See also:Code of the
See also:Hexateuch (Lev.
See also:xxv.) to the observance of every 5oth
See also:year, determined by the lapse of seven seven-year periods as a year of perfect
See also:rest, when there was to be no
See also:sowing, nor even gathering of the natural products of the
See also:field and the
See also:vine . At the beginning of the
See also:jubilee-year the liberation of all Israelitish slaves and the restoration of ancestral possessions was to be proclaimed . As regards the meaning of the name " jubilee " (Heb. yobel)
See also:modern scholars are agreed that it signifies " ram " or " ram's
See also:horn." "Year of jubilee " would then mean the year that is inaugurated by the blowing of the ram's horn (Lev. xxv. g) . According to Lev. xxv . 8–12, at the completion of seven sabbaths of years (i.e . 7 X7 = 49 years) the
See also:trumpet of the jubilee is to be sounded " throughout the
See also:land " on the loth
See also:day of the seventh
See also:month (Tisri 1o), the
See also:great Day of
See also:Atonement . The 5oth year thus announced is to be " hallowed," i.e. liberty 1 is to be proclaimed everywhere to everyone, and the
See also:people are to return " every man unto his possession and unto his
See also:family." As in the sabbatical year, there is to be no sowing, nor
See also:reaping that which grows of itself, nor gathering of grapes . As regards real
See also:property (Lev. xxv . 13–34) the
See also:law is that if any
See also:Hebrew under pressure of
See also:necessity shall alienate his
See also:pro- perty he is to get for it a sum of
See also:money reckoned according to the number of harvests to be reaped between the date of alienation and the first jubilee-year: should he or any relation
See also:desire to redeem the property before the jubilee this can always be done be repaying the value of the harvests between the redemption and the jubilee . This legal enactment, though it is not found (nor anything like it) in the earlier collections of
See also:laws, is evidently based on (or modified from) an
See also:custom which conferred on a near kinsman the right of pre-emption as well as of buying back (cf . Jer. xxxii . 6 sqq.) .
The tendency to impose checks upon the alienation of landed property was exceptionally strong in
See also:Israel . The fundamental principle is that the land is a sacred possession belonging to Yahweh . As such it is not to be alienated from Yahweh's people, to whom it was originally assigned . In Ezekiel's restoration
See also:programme "
See also:crown lands presented by the `
See also:prince ' to any of his officials revert to the crown in the year of liberty (? jubilee year)"; only to his sons may any portion of his
See also:inheritance be alienated in perpetuity (Ezek. xlvi . T6–18; cf . Code of Hammurabi, § 38 seq.) . The same
See also:rule applies to dwelling-houses of unwalled villages; the case is different, however, as regards dwelling-houses in walled cities . These may be redeemed within a year after trans, fer, but if not redeemed within that
See also:period they continue permanently in possession of the purchaser, and this may well be an
See also:echo of ancient practice . An exception to this last rule is made for the houses of the
See also:Levites in the Levitical cities . As regards property in slaves (Lev. xxv . 35–55) the Hebrew whom necessity has compelled to sell himself into the service of his
See also:brother Hebrew is to be treated as a hired servant and sojourner, and to be released absolutely at the jubilee; non-Hebrew bondmen, on the other
See also:hand, are to be bondmen for ever . But the Hebrew who has sold himself to a stranger or sojourner is entitled to freedom at the year of jubilee, and further is at any
See also:time redeemable by any of his kindred—the redemption price being regulated by the number of years to run between the redemption and the jubilee, according to the ordinary wage of hired servants .
Such were the enactments of the Priestly Code—which, of course, represents the latest legislation of the
See also:Pentateuch (
See also:post-exilic) . These enactments, in
See also:order to be understood rightly, must be viewed in relation to the earlier 1 Heb. deror . The same word (dur¢ru) is used in the Code of Hammurabi in the similar enactment that wife, son or daughter sold into
See also:slavery for
See also:debt are to be restored to liberty in the
See also:fourth year (§ 117) . similar provisions in connexion with the sabbatical (seventh) year . " The
See also:foundations of Lev. xxv. are laid in the ancient provisions of the
See also:Book of the
See also:Covenant (Exod. xxi . 2 seq.;
See also:xxiii. to seq.) and in
See also:Deuteronomy (xv.) . The Book of the Covenant enjoined that the land should lie
See also:fallow and Hebrew slaves be liberated in the seventh year; Deuteronomy required in addition the remission of debts " (Benzinger) . Deuteronomy, it will be noticed, in accordance with its humanitarian tendency, not only liberates the slave but remits the debt . It is evident that these enactments proved impracticable in real
See also:life (cf . Jer. xxxiv . 8 seq.), and so it became necessary in the later legislation of P, represented in the
See also:form of Lev. xxv., to relegate them to the 5oth year, the year of jubilee . The latter, however, was a purely theoretic development of the
See also:Sabbath idea, which could never have been reduced to practice (its actual observance would have necessitated that for two consecutive years—the 4gth and 5oth—absolutely nothing could be reaped, while in the 5Ist only summer fruits could be obtained, sowing being prohibited in the 5oth year) .
That in practice the enactments for the jubilee-year were disregarded is evidenced by the fact that, according to the unanimous testimony of the Talmudists and Rabbins, although the jubilee-years were " reckoned " they were not observed . The conjecture of
See also:Kuenen, supported by
See also:Wellhausen, that originally Lev. xxv . 8 seq. had reference to the seventh year is a highly probable one . This may be the case also with Ezek. xlvi . 16–18 (cf . Jer. xxxiv . 14) . A later Rabbinical
See also:device for evading the provisions of the law was the prosbul (ascribed to
See also:Hillel) —i.e. a
See also:condition made in the presence of the
See also:judge securing to the creditor the right of demanding repayment at any time, irrespective of the year of remission . Further enactments regarding the jubilee are found in Lev.
See also:xxvii . 17–25 and Num.
See also:xxxvi . 4 . (W .
R . S.; G . H .
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