Ruth 4:4
New International Version
I thought I should bring the matter to your attention and suggest that you buy it in the presence of these seated here and in the presence of the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, do so. But if you will not, tell me, so I will know. For no one has the right to do it except you, and I am next in line." "I will redeem it," he said.

New Living Translation
I thought I should speak to you about it so that you can redeem it if you wish. If you want the land, then buy it here in the presence of these witnesses. But if you don’t want it, let me know right away, because I am next in line to redeem it after you.” The man replied, “All right, I’ll redeem it.”

English Standard Version
So I thought I would tell you of it and say, ‘Buy it in the presence of those sitting here and in the presence of the elders of my people.’ If you will redeem it, redeem it. But if you will not, tell me, that I may know, for there is no one besides you to redeem it, and I come after you.” And he said, “I will redeem it.”

Berean Study Bible
I thought I should inform you that you may buy it back in the presence of those seated here and in the presence of the elders of my people. If you want to redeem it, do so. But if you will not redeem it, tell me so I may know, because there is no one but you to redeem it, and I am next after you.” “I will redeem it,” he replied.

King James Bible
And I thought to advertise thee, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know: for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it.

New King James Version
And I thought to inform you, saying, ‘Buy it back in the presence of the inhabitants and 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 but you to redeem it, and I am next after you.’ ” And he said, “I will redeem it.

New American Standard Bible
So I thought that I would inform you, saying, ‘Buy it before those who are sitting here, and before the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if not, tell me so that I may know; for there is no one except you to redeem it, and I am after you.’” And he said, “I will redeem it.

NASB 1995
"So I thought to inform you, saying, 'Buy it before those who are sitting here, and before the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if not, tell me that I may know; for there is no one but you to redeem it, and I am after you.'" And he said, "I will redeem it."

NASB 1977
“So I thought to inform you, saying, ‘Buy it before those who are sitting here, and before the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if not, tell me that I may know; for there is no one but you to redeem it, and I am after you.’” And he said, “I will redeem it.

Amplified Bible
So I thought to let you hear of it, saying, ‘Buy it in the presence of those sitting here, and before the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, redeem it; but if not, then tell me, so that I may know; for there is no one besides you to redeem it, and I am [next of kin] after you.’” And he said, “I will redeem it.”

Christian Standard Bible
I thought I should inform you: Buy it back in the presence of those seated here and in the presence of the elders of my people. If you want to redeem it, do it. But if you do not want to redeem it, tell me so that I will know, because there isn’t anyone other than you to redeem it, and I am next after you.” “I want to redeem it,” he answered.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I thought I should inform you: Buy it back in the presence of those seated here and in the presence of the elders of my people. If you want to redeem it, do so. But if you do not want to redeem it, tell me so that I will know, because there isn't anyone other than you to redeem it, and I am next after you."" I want to redeem it," he answered.

American Standard Version
And I thought to disclose it unto thee, saying, Buy it before them that sit here, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know; for there is none to redeem it besides thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And I said that I would reveal it and I would inform you and I would say to you, “Purchase you before these who are seated, and I am one who told my soul to speak and to purchase before these Elders of my people who are seated, and now, if it is that you will redeem it, redeem it, and if you will not redeem it, tell me and I shall know that you are not the Redeemer and I shall redeem it, and he said, “I will redeem it”

Brenton Septuagint Translation
and I said, I will inform thee, saying, Buy it before those that sit, and before the elders of my people: if thou wilt redeem it, redeem it, but if thou wilt not redeem it, tell me, and I shall know; for there is no one beside thee to do the office of a kinsman, and I am after thee: and he said, I am here, I will redeem it.

Contemporary English Version
I'm telling you about this, since you are his closest relative and have the right to buy the property. If you want it, you can buy it now. These ten men and the others standing here can be witnesses. But if you don't want the property, let me know, because I am next in line. The man replied, "I'll buy it!"

Douay-Rheims Bible
I would have thee to understand this, and would tell thee before all that sit here, and before the ancients of my people. If thou wilt take possession of it by the right of kindred: buy it and possess it: but if it please thee not, tell me so, that I may know what I have to do. For there is no near kinsman besides thee, who art first, and me, who am second. But he answered: I will buy the field.

