The Seventh Year
(Exodus 23:10-13; Leviticus 25:1-7)
1In the seventh year thou shalt make a remission, 2Which shall be celebrated in this order. He to whom any thing is owing from his friend or neighbour or brother, cannot demand it again, because it is the year of remission of the Lord, 3Of the foreigner or stranger thou mayst exact it: of thy countryman and neighbour thou shalt not have power to demand it again. 4And there shall be no poor nor beggar among you: that the Lord thy God may bless thee in the land which he will give thee in possession. 5Yet so if thou hear the voice of the Lord thy God, and keep all things that he hath ordained, and which I command thee this day, he will bless thee, as he hath promised. 6Thou shalt lend to many nations, and thou shalt borrow of no man. Thou shalt have dominion over very many nations, and no one shall have dominion over thee.
Generosity in Lending and Giving
7If one of thy brethren that dwelleth within the gates of thy city in the land which the Lord thy God will give thee, come to poverty: thou shalt not harden thy heart, nor close thy hand, 8But shalt open it to the poor man, thou shalt lend him, that which thou perceivest he hath need of. 9Beware lest perhaps a wicked thought steal in upon thee, and thou say in thy heart: The seventh year of remission draweth nigh; and thou turn away thy eyes from thy poor brother, denying to lend him that which he asketh: lest he cry against thee to the Lord, and it become a sin unto thee. 10But thou shalt give to him: neither shalt thou do any thing craftily in relieving his necessities: that the Lord thy God may bless thee at all times, and in all things to which thou shalt put thy hand. 11There will not be wanting poor in the land of thy habitation: therefore I command thee to open thy hand to thy needy and poor brother, that liveth in the land.
Release of Hebrew Servants
12When thy brother a Hebrew man, or Hebrew woman is sold to thee, and hath served thee six years, in the seventh year thou shalt let him go free: 13And when thou sendest him out free, thou shalt not let him go away empty: 14But shalt give him for his way out of thy flocks, and out of thy barnfloor, and thy winepress, wherewith the Lord thy God shall bless thee. 15Remember that thou also wast a bondservant in the land of Egypt, and the Lord thy God made thee free, and therefore I now command thee this. 16But if he say: I will not depart: because he loveth thee, and thy house, and findeth that he is well with thee: 17Thou shalt take an awl, and bore through his ear in the door of thy house, and he shall serve thee for ever: thou shalt do in like manner to thy womanservant also.
18Turn not away thy eyes from them when thou makest them tree: because he hath served thee six years according to the wages of a hireling: that the Lord thy God may bless thee in all the works that thou dost.
19Of the firstlings, that come of thy herds and thy sheep, thou shalt sanctify to the Lord thy God whatsoever is of the male sex. Thou shalt not work with the firstling of a bullock, and thou shalt not shear the firstlings of thy sheep. 20In the sight of the Lord thy God shalt thou eat them every year, in the place that the Lord shall choose, thou and thy house. 21But if it have a blemish, or be lame, or blind, or in any part disfigured or feeble, it shall not be sacrificed to the Lord thy God. 22But thou shalt eat it within the gates of thy city: the clean and the unclean shall eat them alike, as the roe and as the hart. 23Only thou shalt take heed not to eat their blood, but pour it out on the earth as water.