To Workers For Jesus Online Bible Study Table of Contents

About this Bible Study........The King James Version of the Bible is written in a beautiful form of the English language. It can be hard for modern English readers to understand.  In this study, you will find notes and summaries in brown just above the the verses from the Bible. We recommend that you read the notes and summaries first, and then read the verses in their KJV form. 


The book of Leviticus

This book was written by Moses. It covers the time from when the tabernacle was finished until the time that the Israelites left Sinai (about 50 days). The purpose of this book was to give the laws and guidelines to live a moral and pure life. God would live there with the Israelites if they were clean and pure. They made sacrifices to give valuable things to God. Before they learned these laws, the Israelites only knew about worship from the Egyptians. The Egyptians worshipped idols;  they did not worship the one true God. 

Please visit
this page to see where the book of Leviticus fits into the whole Bible. 

 

Leviticus 23 - 25
Special days of celebration
The Year of Jubilee
Rule against blasphemy (talking bad about God)

Leviticus 23

Special days of celebration

While Moses and the Israelites were traveling to the Promised Land of Canaan, God gave them 7 special days to celebrate. These days were to be celebrated every year. The people were not supposed to work on these holy days.  They had special rules for their offerings to give to God. Each holy day had a special lesson that was to be taught to the people. Sometimes the lesson was about an important event in their history. The feasts reminded the people about their covenant promise with God. The feasts gave time for the parents to teach their children about what God had done for them in the past and His promise for their future.

God talked to Moses. He told Moses to tell the Israelites about special days of celebration. They are also called feasts.
[1] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
[2] Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts.


The Sabbath

The Sabbath is the 7th day of the week. The Israelites must not work on the Sabbath.  They should work for 6 days. But the Sabbath should be for going to worship and meeting with the other Israelites to praise God.
[3] Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; ye shall do no work therein: it is the sabbath of the LORD in all your dwellings.


The Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread

The first feast is the Passover. This special time celebrates when God brought the Israelites out of Egypt. It is the time when God killed the oldest children and animals in Egypt. But God passed over the Israelites because they put lamb's blood on their doors (back in Exodus 12:29).The Israelites did not die, and they left Egypt very fast. There was no time to let the bread raise, so it was flat. Passover is on the 14th day of the first month. The feast of Unleavened Bread is the next day. For 7 days, they should eat flat bread without yeast.
[4] These are the feasts of the LORD, even holy convocations, which ye shall proclaim in their seasons.
[5] In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is the LORD's passover.
[6] And on the fifteenth day of the same month is the feast of unleavened bread unto the LORD: seven days ye must eat unleavened bread.

On the first day, they should not work. They should have a service to worship God.  They should make an offering on the first day. Then they should also make offerings for the next 7 days.  On the 7th day, they should have another worship service. They should not work on that day. 
[7] In the first day ye shall have an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.
[8] But ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD seven days: in the seventh day is an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.


The Feast of Firstfruits

This celebrates the beginning of things growing. At this time of year, the plants were starting to grow. This was about the same time of year as our months of March and April.  

God talked to Moses.  He told Moses to tell the Israelites about this celebration.  They should bring the first sheaf (a bunch or group) of wheat or barley to the priest.
[9] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
[10] Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye be come into the land which I give unto you, and shall reap the harvest thereof, then ye shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest unto the priest:

On the day after the Sabbath, the priest will wave the sheaf back and forth in the air to show that it belongs to God. 
[11] And he shall wave the sheaf before the LORD, to be accepted for you: on the morrow after the sabbath the priest shall wave it.


On the same day that the priest waves the sheaf of wheat or barley, the Israelites should bring an offering. They should bring a 1 year old perfect male lamb.
[12] And ye shall offer that day when ye wave the sheaf an he lamb without blemish of the first year for a burnt offering unto the LORD.


