Search our site:

The Bible Story of Ruth
A Lesson on Finding Our Identity and Purpose in Life

The Bible story of Ruth can teach us many lessons for life.  This lesson focuses on the fact she chose to follow God, and because of that she was never alone and became a part of Jesus' earthly family's ancestry.  She was also a foreigner, but God demonstrated His love for her by sending her a Kinsman Redeemer named Boaz.

grain field Bible story of Ruth

Photo Credit: Pixbay @ Pexels

the Bible Story of Ruth


The Bible story of Ruth is found in the Book of Ruth in the Old Testament in the Bible.  This is one of the twelve books of history and found right after the book of Judges.  Ruth is the eighth book in the Bible.


  • The Bible story of Ruth takes place during the period of Israel's history when the God placed judges to rule over the nation. 
  • Ruth was a Moabite who married a Hebrew man when his family left Israel during a famine and moved to Moab.
  • She became a widow and then chose to travel back to Israel with her mother-in-law.
  • Ruth became the great grandmother of David (who fought Goliath) and is one of the few women mentioned in the genealogy of Jesus. (Matthew 1:5)

Summary of the Bible story of Ruth

Ruth lived in the land of Moab and married a Hebrew man who had relocated to there.  Her husband, brother-in-law, and father-in-law died leaving her, her sister-in-law and mother-in-law as widows.

Naomi, Ruth's mother-in-law, decided to travel back to the land of Israel to her hometown of Bethlehem.  Ruth chose to go with her and follow Naomi's God also.

Ruth was a hard worker and went into the grain fields to pick up leftover grain for herself and Naomi to eat.  The owner of the fields, Boaz, noticed her.  He was a very good man and lived to honor God.  He told his workers to drop grain for Ruth and not harm her.

Ruth found out that Boaz was part of her husband's family and therefore could become her Kinsman Redeemer.  Even though Ruth was a Moabite, Boaz agreed to marry her and provide for her and Naomi as they became a part of his family.

Ruth and Boaz had a child named Obed.  Obed became the father of Jesse who became the father of David who became the ancestor of Jesus.

A Lesson from the Bible story of Ruth

When we follow Jesus, we are no longer alone.  He promises to be with us and also makes us part of His family to provide for and protect.

story of Ruth grain

Photo Credit: Pixbay @ Pexels

Bible story of Ruth Lesson Plan

Scripture:  Ruth 4:14  “Then the women said to Naomi, “Praise the LORD, who has not left you without a family redeemer today.”

Central thought:  I belong to Jesus - He is with me & for me!

Object Illustration:  Cord of three – braided yarn for girls; craft sticks for boys

Rec. Game with Tie-in:  (Possible ideas)  Obstacle Course  (Team Work)  or

 “Kinsman Relay” – Team puts all their shoes in a pile and one at a time have to find their shoes.

Points to Emphasize in Bible Story of Ruth:

Overview:  God not only promises that He will be with us; He also gives us a family called the Church!

  • Ruth was a Moabite; she was not born an Israelite
  • Ruth chose to follow Naomi (and her God) into an unknown land where she would stand out as “weird” and different
  • God had already provided a redeemer (Boaz) for Ruth; because of Boaz,  she became a part of Jesus’ family.  She was David’s great grandmother!

The Bible Story of Ruth

Bible story of Ruth

Read the following verses to introduce the Bible story of Ruth (or have a few students read them). Have a few volunteers wear name boards as you direct them while telling the story. {If teaching only boys or only girls option: Instead of boys having to pose as Ruth or Naomi and girls having to pose as the men, have large name boards volunteers can move as a visual during the story}

* Verses 1-2

In the days when the judges ruled in Israel, a severe famine came upon the land. So a man from Bethlehem in Judah left his home and went to live in the country of Moab, taking his wife and two sons with him. 2 The man’s name was Elimelech, and his wife was Naomi. Their two sons were Mahlon and Kilion. They were Ephrathites from Bethlehem in the land of Judah. And when they reached Moab, they settled there.

