Bible Book List

Ruth 4 Living Bible (TLB)

So Boaz went down to the marketplace[a] and found the relative he had mentioned.

“Say, come over here,” he called to him. “I want to talk to you a minute.”

So they sat down together. Then Boaz called for ten of the chief men of the village and asked them to sit as witnesses.

Boaz said to his relative, “You know Naomi, who came back to us from Moab. She is selling our brother Elimelech’s property. I felt that I should speak to you about it so that you can buy it if you wish, with these respected men as witnesses. If you want it,[b] let me know right away, for if you don’t take it, I will. You have the first right to purchase it and I am next.”

The man replied, “All right, I’ll buy it.”

Then Boaz told him, “Your purchase of the land from Naomi requires your marriage to Ruth so that she can have children to carry on her husband’s name and to inherit the land.”

“Then I can’t do it,” the man replied. “For her son would become an heir to my property too;[c] you buy it.”

In those days it was the custom in Israel for a man transferring a right of purchase to pull off his sandal and hand it to the other party; this publicly validated the transaction. So, as the man said to Boaz, “You buy it for yourself,” he drew off his sandal.

Then Boaz said to the witnesses and to the crowd standing around, “You have seen that today I have bought all the property of Elimelech, Chilion, and Mahlon, from Naomi, 10 and that with it I have purchased Ruth the Moabitess, the widow of Mahlon, to be my wife, so that she can have a son to carry on the family name of her dead husband.”

11 And all the people standing there and the witnesses replied, “We are witnesses. May the Lord make this woman, who has now come into your home, as fertile as Rachel and Leah, from whom all the nation of Israel descended! May you be a great and successful man in Bethlehem, 12 and may the descendants the Lord will give you from this young woman be as numerous and honorable as those of our ancestor Perez, the son of Tamar and Judah.”

13 So Boaz married Ruth, and when he slept with her, the Lord gave her a son.

14 And the women of the city said to Naomi, “Bless the Lord who has given you this little grandson; may he be famous in Israel. 15 May he restore your youth and take care of you in your old age; for he is the son of your daughter-in-law who loves you so much, and who has been kinder to you than seven sons!”

16-17 Naomi took care of the baby, and the neighbor women said, “Now at last Naomi has a son again!”

And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse and grandfather of King David.

18-22 This is the family tree of Boaz, beginning with his ancestor Perez: Perez, Hezron, Ram, Amminadab, Nashon, Salmon, Boaz, Obed, Jesse, David.


  1. Ruth 4:1 the marketplace, literally, “the gate” of the city, where legal affairs were usually transacted.
  2. Ruth 4:4 If you want it, literally, “If you want to redeem it.”
  3. Ruth 4:6 “For her son would become an heir to my property too,” or “That would ruin my own inheritance,” i.e., complicate his estate for the children he already had.
Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Ruth 4 New International Version (NIV)

Boaz Marries Ruth

Meanwhile Boaz went up to the town gate and sat down there just as the guardian-redeemer[a] he had mentioned came along. Boaz said, “Come over here, my friend, and sit down.” So he went over and sat down.

Boaz took ten of the elders of the town and said, “Sit here,” and they did so. Then he said to the guardian-redeemer, “Naomi, who has come back from Moab, is selling the piece of land that belonged to our relative Elimelek. I thought I should bring the matter to your attention and suggest that you buy it in the presence of these seated here and in the presence of the elders of my people. If you will redeem it, do so. But if you[b] will not, tell me, so I will know. For no one has the right to do it except you, and I am next in line.”

“I will redeem it,” he said.

Then Boaz said, “On the day you buy the land from Naomi, you also acquire Ruth the Moabite, the[c] dead man’s widow, in order to maintain the name of the dead with his property.”

At this, the guardian-redeemer said, “Then I cannot redeem it because I might endanger my own estate. You redeem it yourself. I cannot do it.”

(Now in earlier times in Israel, for the redemption and transfer of property to become final, one party took off his sandal and gave it to the other. This was the method of legalizing transactions in Israel.)

So the guardian-redeemer said to Boaz, “Buy it yourself.” And he removed his sandal.

Then Boaz announced to the elders and all the people, “Today you are witnesses that I have bought from Naomi all the property of Elimelek, Kilion and Mahlon. 10 I have also acquired Ruth the Moabite, Mahlon’s widow, as my wife, in order to maintain the name of the dead with his property, so that his name will not disappear from among his family or from his hometown. Today you are witnesses!

11 Then the elders and all the people at the gate said, “We are witnesses. May the Lord make the woman who is coming into your home like Rachel and Leah, who together built up the family of Israel. May you have standing in Ephrathah and be famous in Bethlehem. 12 Through the offspring the Lord gives you by this young woman, may your family be like that of Perez, whom Tamar bore to Judah.”

Naomi Gains a Son

13 So Boaz took Ruth and she became his wife. When he made love to her, the Lord enabled her to conceive, and she gave birth to a son. 14 The women said to Naomi: “Praise be to the Lord, who this day has not left you without a guardian-redeemer. May he become famous throughout Israel! 15 He will renew your life and sustain you in your old age. For your daughter-in-law, who loves you and who is better to you than seven sons, has given him birth.”

16 Then Naomi took the child in her arms and cared for him. 17 The women living there said, “Naomi has a son!” And they named him Obed. He was the father of Jesse, the father of David.

The Genealogy of David

18 This, then, is the family line of Perez:

Perez was the father of Hezron,

19 Hezron the father of Ram,

Ram the father of Amminadab,

20 Amminadab the father of Nahshon,

Nahshon the father of Salmon,[d]

21 Salmon the father of Boaz,

Boaz the father of Obed,

22 Obed the father of Jesse,

and Jesse the father of David.


  1. Ruth 4:1 The Hebrew word for guardian-redeemer is a legal term for one who has the obligation to redeem a relative in serious difficulty (see Lev. 25:25-55); also in verses 3, 6, 8 and 14.
  2. Ruth 4:4 Many Hebrew manuscripts, Septuagint, Vulgate and Syriac; most Hebrew manuscripts he
  3. Ruth 4:5 Vulgate and Syriac; Hebrew (see also Septuagint) Naomi and from Ruth the Moabite, you acquire the
  4. Ruth 4:20 A few Hebrew manuscripts, some Septuagint manuscripts and Vulgate (see also verse 21 and Septuagint of 1 Chron. 2:11); most Hebrew manuscripts Salma
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Viewing of
Cross references