They should also bring a grain offering--4 pounds of fine flour with oil mixed in--and  a drink offering--1 quart. The should burn the grain offering on the altar. It makes a smell that God likes. 
[13] And the meat offering thereof shall be two tenth deals of fine flour mingled with oil, an offering made by fire unto the LORD for a sweet savour: and the drink offering thereof shall be of wine, the fourth part of an hin.


They should not eat any of the food they grew until after they bring their offerings to God.  It doesn't matter if the food is baked into bread, raw, or roasted. They must first bring their offerings to God. This will be the law from now on. 
[14] And ye shall eat neither bread, nor parched corn, nor green ears, until the selfsame day that ye have brought an offering unto your God: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.



The Feast of Weeks (also called the Feast of Pentecost)

On the day that they make their offering for the Feast of the Firstfruits, they should start to count 7 sabbaths (7 weeks). The day after the 7th sabbath (50 days later),  they should make another offering. They should bring 2 loaves of bread. Each loaf of bread should weigh 4 pounds. The bread should be waved back and forth in the air to show it is for God. 
[15] And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete:
[16] Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD.
[17] Ye shall bring out of your habitations two wave loaves of two tenth deals: they shall be of fine flour; they shall be baken with leaven; they are the firstfruits unto the LORD.


This festival is held 50 days after the Feast of the Firstfruits. 50 days is 7 weeks later. In the Greek language, the word "pentēcostē" means 50.


The Israelite community should also offer:  7 perfect one year old lambs, 1 young bull, 2 rams, and a drink offering. The animals are for burnt offerings. The burning offerings make a smell that God likes.

[18] And ye shall offer with the bread seven lambs without blemish of the first year, and one young bullock, and two rams: they shall be for a burnt offering unto the LORD, with their meat offering, and their drink offerings, even an offering made by fire, of sweet savour unto the LORD.


The Israelite community should also offer a baby goat (for a sin offering) and 2 one year old perfect lambs (for peace offerings). The priest will wave the lambs and the bread back and forth in the air to show that they are for God.
 
[19] Then ye shall sacrifice one kid of the goats for a sin offering, and two lambs of the first year for a sacrifice of peace offerings.
[20] And the priest shall wave them with the bread of the firstfruits for a wave offering before the LORD, with the two lambs: they shall be holy to the LORD for the priest.


On that day, the people should not work. They should meet together for a worship service. This will be a rule forever.
[21] And ye shall proclaim on the selfsame day, that it may be an holy convocation unto you: ye shall do no servile work therein: it shall be a statute for ever in all your dwellings throughout your generations.

When the Israelites harvest (pick) the food they grow, they should not pick all of it. They should leave some in the corners of the field. If they drop some of the food, they should not pick it up. Then the poor people and the other people who live in the land with the Israelites can come and pick it.
[22] And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not make clean riddance of the corners of thy field when thou reapest, neither shalt thou gather any gleaning of thy harvest: thou shalt leave them unto the poor, and to the stranger: I am the LORD your God.



The Feast of Trumpets

Blowing the shofar (trumpet)

Tabernacle model in Timna Park, Israel
Photo from BiblePlaces.com
 


 God told Moses about another celebration time. This feast will be on the 1st day of the 7th month. It should be a special day like a sabbath. When they hear trumpets, they should meet together for a worship service. They should not work on that day. They should bring offerings to the altar for God.

[23] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,


[24] Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, In the seventh month, in the first day of the month, shall ye have a sabbath, a memorial of blowing of trumpets, an holy convocation.
[25] Ye shall do no servile work therein: but ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD.


 


Jewish people continue to celebrate these 2 holidays today. The Feast of Trumpets is now called Rosh Hashanah. It is the beginning of the Jewish New Year. It is celebrated in September or October.  Each month in the Jewish calendar depends on the moon. The Jewish months do not have 30 or 31 days. So, the 7th Jewish month called  Tishri is sometimes in September and sometimes in October.

The Day of Atonement is now called Yom Kippur. It is celebrated soon after Rosh Hashanah on the 10th day of the Jewish month called Tishri.
 

