Ruth - A Little Background

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Before we get too deep into the story of Ruth, I thought I'd begin this week by sharing some background information. I always love it when I can find out a little more about the timeframe, the country, and/or the culture at the time when stories take place. Many times these are of significant relevance to the story and I also like how it gives a more personal look at the persons involved in the story, as well.

In first chapter of Ruth there are several insights into this beautiful story of Ruth and Naomi. Consider these.....

~ There was a famine in the land of Judah. Due to famine, Naomi and her husband Elimelech are forced to leave their home and go to another country to find food. Can you imagine going to the grocery store and finding it empty? And then learning that all the grocery stores were empty?

~ A man (Elimelech) from Bethlehem in Judah went to live as a resident foreigner. How desperate would we have to be to go to another country to find food?

~ Elimelech's two sons were Mahlon and Kilion. The name Mahlon means unhealthy and the name Kilion means puny or weakly.

~ Sometime later Naomi's husband Elimelech died.

~ Naomi's sons married Moabite women. Her sons married outside their faith.

~ They continued to live in Judah for about ten more years.

~ Nami's two sons, Mahlon and Kilion, also died. Can you even imagine losing your spouse and your children? And, then, being plunged into poverty?

At the time that the book of Ruth begins, Naomi's life is at a point of desperation. I would imagine Naomi felt as if her life had ended. She had no reason to believe there was so much good ahead for her. Or, that she had such a friend in her daughter-in-law, Ruth.

This is truly a story of hope. A story of friendship. A story showing that God NEVER abandons us. A story that shows how circumstances that appear to be the end of the story are really just the beginnings.

7 Thoughts Shared:

Woman on a Mission said...

You are so right. Thank you for sharing.

JesusRulzMe said...

Hello sister Melanie!

I LOVE, LOVE the book of Ruth! I want so much to be like her and have her humble, kind and gentle spirit! I never knew what Naomi's son's names meant....thanks for looking it up and sharing!

Bless you sister! I'm so enjoying getting to know you better!
Sunny

Paula (SweetPea) said...

The story of Ruth and Naomi is, indeed, a precious one.

Tricia said...

"This is truly a story of hope. A story of friendship. A story showing that God NEVER abandons us. A story that shows how circumstances that appear to be the end of the story are really just the beginnings."

Those words ministered so to me today! Thank you for sharing what you are learning in your study of God's Word, and thanks so much for your prayers for my family!

Blessings!

Laurie Ann said...

Thanks for this information. I love the story of Ruth and can't wait to learn more from you, Melanie!

Angie said...

I love the story of Ruth. Such devotion. This will be one to really sink in and study! I am still involved in our Sisters of Faith study...but NOW I see I will have to keep a close check on this! I have a novel by Lois Henderson that is so good and shares wonderful details about the time/location of Ruth and Naomi's story.
Have fun with it!

Pia said...

"A story that shows how circumstances that appear to be the end of the story are really just the beginnings" ~ i'm so encouraged! ♥