English Revised Version
And I thought to disclose it unto thee, saying, Buy it before them that sit here, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it: but if thou wilt not redeem it, then tell me, that I may know: for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee. And he said, I will redeem it.

Good News Translation
and I think you ought to know about it. Now then, if you want it, buy it in the presence of these men sitting here. But if you don't want it, say so, because the right to buy it belongs first to you and then to me." The man said, "I will buy it."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
So I said that I would inform you. Buy it in the presence of these men sitting here and in the presence of the leaders of our people. If you wish to buy back the property, you can buy back the property. But if you do not wish to buy back the property, tell me. Then I will know that I am next in line because there is no other relative except me." The man said, "I'll buy back the property."

International Standard Version
So I thought to myself I ought to tell you that you must make a public purchase of this before the town residents and the elders of my people. So if you intend to act as the related redeemer, then do so. But if not, let me know, because except for you—and I after you—there is no one to fulfill the duties of a related redeemer." The man responded, "I will act as related redeemer."

JPS Tanakh 1917
and I thought to disclose it unto thee, saying: Buy it before them that sit here, and before the elders of my people. If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it; but if it will not be redeemed, then tell me, that I may know; for there is none to redeem it beside thee; and I am after thee.' And he said: 'I will redeem it.'

Literal Standard Version
and I said, I uncover your ear, saying, Buy before the inhabitants and before [the] elderly of my people; if you redeem—redeem, and if none redeems—declare [it] to me and I know, for there is none except you to redeem, and I after you.” And he says, “I redeem [it].”

NET Bible
So I am legally informing you: Acquire it before those sitting here and before the leaders of my people! If you want to exercise your right to redeem it, then do so. But if not, then tell me so I will know. For you possess the first option to redeem it; I am next in line after you." He replied, "I will redeem it."

New Heart English Bible
I thought to disclose it to 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."

World English Bible
I thought to disclose it to 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."

Young's Literal Translation
and I said, I uncover thine ear, saying, Buy before the inhabitants, and before the elders of my people; if thou dost redeem -- redeem, and if none doth redeem -- declare to me, and I know, for there is none save thee to redeem, and I after thee.' And he saith, I redeem it.'

Additional Translations ...
Context
Boaz Redeems Ruth
3And he said to the kinsman-redeemer, “Naomi, who has returned from the land of Moab, is selling the piece of land that belonged to our brother Elimelech. 4I thought I should inform you that you may buy it back in the presence of those seated here and in the presence of the elders of my people. If you want to redeem it, do so. But if you will not redeem it, tell me so I may know, because there is no one but you to redeem it, and I am next after you.” “I will redeem it,” he replied. 5Then Boaz said, “On the day you buy the land from Naomi and also from Ruth the Moabitess, you must also acquire the widow of the deceased in order to raise up the name of the deceased on his inheritance.”…

Cross References
Leviticus 25:25
If your brother becomes impoverished and sells some of his property, his nearest of kin may come and redeem what his brother has sold.

Jeremiah 32:7
Behold! Hanamel, the son of your uncle Shallum, is coming to you to say, 'Buy for yourself my field in Anathoth, for you have the right of redemption to buy it.'


Treasury of Scripture

And I thought to advertise you, saying, Buy it before the inhabitants, 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 none to redeem it beside you; and I am after you. And he said, I will redeem it.

I thought.

Jeremiah 32:7-9,25
Behold, Hanameel the son of Shallum thine uncle shall come unto thee, saying, Buy thee my field that is in Anathoth: for the right of redemption is thine to buy it

Romans 12:17
Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.

2 Corinthians 8:21
Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men.

before the inhabitants

Genesis 23:18
Unto Abraham for a possession in the presence of the children of Heth, before all that went in at the gate of his city.

Jeremiah 32:10-12
And I subscribed the evidence, and sealed it, and took witnesses, and weighed him the money in the balances…

for there is no

Leviticus 25:25-29
If thy brother be waxen poor, and hath sold away some of his possession, and if any of his kin come to redeem it, then shall he redeem that which his brother sold…









(4) And I thought . . .--literally, and I said I will uncover thy ear.