The Day of Atonement (asking God to forgive sins)


God talked to Moses. He said that on the 10th day of the 7th month, they should have a special day. This special day is to ask God to forgive their sins. They should meet together to worship God. They should not eat on this day. They should bring offerings to God.
[26] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
[27] Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD.


The Israelites should not work on the special day of atonement. If anyone eats food on this special day, he will be put out.  He will not be one of God's chosen people anymore. 
[28] And ye shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the LORD your God.
[29] For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people.


God will kill anyone who does work on the special day of atonement.  This will be a rule from now on for all future Israelites. 
[30] And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people.
[31] Ye shall do no manner of work: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.

This special day of atonement will be the same as a sabbath. They should not work.  They should stop eating in the evening of the 9th day of the month. They should not eat anything until the evening of the 10th day of the month.
[32] It shall be unto you a sabbath of rest, and ye shall afflict your souls: in the ninth day of the month at even, from even unto even, shall ye celebrate your sabbath.
 



The Feast of the Tabernacles


God talked to Moses. God told Moses about another celebration. This celebration is called the Feast of the Tabernacles.  It will be celebrated on the 15th day of the 7th month.  This celebration will go on for 7 days. 
[33] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
[34] Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the LORD.


On the first day of this celebration, they should all meet together to worship God. They should not do any work. 

[35] On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.


They should bring burnt offerings to God on all 7 days. On the 8th day, they should have another worship service and bring an offering.  They should not work on that day. 
[36] Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein.


The Israelites should make burnt offerings, grain offering, and drink offerings on these special days. They should meet together to worship God.  These offerings are in addition to offerings on the sabbaths, when they make promises, and when they make volunteer offerings. 
[37] These are the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire unto the LORD, a burnt offering, and a meat offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, every thing upon his day:
[38] Beside the sabbaths of the LORD, and beside your gifts, and beside all your vows, and beside all your freewill offerings, which ye give unto the LORD.


The Feast of the Tabernacles will be after they harvest the food they grew. The celebration will start on the 15th day of the the month. They should not work on the 1st day or the 8th day.
[39] Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruit of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto the LORD seven days: on the first day shall be a sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a sabbath.


The Israelites should build little houses with tree branches during the Feast of the Tabernacles.  They should use palm trees and willow trees. They should live in the little houses during the celebration.  This will remind them of the years they lived outside in the wilderness after they left Egypt. This will be a rule forever for the Israelites.
[40] And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God seven days.
[41] And ye shall keep it a feast unto the LORD seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month.
[42] Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths:
[43] That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.


Moses did what God told him to do. He told the Israelites about the special celebrations.
[44] And Moses declared unto the children of Israel the feasts of the LORD.


Tabernacle model in Timna Park, Israel
Photo from BiblePlaces.com


Leviticus 24

The lamps in the Tabernacle

God talked to Moses. He gave Moses some rules about the lamps in the Tabernacle. The Israelites should bring pure olive oil for the lamps. The lamps should have fire in them all of the time. 
[1] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
[2] Command the children of Israel, that they bring unto thee pure oil olive beaten for the light, to cause the lamps to burn continually.
[3] Without the vail of the testimony, in the tabernacle of the congregation, shall Aaron order it from the evening unto the morning before the LORD continually: it shall be a statute for ever in your generations.
[4] He shall order the lamps upon the pure candlestick before the LORD continually.


The Showbread in the Tabernacle
 

Tabernacle model in Timna Park, Israel
Photo from BiblePlaces.com

The showbread sat on the special table in the tabernacle.  The showbread was 12 loaves of bread. There were 12 loaves because there were 12 tribes of Israel (from Jacob's 12 sons). This bread was to stay on the table for 1 week. The priests would eat the bread in a special place after 1 week was finished. The bread showed that God gave the Israelites everything they needed. 