 [These four move from under the Bethlehem board to under the Moab one.]

Vs. 3 Then Elimelech died, and Naomi was left with her two sons.

[Have Elimelech play dead & then leave the story.]

Vs. 4 The two sons married Moabite women. One married a woman named Orpah, and the other a woman named Ruth.

[Add Orpah & Ruth with the others]

vs. 5 -6  But about ten years later,  both Mahlon and Kilion died. This left Naomi alone, without her two sons or her husband. Then Naomi heard in Moab that the Lord had blessed his people in Judah by giving them good crops again. So Naomi and her daughters-in-law got ready to leave Moab to return to her homeland.

[Mahlon  & Kilion play dead & leave the story .  The other three now move towards Bethlehem.]

vs 8-9  But on the way, Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, “Go back to your mothers’ homes. And may the Lord reward you for your kindness to your husbands and to me. May the Lord bless you with the security of another marriage.” Then she kissed them good-bye, and they all broke down and wept.

vs 14  Orpah kissed her mother-in-law good-bye. But Ruth clung tightly to Naomi. 15 “Look,” Naomi said to her, “your sister-in-law has gone back to her people and to her gods. You should do the same.”

[Orpah goes back to Moab]

vs 16-18 But Ruth replied, “Don’t ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God.  Wherever you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord punish me severely if I allow anything but death to separate us!”  When Naomi saw that Ruth was determined to go with her, she said nothing more.

[Move Naomi & Ruth under Bethlehem]

Ruth probably felt very weird and different when they went back to Bethlehem.  She probably felt like she stuck out and everyone was looking at her and thinking her odd.  She most likely felt very alone too.  Even though she had come back with Naomi, Naomi knew people and was more like them than Ruth.

They were alone with no protector.  They were a dynamic duo themselves traveling that distance alone to return to Bethlehem (about 50 miles)!  But even though they made it to Bethlehem, in that day and time it was hard for women to survive alone.  They needed a family man that would provide and protect them.

Tell the “rest of the story”  in your own words.

*Ruth went out into the fields to pick up leftover grain.

*She met Boaz.  Naomi told her Boaz was a relative and sent her to lie at his feet as a servant so that he would fulfill his place as a family redeemer.

[Add Boaz with Naomi’s & Ruth’s]

* Boaz acted as their “avenger” and bought Naomi’s land and took Ruth as his wife, therefore becoming her protector and redeemer.  He could have let a closer family member take care of them, but he chose to be their redeemer.

4:7-8 Now in those days it was the custom in Israel for anyone transferring a right of purchase to remove his sandal and hand it to the other party. This publicly validated the transaction.  So the other family redeemer drew off his sandal as he said to Boaz, “You buy the land.”

Now that’s weird!

*  Read verses 4:13-17

So Boaz took Ruth into his home, and she became his wife. When he slept with her, the Lord enabled her to become pregnant, and she gave birth to a son.  Then the women of the town said to Naomi, “Praise the Lord, who has now provided a redeemer for your family! May this child be famous in Israel. May he restore your youth and care for you in your old age. For he is the son of your daughter-in-law who loves you and has been better to you than seven sons!” Naomi took the baby and cuddled him to her breast. And she cared for him as if he were her own.  The neighbor women said, “Now at last Naomi has a son again!” And they named him Obed. He became the father of Jesse and the grandfather of David.

Repeat what the women said about Naomi in verse 14 – “Then the women said to Naomi, “Praise the LORD, who has not left you without a family redeemer today.”

Noted point:  God has not left us in this world without a family redeemer!  Jesus came for us!  He has also give us people, a family called the Church, to walk with us on this journey of life!

object lesson - cord of three


Ecclesiastes 4:9-12  “9 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. 11 Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? 12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”

Option 1:  Give each student two strands of yarn & one piece of hemp chord. Have them try to braid them together by themselves.  After a few minutes ask if they are having difficulty.  Ask “Would it help to have a couple of more hands?”  Have them partner with someone to finish braiding their yarn & chord; then tie them around each others’ wrists.

