Ruth 3:13 MEANING

Ruth 3:13
(13) Until the morning.--You have made clear the object of your plea, and I fully assent to it; but do not run the risk of going now, in the dead of night, back to your home.

Verse 13. - Abide here tonight; and it shall come to pass in the morning, if he will act to thee the part of a kinsman, well; he shall act the kinsman's part: and if it please him not to act to thee the kinsman's part, then sure as Yahveh is alive, I will act to thee the kinsman's part. Lie still till the morning. Love is quick-witted. Boaz's plan of operations would formulate itself on the spur of the moment; but the remainder of the night would doubtless be spent in maturing the details of procedure. The aim would be to secure, as far as honor would permit, the much-wished-for prize. There would be, moreover, we need not doubt, much conversation between them, and mutual consultation, and arrangement. A large letter, a majuscula, occurs in the first word of the verse - לִינִי - which the smaller Masora ascribes to the Oriental or Babylonian textualists. It had, no doubt, been at first either a merely accidental, or a finically capricious, enlargement; but, being found, mysteries had to be ex-cogitated to account for it; - all mere rubbish. "Tonight" is a perfect translation of הַלַּיְלָה, for the to is simply the common definite article in one of its peculiar forms, perhaps peculiarly crushed and defaced (see note on Ruth 3:2).

3:6-13 What in one age or nation would be improper, is not always so in another age or another nation. Being a judge of Israel, Boaz would tell Ruth what she should do; also whether he had the right of redemption, and what methods must be taken, and what rites used, in order to accomplishing her marriage with him or another person. The conduct of Boaz calls for the highest praise. He attempted not to take advantage of Ruth; he did not disdain her as a poor, destitute stranger, nor suspect her of any ill intentions. He spoke honourably of her as a virtuous woman, made her a promise, and as soon as the morning arrived, sent her away with a present to her mother-in-law. Boaz made his promise conditional, for there was a kinsman nearer than he, to whom the right of redemption belonged.Tarry this day,.... Or lodge here tonight, where she was; this he said not from any design upon her, but for her own safety and honour, that she might not be exposed to danger or disgrace, by returning home at such an unseasonable time of night. The first letter in the word for "tarry" is larger than usual in the Hebrew text; which may be done to raise the attention of the reader, to observe it as a thing very singular, that a widow should lodge with a man without any diminution of her chastity; so Buxtorf (x) says, that hereby attention is noted, even the honesty of Boaz ordering Ruth to lodge without a man, and wait until a nearer kinsman, according to the law, should come, and promising that on failure thereof he would be the lawful redeemer; but Dr. Lightfoot (y) observes, that as there is a special mark over a word in the story of Lot's eldest daughter lying with her father, Genesis 19:34 and a special mark on this word here, in the story of Ruth going to Boaz his bed, seems to relate one to the other, and both together to point at the great providence of God in bringing light out of darkness, Ruth, a mother of Christ, out of the incest of Lot:

and it shall be, in the morning, that if he will perform unto thee the part of a kinsman, well, let him do the kinsman's part; by marrying Ruth, and redeeming her husband's estate, which if he did, it would be all very well, and right according to law; and it would be very well for Ruth, as Aben Ezra and Abendana interpret it; seeing, as they observe, that kinsman was a very respectable man, a man of great esteem and worth, a man of wealth and authority, and she would be well matched to him. Some think, as the same writers observe, that the word "Tob", translated "well", is the name of the kinsman, the same with Tobias; so R. Joshuah says (z), that Salmon (who was the father of Boaz), and Elimelech (the father of Ruth's husband), and Tob (this near kinsman), were brethren:

but if he will not do the part of a kinsman to thee, then will I do the part of a kinsman to thee, as the Lord liveth: that is, he swore he would marry her, and redeem the inheritance, if the other would not; for the phrase, "as the Lord liveth", is the form of an oath, it is swearing by the living God; so the Targum,"I say with an oath before the Lord, that as I have spoken unto thee, so will I:do:"

lie down until the morning; and take some sleep and rest, and be at ease in mind, depending upon the performance of what I have promised.

(x) Tiberias, c. 14. p. 38. (y) Works, vol. 1. p. 48. (z) In Midrash Ruth, ut supra. (fol. 31. 4. & 34. 2.)

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