1 At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release.
2 And this is the manner of the release: every creditor shall
release that which he hath lent unto his neighbour; he shall not exact it of his
neighbour and his brother; because HaShem'S release hath been proclaimed.
3 Of a foreigner thou mayest exact it; but whatsoever of
thine is with thy brother thy hand shall release.
4 Howbeit there shall be no needy among you--for HaShem will
surely bless thee in the land which HaShem thy G-d giveth thee for an
inheritance to possess it--
5 if only thou diligently hearken unto the voice of HaShem
thy G-d, to observe to do all this commandment which I command thee this day.
6 For HaShem thy G-d will bless thee, as He promised thee;
and thou shalt lend unto many nations, but thou shalt not borrow; and thou shalt
rule over many nations, but they shall not rule over thee.
7 If there be among you a needy man, one of thy brethren,
within any of thy gates, in thy land which HaShem thy G-d giveth thee, thou
shalt not harden thy heart, nor shut thy hand from thy needy brother;
8 but thou shalt surely open thy hand unto him, and shalt
surely lend him sufficient for his need in that which he wanteth.
9 Beware that there be not a base thought in thy heart,
saying: 'The seventh year, the year of release, is at hand'; and thine eye be
evil against thy needy brother, and thou give him nought; and he cry unto HaShem
against thee, and it be sin in thee.
10 Thou shalt surely give him, and thy heart shall not be
grieved when thou givest unto him; because that for this thing HaShem thy G-d
will bless thee in all thy work, and in all that thou puttest thy hand unto.
11 For the poor shall never cease out of the land; therefore
I command thee, saying: 'Thou shalt surely open thy hand unto thy poor and needy
brother, in thy land.'
12 If thy brother, a Hebrew man, or a Hebrew woman, be sold
unto thee, he shall serve thee six years; and in the seventh year thou shalt let
him go free from thee.
13 And when thou lettest him go free from thee, thou shalt
not let him go empty;
14 thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy flock, and out
of thy threshing-floor, and out of thy winepress; of that wherewith HaShem thy
G-d hath blessed thee thou shalt give unto him.
15 And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the
land of Egypt, and HaShem thy G-d redeemed thee; therefore I command thee this
16 And it shall be, if he say unto thee: 'I will not go out
from thee'; because he loveth thee and thy house, because he fareth well with
17 then thou shalt take an awl, and thrust it through his ear
and into the door, and he shall be thy bondman for ever. And also unto thy
bondwoman thou shalt do likewise.
18 It shall not seem hard unto thee, when thou lettest him go
free from thee; for to the double of the hire of a hireling hath he served thee
six years; and HaShem thy G-d will bless thee in all that thou doest.
19 All the firstling males that are born of thy herd and of
thy flock thou shalt sanctify unto HaShem thy G-d; thou shalt do no work with
the firstling of thine ox, nor shear the firstling of thy flock.
20 Thou shalt eat it before HaShem thy G-d year by year in
the place which HaShem shall choose, thou and thy household.
21 And if there be any blemish therein, lameness, or
blindness, any ill blemish whatsoever, thou shalt not sacrifice it unto HaShem
22 Thou shalt eat it within thy gates; the unclean and the
clean may eat it alike, as the gazelle, and as the hart.
23 Only thou shalt not eat the blood thereof; thou shalt pour
it out upon the ground as water.
Sources: Portions copyright © 1997 by Benyamin Pilant, All Rights Reserved
JPS Electronic Edition Copyright © 1998 by Larry Nelson, All Rights Reserved