From Sweet to Bitter to Sweet
Wisdom's Corner
From Sweet to Bitter to Sweet

Ruth's mother-in-law was Naomi. Naomi means "the sweetness of God" or "God is Sweet." Naomi lived during the times of the judges. There were times during the judges that the Israelites did what was right. During these times, God blessed the Israelites with much. But then there were times when the Isaelites did not do what was right and God would punish them.

Since the name Naomi refers to the sweetness of God we can assume that she was born during the time when God was blessing them. But then Elimelech, her husband, moves Naomi and their sons to Moab due to a very bad famine in the land. We do not know for sure but this may have been during a time when God was punishing the Israelites.

While in Moab Elimelech and his two sons die. Naomi tells her two daughter-in-laws that she is very grieved for them over what God has done to her (Ruth 1:13). The word grieved in the verse means "bitter." Naomi is bitter over her situation.

Naomi hears that God is blessing her homeland once again. So Naomi returns to her home town with Ruth. When friends come to greet her she tells them to not call her Naomi. She wants them to call her Mara, which means bitter. She says God has dealt very bitterly with her (verse 20).

Later in the book we find out that Ruth marries and has a son named Obed. All of Naomi's friends tell her that she has been blessed well by God. They say that God has given her a restorer and a nourisher. Naomi is very happy with her life again.

It is very important not to become bitter toward God. When bad things happen to you do not blame God. God only wants what is best for you. If you obey Him and do His commandments, He will bless you.

Keep studying your Bible. Learn what God wants you to do. And if any of this is hard to understand, ask an adult to help you.

Mark McWhorter

Copyright 2001

Published by The Old Paths Bible School