Ruth 1:14
And they lifted up their voice, and wept again: and Orpah kissed her mother in law; but Ruth clave unto her.
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(14) Kissed.—Orpah, though unwilling to leave her mother-in-law, and though warmly attached to her, still thinks of the hardships of the journey, of the hardships when the journey is done; and the comforts of home detain her.

Ruth 1:14. Kissed — Departed from her with a kiss. Bade her farewell for ever. She loved Naomi; but she did not love her so well as to quit her country for her sake. Thus many have a value for Christ, and yet come short of salvation by him, because they cannot find in their hearts to forsake other things for him. They love him, and yet leave him, because they do not love him enough, but love other things better.

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.The kiss at parting as well as at meeting is the customary friendly and respectful salutation in the East. The difference between mere kindness of manner and self-sacrificing love is most vividly depicted in the words and conduct of the two women. Ruth's determination is stedfast to cast in her lot with the people of the Lord (compare the marginal references and Matthew 15:22-28). 13. the hand of the Lord is gone out against me—that is, I am not only not in a condition to provide you with other husbands, but so reduced in circumstances that I cannot think of your being subjected to privations with me. The arguments of Naomi prevailed with Orpah, who returned to her people and her gods. But Ruth clave unto her; and even in the pages of Sterne, that great master of pathos, there is nothing which so calls forth the sensibilities of the reader as the simple effusion he has borrowed from Scripture—of Ruth to her mother-in-law [Chalmers]. Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, i.e. departed from with a kiss, as the manner was, Genesis 31:28 1 Kings 19:20.

And they lifted up their voice, and wept again,.... Not being able to bear the thought of parting, or that they must be obliged to it:

and Orpah kissed her mother in law; gave her the parting kiss, as the Jews (e) call it; and which was used by other people (f); but not without affection to her, and took her leave of her, as her kiss testified, since it must be so; and being moved by her reasons, and having a greater inclination to her own country than Ruth had; of the kiss at parting, see Genesis 31:28.

but Ruth clave unto her; hung about her, would not part from her, but cleaved unto her in body and mind; forsaking her own people, and her father's house; neither the thought of them, nor of her native country, nor of not having an husband, or any likelihood of it, nor of poverty and distress, had any manner of influence upon her, but determined she was to go and abide with her.

(e) Bereshit Rabba, sect. 70. fol. 62. 4. Shemot, sect. 5. fol. 94. 4. (f) "----discedens oscula nulla dedi". Ovid. Ephesians 3. ver. 14.

And they lifted up their voice, and wept again: and Orpah {f} kissed her mother in law; but Ruth clave unto her.

(f) When she took leave and departed.

14. Orpah kissed her mother in law] and, it is implied, said good-bye.

Verse 14. - And they, the daughters-in-law, lifted up their voice in unison and unity, as if instead of two voices there had been but one. Hence the propriety of the singular number, as in ver. 9. And wept again. The "again" doubles back on the statement in ver. 9. With uplifted voice, in shrill Oriental wail, and amid streams of tears, they bemoaned their hapless lot. Then, after the paroxysm of grief had somewhat spent itself, Orpah yielded to her mother-in-law's dissuasives, and at length imprinted on her, reluctantly and passionately, a farewell kiss. Then, not waiting to ascertain the ultimate decision of Ruth, or rather, perhaps, having now a fixed presentiment what it would be, she moved regretfully and tearfully away. She was afraid, perhaps, that if she, as well as Ruth, should insist on accompanying her mother-in-law, the two might be unreasonably burdensome to the aged widow. Perhaps, too, she was not without fear that her own burden in a foreign land, amid strangers, might be too heavy to be borne. There is not, however, the slightest need for supposing that she was, in any respect, deficient in attachment to her mother-in-law. But, it is added, Ruth clave to her mother-in-law, all reasonings, remonstrances, dissuasives on Naomi's part notwithstanding. Ruth would not be parted from her. "Clave." It is the same word that is used in the primitive law of marriage. "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they shall be one flesh" (Genesis 2:24). It occurs again in Psalm 63:8: "My soul followeth hard after thee; and in Psalm 119:31: "I have stuck to thy testimonies." Joshua said, "Cleave unto the Lord thy God" (Joshua 23:8); and many have had sweet, while others have had bitter, experience of the truth that "there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother" (Proverbs 18:24).

CHAPTER 1:15-22. Ruth 1:14At these dissuasive words the daughters-in-law broke out into loud weeping again (תּשּׂנה with the א dropped for תּשּׂאנה, Ruth 1:9), and Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, and took leave of her to return to her mother's house; but Ruth clung to her (דּבק as in Genesis 2:24), forsaking her father and mother to go with Naomi into the land of Judah (vid., Ruth 2:11).
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