Naomi Loses Her Husband and Sons

In the days when the judges ruled,[a](A) there was a famine in the land.(B) So a man from Bethlehem in Judah,(C) together with his wife and two sons, went to live for a while(D) in the country of Moab.(E) The man’s name was Elimelek,(F) his wife’s name was Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Kilion.(G) They were Ephrathites(H) from Bethlehem,(I) Judah. And they went to Moab and lived there.

Now Elimelek, Naomi’s husband, died, and she was left with her two sons. They married Moabite women,(J) one named Orpah and the other Ruth.(K) After they had lived there about ten years, both Mahlon and Kilion(L) also died,(M) and Naomi was left without her two sons and her husband.

Naomi and Ruth Return to Bethlehem

When Naomi heard in Moab(N) that the Lord had come to the aid of his people(O) by providing food(P) for them, she and her daughters-in-law(Q) prepared to return home from there. With her two daughters-in-law she left the place where she had been living and set out on the road that would take them back to the land of Judah.

Then Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go back, each of you, to your mother’s home.(R) May the Lord show you kindness,(S) as you have shown kindness to your dead husbands(T) and to me. May the Lord grant that each of you will find rest(U) in the home of another husband.”

Then she kissed(V) them goodbye and they wept aloud(W) 10 and said to her, “We will go back with you to your people.”

11 But Naomi said, “Return home, my daughters. Why would you come with me? Am I going to have any more sons, who could become your husbands?(X) 12 Return home, my daughters; I am too old to have another husband. Even if I thought there was still hope for me—even if I had a husband tonight and then gave birth to sons— 13 would you wait until they grew up?(Y) Would you remain unmarried for them? No, my daughters. It is more bitter(Z) for me than for you, because the Lord’s hand has turned against me!(AA)

14 At this they wept(AB) aloud again. Then Orpah kissed her mother-in-law(AC) goodbye,(AD) but Ruth clung to her.(AE)

15 “Look,” said Naomi, “your sister-in-law(AF) is going back to her people and her gods.(AG) Go back with her.”

16 But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you(AH) or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go,(AI) and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people(AJ) and your God my God.(AK) 17 Where you die I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord deal with me, be it ever so severely,(AL) if even death separates you and me.”(AM) 18 When Naomi realized that Ruth was determined to go with her, she stopped urging her.(AN)

19 So the two women went on until they came to Bethlehem.(AO) When they arrived in Bethlehem, the whole town was stirred(AP) because of them, and the women exclaimed, “Can this be Naomi?”

20 “Don’t call me Naomi,[b]” she told them. “Call me Mara,[c] because the Almighty[d](AQ) has made my life very bitter.(AR) 21 I went away full, but the Lord has brought me back empty.(AS) Why call me Naomi? The Lord has afflicted[e] me;(AT) the Almighty has brought misfortune upon me.”

22 So Naomi returned from Moab accompanied by Ruth the Moabite,(AU) her daughter-in-law,(AV) arriving in Bethlehem as the barley harvest(AW) was beginning.(AX)

Footnotes

  1. Ruth 1:1 Traditionally judged
  2. Ruth 1:20 Naomi means pleasant.
  3. Ruth 1:20 Mara means bitter.
  4. Ruth 1:20 Hebrew Shaddai; also in verse 21
  5. Ruth 1:21 Or has testified against

Now it came to pass in the days when the judges ruled, that there was a famine in the land. And a certain man of Bethlehemjudah went to sojourn in the country of Moab, he, and his wife, and his two sons.

And the name of the man was Elimelech, and the name of his wife Naomi, and the name of his two sons Mahlon and Chilion, Ephrathites of Bethlehemjudah. And they came into the country of Moab, and continued there.

And Elimelech Naomi's husband died; and she was left, and her two sons.

And they took them wives of the women of Moab; the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth: and they dwelled there about ten years.

And Mahlon and Chilion died also both of them; and the woman was left of her two sons and her husband.

Then she arose with her daughters in law, that she might return from the country of Moab: for she had heard in the country of Moab how that the Lord had visited his people in giving them bread.

Wherefore she went forth out of the place where she was, and her two daughters in law with her; and they went on the way to return unto the land of Judah.

And Naomi said unto her two daughters in law, Go, return each to her mother's house: the Lord deal kindly with you, as ye have dealt with the dead, and with me.

The Lord grant you that ye may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband. Then she kissed them; and they lifted up their voice, and wept.

10 And they said unto her, Surely we will return with thee unto thy people.

11 And Naomi said, Turn again, my daughters: why will ye go with me? are there yet any more sons in my womb, that they may be your husbands?

