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Leviticus 25:13-28

Release of Landed Property

25:13 “‘In this year of jubilee you must each return 1  to your property. 25:14 If you make a sale 2  to your fellow citizen 3  or buy 4  from your fellow citizen, no one is to wrong his brother. 5  25:15 You may buy it from your fellow citizen according to the number of years since 6  the last jubilee; he may sell it to you according to the years of produce that are left. 7  25:16 The more years there are, 8  the more you may make its purchase price, and the fewer years there are, 9  the less you must make its purchase price, because he is only selling to you a number of years of 10  produce. 25:17 No one is to oppress his fellow citizen, 11  but you must fear your God, because I am the Lord your God. 25:18 You must obey my statutes and my regulations; you must be sure to keep them 12  so that you may live securely in the land. 13 

25:19 “‘The land will give its fruit and you may eat until you are satisfied, 14  and you may live securely in the land. 25:20 If you say, ‘What will we eat in the seventh year if we do not sow and gather our produce?’ 25:21 I will command my blessing for you in the sixth year so that it may yield 15  the produce 16  for three years, 25:22 and you may sow the eighth year and eat from that sixth year’s produce 17  – old produce. Until you bring in the ninth year’s produce, 18  you may eat old produce. 25:23 The land must not be sold without reclaim 19  because the land belongs to me, for you are foreigners and residents with me. 20  25:24 In all your landed property 21  you must provide for the right of redemption of the land. 22 

25:25 “‘If your brother becomes impoverished and sells some of his property, his near redeemer is to come to you and redeem what his brother sold. 23  25:26 If a man has no redeemer, but he prospers 24  and gains enough for its redemption, 25  25:27 he is to calculate the value of the years it was sold, 26  refund the balance 27  to the man to whom he had sold it, and return to his property. 25:28 If he has not prospered enough to refund 28  a balance to him, then what he sold 29  will belong to 30  the one who bought it until the jubilee year, but it must revert 31  in the jubilee and the original owner 32  may return to his property.

1 tn Heb “you [plural] shall return, a man.”

2 tn Heb “sell a sale.”

3 tn Or “to one of your countrymen” (NIV); NASB “to your friend.”

4 tn The Hebrew infinitive absolute קָנֹה (qanoh, “buying”) substitutes for the finite verb here in sequence with the previous finite verb “sell” at the beginning of the verse (see GKC 345 §113.z).

5 tn Heb “do not oppress a man his brother.” Here “brother” does not refer only to a sibling, but to a fellow Israelite.

6 tn Heb “in the number of years after.”

7 tn The words “that are left” are not in the Hebrew text, but are implied.

sn The purchaser is actually buying only the crops that the land will produce until the next jubilee, since the land will revert to the original owner at that time. The purchaser, therefore, is not actually buying the land itself.

8 tn Heb “To the mouth of the many years.”

9 tn Heb “to the mouth of the few years.”

10 tn Heb “a number of produce”; the words “years of” are implied. As an alternative this could be translated “a number of harvests” (cf. NRSV, NLT).

11 tn Heb “And you shall not oppress a man his fellow citizen.”

12 tn Heb “And you shall keep and do them.” This appears to be a kind of verbal hendiadys, where the first verb is a modifier of the action of the second verb (see GKC 386 §120.d, although שָׁמַר [shamar, “to keep”] is not cited there; cf. Lev 20:8, etc.).

13 tn Heb “and you shall dwell on the land to security.”

14 tn Heb “eat to satisfaction”; KJV, ASV “ye shall eat your fill.”

15 tn Heb “and it [i.e., the land] shall make the produce.” The Hebrew term וְעָשָׂת (vÿasat, “and it shall make”) is probably an older third feminine singular form of the verb (GKC 210 §75.m). Smr has the normal form.

16 tn Smr and LXX have “its produce” (cf. 25:3, 7, etc.) rather than “the produce.”

17 tn Heb “the produce,” referring to “the produce” of the sixth year of v. 21. The words “sixth year” are supplied for clarity.

18 tn Heb “until the ninth year, until bringing [in] its produce.”

19 tn The term rendered “without reclaim” means that the land has been bought for the full price and is, therefore, not subject to reclaim under any circumstances. This was not to be done with land in ancient Israel (contrast the final full sale of houses in v. 30; see the evidence cited in B. A. Levine, Leviticus [JPSTC], 174).

20 tn That is, the Israelites were strangers and residents who were attached to the Lord’s household. They did not own the land. Note the parallel to the “priest’s lodger” in Lev 22:10.

21 tn Heb “And in all the land of your property.”

22 tn Heb “right of redemption you shall give to the land”; NAB “you must permit the land to be redeemed.”

23 tn Heb “the sale of his brother.”

24 tn Heb “and his hand reaches.”

25 tn Heb “and he finds as sufficiency of its redemption.”

26 tn Heb “and he shall calculate its years of sale.”

27 tn Heb “and return the excess.”

28 tn Heb “And if his hand has not found sufficiency of returning.” Although some versions take this to mean that he has not made enough to regain the land (e.g., NASB, NRSV; see also B. A. Levine, Leviticus [JPSTC], 176), the combination of terms in Hebrew corresponds to the portion of v. 27 that refers specifically to refunding the money (cf. v. 27; see NIV and G. J. Wenham, Leviticus [NICOT], 315).

29 tn Heb “his sale.”

30 tn Heb “will be in the hand of.” This refers to the temporary control of the one who purchased its produce until the next year of jubilee, at which time it would revert to the original owner.

31 tn Heb “it shall go out” (so KJV, ASV; see B. A. Levine, Leviticus [JPSTC], 176).

32 tn Heb “he”; the referent (the original owner of the land) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

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