New English Translation
Release for Debt Slaves
1 At the end of every seven years you must declare a cancellation of debts. 2 This is the nature of the cancellation: Every creditor must remit what he has loaned to another person; he must not force payment from his fellow Israelite, for it is to be recognized as "the LORD's cancellation of debts." 3 You may exact payment from a foreigner, but whatever your fellow Israelite owes you, you must remit. 4 However, there should not be any poor among you, for the LORD will surely bless you in the land that he is giving you as an inheritance, 5 if you carefully obey him by keeping all these commandments that I am giving you today. 6 For the LORD your God will bless you just as he has promised; you will lend to many nations but will not borrow from any, and you will rule over many nations but they will not rule over you.
The Spirit of Liberality
7 If a fellow Israelite from one of your villages in the land that the LORD your God is giving you should be poor, you must not harden your heart or be insensitive to his impoverished condition. 8 Instead, you must be sure to open your hand to him and generously lend him whatever he needs. 9 Be careful lest you entertain the wicked thought that the seventh year, the year of cancellation of debts, has almost arrived, and your attitude be wrong toward your impoverished fellow Israelite and you do not lend him anything; he will cry out to the LORD against you and you will be regarded as having sinned. 10 You must by all means lend to him and not be upset by doing it, for because of this the LORD your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you attempt. 11 There will never cease to be some poor people in the land; therefore, I am commanding you to make sure you open your hand to your fellow Israelites who are needy and poor in your land.
Release of Debt Slaves
12 If your fellow Hebrew - whether male or female - is sold to you and serves you for six years, then in the seventh year you must let that servant go free. 13 If you set them free, you must not send them away empty-handed. 14 You must supply them generously from your flock, your threshing floor, and your winepress - as the LORD your God has blessed you, you must give to them. 15 Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt and the LORD your God redeemed you; therefore, I am commanding you to do this thing today. 16 However, if the servant says to you, "I do not want to leave you," because he loves you and your household, since he is well off with you, 17 you shall take an awl and pierce a hole through his ear to the door. Then he will become your servant permanently (this applies to your female servant as well). 18 You should not consider it difficult to let him go free, for he will have served you for six years, twice the time of a hired worker; the LORD your God will bless you in everything you do.
Giving God the Best
19 You must set apart for the LORD your God every firstborn male born to your herds and flocks. You must not work the firstborn of your bulls or shear the firstborn of your flocks. 20 You and your household must eat them annually before the LORD your God in the place he chooses. 21 If they have any kind of blemish - lameness, blindness, or anything else - you may not offer them as a sacrifice to the LORD your God. 22 You may eat it in your villages, whether you are ritually impure or clean, just as you would eat a gazelle or an ibex. 23 However, you must not eat its blood; you must pour it out on the ground like water.
King James Version
1 At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release.
2 And this is the manner of the release: Every creditor that lendeth ought unto his neighbour shall release it; he shall not exact it of his neighbour, or of his brother; because it is called the LORD'S release.
3 Of a foreigner thou mayest exact it again: but that which is thine with thy brother thine hand shall release;
4 Save when there shall be no poor among you; for the LORD shall greatly bless thee in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance to possess it:
5 Only if thou carefully hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all these commandments which I command thee this day.
6 For the LORD thy God blesseth thee, as he promised thee: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, but thou shalt not borrow; and thou shalt reign over many nations, but they shall not reign over thee.
7 ¶ If there be among you a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates in thy land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother:
8 But thou shalt open thine hand wide unto him, and shalt surely lend him sufficient for his need, in that which he wanteth.
9 Beware that there be not a thought in thy wicked heart, saying, The seventh year, the year of release, is at hand; and thine eye be evil against thy poor brother, and thou givest him nought; and he cry unto the LORD against thee, and it be sin unto thee.
10 Thou shalt surely give him, and thine heart shall not be grieved when thou givest unto him: because that for this thing the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thy works, and in all that thou puttest thine hand unto.
11 For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt open thine hand wide unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in thy land.
12 ¶ And if thy brother, an Hebrew man, or an Hebrew woman, be sold unto thee, and serve thee six years; then in the seventh year thou shalt let him go free from thee.
13 And when thou sendest him out free from thee, thou shalt not let him go away empty:
14 Thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy flock, and out of thy floor, and out of thy winepress: of that wherewith the LORD thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt give unto him.
15 And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt, and the LORD thy God redeemed thee: therefore I command thee this thing to day.
16 And it shall be, if he say unto thee, I will not go away from thee; because he loveth thee and thine house, because he is well with thee;
17 Then thou shalt take an aul, and thrust it through his ear unto the door, and he shall be thy servant for ever. And also unto thy maidservant thou shalt do likewise.
18 It shall not seem hard unto thee, when thou sendest him away free from thee; for he hath been worth a double hired servant to thee, in serving thee six years: and the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all that thou doest.
19 ¶ All the firstling males that come of thy herd and of thy flock thou shalt sanctify unto the LORD thy God: thou shalt do no work with the firstling of thy bullock, nor shear the firstling of thy sheep.
20 Thou shalt eat it before the LORD thy God year by year in the place which the LORD shall choose, thou and thy household.
21 And if there be any blemish therein, as if it be lame, or blind, or have any ill blemish, thou shalt not sacrifice it unto the LORD thy God.
22 Thou shalt eat it within thy gates: the unclean and the clean person shall eat it alike, as the roebuck, and as the hart.
23 Only thou shalt not eat the blood thereof; thou shalt pour it upon the ground as water.