Ruth’s Dedication

1: 6-18

Na’omi had no reason to stay in in Mo’av. The news that the famine that had brought the family there in the first place was over was sufficient to cause her to decide to return home to Isra’el. This led to a problem for her daughters-in-law that they faced in different ways. Orpah returned to her native country of Mo’av, but Ruth did the extraordinary thing and went with Na’omi. It brought from Ruth a magnificent declaration of her dedication.18

Scene One reaches its climax as Ruth makes her declaration in 1:16-17. These verses form a chiastic A-B-C-B-A literary structure.

A Don’t press me to leave you or to turn back from you.

B Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay.

C Your people will be my people and your God my God.

B Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried.

A May God deal with me, be it ever so severely, if even death separates you and me.

 

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