23:9 “You must not oppress 1 a foreigner, since you know the life 2 of a foreigner, for you were foreigners in the land of Egypt.
23:10 3 “For six years 4 you are to sow your land and gather in its produce. 23:11 But in the seventh year 5 you must let it lie fallow and leave it alone so that the poor of your people may eat, and what they leave any animal in the field 6 may eat; you must do likewise with your vineyard and your olive grove.
1 tn The verb means “to crush.” S. R. Driver notes that in this context this would probably mean with an unfair judgment in the courts (Exodus, 239).
2 tn Heb “soul, life” – “you know what it feels like.”
3 sn This section concerns religious duties of the people of God as they worship by giving thanks to God for their blessings. The principles here are: God requires his people to allow the poor to share in their bounty (10-11); God requires his people to provide times of rest and refreshment for those who labor for them (12); God requires allegiance to himself (13); God requires his people to come before him in gratitude and share their bounty (14-17); God requires that his people safeguard proper worship forms (18-19).
4 tn Heb “and six years”; this is an adverbial accusative telling how long they can work their land. The following references to years and days in vv. 10-12 function similarly.
5 tn Heb “and the seventh year”; an adverbial accusative with a disjunctive vav (ו).
6 tn Heb “living thing/creature/beast of the field.” A general term for animals, usually wild animals, including predators (cf. v. 29; Gen 2:19-20; Lev 26:22; Deut 7:22; 1 Sam 17:46; Job 5:22-23; Ezek 29:5; 34:5).