Ruth 3-4 – Ruth and Boaz

Ruth in Boaz's Field

Ruth in Boaz's Field (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some have suggested that the uncovering of Boaz’s feet in 3:7 suggests some sort of sexual contact, but that is not the case and it does not fit the story or the characters.  Ruth’s calling Boaz her redeemer is what amounts to a marriage proposal.  He knows that there is a closer relative who has the first right of redemption, so he tells her that he will work the matter out with that relative.  If that closer relative to does not step up, Boaz promises to do so.  The land of Naomi’s husband Elimelech must be bought by a kinsman and Ruth will be part of the bargain (an overview of the process can be found in Deuteronomy 25:7-8).

Boaz meets with the relative at the city gate (equivalent to our town hall) with the elders and proposes the situation to the other relative.  At first, he likes the idea of buying the land, but taking Ruth could muddy the waters of inheritance for the children he already has.  So under witness of the elders, Boaz claims the right that this relative passes to him (chapter 4:7-11).

So Boaz marries Ruth and they have a son named Obed who will be the grandfather of David (4:22).  Ruth is the third foreign woman in this line of Jesus Christ’s ancestry (Matthew 1:1-6).  The other two are Rahab and Tamar.

Read or listen to audio of ESV version of this selection from this link.

some images © V. Gilbert & Arlisle F. Beers

Please note: I did not design the reading plan that I am following in my blog.  All of my comments in this blog, however, are solely my responsibility.  When reading ANY commentary, you should ALWAYS refer first to the scripture, which is God’s unchanging and unfailing word. Reading schedules, as well as a link to the site where you can get the reading plan that I’m currently following for yourself can be found on the “Bible Reading Schedules” page of my website at  For questions and help, please see the “FAQ” and “Summaries” pages there.


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