Now it came about in the days1when the judgesagoverned, that there was 2a famine in the land. And a certain man3of Bethlehem in Judahwent to sojourn in the land of Moabbwith his wife and his twosons.
The name of the man was Elimelech, and the name of his wife, Naomi; and the names of his twosons were Mahlon and Chilion, Ephrathites of Bethlehem in Judah. Now they 4entered the land of Moab and remainedthere.
Then Elimelech, Naomi'shusband, died; and she was left with her twosons.
They took for themselvesMoabitewomen as wives; the name of the one was Orpah and the name of the otherRuth. And they livedthere about tenyears.
Then cbothMahlon and Chilionalsodied, and the woman was bereft of her twochildren and her husband.
Then she arose with her daughters-in-law that she might return from the land of Moab, for she had heard in the land of Moab that the LORD had 5visited His people in 6giving them food.
So she departed from the placewhere she was, and her twodaughters-in-law with her; and they went on the way to return to the land of Judah.
And Naomisaid to her twodaughters-in-law, "Go, returneach of you to her mother'shouse. 7May the LORDdealkindly with you as you have dealt with the dead and with me.
"May the LORDgrant that you may findrest, each in the house of her husband." Then she kissed them, and they lifted up their voices and wept.
And they said to her, "No, but we will surelyreturn with you to your people."
But Naomisaid, "Return, my daughters. Why should you go with me? Have I yetsons in my womb, that 8they may be your husbands?
12"Return, my daughters! Go, for I amtooold to have a husband. If I said I havehope, if I should evenhave a husbandtonight and alsobearsons,
would you thereforewaituntil they were grown? Would you thereforerefrain from marrying ? No, my daughters; for it is dharder for me than for you, for 9the hand of the LORD has goneforth against me."
And they lifted up their voices and weptagain; and Orpahkissed her mother-in-law, but Ruthclung to her.
Then she said, "Behold, your sister-in-law has goneback to her people and her 10gods; returnafter your sister-in-law."
But Ruthsaid, "Do not urge me to leave you or turnback from following you; for where you go, I will go, and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God, my God.
17"Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. Thus may 11the LORDdo to me, and worse , if anything but deathparts you and me."
When 12she saw that she was determined to go with her, she esaidno more to her.
So they bothwentuntil they came to Bethlehem. And when they had come to Bethlehem, 13all the city was stirredbecause of them, and fthe women said, "Is thisNaomi?"
She said to them, "Do not call me gNaomi; call me hMara, for i14the Almighty has dealtverybitterly with me.
"I went out full, but 15the LORD has brought me backempty. Why do you call me Naomi, since the LORD has witnessed against me and jthe Almighty has afflicted me?"
So Naomireturned, and with her Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter-in-law, who returned from the land of Moab. And they came to Bethlehem at 16the beginning of barleyharvest.