her. They had kept, it seems, on terms of affectionate sympathy with their mother-in-law. The jealousies that so often disturb the peace of households had no place within the bounds of Naomi's jurisdiction. The home of which she was the matronly center had been kept in its own beautiful orbit by the law of mutual respect, deference, affection, and esteem - the law that insures happiness to both the loving and the loved. "If there were more Naomis," says Lawson, "there might be more Orpahs and Ruths." And they went on the way to return to the land of Judah. Having left her Moabitish abode, and got into the frequented track which led in the direction of her native land, she journeyed onward for a stage or two, accompanied by her daughters-in-law. Such is the picture. It must be subsumed in it that her daughters-in-law had made up their minds to go with her to the land of her nativity. The subject had been often talked over and discussed. Naomi would from time to time start objections to their kind intention. They, on their part, would try to remove her difficulties, and would insist on accompanying her. So the three widows journeyed onward together, walking. Adversity had pressed hard on their attenuated resources, and they would not be encumbered with burdensome baggage. Elimelech's Emigration (Ruth 1:1, Ruth 1:2). - By the word ויהי the following account is attached to other well-known events (see at Joshua 1:1); and by the definite statement, "in the days when judges judged," it is assigned to the period of the judges generally. "A famine in the land," i.e., in the land of Israel, and not merely in the neighbourhood of Bethlehem. The time of this famine cannot be determined with certainty, although it seems very natural to connect it, as Seb. Schmidt and others do, with the devastation of the land by the Midianites (Judges 6); and there are several things which favour this. For example, the famine must have been a very serious one, and not only have extended over the whole of the land of Israel, but have lasted several years, since it compelled Elimelech to emigrate into the land of the Moabites; and it was not till ten years had elapsed, that his wife Naomi, who survived him, heard that Jehovah had given His people bread again, and returned to her native land (Ruth 1:4, Ruth 1:5).Now the Midianites oppressed Israel for seven years, and their invasions were generally attended by a destruction of the produce of the soil (Judges 6:3-4), from which famine must necessarily have ensued. Moreover, they extended their devastations as far as Gaza (Judges 6:4). And although it by no means follows with certainty from this, that they also came into the neighbourhood of Bethlehem, it is still less possible to draw the opposite conclusion, as Bertheau does, from the fact they encamped in the valley of Jezreel (Judges 6:33), and were defeated there by Gideon, namely, that they did not devastate the mountains of Judah, because the road from the plain of Jezreel to Gaza did not lie across those mountains. There is just as little force in the other objection raised by Bertheau, namely, that the genealogical list in Ruth 4:18. would not place Boaz in the time of Gideon, but about the time of the Philistian supremacy over Israel, since this objection is founded partly upon an assumption that cannot be established, and partly upon an erroneous chronological calculation. For example, the assumption that every member is included in this chronological series cannot be established, inasmuch as unimportant members are often omitted from the genealogies, so that Obed the son of Boaz might very well have been the grandfather of Jesse. And according to the true chronological reckoning, the birth of David, who died in the year 1015 b.c. at the age of seventy, fell in the year 1085, i.e., nine or ten years after the victory gained by Samuel over the Philistines, or after the termination of their forty years' rule over Israel, and only ninety-seven years after the death of Gideon (see the chronological table). Now David was the youngest of the eight sons of Jesse. If therefore we place his birth in the fiftieth year of his father's life, Jesse would have been born in the first year of the Philistian oppression, or forty-eight years after the death of Gideon. Now it is quite possible that Jesse may also have been a younger son of Obed, and born in the fiftieth year of his father's life; and if so, the birth of Obed would fall in the last years of Gideon. From this at any rate so much may be concluded with certainty, that Boaz was a contemporary of Gideon, and the emigration of Elimelech into the land of Moab may have taken place in the time of the Midianitish oppression. "To sojourn in the fields of Moab," i.e., to live as a stranger there. The form שׂדי (Ruth 1:1, Ruth 1:2, Ruth 1:22, and Ruth 2:6) is not the construct state singular, or only another form for שׂדה, as Bertheau maintains, but the construct state plural of the absolute שׂדים, which does not occur anywhere, it is true, but would be a perfectly regular formation (comp. Isaiah 32:12; 2 Samuel 1:21, etc.), as the construct state singular is written שׂדה even in this book (Ruth 1:6 and Ruth 4:3). The use of the singular in these passages for the land of the Moabites by no means proves that שׂדי must also be a singular, but may be explained from the fact that the expression "the field ( equals the territory) of Moab" alternates with the plural, "the fields of Moab."
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