Women in the Bible: Orpah

Women in the Bible: Orpah

Orpah Begins a Journey but Then Returns Home

Orpah is the widowed daughter-in-law of Naomi and sister-in-law to Ruth. When Naomi decides to return to Judah, her daughters-in-law start out with her, but Naomi releases them. She encourages them to return to their mothers and find new husbands. Though Ruth stubbornly refuses, Orpah does the smart thing and goes home.

That’s the last we hear of her. We don’t know if she marries again or ever has any children. We don’t know how long she lives. We only know she does what makes sense from a human perspective.

However, Orpah’s sister-in-law chooses a path that doesn’t make sense, and God honors her for her loyalty to him and to her mother-in-law.

Sometimes what seems right to us is far different than God’s plan for us.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Ruth 1-4, and today’s post is on Ruth 1:6-15.]

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Peter DeHaan writes about biblical spirituality, often with a postmodern slant. He seeks a fresh approach to faith and following God through the lens of scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.

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