What does the Great Commission have to do with mobile devices? More than you might think.
2:7 She asked,18 ‘May I follow the harvesters and gather19 grain among the bundles?’20 Since she arrived she has been working hard21 from this morning until now22—except for23 sitting24 in the resting hut25 a short time.”26
tn Heb “said.” What follows is a question, so “asked” is used in the translation.
tn Heb “May I glean and gather among the bundles behind the harvesters?” Others translate, “May I glean and gather [grain] in bundles behind the harvesters?” (cf. NAB; see F. W. Bush, Ruth, Esther [WBC], 117). For discussion of the terminology and process of harvesting, see O. Borowski, Agriculture in Iron Age Israel, 59–61.
tn Heb “and she came and she has persisted.” The construction וַתָּבוֹא וַתַעֲמוֹד (vattavo’ vata’amod) forms a dependent temporal sequence: “since she came, she has persisted.” Because עָמַד (’amad, “to stand, remain, persist”; BDB 764 s.v. עָמַד; HALOT 840–42 s.v. עמד) has a broad range of meanings, וַתַעֲמוֹד has been understood in various ways: (1) Ruth had stood all morning waiting to receive permission from Boaz to glean in his field: “she has stood (here waiting)”; (2) Ruth had remained in the field all morning: “she has remained here” (NAB, NASB, NCV); and (3) Ruth had worked hard all morning: “she has worked steadily” (REB), “she has been working” (TEV, CEV), “she has been on her feet (all morning)” (JPS, NJPS, NRSV). For discussion, see F. W. Bush, Ruth, Esther (WBC), 118–19.
tn Heb “except this.” The function and meaning of the demonstrative adjective זֶה (zeh, “this”) is difficult: (1) MT accentuation joins זֶה with שִׁבְתָּהּ (shivtah, “this her sitting”), suggesting that זֶה שִׁבְתָּהּ functions as subject complement (see BDB 261 s.v. זֶה 2.a and Josh 9:12). (2) Others suggest that זֶה functions as an emphasizing adverb of time (“just now”; BDB 261 s.v. 4.h) and connect it with עַתָּה (’attah, “now”) to form the idiom עַתָּה זֶה (zeh ’attah, “now, just now”; BDB 261 s.v. 4.h; GKC 442–43 §136.d; see F. W. Bush, Ruth, Esther [WBC], 118–19). The entire line is translated variously: KJV “until now, (+ save ASV) that she tarried a little in the house”; NASB “she has been sitting in the house for a little while”; NIV “except for a short rest in the shelter”; NJPS “she has rested but little in the hut”; “her sitting (= resting) in the house (has only been) for a moment.” A paraphrase would be: “She came and has kept at it (= gleaning) from this morning until now, except for this: She has been sitting in the hut only a little while.” The clause as a whole is an exceptive clause: “except for this.…”
tc The MT vocalizes consonantal שבתה as שִׁבְתָּהּ (shivtah, “her sitting”; Qal infinitive construct from יָשַׁב (yashav), “to sit” + 3rd person feminine singular suffix), apparently taking the 3rd person feminine singular suffix as a subjective genitive: “she sat [in the hut only a little while]” (so KJV, ASV, NASB, NIV, REB, TEV, NCV, NJPS). On the other hand, LXX κατέπαυσεν (“she rested”) reflects the vocalization שָׁבְתָה (shavtah, “she rested”; Qal perfect 3rd person feminine singular from שָׁבַת (shavat), “to rest”): “she rested [in the hut only a little while]” (so RSV, NRSV, NAB, CEV, NJB, JPS). The MT reading is more difficult and is therefore probably original.
tn Heb “and she came and she stood, from then, the morning, and until now, this, her sitting [in] the house a little.” The syntax of the Hebrew text is awkward here and the meaning uncertain. F. W. Bush (Ruth, Esther [WBC], 118–19) takes עָמַד (’amad, “to stand”) in the sense “to stay, remain,” connects זֶה (zeh, “this”) with the preceding עַתָּה (’attah, “now”) as an emphasizing adverb of time (“just now”), and emends שִׁבְתָּהּ הַבַּיִת (shivtah habbayit, “her sitting [in] the house”) to שָׁבְתָה (shavtah, “she rested”), omitting הַבַּיִת (habbayit) as dittographic. Another option is to translate, “She came and has stood here from this morning until now. She’s been sitting in the house for a short time.” According to this view the servant has made Ruth wait to get permission from Boaz. It is difficult, however, to envision a “house” being in the barley field.
tc Several English versions (NAB, NEB, RSV, NRSV, JB, CEV) suggest deleting MT הַבַּיִת (habbayit, lit. “the house”) due to dittography with בתה in שִׁבְתָּהּ (shivtah) which precedes; however, several ancient textual witnesses support the MT (medieval Hebrew manuscripts, Syriac, Targum). The LXX reading ἐν τῷ ἀργῷ (en tō argō, “in the field”) probably does not represent an alternate Hebrew textual tradition, but merely the translator’s attempt to smooth out a difficult Hebrew text.
tn “[in] the house.” The noun הַבַּיִת (lit. “the house”) functions as an adverbial accusative of location, and probably refers to a “hut, shelter,” providing shade for workers in the field, such as those still used by harvesters in modern Israel (H. A. Hoffner, TDOT 2:111–15). This kind of structure is probably referred to using different terms in Isaiah 1:8, “like a shelter (כְּסֻכָּה, késukkah) in a vineyard, like a hut (כִּמְלוּנָה, kimlunah) in a field of melons.” Some translations render הַבַּיִת (habbayit) literally as “the house” (KJV, NKJV, NASB), while others nuance it as “the shelter” (NIV, NCV, TEV, NLT).
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