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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Ruth 2:17

 

 

So she gleaned in the field until evening. Then she beat out what she had gleaned, and it was about an ephah of barley.

Adam Clarke Commentary

An ephah of barley - Not less than seven gallons and a half; a good day's work. On Hebrew measures of capacity, see the note on Exodus 16:16.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/ruth-2.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

And beat out that she had gleaned - Namely, with a stick, as the word implies (compare Deuteronomy 24:20; Isaiah 27:12). This method is still commonly practiced. Ruth gleaned enough to support herself and her mother-in-law for five days sa40" translation="">Exodus 16:16.

sa40


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/ruth-2.html. 1870.

The Biblical Illustrator

Ruth 2:17

So she gleaned in the field until even.

Persevering labour

1. Gleaners in gospel-fields should continue in their gleaning work from morning to evening. How many are but half Sabbath folk, that can spare to spend a morning in Sabbath service, but are for their pastimes after that! Ruth was none of those lazy gleaners.

2. Though God be very bountiful to us, yet will He have us to use all the means in a way of subserviency to His bounty. God will give us at the second-hand what He would not give us at first-hand; He will give us grace and knowledge by the use of the means, which He gives not immediately from Himself. “God sells all for labour,” saith Hesiod. (C. Ness.)

Labour

I. no labour is too insignificant for love. “So she gleaned.” She was of a good family, accustomed to a life of ease and plenty. That which she does now is anything but dignified.

1. A work for the commonest powers.

2. A work for the commonest people.

3. A work whose results bear no comparison to the expenditure of labour.

4. A work in which is redone that which has been considered as done.

Men measure the worth of work by its conspicuousness. The real worth of work lies in meeting the necessity for its existence, and the motive which inspires it. Two lives depend upon her toil--then her work has worth; she loves the woman for whom she toils--then her work has dignity. Her love consecrates lowest means for highest ends.

II. no results of labour are too insignificant for care. She “beat out that she had gleaned.”(S. B. Rees.)

The successful gleaner

1. Ruth was a gleaner; and so should we be. The Bible is that field. Search the Scriptures; glean there. Pick up every grain, for it contains precious nourishment. No matter how many gleaners; there is food enough for all.

2. Alas, how many careless ones there are, who never glean at all! They loiter all the day of their life idle. And so, when night comes, they sink into eternity with nothing done.

3. Others, again, begin when Ruth leaves off, at even. All the bright and sunny portion of their lives they give to the world.

4. Ruth began gleaning in the morning. She felt that every hour must be employed; that every moment was precious. She laboured diligently. May we make God’s Word our daily study! (Bp. Oxenden.)


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Bibliography
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Ruth 2:17". The Biblical Illustrator. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tbi/ruth-2.html. 1905-1909. New York.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

So she gleaned in the field until even,.... An instance of her great diligence and industry, attending to this mean employment constantly from morning tonight:

and beat out that she had gleaned: she did not bind up her gleanings in a bundle, and carry it home on her head, as gleaners with us do, but she beat it out with a staff in the field, where she gleaned it, and winnowed it, very probably in the threshingfloor of Boaz; by which means what she had gleaned was brought into a lesser size and weight, and was a lighter burden to carry home:

and it was an ephah of barley; or three seahs of barley, as the Targum; which, according to Bishop CumberlandF9Of Scripture Weights and Measures, ch. 3. p. 64. , was six gallons, and three pints, and three solid inches: an omer is said to be the tenth part of an ephah, and, made into bread, was as much as a man could eat in one day, Exodus 16:16, so that Ruth got enough in one day, for herself and her mother-in-law, which would last five days at least. This was a great deal for one woman to pick up, ear by ear, in one day; and must be accounted for, not only by her diligence and industry, but by the favour shown her by the reapers, under the direction of Boaz, who suffered her to glean among the sheaves, and let fall handfuls for her to pick up.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/ruth-2.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

and beat out that she had gleaned — When the quantity of grain was small, it was beat out by means of a stick.

an ephah — supposed to contain about a bushel.


