Beware that there be not a thought in thy wicked heart - בליעל לבבך lebabecha beliyaal, thy belial heart, that is, thy good-for-nothing or unprofitable heart; See on Deuteronomy 13:13; (note).
And thine eye be evil - An evil eye signifies a covetous disposition. See the same form of expression used by our Lord in the same sense, Matthew 6:23. If thine eye be evil - If thou be a covetous person. Evil eye is by our Lord opposed to single eye, i. e., a person of a liberal, benevolent mind. Covetousness darkens the soul; liberality and benevolence enlighten it.
And he cry unto the Lord against thee - What a consolation to the poor and the oppressed, that they have a sure friend in God, who will hear their cry and redress their grievances!
The year of release is no doubt identical with the sabbatical year of the earlier legislation (Exodus 23:10 ff, and Leviticus 25:2 ff), the command of the older legislation being here amplified. The release was probably for the year, not total and final, and had reference only to loans lent because of poverty (compare Deuteronomy 15:4, Deuteronomy 15:7). Yet even so the law was found to be too stringent for the avarice of the people, because it was one of those which the rabbis “made of none effect by their traditions.”
Because it is called the Lord‘s release - Render, because proclamation has been made of the Lord‘s release. The verb is impersonal, and implies (compare Deuteronomy 31:10) that “the solemnity of the year of release” has been publicly announced.
The foreigner would not be bound by the restriction of the sabbatical year, and therefore would have no claim to its special remissions and privileges. He could earn his usual income in the seventh as in other years, and therefore is not exonerated from liability to discharge a debt anymore in the one than the others.
There is no inconsistency between this and Deuteronomy 15:11. The meaning seems simply to be, “Thou must release the debt for the year, except when there be no poor person concerned, a contingency which may happen, for the Lord shall greatly bless thee.” The general object of these precepts, as also of the year of Jubilee and the laws respecting inheritance, is to prevent the total ruin of a needy person, and his disappearance from the families of Israel by the sale of his patrimony.
literally: “Beware that there be not in thy heart a word which is worthlessness” (compare Deuteronomy 13:13 note).
None need fear that their liberality would bring them to want. Obedience to God's commandments would surely result in prosperity. “Thou shalt lend unto many nations,” He said, “but thou shalt not borrow; and thou shalt reign over many nations, but they shall not reign over thee.” Deuteronomy 15:6. PP 533.1
After “seven sabbaths of years,” “seven times seven years,” came that great year of release—the jubilee. “Then shalt thou cause the trumpet of the jubilee to sound ... throughout all your land. And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: it shall be a jubilee unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family.” Leviticus 25:9, 10. PP 533.2
“On the tenth day of the seventh month, in the Day of Atonement,” the trumpet of the jubilee was sounded. Throughout the land, wherever the Jewish people dwelt, the sound was heard, calling upon all the children of Jacob to welcome the year of release. On the great Day of Atonement satisfaction was made for the sins of Israel, and with gladness of heart the people would welcome the jubilee. PP 533.3
As in the sabbatical year, the land was not to be sown or reaped, and all that it produced was to be regarded as the rightful property of the poor. Certain classes of Hebrew slaves—all who did not receive their liberty in the sabbatical year—were now set free. But that which especially distinguished the year of jubilee was the reversion of all landed property to the family of the original possessor. By the special direction of God the land had been divided by lot. After the division was made no one was at liberty to trade his estate. Neither was he to sell his land unless poverty compelled him to do so, and then, whenever he or any of his kindred might desire to redeem it, the purchaser must not refuse to sell it; and if unredeemed, it would revert to its first possessor or his heirs in the year of jubilee. PP 533.4Read in context »
Wherever a church is established, its members are to do a faithful work for the needy believers. But they are not to stop here. They are also to aid others, irrespective of their faith. As the result of such effort, some of these will receive the special truths for this time. 6T 270.1Read in context »