There is a *Redeemer
An EasyEnglish Bible Version and Commentary (1200 word vocabulary) on the Book of Ruth
This commentary has been through Advanced Checking.
Words in boxes are notes on the Bible text.
A word list at the end explains words with a *star by them.
Jesus said, ‘The Son of Man came to give his life to *redeem many people’ (Matthew 20:28). (‘Son of Man’ is a name that Jesus gave to himself.)
v1 There was a *famine in the country. It happened in the days when the *judges ruled the people. A man from Bethlehem in Judah went to stay in the country called Moab. His wife and his two sons went with him. v2 The man’s name was Elimelech and his wife’s name was Naomi. The names of his two sons were Mahlon and Kilion. They were all *Ephrathites. They went from Bethlehem in Judah and they came to live in Moab. v3 But Elimelech died. He was Naomi’s husband. Naomi and her two sons remained. v4 The two sons married women from Moab. The name of one was Orpah and the name of the second was Ruth. Naomi’s family stayed there for about 10 years. v5 Then Mahlon and Kilion died also. The woman now remained without her children or her husband.
v6 Then she heard in Moab that the *LORD had given his people help. He was giving food to them. So, she started to go home from Moab. Her sons’ wives went with her. v7 She left the place where she lived. She and her two sons’ wives went on the road to return to the place called Judah. v8 Then Naomi said to her two sons’ wives, ‘Go; return home to your own mothers. You gave kind love to me and to those that died. So I hope that the *LORD gives you his kind love. v9 I hope that the *LORD will give you rest in the home of a husband.’ Then Naomi kissed them. But they cried, v10 and they said to Naomi, ‘No, we will not go home. We will go with you to your people.’ v11 But Naomi said, ‘My daughters, go home. You should not come with me. I will not have more sons to become your husbands.
v12 Go, my daughters, go home. I am too old to have a husband. I might say that:
· there is hope for me.
· I might have a husband tonight.
· I might have sons.
v13 Even then you could not wait until they were men. You could not be without husbands until then. No, my daughters. What the *LORD has done is more *bitter for me than for you. The *LORD is against me.’ v14 Then they cried aloud again. Orpah kissed her husband’s mother, but Ruth held on to Naomi.
v15 ‘Look’, said Naomi, ‘your *sister-in-law is going back to her family and to her gods. Go back with her.’
v16-17 But Ruth said:
· ‘Do not ask me to leave you or not to follow you.
· Where you go, I will go. And where you stay, I will stay.
· Your people will be my people and your God will be my God.
· Where you die I will die. And there they will bury me.
· I want the *LORD to hurt me if anything except death makes us separate.’
v18 Then Naomi knew that Ruth wanted to go with her. So she did not argue any more. v19 The two women went to Bethlehem. When they arrived in Bethlehem, all the people in the town started to talk about them. The women asked, ‘Is this really Naomi?’ v20 But Naomi said to them, ‘Do not call me Naomi. Call me *Mara, because *The Almighty has made life very *bitter for me. v21 I went away full. The *LORD has brought me back empty. So do not call me Naomi. The *LORD has spoken against me. *The Almighty has done bad things to me.’
v22 So Naomi came home. Ruth, her son’s wife, came with her from the country called Moab. They reached Bethlehem at the beginning of the *barley *harvest.
v1 Elimelech had been Naomi’s husband. Boaz was a *relation of Elimelech. Boaz was an important man. v2 Ruth was from Moab. She said to Naomi, ‘Let me now go to the field where I can *glean *grain. Perhaps someone will be kind to me.’ Naomi said to her, ‘Go, my daughter.’ v3 So Ruth left and she went to the field. There she *gleaned *grain behind the *harvesters. Now she happened to come to the part of the field that *belonged to Boaz. He was a *relation of Elimelech. v4 Just then, Boaz came from Bethlehem. He said to the *harvesters, ‘The *LORD is with you.’ They said to Boaz, ‘We pray that the *LORD will do good things to you.’ v5 Boaz asked his servant, ‘Who is that young woman?’ The servant was the leader of the *harvesters. v6 He said, ‘The young woman is from Moab. She came back from the country called Moab with Naomi. v7 She said, “Let me *glean by the *sheaves. Let me walk behind the *harvesters.” She came at dawn and she has worked until now. Maybe she went into the house for a short time.’
v8 So Boaz said to Ruth, ‘Listen to me, my daughter. Do not go to another part of this field to *glean. Do not go away from here. Stay with my women servants. v9 Look in the field where the *harvesters are. *Glean where they are. I will tell the men that they must not touch you. The men have filled jars with water. If you want a drink, use those jars.’ v10 Then Ruth fell on the ground and she hid her face. She asked him, ‘Why are you so kind to me? What do you see in me? I am a foreign woman.’ v11 Boaz replied, ‘They told me everything that you have done for your *mother-in-law. When your husband died, you came away from your mother and father and from your own country. You came to people that you did not know before. v12 I ask the *LORD to be good to you for what you have done. I pray that the *LORD, the God of Israel will pay you in full. That is because you came to him for a safe place under his *wings.’ v13 Then she said, ‘You are so kind to me, my *lord, because you are giving me help. I am only a servant girl, but you speak to me like a friend. I am not even one of your own women servants.’
v14 When it was time for a meal, Boaz said to her, ‘Come with us. Take some of our food. Put it in the *vinegar.’ So she sat by the *harvesters. Boaz gave her some of the *barley, hot from the fire. She ate as much as she wanted. But some remained. v15 Then Ruth started to *glean again. Boaz told his men, ‘Let her *glean under the *sheaves. Do not stop her. v16 You can also pull out some *barley from the *sheaves. Drop it where she can *glean it. And do not tell her that she must not do it.’
v17 So, Ruth *gleaned in the field until the evening. Then she *threshed what she had *gleaned. She had about 20 litres of *barley *grain. v18 She took the *grain and she went to the town. Her husband’s mother saw how much that Ruth had *gleaned. Then she gave her husband’s mother the food that she had not eaten at the meal time. v19 Her husband’s mother asked her, ‘Where did you *glean today? Where did you work? Good things should happen to the man who gave you help.’ So, she told her husband’s mother what she had done. She said, ‘The name of the man that I worked with today is Boaz.’ v20 Then Naomi said to her son’s wife, ‘I pray that the *LORD will do good things to him! He has not stopped showing his kind love to the living people and to the dead people.’ Naomi also said to her, ‘The man is a *relation of ours. He might *redeem us.’ v21 Then Ruth, the woman from Moab, said, ‘Boaz also told me, “Stay near my servants until the end of the *harvest”.’ v22 Naomi said to Ruth, her son’s wife, ‘It is good if you stay with his young women. Do not go to another field where someone may hurt you.’ v23 So Ruth stayed near Boaz’s young women. She *gleaned until the end of the *barley *harvest and of the *wheat *harvest. She continued to live with her husband’s mother.
v1 Naomi, Ruth’s husband’s mother, said to her, ‘My daughter, I am looking for a home where you can rest. So then you can be happy. v2 Now Boaz is a *relation of ours. You have been with his young women. Tonight he will *winnow *barley at the *threshing floor. v3 Now, have a bath and make yourself smell nice. Then dress in your best clothes. Go down to the *threshing floor. Remain hidden until he finishes eating and drinking. v4 Notice carefully the place where he lies down to sleep. Then go there and uncover his feet. And lie by his feet. He will tell you what to do.’ v5 ‘I will do everything that you have told me’, Ruth said to Naomi.
v6 So Ruth went to the *threshing floor. There she did everything that her husband’s mother had said. v7 Boaz ate and drank. He began to feel very happy. He went to sleep by the side of all the *grain. Ruth came in secret. She uncovered his feet and she lay down by his feet. v8 At midnight, something made the man feel afraid. He turned. And he discovered a woman who was lying by his feet. v9 ‘Who are you?’ he asked. ‘I am Ruth, your servant’, she replied. ‘You are a *redeemer. So cover me with the coat that is covering your feet.’ v10 ‘My daughter, I pray that the *LORD will be good to you’, said Boaz. ‘You are more kind now than you were earlier. You have not run after young men, poor or rich. v11 Now, my daughter, do not be afraid. I will do everything that you have suggested. Everyone in the town knows that you are a good woman. v12 It is true that I am a *redeemer. But there is a *redeemer closer to you than I am. v13 Stay here for the night. It may happen in the morning that he will *redeem you. If so, that will be good. He will *redeem you. But if he does not want to *redeem you, then I will *redeem you. I promise this, as the *LORD lives! Lie down until the morning.’
v14 So, Ruth lay by his feet until the morning. She got up before anyone might recognise the person next to him. Boaz said, ‘Do not let anyone know that a woman came to the *threshing floor.’ v15 He also said, ‘Bring me your *shawl. Hold it in front of me.’ When she did, he poured a lot of *barley into it. He gave her help to pick it up, and then he went back to town. v16 Ruth came back to her husband’s mother. Naomi said to Ruth, ‘What happened, my daughter?’ Ruth told her all that had happened with Boaz. v17 She also said, ‘He gave me all this *barley. He told me not to come back to my husband’s mother with empty hands.’ v18 Naomi replied, ‘Wait, my daughter. And see what happens. The man will make sure that he finishes everything today.’
v1 Boaz went to the gate of the town and he sat down there. Then the other *redeemer came past him, the one that Boaz had talked about. Boaz said, ‘Come here, sir, and sit down.’ So the man went over and he sat down. v2 Boaz had found 10 important men from the town. He said to them, ‘Sit down here’ and they sat down. v3 Boaz said to the other *redeemer, ‘Our brother Elimelech had part of the field. Naomi, who has returned from Moab, wants to sell it. v4 I thought that I ought to tell you about it. I suggest that you buy it. Buy it in front of all the people who are sitting here and in front of our people’s leaders. If you will *redeem it, then *redeem it. But if you will not *redeem it then tell me. Then I will know. There is nobody else to *redeem it except you first and me second.’ ‘Yes, I will *redeem it’, the other *redeemer said. v5 Boaz said, ‘On the day that you buy the field from Naomi you also buy it from Ruth. She is the woman from Moab, the *widow of the dead man. You must take her also to continue the dead man’s name on his land.’ v6 The other *redeemer replied, ‘I cannot *redeem it. If I did, I might put my own land in danger. You *redeem it in my place. I cannot do it.’
