Deuteronomy 15


The Sabbatical year of release, 1.

The manner in which this release shall take place, 2-5.

Of lending to the poor, and the disposition in which it should

be done, 6-11.

Of the Hebrew servant who has served six years, and who shall be

dismissed well furnished, 12-15.

The ceremony of boring the ear, when the servant wishes to

continue with his master, 16-18.

Of the firstlings of the flock and herd, 19, 20.

Nothing shall be offered that has any blemish, 21.

The sacrifice to be eaten both by the clean and unclean, except

the blood, which is never to be eaten, but poured out upon the

ground, 22, 23.


Verse 1. At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a

release] For an explanation of many things in this chapter, see

the notes on Exod. xxi. and xxiii., and Lev. xxv.

Verse 4. There shall be no poor] That is, comparatively; see

De 15:11.

Verse 8. Thou shalt open thine hand wide] Thy benevolence

shall be in proportion to his distress and poverty, and thy

ability. Thou shalt have no other rule to regulate thy charity


Verse 9. Beware that there be not a thought in thy wicked

heart] lebabecha beliyaal, thy belial heart, that

is, thy good-for-nothing or unprofitable heart;

See Clarke on De 13:13.

And thine eye be evil] An evil eye signifies a covetous

disposition. See the same form of expression used by our Lord in

the same sense. Mt 6:23.

If thine eye be evil-If thou be a covetous person. Evil eye is by

our Lord opposed to single eye, i. e., a person of a liberal,

benevolent mind. Covetousness darkens the soul; liberality and

benevolence enlighten it.

And he cry unto the Lord against thee] What a consolation to

the poor and the oppressed, that they have a sure friend in God,

who will hear their cry and redress their grievances!

Verse 11. For the poor shall never cease out of the land] To

this passage our Lord appears to allude Mr 14:7:

For ye have the poor with you always. God leaves these in mercy

among men to exercise the feelings of compassion, tenderness,

mercy, &c. And without occasions afforded to exercise these, man

would soon become a Stoic or a brute.

Verse 13. Thou shalt not let him go away empty] Because during

the time he served thee, he made no property for himself, having

been always honest towards thee; and now when he leaves thee, he

has nothing to begin the world with.

Verse 14. Thou shalt furnish him-out of thy flock] Thou shalt

give him some cattle to breed with; out of thy floor-some corn

for seed and for bread; and out of thy wine press-an adequate

provision of wine for present necessity.

Verse 17. Thou shalt take an awl]

See Clarke on Ex 21:6.

Verse 20. Thou shalt eat it-in the place which the Lord shall

choose] Thus God in his mercy made their duty and interest go

hand in hand. And in every case God acts thus with his creatures;

well, therefore, might Satan ask, Doth Job serve God for naught?

No! nor does God design that any man should.

Verse 21. If there be any blemish]

See Clarke on Le 22:20. God will have both a perfect priest

and a perfect offering.

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