Apollos Old Testament Commentary: Ruth (Hawk)
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On the surface, the book of Ruth tells the tale of an unlikely marriage between a destitute Moabite widow and an upstanding citizen of a Judean village. The deeper import of the story, however, has to do with the internal boundaries that define the people of God. Is Israel a closed community, held together exclusively by bonds of kinship, or a nation that welcomes faithful outsiders into its sphere of belonging? Ruth appropriates marriage as the symbolic vehicle of a transformation in Israel's self-understanding from a community articulated by Naomi's declaration that her daughters-in-law marry within their own people, to the acclamations by the people of Bethlehem that endorse Boaz's marriage to a Moabite.
L. Daniel Hawk undertakes a detailed narrative analysis of Ruth that goes beyond the description of its content and stylistic features to illumine its deep structure and use of metaphor. Informed by contemporary studies on ethnicity, he discovers a work of remarkable sophistication that employs a story of intermarriage to address opposing ideas of Israelite identity. Hawk's meticulous attention to patterned structures, stylistic devices and characterization reveals the strategy by which the narrator constructs a vision of Israel that looks beyond rigid internal boundaries to the welcome of faithful foreigners as agents of blessing.
About the Series:
The Apollos Old Testament Commentary (AOTC) aims to take with equal seriousness the divine and human aspects of Scripture. It expounds the books of the Old Testament in a scholarly manner accessible to non-experts, and it shows the relevance of the Old Testament to modern readers. Written by an international team of scholars and edited by David W. Baker and Gordon J. Wenham, these commentaries are intended to serve the needs of those who preach from the Old Testament, as well as scholars and all serious students of the Bible.
The AOTC series introduces and examines the books of the Old Testament, bridging the gap between the age in which they were written and the age in which we now read them. Each commentary begins with an Introduction which gives an overview of the issues of date, authorship, sources, and outlines the theology of the book, providing pointers towards its interpretation and contemporary application. An annotated Translation of the Hebrew text by the author forms the basis for the subsequent commentary.
Within the commentary, Form and Structure sections examine the context, rhetorical devices, and source and form-critical issues of each passage. Comment sections offer thorough, detailed exegesis of the historical and theological meaning of each passage, and Explanation sections offer a full exposition of the theological message within the framework of biblical theology and a commitment to the inspiration and authority of the Old Testament.
Apollos Old Testament Commentary Series: Ruth (Volume 7B)
• Author: L. Daniel Hawk
• Series Editors: David W. Baker, Gordon J. Wenham
• Publisher: InterVarsity Press (2015)