Face-to-Face with Naomi and Ruth: Together for the Journey (New Hope Bible Studies for Women)

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She turns her head towards the two men — can she hear what is being said? His Ruth is a beautiful young woman, dressed simply except for the lovely necklace she wears round her throat. Her figure is voluptuous but her head is modestly covered — there are many messages being sent by this painting. Boaz and Ruth both hold sheaves of wheat, a hint of their own future fertility. Ruth holds so much wheat that she must gather it up in a fold of her cloak.

Boaz is richly but simply clothed; Ruth has more modest clothing and is barefoot, a sign of her poverty. Many of the windows in this church were designed by Edward Burne-Jones, but this one was by William Morris, and was produced by the William Morris Company. It was dedicated to Edward Knollys. One of the interesting things about these windows is that the background details are muted — most stained glass windows have landscapes of buildings in the background. The result of this relative simplicity is that the figures are thrown into greater prominence, making you really look at them.

Ruth stops her task for a moment and looks up, responding to the outstretched hand of Baoz. His gesture says it all — he will help her, if she will accept him. The delicacy and skill of this drawing is breathtaking. Burne-Jones was originally a Theology student at Oxford, but his contact with Rossetti changed his life. The two men met at Oxford, where Rossetti was working on his decorations for the Oxford Union. After this, Burne-Jones abandoned his studies in theology for a career as an artist.

He served God better, perhaps, through his art. Ruth and Boaz meet face to face for the first time, and it is clearly a joyful moment for both of them. There is joy, but there is something else as well — something like recognition. Is Chagall suggesting that love at first sight — which Boaz is certainly experiencing — is like a sudden awareness that the person in front of us is meant to be The One? His happy amazement shows not only on his face, but in his upflung arms. Ruth kneels before Boaz, thanking him for his generosity and for his adherence to chesed , the sense of loyalty and benevolence towards those in need.

The Arcadian landscape is orderly, an earthly paradise, and the people within this landscape are calm, hardworking, and completely in harmony with their environment. He is not a young man, but he is more than willing to lavish whatever he can on this young woman. Boaz is speaking to Ruth, reassuring her and giving her permission to glean in his fields. Ruth listens quietly, her demeanor modest and grateful. The ideal Early Victorian Woman.

Questions for Bible study groups

Carolsfeld was a deeply religious man, and some of his best work is on biblical subjects. There is little to startle the viewer in this painting, nothing that will frighten the horses, but it has a calm order and harmony that reflected the early Victorian interpretation of the story of Ruth and Boaz.

Boaz approaches Ruth and tells her that she is welcome to glean in his fields, and that she may do so in safety.

Lessons on the Road Home (Ruth 1:6-18)

She in turn extends her hand in a grateful gesture of thanks. Koch was primarily a landscape painter, and clearly the scene behind the figures is saying something about the story. In this case, the fertile fields and civilized background echo the nobility of Boaz, and the serenity of Ruth.

The Journey Home - Part 1

The workers in the field are busy and all, Koch seems to say, is as it should be. Boaz, his hand stretched out towards her, directs Ruth to take grain from his field. She in turn looks gratefully up towards him,.


  • Sisu Et Yrushalayim - Score;
  • Face-to-Face with Naomi and Ruth.
  • Pockets of resistance;
  • Lesson #2 – The Past is Not Our Final Destination When We Trust God.

In this painting Boaz appears not as an ancient Jewish landowner, but as a member of the 17th century landed gentry, tight-fitting breeches and all. His manner towards the young girl gleaning on his land is benevolent. Ruth seems to be wearing an extraordinary padded hat to shield her pale skin from the sun. There is not the slightest attempt to portray the story in its historical setting; the story has been transplanted to the Protestant Netherlands — quite right too, since it is a timeless and universal story.

It is night, a dim landscape, with only the moon bathing the land in its light. Boaz is clearly asleep, cradling his head on his arm, but Ruth is not. Her eyes are open, her breasts visible and the expression on her face shows that she, God bless her, is up to mischief. It is easy enough to paint a scene in broad daylight, but here the landscape is shrouded in darkness.

Even so, Chagal has brought the moment vividly to life. Her face is bright with expectation — this is a pivotal moment in her life. When Boaz wakes in the morning on the threshing floor, he sees Ruth lying beside him. A red sun throbs in the top right hand corner in this paean to love and sexual joy. Ruth and Boaz wake in the morning, together on the threshing floor during harvest time. They are surrounded by sheaves of grain, signs of prosperity and a plentiful future. Both of them seem to be naked — Chagall has no doubts about what has occurred the night before, even if the Bible demurs on this point.

Ruth is a happy woman, and Boaz positively soars.

On the left side of the painting Ruth cradles her son Obed. Her breast sags at the opening of her bodice, and the baby, now full of warm milk, dozes quietly. On the right side despite what Wikipedia says!! Salmon has the staff, hat and garb of a traveller, reminding the viewer that he accompanied Moses on part of the trek from Egypt, and was commissioned by Moses to be Prince of the Tribe of Judah, from which Jesus would come. There is a straight line between Salmon, who knew Moses though only when Moses was very old and Salmon was very young and was present at the birth of the Israelite nation — right through to Obed, who would be the grandfather of King David.

What a joyful swirl of humanity! The figures twine together so harmoniously you can hardly tell where either one of them begins and ends, even though each has its own distinctive colors. As it should be with a family. Harmony in Nature, with a glowing sun behind and green swaths beneath their feet.

There was a famine, and the family of a woman called Naomi went to Moab to look for food. While they were there, all the men in the family died, and the women had to fend for themselves. Naomi, being the matriarch of the group, told the young women, including Ruth, to head for home. She would do the same, parting company with them. One of them refused to leave her — a young Moabite and therefore an outsider called Ruth.

She stuck like glue.

Where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people and your God my God.

Where you die, I will die and there I will be buried. When they got there, they had very little else besides their wits. Ruth decided she would help glean the barley in the fields, to feed herself and Naomi and to get a store of grain for winter. Boaz was an ideal match for any young woman — single, well respected and rich.

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Ruth and Naomi

When he saw Ruth, it was love at first sight. He made a bit of an idiot of himself, trying to help her, getting extra grain for her, protecting her, seeing she was well fed. It was clear to everyone that love was in the air, but how to nudge him into proposing? The older woman stepped forward, telling Ruth exactly what to do. Ruth had the good sense to listen.

7 Powerful Lessons We Can Learn from the Story of Ruth

She perfumed herself, dressed in her most becoming clothes, and waited at the threshing floor until Boaz had eaten a good meal — a man with a full stomach was always more amenable. Boaz was only too happy to oblige. Soon after, they were married, and Ruth had a son, Obed, who was the father of Jesse, who was the father of King David.

So Ruth, once the destitute outsider, became the great-grand-mother of a king.

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Naomi, who had lost her husband and two sons, now held her little grandson close, becoming his nurse. They went into the country of Moab and remained there. When they had lived there for about ten years, 5 both Mahlon and Chilion also died, so that the woman was left without her two sons or her husband.

May the Lord deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me. Do I still have sons in my womb that they may become your husbands? Even if I thought there was hope for me, even if I should have a husband tonight and bear sons, 13 would you then wait until they were grown?

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