2:1–23 Chapter two introduces the last main character, Boaz, and the major theme, that of the close relative, or redeemer, who has certain responsibilities for the family and property of a relative who dies (2:20 note). The narrator, who already knows what is ahead, gives only a hint with the description of Boaz as “a relative” in v. 1. Only after the natural kindness of Boaz, and the natural winsomeness of Ruth, have taken their course, does Naomi reveal the key to the entire story: Boaz is “a close relative” (2:20). Even then, no claims are made; there is no appeal to custom. Events must wait their time, while Naomi schemes, Ruth serves quietly, and Boaz finishes the harvest. However, God had already provided an answer through the law (Lev. 25).
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