Each loaf of bread should use 16 cups of flour. They should set the 12 loaves of bread in 2 rows.  There should be 6 loaves of bread in each row. 
[5] And thou shalt take fine flour, and bake twelve cakes thereof: two tenth deals shall be in one cake.
[6] And thou shalt set them in two rows, six on a row, upon the pure table before the LORD.


They should put some frankincense (a spice that smells good) with each row.  Then the spice can be offered as a burnt offering. It will take the place of the bread.  
[7] And thou shalt put pure frankincense upon each row, that it may be on the bread for a memorial, even an offering made by fire unto the LORD.

The priests must set out new bread every week on the sabbath.  
[8] Every sabbath he shall set it in order before the LORD continually, being taken from the children of Israel by an everlasting covenant.

Aaron and his family may eat the bread. They must eat the bread in a holy place because it was offered to God. This rule will continue forever.
[9] And it shall be Aaron's and his sons'; and they shall eat it in the holy place: for it is most holy unto him of the offerings of the LORD made by fire by a perpetual statute.


A story about blasphemy (saying bad things about God or using God's name in a bad way)

Shelomith was an Israelite woman. She had a son.  The son's father was an Egyptian. Shelomith's son and another Israelite had a fight. Shelomith's son cursed the name of God (used God's name in a bad way). The people took Shelomith's son to Moses. 
[10] And the son of an Israelitish woman, whose father was an Egyptian, went out among the children of Israel: and this son of the Israelitish woman and a man of Israel strove together in the camp;
[11] And the Israelitish woman's son blasphemed the name of the LORD, and cursed. And they brought him unto Moses: (and his mother's name was Shelomith, the daughter of Dibri, of the tribe of Dan:)


They locked him up to wait and see what God told them to do.

[12] And they put him in ward, that the mind of the LORD might be shewed them.


God told Moses what to do. God told Moses to take the son outside the camp. Everyone who heard him blaspheme God should put their hands on his head. Then the other people should throw rocks at him and kill him. This is called stoning.
[13] And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
[14] Bring forth him that hath cursed without the camp; and let all that heard him lay their hands upon his head, and let all the congregation stone him.

God told Moses to tell the Israelites this rule about blasphemy. Anyone who says bad things about God is guilty.  The other Israelites should kill him with rocks.  It doesn't matter if he is an Israelite or someone who comes from another country.
[15] And thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel, saying, Whosoever curseth his God shall bear his sin.
[16] And he that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him: as well the stranger, as he that is born in the land, when he blasphemeth the name of the LORD, shall be put to death.


A murderer is someone who kills another person.  A murderer should be punished with death. This means that he should be killed, too.
[17] And he that killeth any man shall surely be put to death.

If a man kills an animal, he should give the animal's owner a new animal.
[18] And he that killeth a beast shall make it good; beast for beast.

If a man hurts another man, he should be punished. He should be hurt in the same way. If the man hurt the other man's eye, his eye will be hurt, too.  If the man hurt the other man's tooth, his tooth will be hurt, too. This is the meaning of "an eye for an eye, and a tooth for tooth".
[19] And if a man cause a blemish in his neighbour; as he hath done, so shall it be done to him;
[20] Breach for breach, eye for eye, tooth for tooth: as he hath caused a blemish in a man, so shall it be done to him again.

If a man kills an animal, he must give the person a new animal. If a man kills another man, he must be killed, too.  This is God's law for the Israelites and the people from other countries who live with them. 
[21] And he that killeth a beast, he shall restore it: and he that killeth a man, he shall be put to death.
[22] Ye shall have one manner of law, as well for the stranger, as for one of your own country: for I am the LORD your God.

Moses told the Israelites to bring Shelomith's son out. Moses told the people to stone him. The Israelites obeyed Moses. They killed Shelomith's sons with rocks. 
[23] And Moses spake to the children of Israel, that they should bring forth him that had cursed out of the camp, and stone him with stones. And the children of Israel did as the LORD commanded Moses.



