|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
4:1-8 This matter depended on the laws given by Moses about inheritances, and doubtless the whole was settled in the regular and legal manner. This kinsman, when he heard the conditions of the bargain, refused it. In like manner many are shy of the great redemption; they are not willing to espouse religion; they have heard well of it, and have nothing to say against it; they will give it their good word, but they are willing to part with it, and cannot be bound to it, for fear of marring their own inheritance in this world. The right was resigned to Boaz. Fair and open dealing in all matters of contract and trade, is what all must make conscience of, who would approve themselves true Israelites, without guile. Honesty will be found the best policy.
Verse 2. - And he took ten men of the elderly inhabitants of the city, and he said, Sit ye here; and they sat down. Boaz wished to have a full complement of witnesses to the important transaction which he contemplated.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And he took ten men of the elders of the city,.... Who were such, not merely in age but in office, who were the heads of thousands, fifties, and tens; ten of whom were a quorum to do business in judiciary affairs, to determine such matters as Boaz had propose, as to whom the right of redemption of a brother and kinsman's widow, and her estate, belonged, and who were the proper witnesses of the refusal of the one to do it, and of the other's doing it and from hence the Jews (e) gather, that the blessing of the bride and bridegroom at their marriage is not to be done by less than ten persons:
and said, sit down here, and they sat down; and so made a full court.
(e) Misnah Megillah, c. 4. sect. 3. T. Bab. Cetubot, fol. 7. 1. Midrash Ruth, fol. 35. 1.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
2. he took ten men of the elders of the city—as witnesses. In ordinary circumstances, two or three were sufficient to attest a bargain; but in cases of importance, such as matrimony, divorce, conveyancing of property, it was the Jewish practice to have ten (1Ki 21:8).
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