The book of Ruth contains one of the Bible's best-known and most-loved stories. This major commentary by Robert L. Hubbard Jr. shows how the author of Ruth used, with great literary artistry, the story of Ruth and Naomi to convey important theological themes.
In his introduction Hubbard discusses the issues of text, canonicity, literary criticism, authorship, date, purpose, setting, genre, legal background, themes, and theology, concluding with an outline of the book and a thorough bibliography. The commentary proper is based on Hubbard's own fresh translation and accented by copious footnotes on textual, philological, and literary matters.
Gleaning the best from recent research on Ruth, Hubbard gives the story's rich literary, grammatical, and theological dimensions of careful, rigorous treatment. He allows for the possibility that the anonymous author was a woman and argues that the narrative itself aims to counter opposition to the Davidic monarchy in Israel and Judah during Solomon's reign. Throughout, Hubbard's sensitivity to the literary genius of Ruth's author and his coherent explication of the outworking of the book's theological themes makes this volume an invaluable tool for anyone desiring to explore the intriguing story of Ruth in depth.
About the New International Commentary Old Testament Series
“In the Old Testament we read God’s word as it was spoken to his people Israel. Today, thousands of years later, we hear in these thirty-nine books his inspired and authoritative message for us.”
These twin convictions, shared by all of the contributors to The New International Commentary on the Old Testament, define the goal of this ambitious series of commentaries. For those many modern readers who find the Old Testament to be strange and foreign soil, the NICOT series serves as an authoritative guide bridging the cultural gap between today’s world and the world of ancient Israel. Each NICOT volume aims to help us hear God’s word as clearly as possible.
Scholars, pastors, and serious Bible students will welcome the fresh light that this commentary series casts on ancient yet familiar biblical texts. The contributors apply their proven scholarly expertise and wide experience as teachers to illumine our understanding of the Old Testament. As gifted writers, they present the results of the best recent research in an interesting manner.
Each commentary opens with an introduction to the biblical book, looking especially at questions concerning its background, authorship, date, purpose, structure, and theology. A select bibliography also points readers to resources for their own study. The author’s own translation from the original Hebrew forms the basis of the commentary proper. Verse-by-verse comments nicely balance in-depth discussions of technical matters — textual criticism, critical problems, and so on — with exposition of the biblical writer’s theology and its implications for the life of faith today.
About the Author
Robert L. Hubbard Jr. is Professor of Biblical Literature at North Park Theological Seminary, Chicago, and general editor of the New International Commentary on the Old Testament series. He chaired the team of translation consultants for The Message by Eugene Peterson, and his books include the award-winning NICOT volume on the book of Ruth.
It is safe to say that this will remain, for some considerable time to come, one of the most useful and enlightening commentaries available on the lovely little book of Ruth.