Leviticus 25


Rules about farming

God talked to Moses on the mountain Sinai. He gave Moses these rules.
[1] And the LORD spake unto Moses in mount Sinai, saying,
 

Photo of wheat field from eBibleTeacher.com


When the Israelites live in Canaan, they should obey the rules for their farms. The land in the farms should have a sabbath. That means that they can grow food for 6 years. But they should not grow food in the 7th year. The land needs to rest in the 7th year. This honors God.
[2] Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye come into the land which I give you, then shall the land keep a sabbath unto the LORD.
[3] Six years thou shalt sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyard, and gather in the fruit thereof;
[4] But in the seventh year shall be a sabbath of rest unto the land, a sabbath for the LORD: thou shalt neither sow thy field, nor prune thy vineyard.

The land that is resting will still have some plants that grow by themselves. They grow from old seeds. No one planted them this year. The Israelites should not work and pick those plants for selling or business.  But if the owner, the owner's servants, the owner's workers, or strangers want to eat that food themselves, they are allowed to pick the food and eat it. Also, any cattle or wild animals may eat the food themselves.
[5] That which groweth of its own accord of thy harvest thou shalt not reap, neither gather the grapes of thy vine undressed: for it is a year of rest unto the land.
[6] And the sabbath of the land shall be meat for you; for thee, and for thy servant, and for thy maid, and for thy hired servant, and for thy stranger that sojourneth with thee,
[7] And for thy cattle, and for the beast that are in thy land, shall all the increase thereof be meat.



The Year of Jubilee



This was every 50th year. They should count 7 times 7 weeks. Then the next year was the Year of Jubilee. 

[8] And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years.

They should blow the trumpet on the 10th day of the 7th month (on the day of atonement to ask for God's forgiveness). This starts the new year of Jubilee.
[9] Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubile to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land.

The Year of Jubilee is holy. It is a year of freedom. All property should be given back to the original owner.  All of the slaves should be free, and they should go back to their own families.  
[10] And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: it shall be a jubile unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family.

The Year of Jubilee is the same as the sabbath year.  They should not plant anything. The land should rest. The land that is resting will still have some plants that grow from old seeds. They will grow by themselves. No one planted them this year. The Israelites should not work and pick those plants for selling or business.  But if the owner, the owner's servants, the owner's workers, or strangers want to eat that food themselves, they are allowed to pick the food and eat it. 
[11] A jubile shall that fiftieth year be unto you: ye shall not sow, neither reap that which groweth of itself in it, nor gather the grapes in it of thy vine undressed.
[12] For it is the jubile; it shall be holy unto you: ye shall eat the increase thereof out of the field.

In the Year of Jubilee, all land goes back to the original owner. So, when the Israelites sell land, they should be fair.  The price should be fair. They should figure how many times the new owner can grow food before the next Year of Jubliee. That is how they should pick the price. 
[13] In the year of this jubile ye shall return every man unto his possession.
[14] And if thou sell ought unto thy neighbour, or buyest ought of thy neighbour's hand, ye shall not oppress one another:
[15] According to the number of years after the jubile thou shalt buy of thy neighbour, and according unto the number of years of the fruits he shall sell unto thee:


If there are many years left until the next Year of Jubilee, the price will be higher. If there are a small number of years left until the next Year of Jubilee, the price should be smaller.
[16] According to the multitude of years thou shalt increase the price thereof, and according to the fewness of years thou shalt diminish the price of it: for according to the number of the years of the fruits doth he sell unto thee.

They should be fair. They should obey God. God is Lord.
[17] Ye shall not therefore oppress one another; but thou shalt fear thy God: for I am the LORD your God.


If the Israelites obey God's laws and do what God tells them to do, they will live in Canaan safely. Their land will grow a lot of food, and they will have enough food to eat.
[18] Wherefore ye shall do my statutes, and keep my judgments, and do them; and ye shall dwell in the land in safety.
[19] And the land shall yield her fruit, and he shall eat your fill, and dwell therein in safety.


