Sabbatical Year/Shemitah, Part 3

Deuteronomy 15:1-2 At the end of every seven years you shall grant a remission of debts. This is the manner of remission: every creditor shall release what he has loaned to his neighbor; he shall not exact it of his neighbor and his brother, because the LORD’S remission has been proclaimed.

In today’s world, the verses above are radical financial and economic concepts. All debt, regardless of size, is forgiven at the end of every seventh year. Imagine, a clean financial slate.

Think about how these verses would influence lending and borrowing practices. Larger loans would occur early in the seven year cycle. Debt structure would not look like it does today. The 30 year mortgage would be toast. Loans would likely be much smaller. Personal savings would be promoted. People would be more inclined to live within their means.

Think of all the debt practices: home mortgages, car loans, student loans, and credit cards just to mention a few. Debt is oppressive and restrictive to freedom. Consider how each of the above would be financed or paid if debt was forgiven at the end of every seven years. Consider the change in personal spending habits.

Creditors would be more careful how they loaned their money. There would be less loaning of money. Creditors would likely make less irresponsible loans to customers who do not have the means to pay. If implemented today, debt bubbles would be a thing of the past. At the end of every seven years, everyone would be debt free. If debt payments remained at the end of the cycle, it would be forgiven. Poverty would likely be diminished significantly.

Responsibility would be increased on both the lender and the borrower. These practices would significantly cut into corporate banking profits and affect their stock prices.

Deuteronomy 23:19-20 You shall not charge interest to your countrymen: interest on money, food, or anything that may be loaned at interest. You may charge interest to a foreigner, but to your countrymen you shall not charge interest, so that the LORD your God may bless you in all that you undertake in the land which you are about to enter to possess.

Interest free lending would promote national unity and good will toward your fellow countryman. It is a matter of looking after your neighbor and brother. Financial collaboration would be an outcome. People would be more interested in the success of others.

God does not want us to take financial advantage of our fellow man. These loaning practices were built into society by God. He understands the capacity of greed demonstrated by humanity. Don’t shaft your neighbor.

These financial concepts are nowhere to be seen in today’s economic world. Most people are not aware these statutes exist. Would our lives be economically easier if this were in place today? What a concept, it is a universal blessing from God if one loans interest free to their countryman.

The ultimate example of God’s release or remission is in His Son. Jesus forgives us of our debt, sin. John 1:29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! Our transgressions are forgiven as a matter of grace and mercy. Ephesians 1:7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace. He has paid our debt without charging us. Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. It is His payment that allows us to possess eternity in New Jerusalem (Revelation 21).

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3 Responses to “Sabbatical Year/Shemitah, Part 3”

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