The inhabitants.--This should perhaps rather be, those who are sitting here [the Hebrew word yashabh has the two meanings of dwelling and sitting, see e.g., Genesis 23:10, where the latter meaning should certainly be taken]. So the LXX., Peshito and Vulg.

If thou wilt not.--The current Hebrew text has here, if he will not, which is clearly an error for the second person, which is read by a large number of Hebrew MSS., and by all the ancient versions.

I will redeem it.--He is willing enough to redeem the land as a good investment, forgetting, until reminded, the necessary previous condition. It involves marrying Ruth, and this he declines to do.

Verse 4. - And I said (to myself). There is little likelihood in the opinion of those who maintain, with Rosenmüller, that the expression, "I said," refers to a promise which Boaz had made to Ruth (see Ruth 3:13). It is a primitive phrase to denote internal resolution. There is a point where thought and speech coalesce. Our words are thoughts, and our thoughts are words. I will uncover thine ear, that is, "I will lift the locks of hair that may be covering the ear, so as to communicate something in confidence." But here the phrase is employed with the specific import of secrecy dropt out. It is thus somewhat equivalent to "I will give thee notice;" only the following expression לֵאמֹר, i.e. to say, must be read in the light of the undiluted original phrase, "I will uncover thine ear to say. The whole expression furnishes the most beautiful instance imaginable of the primary meaning of לֵאמֹר. The thing that was to be said follows immediately, viz., Acquire it, or Buy it. It is as if he had said, "Now you have a chance which may not occur again." It is added, in the presence of the inhabitants. This, rather than "the assessors," is the natural interpretation of the participle (הַיּשְׁבִים). It is the translation which the word generally receives in the very numerous instances in which it occurs. There was, so to speak, a fair representation of the inhabitants of the city in the casual company that had assembled in the gateway. And in presence of the elders of my people. The natural "aldermen," or unofficial "senators," whose presence extemporized for the occasion a sufficient court of testators. If thou wilt perform the part of a kinsman, perform it. The translation in King James's English version, and in many other versions, viz., "If thou wilt redeem it, redeem it," is somewhat out of harmony with the nature of the case. Naomi was not wishing Elimelech's estate to be redeemed. It was not yet in a position to be redeemed. It had not been alienated or sold. She wished for it not a redeemer, but a purchaser. And as it was the right of a נֹאֵל or kinsman to redeem for a reduced brother, if he was able and willing, the estate which had been sold to an alien (Leviticus 25:25), so it was the privilege of the same גואֵל or kinsman to get, if the reduced brother was wishing to sell, the first offer of the estate. It would, in particular, be at variance with the prerogative of the nearest of kin if some other one in the circle of the kindred, but not so near, were to be offered on sale the usufructuary possession of the family estate (Leviticus 25:23, 27). Hence Boaz recognized the prior prerogative of his anonymous relative and friend, and said to him, "If thou wilt perform the part of a kinsman, and buy the property, then buy it." It is added, and if he will not. Note the use of the third person he, instead of the second thou. If the reading be correct, then Boaz, in thus speaking, must for the moment have turned to the witnesses so as to address them. That the reading is correct, notwithstanding that some MSS. and all the ancient versions exhibit the verb in the second person, is rendered probable by the very fact that it is the difficult reading. There could be no temptation for a transcriber to substitute the third person for the second; there would be temptation to substitute the second for the third. The unanimity of the ancient versions is probably attributable to the habit of neglecting absolute literality, and translating according to the sense, when the sense was clear. Boaz, turning back instantaneously to his relative, says, Make thou known to me, that I may know, for there is none besides thee to act the kinsman's part (with the exception of myself), and I come after thee. The little clause, "with the exception of myself," lies in the sense, or spirit, although not in the letter of Boaz's address, as reported in the text. And he said, I will act the kinsman's part. He was glad to get the opportunity of adding to his own patrimonial possession the property that had belonged to Elimelech, and which Naomi, in her reduced condition, wished to dispose cf. So far all seemed to go straight against the interests of Ruth.

Parallel Commentaries ...