During the sabbath year when they cannot grow food, they will have enough food to eat. Some Israelites might worry that they will not have enough food that year because they are not planting any food.  But God will make sure they have enough food. In the sixth year, God will make sure that a lot of  food grows. They will have enough food to eat during the 7th year and the 8th year. During the 8th year, they can grow food but it won't be ready to eat until the end of the year. 
[20] And if ye shall say, What shall we eat the seventh year? behold, we shall not sow, nor gather in our increase:
[21] Then I will command my blessing upon you in the sixth year, and it shall bring forth fruit for three years.
[22] And ye shall sow the eighth year, and eat yet of old fruit until the ninth year; until her fruits come in ye shall eat of the old store.


The land belongs to God. The Israelites live there, but it is God's land.
[23] The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me.


If someone wants to sell some land, the original owner of the land must be asked first. He must get the first chance to buy the land back.
[24] And in all the land of your possession ye shall grant a redemption for the land.

Sometimes, a man will be poor, and he will need to sell his land and things.  If he has close family, they should buy the land back. But if the man has no close family, he may be able to buy the land back later when he has more money himself.  He should count the number of years until the next Year of Jubilee. The price should be more than the number of years left until the next Year of Jubilee.
[25] If thy brother be waxen poor, and hath sold away some of his possession, and if any of his kin come to redeem it, then shall he redeem that which his brother sold.
[26] And if the man have none to redeem it, and himself be able to redeem it;
[27] Then let him count the years of the sale thereof, and restore the overplus unto the man to whom he sold it; that he may return unto his possession.

But if the poor man can't buy his land back, he will get it back in the next Year of Jubilee.
[28] But if he be not able to restore it to him, then that which is sold shall remain in the hand of him that hath bought it until the year of jubile: and in the jubile it shall go out, and he shall return unto his possession.


If a man sells a house that is built inside a walled city (a city that has a big wall around it), he can buy it back for one year. If he does not buy it back in one year, the new owner keeps the house. The old owner does not get the house back in the Year of Jubilee.
[29] And if a man sell a dwelling house in a walled city, then he may redeem it within a whole year after it is sold; within a full year may he redeem it.
[30] And if it be not redeemed within the space of a full year, then the house that is in the walled city shall be established for ever to him that bought it throughout his generations: it shall not go out in the jubile.


But it is different for houses that are in the country or small towns (towns that do not have walls around them). These houses have the same rules as land. The old owner's family can buy the house back. Or if no one buys it back, the old owner will get the house back in the Year of Jubilee.
[31] But the houses of the villages which have no wall round about them shall be counted as the fields of the country: they may be redeemed, and they shall go out in the jubile.


If a Levite (a person who is from the tribe of Levi) sells a house in the city, his family can buy it back anytime. 
[32] Notwithstanding the cities of the Levites, and the houses of the cities of their possession, may the Levites redeem at any time.


If a Levite sells a house, then the new owner sells it again, the house will still be returned to the Levite in the Year of Jubilee.  A Levite may not sell his land. It should belong to him and his family always.
[33] And if a man purchase of the Levites, then the house that was sold, and the city of his possession, shall go out in the year of jubile: for the houses of the cities of the Levites are their possession among the children of Israel.
[34] But the field of the suburbs of their cities may not be sold; for it is their perpetual possession.

If an Israelite becomes poor and has hard times, the others should help him.  They should help him the same way that they help strangers. Then he can continue to live with them.
[35] And if thy brother be waxen poor, and fallen in decay with thee; then thou shalt relieve him: yea, though he be a stranger, or a sojourner; that he may live with thee.

No one should loan him money and charge interest (interest is extra money a person pays when he borrows money). They should not sell food to him at a high price. They should help the poor Israelite stay in his home. 
[36] Take thou no usury of him, or increase: but fear thy God; that thy brother may live with thee.
[37] Thou shalt not give him thy money upon usury, nor lend him thy victuals for increase.