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/ruth-2.html. 1871-8.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.

So do all laborers in the vineyard remain in their employment until .the evening of their day; and when the even of life is come, the lord of the vineyard saith unto his steward, call the laborers. Blessed Jesus! grant, when the evening of my day is come, and thou commandest me to return, that I may be of that happy number, whom the voice from heaven pronounced to be blessed. See Revelation 14:13. It is evident how diligent Ruth had been, for an ephah is not less than between three and four pecks, forty omens: see Exodus 16:36.


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Bibliography
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/ruth-2.html. 1828.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.

An Ephah — About a bushel.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/ruth-2.html. 1765.

James Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary

THE DILIGENT GLEANER

‘So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.’

Ruth 2:17

I. Notice, first, the good providence of God as illustrated in the story of Ruth and Naomi.—Who was more forlorn than Naomi when she set out, penniless and a widow, both her sons dead, to return into the land of Judah? God finds the widow friends, He finds the oppressed and solitary a Ruth to stay by them, a Boaz to see that they have their rights. He is a never-failing helper in the time of trouble.

II. Notice from this history the blessing which waits upon piety for those who are kind and affectionate and helpful in their homes.—Ruth was but a daughter-in-law, yet she acted the part of a real daughter to the widowed and childless Naomi. She clave to her in her trouble, she worked for her in her poverty, and she was rewarded even on earth.

III. Ruth is also an example of maidenly modesty, purity, steadiness of conduct.—She kept fast by the maidens of Boaz unto the end of the barley harvest and wheat harvest.

IV. Notice the diligence of Ruth.—She gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she gleaned; it was a good day’s work, bringing with it a good recompense of reward. Ruth invites us to use all diligence to make our calling and election sure. God has set us in His field, the world, and set us there to glean, to gather up as we are able the precious seed. There is much for every one to do, and the time is short.

—Canon Rawnsley.

Illustrations

(1) ‘If we would glean a heap, we must be content with a little at a time. It is wonderful what may be done by never passing by a thing that is worth preserving. We have trampled under foot during our life that which, if saved, would have done much to make a golden age for ourselves. No one can gleam well who is not able to persevere. If we mean to succeed, we must go on long after we are weary. We shall glean with greater care and industry if we remember that we must live for ever on the results of this life. If men did but think they gather gold for a crown or iron for fetters, they would be more careful what they pick up.’

(2) ‘This incident illustrates the dignity of all honest work. It is well to remind ourselves of this in an age which is often ashamed of work. There are people who cultivate flabbiness. They are happy if only they can pass themselves off as genteel and above the suspicion of work. In society they ignore the factory or the shop. They are ashamed of their trade. It is a bad thing for society when men or women shrink from acknowledging the glory and necessity of work. But in a time when wealth is the only idol, it is not to be wondered at that work should be thought of in shamefaced fashion, for the necessity of work hints the possibility of poverty; and where wealth is worshipped poverty is an unpardonable sin. But this genteel affectation of idleness is not a mere modern vice. It was rife in Solomon’s day, and the wise king satirised it in words which are full of delicate and suggestive irony: “Better is he that worketh and hath a servant than he that honoureth himself and hath no bread.”’

(3) ‘This incident in Boaz’s barley field has a beautiful application to Bible study. Too many Christians never practise a careful gleaning of the inspired Word. In fact, to such careless readers a large and precious portion of the Word is as utterly unknown territory as the headwaters of the Nile. They never search the Scriptures. But when we patiently go through the wonderful domain of truth with open eye bent down humbly to seek for the hidden treasures, Oh! what handfuls of fresh promises and fertile suggestions, and marvellous teachings are dropped in our path. We pick up a truth never dreamed of in many an out-of-the-way passage. In some historical incident, or some neglected verse of prophecy, or some dry chapter about Jewish rites and ceremonies we find a whole sheaf of Divine teaching. God never put one page in His Book without a purpose.’


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Nisbet, James. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". Church Pulpit Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cpc/ruth-2.html. 1876.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Ruth 2:17 So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.

