Leviticus 25:3‘Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard and gather in its crop, 4but during the seventh year the land shall have a sabbath rest, a sabbath to the LORD; you shall not sow your field nor prune your vineyard.
The idea that the land should also have a Sabbath was new and surely caused some questions among His people. But, we know today, that in order to produce healthier foods, we need to replenish the soil with nutrients. Today’s foods may not contain the nutritional values that they did one hundred or even fifty years ago, due to the intense farming practices that drain the soil. Time, back then, would have been used to let the Lord replenish the soil naturally. Yet again, we see that more practical information exists in the Word than we ever realized; if we would only listen and obey.
The Sabbatic Year and Year of Jubilee
1The LORD then spoke to Moses at Mount Sinai, saying, 2“Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, ‘When you come into the land which I shall give you, then the land shall have a sabbath to the LORD. 3‘Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard and gather in its crop, 4but during the seventh year the land shall have a sabbath rest, a sabbath to the LORD; you shall not sow your field nor prune your vineyard. 5‘Your harvest’s aftergrowth you shall not reap, and your grapes of untrimmed vines you shall not gather; the land shall have a sabbatical year. 6‘All of you shall have the sabbath products of the land for food; yourself, and your male and female slaves, and your hired man and your foreign resident, those who live as aliens with you. 7‘Even your cattle and the animals that are in your land shall have all its crops to eat.
8‘You are also to count off seven sabbaths of years for yourself, seven times seven years, so that you have the time of the seven sabbaths of years, namely, forty-nine years. 9‘You shall then sound a ram’s horn abroad on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the day of atonement you shall sound a horn all through your land. 10‘You shall thus consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim a release through the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, and each of you shall return to his own property, and each of you shall return to his family. 11‘You shall have the fiftieth year as a jubilee; you shall not sow, nor reap its aftergrowth, nor gather in from its untrimmed vines. 12‘For it is a jubilee; it shall be holy to you. You shall eat its crops out of the field.
13‘On this year of jubilee each of you shall return to his own property. 14‘If you make a sale, moreover, to your friend or buy from your friend’s hand, you shall not wrong one another. 15‘Corresponding to the number of years after the jubilee, you shall buy from your friend; he is to sell to you according to the number of years of crops. 16‘In proportion to the extent of the years you shall increase its price, and in proportion to the fewness of the years you shall diminish its price, for it is a number of crops he is selling to you. 17‘So you shall not wrong one another, but you shall fear your God; for I am the LORD your God.
18‘You shall thus observe My statutes and keep My judgments, so as to carry them out, that you may live securely on the land. 19‘Then the land will yield its produce, so that you can eat your fill and live securely on it. 20‘But if you say, “What are we going to eat on the seventh year if we do not sow or gather in our crops?” 21then I will so order My blessing for you in the sixth year that it will bring forth the crop for three years. 22‘When you are sowing the eighth year, you can still eat old things from the crop, eating the old until the ninth year when its crop comes in.
The Law of Redemption
23‘The land, moreover, shall not be sold permanently, for the land is Mine; for you are but aliens and sojourners with Me. 24‘Thus for every piece of your property, you are to provide for the redemption of the land.
25‘If a fellow countryman of yours becomes so poor he has to sell part of his property, then his nearest kinsman is to come and buy back what his relative has sold. 26‘Or in case a man has no kinsman, but so recovers his means as to find sufficient for its redemption, 27then he shall calculate the years since its sale and refund the balance to the man to whom he sold it, and so return to his property. 28‘But if he has not found sufficient means to get it back for himself, then what he has sold shall remain in the hands of its purchaser until the year of jubilee; but at the jubilee it shall revert, that he may return to his property.
29‘Likewise, if a man sells a dwelling house in a walled city, then his redemption right remains valid until a full year from its sale; his right of redemption lasts a full year. 30‘But if it is not bought back for him within the space of a full year, then the house that is in the walled city passes permanently to its purchaser throughout his generations; it does not revert in the jubilee. 31‘The houses of the villages, however, which have no surrounding wall shall be considered as open fields; they have redemption rights and revert in the jubilee. 32‘As for cities of the Levites, the Levites have a permanent right of redemption for the houses of the cities which are their possession. 33‘What, therefore, belongs to the Levites may be redeemed and a house sale in the city of this possession reverts in the jubilee, for the houses of the cities of the Levites are their possession among the sons of Israel. 34‘But pasture fields of their cities shall not be sold, for that is their perpetual possession.
