The Book of Ruth Questions
Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.
- Do you think Ruth might have been written by a woman? Why or why not?
- Why don't we get any backstory on Elimelech and his sons? If you were to make one up, what would it be?
- Would you do what Ruth did when she followed Naomi? What might you do differently?
- How do you see Naomi? Does she truly care for her daughter-in-law, or is she so wrapped up in grief that she can't think of anyone but herself? What makes you say so?
- Why do you think Orpah returns to Moab instead of following Ruth and Naomi?
- Ruth is pretty willing to throw off her native land and religion. Why do you think that is?
- Naomi changes her name in the first chapter, but no one seems to be listening. Why do you think everyone ignores her request to be called Mara?
- What do you think of the idea that God brings both good and bad things into the world? How does that play out in the story?
- How does the harvest set the stage for Ruth's story?
- What are some of the qualities that attract Boaz to Ruth? Ruth to Boaz?
- The story tells us about Ruth's and Boaz's family connections and wealth, but nothing about their physical appearance. What do you think they both looked like? What makes you say so?
- Is Ruth naïve to what Boaz's kindness could mean? Or do you think she knows exactly how much he digs her?
- What do you think went down on the threshing floor? Did Ruth and Boaz have some sexy time or was the whole night on the up and up? How can you tell?
- In chapter 4, the other kinsman wants the land, but not the wife. Why?
- Why did Boaz go tell the other kinsman about Ruth? Did he not want to marry her? Or was something else going on?
- Imagine you live in a society where marriage was based on security, not love. What would that be like? What kind of person would you want to marry?
- Do the blessings at the end of the story (4:11-12) mean Ruth has finally been accepted as a Jewish woman? Why or why not?
- Why isn't Baby Obed recorded as the son of Mahlon? Wasn't that the whole deal with this Levirate marriage thing?
- Why do you think Naomi takes such a liking to her grandson?
- Would you say that Ruth and Boaz are part of a love story? Why or why not?
- How does Ruth's story take a stand against hatred and intolerance? How so?
- Who's your favorite character in the Book of Ruth? Your least favorite? Why?
- How does Ruth stack up against the rest of the stories in the Bible?
- Why do you think Ruth's story is so short? Did you wish it were longer? Maybe had a sequel?
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