ESV - 8 But Naomi said to her two daughters-in-law, "Go, return each of you to her mother's house. May the Lord deal kindly with you, as you have dealt with the dead and with me.
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In my opinion, when Naomi spoke of "the dead", she was referring to the kindness shown by Orpah and Ruth to the two sons of Naomi and her late husband Elimelech (Mahlon and Chilion, the husbands of Orpah and Ruth) while they had still been alive. Naomi referred to Mahlon and Chilion as "the dead" because they had both subsequently died, and were dead at the time that Naomi was speaking in Ruth 1:8. Ruth and Orpah had dealt kindly with Mahlon and Chilion by leaving their home country (Moab) behind to marry Mahlon and Chilion, who were not Moabites, but Israelites from Bethlehem (Ruth 1:1).
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