Of Poor Countrymen
35‘Now in case a countryman of yours becomes poor and his means with regard to you falter, then you are to sustain him, like a stranger or a sojourner, that he may live with you. 36‘Do not take usurious interest from him, but revere your God, that your countryman may live with you. 37‘You shall not give him your silver at interest, nor your food for gain. 38‘I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt to give you the land of Canaan and to be your God.
39‘If a countryman of yours becomes so poor with regard to you that he sells himself to you, you shall not subject him to a slave’s service. 40‘He shall be with you as a hired man, as if he were a sojourner; he shall serve with you until the year of jubilee. 41‘He shall then go out from you, he and his sons with him, and shall go back to his family, that he may return to the property of his forefathers. 42‘For they are My servants whom I brought out from the land of Egypt; they are not to be sold in a slave sale. 43‘You shall not rule over him with severity, but are to revere your God. 44‘As for your male and female slaves whom you may have—you may acquire male and female slaves from the pagan nations that are around you. 45‘Then, too, it is out of the sons of the sojourners who live as aliens among you that you may gain acquisition, and out of their families who are with you, whom they will have produced in your land; they also may become your possession. 46‘You may even bequeath them to your sons after you, to receive as a possession; you can use them as permanent slaves. But in respect to your countrymen, the sons of Israel, you shall not rule with severity over one another.
Of Redeeming a Poor Man
47‘Now if the means of a stranger or of a sojourner with you becomes sufficient, and a countryman of yours becomes so poor with regard to him as to sell himself to a stranger who is sojourning with you, or to the descendants of a stranger’s family, 48then he shall have redemption right after he has been sold. One of his brothers may redeem him, 49or his uncle, or his uncle’s son, may redeem him, or one of his blood relatives from his family may redeem him; or if he prospers, he may redeem himself. 50‘He then with his purchaser shall calculate from the year when he sold himself to him up to the year of jubilee; and the price of his sale shall correspond to the number of years. It is like the days of a hired man that he shall be with him. 51‘If there are still many years, he shall refund part of his purchase price in proportion to them for his own redemption; 52and if few years remain until the year of jubilee, he shall so calculate with him. In proportion to his years he is to refund the amount for his redemption. 53‘Like a man hired year by year he shall be with him; he shall not rule over him with severity in your sight. 54‘Even if he is not redeemed by these means, he shall still go out in the year of jubilee, he and his sons with him. 55‘For the sons of Israel are My servants; they are My servants whom I brought out from the land of Egypt. I am the LORD your God.
Blessings of Obedience
1‘You shall not make for yourselves idols, nor shall you set up for yourselves an image or a sacred pillar, nor shall you place a figured stone in your land to bow down to it; for I am the LORD your God. 2‘You shall keep My sabbaths and reverence My sanctuary; I am the LORD. 3‘If you walk in My statutes and keep My commandments so as to carry them out, 4then I shall give you rains in their season, so that the land will yield its produce and the trees of the field will bear their fruit. 5‘Indeed, your threshing will last for you until grape gathering, and grape gathering will last until sowing time. You will thus eat your food to the full and live securely in your land. 6‘I shall also grant peace in the land, so that you may lie down with no one making you tremble. I shall also eliminate harmful beasts from the land, and no sword will pass through your land. 7‘But you will chase your enemies and they will fall before you by the sword; 8five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall before you by the sword. 9‘So I will turn toward you and make you fruitful and multiply you, and I will confirm My covenant with you. 10‘You will eat the old supply and clear out the old because of the new. 11‘Moreover, I will make My dwelling among you, and My soul will not reject you. 12‘I will also walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people. 13‘I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt so that you would not be their slaves, and I broke the bars of your yoke and made you walk erect.
Penalties of Disobedience
14‘But if you do not obey Me and do not carry out all these commandments, 15if, instead, you reject My statutes, and if your soul abhors My ordinances so as not to carry out all My commandments, and so break My covenant, 16I, in turn, will do this to you: I will appoint over you a sudden terror, consumption and fever that will waste away the eyes and cause the soul to pine away; also, you will sow your seed uselessly, for your enemies will eat it up. 17‘I will set My face against you so that you will be struck down before your enemies; and those who hate you will rule over you, and you will flee when no one is pursuing you. 18‘If also after these things you do not obey Me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins. 19‘I will also break down your pride of power; I will also make your sky like iron and your earth like bronze. 20‘Your strength will be spent uselessly, for your land will not yield its produce and the trees of the land will not yield their fruit.
