Deuteronomy 15:1–2: “At the end of every seven years you shall grant a release of debts. And this is the form of the release: Every creditor who has lent anything to his neighbor shall release it; he shall not require it of his neighbor or his brother, because it is called the Lord’s release.”

November 29th, 2019 by Pastor Ed in devotional

This chapter has been called God’s anti-poverty program. God had already told His people earlier that their land was to rest from plowing every 7th year, which was called a sabbatical year. Now He tells them no Israelite could take out a mortgage for a time period longer than 7 years. Money was only to be loaned with the understanding that every 7th year, debts would be canceled. So there were no long-term debts. Money could never be borrowed, or owed, for more than 6 years. In God’s economy, at the end of the 7th year, all the personal debt accumulated was released or cancelled.

This served as a great equalizer of wealth and poverty by giving every person an equal opportunity. Some have argued that the year for canceling debts was a release of repayment just for one year. But the majority opinion, based on a simple reading of this chapter, was that all debts were to be cancelled totally. Another interesting part of this plan was that the wealthy person being approached for a loan, even in the 6th year, was not to refuse the poor person asking for it. The result being that God promised to bless those who were obedient to His word, both to the one who gave and to the one who received the loan.

God warns that “the poor will never cease from the land” (Deut. 15:11), which is obviously an important point as Jesus also quoted this: “For you have the poor with you always” (Matt. 26:11, Mark 14:7, John 12:8). So God was not giving a guarantee of material prosperity, but He was giving an opportunity for obedient people’s betterment. This is still true for believers. God does not guarantee riches here, but He does promise to bless us when we are obedient. How we need God’s blessing on our lives. Most of us remember well what it was like to live a life outside of God’s protecting and blessing hand. Strive to stay under the covering of your loving, heavenly Father and you will never lack for necessary things.

“LORD, we do ask for and acknowledge our need for Your hand directing and blessing our lives this day.”