They must remember that God is Lord, and he brought the Israelites out of Egypt to live in Canaan.
[38] I am the LORD your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, and to be your God.


If an Israelite is poor and is sold to another Israelite, he should not be a slave. He should be a hired worker. He should work until the next Year of Jubilee.
[39] And if thy brother that dwelleth by thee be waxen poor, and be sold unto thee; thou shalt not compel him to serve as a bondservant:
[40] But as an hired servant, and as a sojourner, he shall be with thee, and shall serve thee unto the year of jubile:


In the Year of Jubilee, the hired worker and his children will go back to their own family. They will go back to the land that God gave to their ancestors.
[41] And then shall he depart from thee, both he and his children with him, and shall return unto his own family, and unto the possession of his fathers shall he return.


The workers should not be slaves. God brought them out of Egypt, and He does not want them to be slaves again. The employers should respect God. The employers should treat their workers well. They should not treat them too strictly. 
[42] For they are my servants, which I brought forth out of the land of Egypt: they shall not be sold as bondmen.
[43] Thou shalt not rule over him with rigour; but shalt fear thy God.


The Israelites were allowed to own slaves. The slaves must be people who are not Israelites. They must be other people who came from other areas. They can also be other people who live with the Israelites and the children of those people.
[44] Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids.
[45] Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession.


If an Israelite dies, and he owns slaves, his heirs (people who inherit or own his things after he dies) can then own the slaves. But an Israelite must never make another Israelite work as a slave. 
[46] And ye shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession; they shall be your bondmen for ever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, ye shall not rule one over another with rigour.


In this situation, an Israelite has money problems, and he is poor. He sells himself to a rich person who is not an Israelite. He will work as a slave for the rich person or the rich person's family.  The slave's family may redeem him. That means they can buy him back from the rich person. 
[47] And if a sojourner or stranger wax rich by thee, and thy brother that dwelleth by him wax poor, and sell himself unto the stranger or sojourner by thee, or to the stock of the stranger's family:
[48] After that he is sold he may be redeemed again; one of his brethren may redeem him:


These are the family members who can redeem the slave:  a brother, an uncle, a cousin, or any close family member. If the slave gets some money, he can buy his freedom himself. 
[49] Either his uncle, or his uncle's son, may redeem him, or any that is nigh of kin unto him of his family may redeem him; or if he be able, he may redeem himself.


If someone is buying the slave back, this is how they know how much to pay.  They count the years until the next Year of Jubilee.  That is because all slaves go free in the Year of Jubilee. Then they count how much a hired workers gets paid in one year. They multiply the number of years left by the amount of pay for one year. This should be the fair price for the slave.  
[50] And he shall reckon with him that bought him from the year that he was sold to him unto the year of jubile: and the price of his sale shall be according unto the number of years, according to the time of an hired servant shall it be with him.

If there are many years until the next Year of Jubilee, the price will be high. If there are just a small number of years, the price will be low. 
[51] If there be yet many years behind, according unto them he shall give again the price of his redemption out of the money that he was bought for.
[52] And if there remain but few years unto the year of jubile, then he shall count with him, and according unto his years shall he give him again the price of his redemption.


If an Israelite is a slave for someone who is not an Israelite, the slave's family should make sure he is treated well.  If no one can buy him back, he and his children will be free in the next Year of Jubilee.
[53] And as a yearly hired servant shall he be with him: and the other shall not rule with rigour over him in thy sight.
[54] And if he be not redeemed in these years, then he shall go out in the year of jubile, both he, and his children with him.

The Israelites cannot be slaves to men forever. The Israelites should be God's workers. God brought them out of Egypt. God is the Lord.
[55] For unto me the children of Israel are servants; they are my servants whom I brought forth out of the land of Egypt: I am the LORD your God.


 Workers For Jesus Online Bible Study Table of Contents