Hebrew
I
וַאֲנִ֨י (wa·’ă·nî)
Conjunctive waw | Pronoun - first person common singular
Strong's 589: I

thought
אָמַ֜רְתִּי (’ā·mar·tî)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - first person common singular
Strong's 559: To utter, say

I should inform
אֶגְלֶ֧ה (’eḡ·leh)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - first person common singular
Strong's 1540: To denude, to exile, to reveal

you
אָזְנְךָ֣ (’ā·zə·nə·ḵā)
Noun - feminine singular construct | second person masculine singular
Strong's 241: Broadness, the ear

that you may buy it back
קְ֠נֵה (qə·nêh)
Verb - Qal - Imperative - masculine singular
Strong's 7069: To erect, create, to procure, by purchase, to own

in the presence of
נֶ֥גֶד (ne·ḡeḏ)
Preposition
Strong's 5048: A front, part opposite, a counterpart, mate, over against, before

those seated here
הַֽיֹּשְׁבִים֮ (hay·yō·šə·ḇîm)
Article | Verb - Qal - Participle - masculine plural
Strong's 3427: To sit down, to dwell, to remain, to settle, to marry

and in the presence of
וְנֶ֣גֶד (wə·ne·ḡeḏ)
Conjunctive waw | Preposition
Strong's 5048: A front, part opposite, a counterpart, mate, over against, before

the elders
זִקְנֵ֣י (ziq·nê)
Adjective - masculine plural construct
Strong's 2205: Old

of my people.
עַמִּי֒ (‘am·mî)
Noun - masculine singular construct | first person common singular
Strong's 5971: A people, a tribe, troops, attendants, a flock

If
אִם־ (’im-)
Conjunction
Strong's 518: Lo!, whether?, if, although, Oh that!, when, not

you want to redeem it,
תִּגְאַל֙ (tiḡ·’al)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - second person masculine singular
Strong's 1350: To redeem, act as kinsman

do so.
גְּאָ֔ל (gə·’āl)
Verb - Qal - Imperative - masculine singular
Strong's 1350: To redeem, act as kinsman

But if you
וְאִם־ (wə·’im-)
Conjunctive waw | Conjunction
Strong's 518: Lo!, whether?, if, although, Oh that!, when, not

will not
לֹ֨א (lō)
Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's 3808: Not, no

redeem [it],
יִגְאַ֜ל (yiḡ·’al)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - third person masculine singular
Strong's 1350: To redeem, act as kinsman

tell
הַגִּ֣ידָה (hag·gî·ḏāh)
Verb - Hifil - Imperative - masculine singular | third person feminine singular
Strong's 5046: To be conspicuous

me
לִּ֗י (lî)
Preposition | first person common singular
Strong's Hebrew

so I may know,
וְאֵֽדְעָה֙ (wə·’ê·ḏə·‘āh)
Conjunctive waw | Verb - Qal - Conjunctive imperfect Cohortative - first person common singular
Strong's 3045: To know

because
כִּ֣י (kî)
Conjunction
Strong's 3588: A relative conjunction

[there is] no one
אֵ֤ין (’ên)
Adverb
Strong's 369: A non-entity, a negative particle

but you
זוּלָֽתְךָ֙ (zū·lā·ṯə·ḵā)
Preposition | second person masculine singular
Strong's 2108: Scattering, removal, except

to redeem [it],
לִגְא֔וֹל (liḡ·’ō·wl)
Preposition-l | Verb - Qal - Infinitive construct
Strong's 1350: To redeem, act as kinsman

and I [am]
וְאָנֹכִ֖י (wə·’ā·nō·ḵî)
Conjunctive waw | Pronoun - first person common singular
Strong's 595: I

next after you.?
אַחֲרֶ֑יךָ (’a·ḥă·re·ḵā)
Preposition | second person masculine singular
Strong's 310: The hind or following part

?I
אָנֹכִ֥י (’ā·nō·ḵî)
Pronoun - first person common singular
Strong's 595: I

will redeem [it],?
אֶגְאָֽל׃ (’eḡ·’āl)
Verb - Qal - Imperfect - first person common singular
Strong's 1350: To redeem, act as kinsman

he replied.
לֵאמֹ֗ר (lê·mōr)
Preposition-l | Verb - Qal - Infinitive construct
Strong's 559: To utter, say


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OT History: Ruth 4:4 I thought to disclose it to you (Ru Rut.)
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