v7 Now they finished selling or *redeeming anything long ago in Israel like this: A man took off his shoe and he gave it to the other man. This was the proper way in Israel. v8 He said to Boaz, ‘You buy it.’ And he took off his shoe. v9 Then Boaz said to the important men and all the people, ‘Today you saw what I did. I bought from Naomi all that Elimelech, Mahlon and Kilion had. v10 Ruth, the woman from Moab, was the wife of Mahlon. She also is now mine. This means that everyone will remember him. And they will remember where his land was. His family will not forget him, and the people from his village will not forget him. You have all seen this today.’ v11 The most important people and everyone else said, ‘We have seen it. This woman is coming into your home. And we pray that she will be like Rachel and like Leah. Those two women built up the house of Israel. We want you to be important in Ephrathah and famous in Bethlehem. v12 We pray that your family will be like the family of Perez, the son of Tamar and Judah. We pray that this will happen because of your child. We pray that the *LORD will give you a child by this young woman.’
v13 So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. He loved her. Then she was going to have a baby. The *LORD gave her a baby son. v14 The women said to Naomi, ‘The *LORD is good. Today he has given you a *redeemer. We pray that his name will be famous in all Israel! v15 He will give you a new life. He will give you help when you become old. Your son’s wife loves you. She is better to you than 7 sons. She is boy’s mother.’
v16 Naomi held the boy in her arms. She fed him and she kept him safe. v17 The women that lived there said, ‘Naomi has a son.’ They called him Obed. He was the father of Jesse. Jesse was the father of David.
v18-22 This is the *family tree of Perez:
· Perez was the father of Hezron.
· Hezron was the father of Ram.
· Ram was the father of Amminadab.
· Amminadab was the father of Nahshon.
· Nahshon was the father of Salmon.
· Salmon was the father of Boaz.
· Boaz was the father of Obed.
· Obed was the father of Jesse.
· Jesse was the father of David.
barley ~ a plant; you make bread from its seeds.
belong to ~ what someone has; people’s things belong to them.
bitter ~ opposite of sweet; or a very difficult life.
church ~ a group of Christians who meet together. A church is not only the building that they meet in. It can also mean all the Christians in the world.
covenant ~ when people agree something together; when God and a person or people agree to a special thing.
descendants ~ children and their children and so on.
Ephrathites ~ people that lived in Bethlehem.
family tree ~ a list of your parents, grandparents and *descendants.
famine ~ time when food plants do not grow.
glean ~ get what other people leave.
grain ~ the seeds of *barley and *wheat.
harvest ~ the time when people pick plants and fruits.
harvesters ~ the people that pick the plants and fruits.
Hebrew ~ the language that the *Jews spoke.
Jew ~ someone that was born from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and their children.
Jewish ~ a word that describes a *Jew or anything that *belongs to a *Jew.
judges ~ the leaders of Judah after Moses and before Saul.
keep a promise ~ do what you promised to do.
law ~ the rules of a country.
levirate ~ a *law about marrying. See the notes at the beginning.
lord ~ someone who rules or is a master; someone with authority.
LORD ~ a special name for God that his people use. It is the *covenant name of God.
Mara ~ a *Hebrew word that means ‘*bitter’.
mother-in-law ~ the mother of your husband or wife.
Old Testament ~ the first part of the Bible, which the writers wrote before the life of Jesus.
princess ~ the daughter of a king.
redeem ~ buy back again.
redeemer ~ a name for God. It means that he pays the price of our *sin. This happened when Jesus died on the cross.
relation ~ someone in your family, like an aunt or a cousin.
serve ~ work for another person.
shawl ~ a square of cloth; women wear it over their shoulders.
sheaf/sheaves ~ some plants of *wheat or *barley tied together.
sin ~ when we do not obey God’s rules.
sister-in-law ~ the wife of your husband’s brother is called your sister-in-law.
The Almighty ~ a translation of the *Hebrew word ‘Shaddai’. Bible students are not sure what Shaddai means. Some think that it means The Almighty; that is someone more powerful than anybody else is.
thresh ~ hit *wheat or *barley plants until the *grain falls out.
threshing floor ~ a place without a roof where you *thresh *barley.
uncle ~ your father’s brother or your mother’s brother.
vinegar ~ what *wine becomes if we leave it open to the air.
wheat ~ a plant like *barley that gives *grain when *threshed.
widow ~ woman when husband has died.
wine ~ a drink with alcohol in it. People make it from fruit called grapes.
wings ~ a bird uses its wings to fly.
winnow ~ after you *thresh plants, you winnow to make the *grain separate from the rest of the plant.
witness ~ someone who sees what happens.
© 1997-2007, Wycliffe Associates (UK)
This publication is written in EasyEnglish Level A (1200 words)
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