Ver. 17. Until even.] Strengthening herself to her labour, as that good housewife, [Proverbs 31:17] and laying her bones to work.

About an ephah.] Almost a bushel, her back burden.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/ruth-2.html. 1865-1868.

Sermon Bible Commentary

Ruth 2:17

I. Notice first, the good providence of God as illustrated in the story of Ruth and Naomi. Who was more forlorn than Naomi when she set out, penniless and a widow, both her sons dead, to return into the land of Judah. God finds the widow friends, He finds the oppressed and solitary a Ruth to stay by them, a Boaz to see that they have their rights. He is a never-failing helper in the time of trouble.

II. Notice from this history the blessing which waits upon piety, for those who are kind and affectionate and helpful in their homes. Ruth was but a daughter-in-law, yet she acted the part of a real daughter to the widowed and childless Naomi. She clave to her in her trouble, she worked for her in her poverty, and she was rewarded even on earth.

III. Ruth is also an example of maidenly modesty, purity, steadiness of conduct. She kept fast by the maidens of Boaz unto the end of the barley harvest and wheat harvest.

IV. Notice the diligence of Ruth. She gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she gleaned; it was a good day's work, bringing with it a good recompense of reward. Ruth invites us to use all diligence to make our calling and election sure. God has set us in His field, the world, and set us there to glean, to gather up as we are able the precious seed. There is much for every one to do, and the time is short.

R. D. B. Rawnsley, Village Sermons, 3rd series, p. 119.


Reference: Ruth 2:17.—Spurgeon, Evening by Evening, p. 216.



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Bibliography
Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Sermon Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/sbc/ruth-2.html.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Ruth 2:17. So she gleaned in the field—and beat out that she had gleaned Ruth availed herself of the goodness of Boaz. She gleaned all the day; and then, according to the custom of those times, she beat out, with a rod, the corn, which produced her an ephah. See Exodus 16:36.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/ruth-2.html. 1801-1803.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

An ephah is thought to contain about a bushel. See Exodus 16:36 Leviticus 5:11.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/ruth-2.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

17. Beat out… had gleaned — This process is often witnessed by the modern traveller in the East. In passing a harvest field near Gaza, Robinson observes: “Several women were beating out with a stick handfuls of the grain which they seemed to have gleaned.” About an ephah — About a bushel and a half, a large amount for a gleaner to gather in a single day.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/ruth-2.html. 1874-1909.

Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible

So she gleaned in the field until evening, and she beat out what she had gleaned, and it was about an ephah of barley.’

So Ruth continued to glean diligently until nightfall, after which she beat out what she had gleaned, and it came to about an ephah of barley. Due to the generosity and kindness of Boaz it was far more than she could have expected as a gleaner. An ephah was a vessel large enough to hold a small woman (Zechariah 5:6-10).


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Bibliography
Pett, Peter. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible ". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pet/ruth-2.html. 2013.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Rod, as Gedeon had done, Judges vi. 11. --- That is, &c., an explanation of the Vulgate. (Calmet)-The ephi contained three pecks and three pints. (Arbuthnot) --- Alcazar and Cornelius a Lapide say 960 ounces. (Menochius)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/ruth-2.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

ephah. See App-51.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/ruth-2.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.

And beat out that she had gleaned. When the quantity of grain was small, it was beat out by means of a stick. This process is frequently seen at the present day on the same fields by women who beat out with a stick handfuls of the grain which they have glossed (Robinsons' 'Biblical Researches,' 2:, p. 385).

An ephah - supposed to contain about a bushel.


Copyright Statement
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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/ruth-2.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(17) Beat out.—That is, she threshed it herself, so as to save the labour of carrying away the straw. She then found she had an ephah, that is, rather more than four pecks.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/ruth-2.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

So she gleaned in the field until even, and beat out that she had gleaned: and it was about an ephah of barley.
she gleaned
Proverbs 31:27
ephah
Exodus 16:36; Ezekiel 45:11,12

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Ruth 2:17". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/ruth-2.html.

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