Women in the Bible: Orpah

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 Orpah. 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 about Orpah in Ruth 1:4-16.]

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