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Leviticus 25:23-55

Talks for Growing Christians

Israel’s Year of Jubilee

Leviticus 25:23-55

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Lesson Number 27

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. Under the Law, the redemption of property was related to the year of Jubilee.
  2. Under the Law, the redemption of slaves was related to the year of Jubilee.

Practical Application

  1. Don’t give the land away!

Questions

  1. What was the year of Jubilee?
  2. What two aspects of the Year of Jubilee were prescribed in the first half of Leviticus 25?
  3. Give the two reasons mentioned for the land reverting to its original owner in the year of Jubilee.
  4. What was a “kinsman-redeemer”?
  5. Explain why verse 38 was included in this passage, “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.”
  6. Describe the situation when a person became so poor that he had to sell himself to fellow Hebrew.

Answers

  1. Every fifty years in Israel was a year of Jubilee. This was a year of celebration and restoration.
  2. During the Year of Jubilee, the land itself was to be given a rest and left untilled. Also all property bought and sold in Israel was restored to the former owners in the Year of Jubilee.
  3. All property bought and sold in Israel was priced according to how many years remained before Jubilee. This not only prevented inflated land prices it was a means of price control. It also guaranteed that property would remain in the respective tribe of Israel to which it was originally given, so that there would not be a patchwork of properties throughout the land with the tribal areas no longer intact.
  4. If a poor person sold his land, the nearest relative, kinsman-redeemer, not only had the right to buy back the property, but had the responsibility. In the Year of Jubilee, property did not have to be redeemed because it automatically reverted back to its former owners.
  5. The Hebrews were constantly to remember that everything they had, including the land, had been given to them.
  6. If a poor countryman had to hire himself out in order to pay off a debt and make ends meet he was not to be treated as a slave. Rather he was to be considered as a hired hand until the debt was paid off, or for a maximum of six years, or until the year of Jubilee. See Deuteronomy 15.

Discuss/Consider

  1. The Lord declared Leviticus 25:38 to remind His children that everything they had, including the land, had been given to them. What about you today? Does the principle apply? If so, how do you stay mindful of this?

Challenge


Key Verses

  • “The land shall not be sold permanently, for the land is Mine; for you are strangers and sojourners with Me.” Leviticus 25:23
  • “You shall not lend him your money for usury, nor lend him your food at a profit.” Leviticus 25:37

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