21‘If then, you act with hostility against Me and are unwilling to obey Me, I will increase the plague on you seven times according to your sins. 22‘I will let loose among you the beasts of the field, which will bereave you of your children and destroy your cattle and reduce your number so that your roads lie deserted.
23‘And if by these things you are not turned to Me, but act with hostility against Me, 24then I will act with hostility against you; and I, even I, will strike you seven times for your sins. 25‘I will also bring upon you a sword which will execute vengeance for the covenant; and when you gather together into your cities, I will send pestilence among you, so that you shall be delivered into enemy hands. 26‘When I break your staff of bread, ten women will bake your bread in one oven, and they will bring back your bread in rationed amounts, so that you will eat and not be satisfied.
27‘Yet if in spite of this you do not obey Me, but act with hostility against Me, 28then I will act with wrathful hostility against you, and I, even I, will punish you seven times for your sins. 29‘Further, you will eat the flesh of your sons and the flesh of your daughters you will eat. 30‘I then will destroy your high places, and cut down your incense altars, and heap your remains on the remains of your idols, for My soul shall abhor you. 31‘I will lay waste your cities as well and will make your sanctuaries desolate, and I will not smell your soothing aromas. 32‘I will make the land desolate so that your enemies who settle in it will be appalled over it. 33‘You, however, I will scatter among the nations and will draw out a sword after you, as your land becomes desolate and your cities become waste.
34‘Then the land will enjoy its sabbaths all the days of the desolation, while you are in your enemies’ land; then the land will rest and enjoy its sabbaths. 35‘All the days of its desolation it will observe the rest which it did not observe on your sabbaths, while you were living on it. 36‘As for those of you who may be left, I will also bring weakness into their hearts in the lands of their enemies. And the sound of a driven leaf will chase them, and even when no one is pursuing they will flee as though from the sword, and they will fall. 37‘They will therefore stumble over each other as if running from the sword, although no one is pursuing; and you will have no strength to stand up before your enemies. 38‘But you will perish among the nations, and your enemies’ land will consume you. 39‘So those of you who may be left will rot away because of their iniquity in the lands of your enemies; and also because of the iniquities of their forefathers they will rot away with them.
40‘If they confess their iniquity and the iniquity of their forefathers, in their unfaithfulness which they committed against Me, and also in their acting with hostility against Me— 41I also was acting with hostility against them, to bring them into the land of their enemies—or if their uncircumcised heart becomes humbled so that they then make amends for their iniquity, 42then I will remember My covenant with Jacob, and I will remember also My covenant with Isaac, and My covenant with Abraham as well, and I will remember the land. 43‘For the land will be abandoned by them, and will make up for its sabbaths while it is made desolate without them. They, meanwhile, will be making amends for their iniquity, because they rejected My ordinances and their soul abhorred My statutes. 44‘Yet in spite of this, when they are in the land of their enemies, I will not reject them, nor will I so abhor them as to destroy them, breaking My covenant with them; for I am the LORD their God. 45‘But I will remember for them the covenant with their ancestors, whom I brought out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the nations, that I might be their God. I am the LORD.’”
46These are the statutes and ordinances and laws which the LORD established between Himself and the sons of Israel through Moses at Mount Sinai.
Rules concerning Valuations
1Again, the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2“Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, ‘When a man makes a difficult vow, he shall be valued according to your valuation of persons belonging to the LORD. 3‘If your valuation is of the male from twenty years even to sixty years old, then your valuation shall be fifty shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary. 4‘Or if it is a female, then your valuation shall be thirty shekels. 5‘If it be from five years even to twenty years old then your valuation for the male shall be twenty shekels and for the female ten shekels. 6‘But if they are from a month even up to five years old, then your valuation shall be five shekels of silver for the male, and for the female your valuation shall be three shekels of silver. 7‘If they are from sixty years old and upward, if it is a male, then your valuation shall be fifteen shekels, and for the female ten shekels. 8‘But if he is poorer than your valuation, then he shall be placed before the priest and the priest shall value him; according to the means of the one who vowed, the priest shall value him.