Option 2:  Ask a few guys that think they are strong to volunteer.  Give each a craft stick and ask if they think they can break it.  Let them do so.  Now give them a two sticks together.  May be a little more difficult, but doable.  Finally give them two sticks with a large carpenter’s nail in the middle to represent God…He can’t be broken!

Point out that on our own…alone, life can get pretty difficult.  It helps when we have someone with us like Naomi had Ruth.  Together we are stronger.

Think of some people in your life that make you stronger.  It may be your family.  It may be a friend.  It may be a teacher or a coach.  Take a minute and thank God for them. 

Other people can let us down.  Maybe they don’t mean to; you may have had someone close to you pass away (die).  Although they couldn’t help it, they left you and that hurts.  Others may have let you down by not taking your side or spending time with other people and not including you.

Jesus will never let us down.  He loves us more than any person possibly could.  He is our family redeemer, our avenger! He left all the glory of Heaven and came to live and die on this earth to pay the price for our sin.  He died our death so that we could live His life. (Gal. 2:20)

Boaz paid the price for Naomi’s land and for Ruth to be his wife.  Ruth didn’t work or try to pay it; all Ruth had to do was lie at Boaz’s feet as a servant, accepting his place as redeemer.  She took the place of a servant, humbling herself to Him as her Lord. 

Jesus already paid the price to “redeem” us.

Redeem means….to buy back; to pay a price to receive back what once belonged to you.  God created us…He created me and you and all else in this world. We were created to be His.  When Adam and Eve sinned, they lost ownership of that which had been given to them by God – eternal life.  Jesus came and paid the price with His life on the cross to redeem, to buy us back that we may have life in Him.

Boaz took Ruth home to be his wife; she would not be alone and on her own.  They also became a family.  Jesus promises in Matthew 28 that He will be with us.  He has also made us part of God’s family – the Church.  We become brothers and sisters in Christ.  Talk about a huge family!!!

Recap (5 min.) - Lessons we can learn from the Bible story of Ruth:

[Hold each name up as you talk about them as a visual reminder.]

*Naomi  - faith – not only did Naomi have faith and return to her homeland (her God), but her life must have shown her faith for Ruth to want to follow her to an unknown place and Naomi’s God become her God.  Even when times get hard, we can know God is with us and working.

*Ruth  - loyalty – She chose to leave everything she had to not only follow Naomi, but to follow Naomi’s God.  When we trust Jesus, we are saying we will follow Him no matter where He leads we will trust Him.  We choose Him over holding on to old ways in our life.

*Boaz  (Family Redeemer/Avenger) – a picture of Jesus who redeems us back to God’s family.  Boaz paid the price that was necessary; Jesus paid the price that was necessary to buy us back.  He laid down His sinless life for us and took our place dying for sinfulness.

[Hold all three names together as a family.]

*Family -  Jesus promises to be with us each and every day through His Holy Spirit and as children of God we become a part of His family – the Church!

We are NOT alone!

Prayer Time:

Ask another leader ahead of time to be ready to close in prayer and to pray over each child briefly by name.

Extra Activities:
Bible Story of RUth

Bible cup game

Photo Credit: ScienceGal

Find more Bible activities, ideas and a more in-depth lesson plan to teach the Bible story of Ruth - HERE 

Bible Story of Ruth Videos

Other Bible Lessons in this Series

Special note: We do preview the websites to which we link, but are unable to peruse them completely. We try to check others' faith statements and make sure they do profess Jesus Christ as God's Son and salvation is found only in Him. It must, however, be your responsibility to personally dig into God's Word and allow the Holy Spirit to be your first and final teacher on all subjects.

"Our website may contain affiliate marketing links, which means we may get paid commission on sales of those products or services we write about. Our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers or affiliate partnerships. This disclosure is provided in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR § 255.5: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Creative Bible-Bits Newsletter:

Let us help you keep up with what's new at Creative Bible Study with free Bible study lessons and ideas straight to your email!  Your information will be kept confidential and not be used for solicitation.

Free Ebooks: