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Old Testament: The Book Of Ruth

1385 words - 6 pages

Evidence is insufficient on the author of the book of Ruth. Historically, it gives the impression to be during the era of the judges (Ruth.1:1), but was finalized at another time. (Hubbard, 1988). According to Gerald West, editor for Eerdmans Commentary on the Bible, “The opening words, In the days when the judges ruled looks back to that period; the gloss in Ruth 4:7 explains an ancient custom for later readers; and Ruth 4:22 mentions David. Thus, the final editorial process could not have ended before the time of David” (West, 2003, p. 211). The 19th century German philosopher, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe said that Ruth is "The loveliest complete work on a small scale" (Hillenbrand, ...view middle of the document...

She knew she made a decision that was final and complicated, but followed through with her choice.
In further exploring Gelatt’s theory, we can see that he amended it to an approach of uncertainty. There was an additional implication in Ruth’s and Mahlon’s marriage, a possible conversion to Judaism for Ruth. This created uncertainty in Ruth’s life. While Oprah and Ruth lived with Naomi, Naomi taught the girls about the one true God.
Opinions of the commentaries vary on the issue, but did Ruth and her sister-in-law convert to Judaism during their marriage to their husbands or after their death? A conversion to Judaism is dependent on the sincerity of the one converting. Most commentaries say that the conversion happened before or during their marriages. However, during their husbands' lifetimes, it was uncertain whether they observed Judaism out of a sincere desire to be part of the Jewish nation, or only to please their husbands and maybe even Naomi (Taitz, Henry, Talon, 2003).
I believe that Ruth desired to be a Jewish from the start. To understand the full impact of what happened, we need to put ourselves in the mindset of the people who lived at that time. Judaism affected every part of life, it lasts as long as a person lives, and transfers to your children; so it is clearly a major commitment. Judaism is based on 613 commandments (Biale, 1995). Ruth was a woman of commitment and her choice to become Jewish was not something to be taken lightly. It does not seem likely that her decision to convert was because of Mahlon's influence.
According to traditional Judaism, women are endowed with a greater degree of "binah" which means intuition, understanding, and intelligence than men. The rabbis inferred this from the fact that the woman was "built" (Gen. 2:22) rather than "formed" (Gen. 2:7), and the Hebrew root of "build" has the same consonants as the word "binah" (Kreuzinger, 2011). Ruth had the devotion and dedication necessary to be a good wife, so in essence, the application would be that this was a good career choice for her.
In order to move on to the next point, we must first take a look at Parson's view of Vocational Development: “Vocational development is a cognitive process in which the individual uses reasoning to arrive at decisions” (Hall, 2014). Ruth was in a time where you were either a daughter in your father’s house or a wife in your husband’s house so this career application came about from an understanding of her external factors in her life and she chose marriage.
Donald Super, another one of our theorists believed that a person's “…self-concept evolves and grows with life experiences, personal needs, and resources intertwined with cultural and economic demands” (Hall, 2014). We can factor in these above ideas from Gelatt, Parsons and Super and logically confirm that the role of...

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