12 Turn again, my daughters, go your way; for I am too old to have an husband. If I should say, I have hope, if I should have an husband also to night, and should also bear sons;

13 Would ye tarry for them till they were grown? would ye stay for them from having husbands? nay, my daughters; for it grieveth me much for your sakes that the hand of the Lord is gone out against me.

14 And they lifted up their voice, and wept again: and Orpah kissed her mother in law; but Ruth clave unto her.

15 And she said, Behold, thy sister in law is gone back unto her people, and unto her gods: return thou after thy sister in law.

16 And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:

17 Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me.

18 When she saw that she was stedfastly minded to go with her, then she left speaking unto her.

19 So they two went until they came to Bethlehem. And it came to pass, when they were come to Bethlehem, that all the city was moved about them, and they said, Is this Naomi?

20 And she said unto them, Call me not Naomi, call me Mara: for the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me.

21 I went out full and the Lord hath brought me home again empty: why then call ye me Naomi, seeing the Lord hath testified against me, and the Almighty hath afflicted me?

22 So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter in law, with her, which returned out of the country of Moab: and they came to Bethlehem in the beginning of barley harvest.

Elimelech’s Family Goes to Moab

Now it came to pass, in the days when (A)the judges [a]ruled, that there was (B)a famine in the land. And a certain man of (C)Bethlehem, Judah, went to [b]dwell in the country of (D)Moab, he and his wife and his two sons. The name of the man was Elimelech, the name of his wife was Naomi, and the names of his two sons were Mahlon and Chilion—(E)Ephrathites of Bethlehem, Judah. And they went (F)to the country of Moab and remained there. Then Elimelech, Naomi’s husband, died; and she was left, and her two sons. Now they took wives of the women of Moab: the name of the one was Orpah, and the name of the other Ruth. And they [c]dwelt there about ten years. Then both Mahlon and Chilion also died; so the woman survived her two sons and her husband.

Naomi Returns with Ruth

Then she arose with her daughters-in-law that she might return from the country of Moab, for she had heard in the country of Moab that the Lord had (G)visited[d] His people by (H)giving them bread. Therefore she went out from the place where she was, and her two daughters-in-law with her; and they went on the way to return to the land of Judah. And Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, (I)“Go, return each to her mother’s house. (J)The Lord deal kindly with you, as you have dealt (K)with the dead and with me. The Lord grant that you may find (L)rest, each in the house of her husband.”

So she kissed them, and they lifted up their voices and wept. 10 And they said to her, “Surely we will return with you to your people.”

11 But Naomi said, “Turn back, my daughters; why will you go with me? Are there still sons in my womb, (M)that they may be your husbands? 12 Turn back, my daughters, go—for I am too old to have a husband. If I should say I have hope, if I should have a husband tonight and should also bear sons, 13 would you wait for them till they were grown? Would you restrain yourselves from having husbands? No, my daughters; for it grieves me very much for your sakes that (N)the hand of the Lord has gone out against me!”

14 Then they lifted up their voices and wept again; and Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, but Ruth (O)clung to her.

15 And she said, “Look, your sister-in-law has gone back to (P)her people and to her gods; (Q)return after your sister-in-law.”

16 But Ruth said:

(R)“Entreat[e] me not to leave you,
Or to turn back from following after you;
For wherever you go, I will go;
And wherever you lodge, I will lodge;
(S)Your people shall be my people,
And your God, my God.
17 Where you die, I will die,
And there will I be buried.
(T)The Lord do so to me, and more also,
If anything but death parts you and me.”

18 (U)When she saw that she [f]was determined to go with her, she stopped speaking to her.

19 Now the two of them went until they came to Bethlehem. And it happened, when they had come to Bethlehem, that (V)all the city was excited because of them; and the women said, (W)Is this Naomi?”

20 But she said to them, “Do not call me [g]Naomi; call me [h]Mara, for the Almighty has dealt very bitterly with me. 21 I went out full, (X)and the Lord has brought me home again empty. Why do you call me Naomi, since the Lord has testified against me, and [i]the Almighty has afflicted me?”

22 So Naomi returned, and Ruth the Moabitess her daughter-in-law with her, who returned from the country of Moab. Now they came to Bethlehem (Y)at the beginning of barley harvest.

Footnotes

  1. Ruth 1:1 Lit. judged
  2. Ruth 1:1 As a resident alien
  3. Ruth 1:4 lived
  4. Ruth 1:6 attended to
  5. Ruth 1:16 Urge me not
  6. Ruth 1:18 Lit. made herself strong to go
  7. Ruth 1:20 Lit. Pleasant
  8. Ruth 1:20 Lit. Bitter
  9. Ruth 1:21 Heb. Shaddai

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