The Bible in Its Traditions

Deuteronomy 15:1–23

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At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release.

Every seven years thou shalt make a release.

“In the seventh year, you shall perform a remission,

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 YHWH'S release hath been proclaimed.

And this is the ordinance of the release: thou shalt remit every private debt which thy neighbour owes thee, and thou shalt not ask payment of it from thy brother; for it has been called a release to the Lord thy God.

which shall be celebrated according to this order. Anyone to whom anything is owed, by his friend or neighbor or brother, will not be able to request its return, because it is the year of remission of the Lord.

Of a foreigner thou mayest exact it; but whatsoever of thine is with thy brother thy hand shall release.

Of a stranger thou shalt ask again whatsoever he has of thine, but to thy brother thou shalt remit his debt to thee.

From the sojourner and the new arrival, you may require its return. From your fellow countryman and neighbor, you will not have the power to request its return.

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Howbeit there shall be no needy among you--for YHWH will surely bless thee in the land which the YHWH thy God giveth thee for an inheritance to possess it--

For thus there shall not be a poor person in the midst of thee, for the Lord thy God will surely bless thee in the land which the Lord thy God gives thee by inheritance, that thou shouldest inherit it.

And there shall not be anyone indigent or begging among you, so that the Lord your God may bless you in the land which he will deliver to you as a possession.

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if only thou diligently hearken unto the voice of YHWH thy God, to observe to do all this commandment which I command thee this day.

And if ye shall indeed hearken to the voice of the Lord your God, to keep and do all these commandments, as many as I charge thee this day,

But only if you heed the voice of the Lord your God, and keep to all that he has ordered, that which I am entrusting to you this day, will he bless you, just as he has promised.

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For YHWH thy God 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.

You shall lend money to many nations, and you yourselves shall borrow in return from no one. You shall rule over very many nations, and no one shall rule over you.

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If there be among you a needy man, one of thy brethren, within any of thy gates, in thy land which YHWH thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thy heart, nor shut thy hand from thy needy brother;

And if there shall be in the midst of thee a poor man of thy brethren in one of thy cities in the land, which the Lord thy God gives thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, neither shalt thou by any means close up thine hand from thy brother who is in want.

If one of your brothers, who dwells within the gates of your city, in the land which the Lord your God will give to you, falls into poverty, you shall not harden your heart, nor tighten your hand.

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but thou shalt surely open thy hand unto him, and shalt surely lend him sufficient for his need in that which he wanteth.

Instead, you shall open your hand to the poor, and you shall lend to him whatever you perceive him to need.

But you shall open your hand wide to him, and shall surely lend him whatsoever he lacks.

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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 YHWH against thee, and it be sin in thee.

Take heed to thyself that there be not a secret thing in thine heart, an iniquity, saying, The seventh year, the year of release, draws nigh; and thine eye shall be evil to thy brother that is in want, and thou shalt not give to him, and he shall cry against thee to the Lord, and there shall be great sin in thee.

Take care, lest perhaps an impious thought might creep within you, and you might say in your heart: ‘The seventh year of remission approaches.’ And so you might turn your eyes away from your poor brother, unwilling to lend to him what he has asked. If so, then he may cry out against you to the Lord, and it will be a sin for you.

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10  Thou shalt surely give him, and thy heart shall not be grieved when thou givest unto him; because that for this thing YHWH thy God will bless thee in all thy work, and in all that thou puttest thy hand unto.

10  Thou shalt surely give to him, and thou shalt lend him as much as he wants, according as he is in need; and thou shalt not grudge in thine heart as thou givest to him, because on this account the Lord thy God will bless thee in all thy works, and in all things on which thou shalt lay thine hand.

10  Instead, you shall give to him. Neither shall you do anything craftily while assisting him in his needs, so that the Lord your God may bless you, at all times and in all things to which you will put your hand.

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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.'

11  For the poor shall not fail off thy land, therefore I charge thee to do this thing, saying, Thou shalt surely open thine hands to thy poor brother, and to him that is distressed upon thy land.

11  The poor will not be absent from the land of your habitation. For this reason, I instruct you to open your hand to your indigent and poor brother, who lives among you in the land.

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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.

12  When your brother, a Hebrew man or a Hebrew woman, has been sold to you, and has served you for six years, in the seventh year you shall set him free.

13  And when thou lettest him go free from thee, thou shalt not let him go empty;

13  And when you grant his freedom, you shall by no means permit him to go away empty.

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14  thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy flock, and out of thy threshing-floor, and out of thy winepress; of that wherewith YHWH thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt give unto him.

14  Instead, you shall give to him, for his journey, from your flocks and threshing floor and winepress, with which the Lord your God has blessed you.

14  But you shall set aside and give to him out of your flocks and out of your oxen and out of your threshing floor and out of your wine press; out of everything which the LORD your God gives you, you shall give to him.

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15  And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt, and YHWH thy God redeemed thee; therefore I command thee this thing to-day.

15  Remember that you yourself also served in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God set you free. And therefore, I now command this of you.

15  And you shall remember that you were a bondman in Egypt, and the LORD your God delivered you; therefore I command you this thing today.

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 thee;

16  But if he will say, ‘I am not willing to depart,’ because he loves you and your household, and because he feels that it would be good for him to stay with you,

16  But if he says to you. I will not go away from you, because I love you and your household, and because it is better for me to be with you,

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.

17  then you shall take an awl and pierce his ear, at the door of your house. And he shall serve you even forever. You shall also act similarly toward your woman servant.

17  Then you must take an awl, and thrust it through his ear to the door, and he shall be your servant for ever. You shall do likewise to your maidservant.

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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 YHWH thy God will bless thee in all that thou doest.

18  You should not avert your eyes from them when you set them free, because he has served you for six years, in a manner deserving of the pay of a hired hand. So may the Lord your God bless you in all the works that you do.

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19  All the firstling males that are born of thy herd and of thy flock thou shalt sanctify unto YHWH thy God; thou shalt do no work with the firstling of thine ox, nor shear the firstling of thy flock.

19  Every first-born that shall be born among thy kine and thy sheep, thou shalt sanctify the males to the Lord thy God; thou shalt not work with thy first-born calf, and thou shalt not shear the first-born of thy sheep.

19  Of the firstborn, those born from your herds and sheep, you shall sanctify to the Lord your God whatever is of the male sex. You shall not put the firstborn of the oxen to work, nor shall you shear the firstborn of the sheep.

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20  Thou shalt eat it before YHWH thy God year by year in the place which the YHWH shall choose, thou and thy household.

20  In the sight of the Lord your God, you shall eat these, each year, in the place which the Lord will choose, you and your household.

20  You shall eat a firstling before the LORD your God year by year in the place which the LORD shall choose, you and your household;

21  And if there be any blemish therein, lameness, or blindness, any ill blemish whatsoever, thou shalt not sacrifice it unto YHWH thy God.

21  But if it has a blemish, or is lame, or is blind, or if it is in any part deformed or debilitated, it shall not be immolated to the Lord your God.

21  And if there is any blemish in it, or it is lame or blind, or have any ill blemish, you shall not sacrifice it to the LORD your God.

22  Thou shalt eat it within thy gates; the unclean and the clean may eat it alike, as the gazelle, and as the hart.

22  Instead, you shall eat it within the gates of your city. The clean as well as the unclean alike shall feed on these, such as the roe deer and the stag.

22  But you shall eat it within your towns; the unclean and the clean shall eat of it alike, as a gazelle, and as the hart.

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23  Only thou shalt not eat the blood thereof; thou shalt pour it out upon the ground as water.