9‘Now if it is an animal of the kind which men can present as an offering to the LORD, any such that one gives to the LORD shall be holy. 10‘He shall not replace it or exchange it, a good for a bad, or a bad for a good; or if he does exchange animal for animal, then both it and its substitute shall become holy. 11‘If, however, it is any unclean animal of the kind which men do not present as an offering to the LORD, then he shall place the animal before the priest. 12‘The priest shall value it as either good or bad; as you, the priest, value it, so it shall be. 13‘But if he should ever wish to redeem it, then he shall add one-fifth of it to your valuation.
14‘Now if a man consecrates his house as holy to the LORD, then the priest shall value it as either good or bad; as the priest values it, so it shall stand. 15‘Yet if the one who consecrates it should wish to redeem his house, then he shall add one-fifth of your valuation price to it, so that it may be his.
16‘Again, if a man consecrates to the LORD part of the fields of his own property, then your valuation shall be proportionate to the seed needed for it: a homer of barley seed at fifty shekels of silver. 17‘If he consecrates his field as of the year of jubilee, according to your valuation it shall stand. 18‘If he consecrates his field after the jubilee, however, then the priest shall calculate the price for him proportionate to the years that are left until the year of jubilee; and it shall be deducted from your valuation. 19‘If the one who consecrates it should ever wish to redeem the field, then he shall add one-fifth of your valuation price to it, so that it may pass to him. 20‘Yet if he will not redeem the field, but has sold the field to another man, it may no longer be redeemed; 21and when it reverts in the jubilee, the field shall be holy to the LORD, like a field set apart; it shall be for the priest as his property. 22‘Or if he consecrates to the LORD a field which he has bought, which is not a part of the field of his own property, 23then the priest shall calculate for him the amount of your valuation up to the year of jubilee; and he shall on that day give your valuation as holy to the LORD. 24‘In the year of jubilee the field shall return to the one from whom he bought it, to whom the possession of the land belongs. 25‘Every valuation of yours, moreover, shall be after the shekel of the sanctuary. The shekel shall be twenty gerahs.
26‘However, a firstborn among animals, which as a firstborn belongs to the LORD, no man may consecrate it; whether ox or sheep, it is the LORD’S. 27‘But if it is among the unclean animals, then he shall redeem it according to your valuation and add to it one-fifth of it; and if it is not redeemed, then it shall be sold according to your valuation.
28‘Nevertheless, anything which a man sets apart to the LORD out of all that he has, of man or animal or of the fields of his own property, shall not be sold or redeemed. Anything devoted to destruction is most holy to the LORD. 29‘No one who may have been set apart among men shall be ransomed; he shall surely be put to death.
30‘Thus all the tithe of the land, of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD’S; it is holy to the LORD. 31‘If, therefore, a man wishes to redeem part of his tithe, he shall add to it one-fifth of it. 32‘For every tenth part of herd or flock, whatever passes under the rod, the tenth one shall be holy to the LORD. 33‘He is not to be concerned whether it is good or bad, nor shall he exchange it; or if he does exchange it, then both it and its substitute shall become holy. It shall not be redeemed.’”
34These are the commandments which the LORD commanded Moses for the sons of Israel at Mount Sinai.
Thanksgiving for Deliverance from Death.
A PSALM; A SONG AT THE DEDICATION OF THE HOUSE. A PSALM OF DAVID.
1 I will extol You, O LORD, for You have lifted me up,
And have not let my enemies rejoice over me.
2 O LORD my God,
I cried to You for help, and You healed me.
3 O LORD, You have brought up my soul from Sheol;
You have kept me alive, that I would not go down to the pit.
4 Sing praise to the LORD, you His godly ones,
And give thanks to His holy name.
5 For His anger is but for a moment,
His favor is for a lifetime;
Weeping may last for the night,
But a shout of joy comes in the morning.
6 Now as for me,
I said in my prosperity, “I will never be moved.”
7 O LORD, by Your favor You have made my mountain to stand strong;
You hid Your face, I was dismayed.
8 To You, O LORD, I called,
And to the Lord I made supplication:
9 “What profit is there in my blood, if I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise You? Will it declare Your faithfulness?
10 “Hear, O LORD, and be gracious to me;
O LORD, be my helper.”
11 You have turned for me my mourning into dancing;
You have loosed my sackcloth and girded me with gladness,
12 That my soul may sing praise to You and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever.