The Cloisters. Basilica Of Saint Paul-Without-The-Walls, Rome. Author: Dnalor 01. Licence (CC-BY-SA 3.0). Wikimedia Commons.

Monday, 19 February 2018

The Book Of Ruth: “ Whither Thou Goest, I Will Go . . . Where Thou Lodgest, I Will Lodge . . . Thy People Shall Be My People . . . And Thy God, My God ”.

Text from Wikipedia - the free encyclopaedia,
unless otherwise stated.


"Whither Thou Goest".
Sung by Les Paul and Mary Ford.
Available on YouTube at

Ruth (Hebrew: רוּת, Modern Rut Tiberian Rūθ), is the main character in The Book of Ruth in The Hebrew Bible.

Ruth was a Moabitess, who married into the Hebrew family of Elimelech and Naomi, whom she met when they left Bethlehem and relocated to Moab, due to a famine. Elimelech and his two sons died, leaving Naomi and her two daughters-in-law as widows.

When Naomi decided to return to Bethlehem, Ruth decided to go with her, despite the fact that Orpah, Naomi's other daughter-in-law, went back home.

Ruth famously vowed to follow Naomi in the following passage:

" Entreat me not to leave thee,
or to return from following after thee:

for whither thou goest, I will go;
and where thou lodgest, I will lodge:
thy people shall be my people,
and thy God my God:

Where thou diest, will I die,
and there will I be buried:
the LORD do so to me, and more also,
if ought but death part thee and me. "

(Ruth 1:16-17, King James Version)

"Ruth in the Fields"
by Merle Hugues, 1876.
Illustration: BIBLE-PEOPLE

"Whither Thou Goest".
Sung by Perry Como.
Available on YouTube at

Ruth went to glean in the fields, where she met Boaz. At the instigation of Naomi, she forced Boaz to declare his intentions regarding Ruth by slipping into the threshing floor at night, uncovering his feet, and lying at his feet (Ruth 3:8), in the Mosaic tradition of having the nearest relative be the kinsman redeemer (Leviticus 25:25-55).

Boaz indicated his desire to marry her, and called Ruth a "woman of noble character". After overcoming the obstacle of having a relative with a stronger claim (per the Mosaic requirements in Deuteronomy 25:7-9), Boaz married Ruth, and they had a son, named Obed.

The genealogy, in the final Chapter of the Book, explains how Ruth became the Great-Grandmother of David: Boaz begot Obed, Obed begot Jesse and Jesse begot David (Ruth 4:17). She is also, thus, the ancestor of Joseph (husband of Mary and foster-father of Jesus), and is one of the five women mentioned in The Genealogy of Matthew (along with Tamar, Rahab, Bathsheba, and Mary).

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