Leviticus 25; Psalm 32; Ecclesiastes 8; 2 Timothy 4

The Sabbath Year

25 wThe Lord spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai, saying, Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, When you come into xthe land that I give you, the land shall keep a Sabbath to the Lord. For six years you shall sow your field, and for six years you shall prune your vineyard and gather in its fruits, but in the seventh year there shall be a Sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a Sabbath to the Lord. You shall not sow your field or prune your vineyard. yYou shall not reap what grows of itself in your harvest, or gather the grapes of your undressed vine. It shall be a year of solemn rest for the land. The Sabbath of the land1 shall provide food for you, for yourself and for your male and female slaves2 and for your hired worker and the sojourner who lives with you, and for your cattle and for the wild animals that are in your land: zall its yield shall be for food.

The Year of Jubilee

You shall count seven weeks3 of years, seven times seven years, so that the time of the seven weeks of years shall give you forty-nine years. Then you shall sound athe loud trumpet on the tenth day of the seventh month. bOn the Day of Atonement you shall sound the trumpet throughout all your land. 10 And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and cproclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you, when each of you shall return to his property and each of dyou shall return to his clan. 11 That fiftieth year shall be a jubilee for you; in it eyou shall neither sow nor reap ywhat grows of itself nor gather the grapes from the undressed vines. 12 For it is a jubilee. It shall be holy to you. fYou may eat the produce of the field.4

13 dIn this year of jubilee each of you shall return to his property. 14 And if you make a sale to your neighbor or buy from your neighbor, gyou shall not wrong one another. 15 hYou shall pay your neighbor according to the number of years after the jubilee, and he shall sell to you according to the number of years for crops. 16 If the years are many, you shall increase the price, and if the years are few, you shall reduce the price, for it is the number of the crops that he is selling to you. 17 iYou shall not wrong one another, but you shall fear your God, for I am the Lord your God.

18 jTherefore you shall do my statutes and keep my rules and perform them, and then kyou will dwell in the land securely. 19 lThe land will yield its fruit, and myou will eat your fill kand dwell in it securely. 20 And if you say, nWhat shall we eat in the seventh year, if owe may not sow or gather in our crop? 21 I will pcommand my blessing on you in the sixth year, so that it will produce a crop sufficient for three years. 22 qWhen you sow in the eighth year, you will be eating some of rthe old crop; you shall eat the old until the ninth year, when its crop arrives.

Redemption of Property

23 The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for sthe land is mine. For you are strangers and sojourners with me. 24 And in all the country you possess, you shall allow a redemption of the land.

25 If your brother becomes poor and sells part of his property, tthen his nearest redeemer shall come and redeem what his brother has sold. 26 If a man has no one to redeem it and then himself becomes prosperous and finds sufficient means to redeem it, 27 let uhim calculate the years since he sold it and pay back the balance to the man to whom he sold it, and then return to his property. 28 But if he does not have sufficient means to recover it, then what he sold shall remain in the hand of the buyer until the year of jubilee. In the jubilee it shall vbe released, and whe shall return to his property.

29 If a man sells a dwelling house in a walled city, he may redeem it within a year of its sale. For a full year he shall have the right of redemption. 30 If it is not redeemed within a full year, then the house in the walled city shall belong in perpetuity to the buyer, throughout his generations; vit shall not be released in the jubilee. 31 But the houses of the villages that have no wall around them shall be classified with the fields of the land. They may be redeemed, and vthey shall be released in the jubilee. 32 As for xthe cities of the Levites, the Levites may redeem at any time the houses in the cities they possess. 33 And if one of the Levites exercises his right of redemption, then the house that was sold in a city they possess shall be released in the jubilee. For the houses in the cities of the Levites are their possession among the people of Israel. 34 But the fields yof pastureland belonging to their cities may not be sold, for that is their possession forever.

Kindness for Poor Brothers

35 If your brother becomes poor and cannot maintain himself with you, zyou shall support him as though he were a stranger and a sojourner, and he shall live with you. 36 aTake no interest from him or profit, but bfear your God, that your brother may live beside you. 37 aYou shall not lend him your money at interest, nor give him your food for profit. 38 cI am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt to give you the land of Canaan, and to be your God.

39 dIf your brother becomes poor beside you and sells himself to you, you shall not make him serve as a slave: 40 he shall be with you as a hired worker and as a sojourner. He shall serve with you until the year of the jubilee. 41 vThen he shall go out from you, ehe and his children with him, and go back to his own clan and return fto the possession of his fathers. 42 For they are gmy servants,5 whom I brought out of the land of Egypt; they shall not be sold as slaves. 43 hYou shall not rule over him iruthlessly but jshall fear your God. 44 As for your male and female slaves whom you may have: you may buy male and female slaves from among the nations that are around you. 45 kYou may also buy from among the strangers who sojourn with you and their clans that are with you, who have been born in your land, and they may be your property. 46 You may bequeath them to your sons after you to inherit as a possession forever. You may make slaves of them, but over your brothers the people of Israel lyou shall not rule, one over another ruthlessly.

Redeeming a Poor Man

47 If a stranger or sojourner with you becomes rich, and myour brother beside him becomes poor and sells himself to the stranger or sojourner with you or to a member of the stranger's clan, 48 then after he is sold he may be redeemed. One of his brothers may redeem him, 49 or his uncle or his cousin may nredeem him, or a close relative from his clan may redeem him. Or if he ogrows rich he may redeem himself. 50 He shall calculate with his buyer from the year when he sold himself to him until the year of jubilee, and the price of his sale shall vary with the number of years. The time he was with his owner shall be prated as the time of a hired worker. 51 If there are still many years left, he shall pay proportionately for his redemption some of his sale price. 52 If there remain but a few years until the year of jubilee, he shall calculate and pay for his redemption in proportion to his years of service. 53 He shall treat him as a worker hired year by year. lHe shall not rule ruthlessly over him in your sight. 54 And if he is not redeemed by these means, then qhe and his children with him shall be released in the year of jubilee. 55 For it is rto me that the people of Israel are servants.6 They are my servants whom I brought out of the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.


Blessed Are the Forgiven

A Maskil1 of David.

32  jBlessed is the one whose ktransgression is forgiven,

whose sin is covered.

Blessed is the man against whom the Lord lcounts no iniquity,

and in whose spirit mthere is no deceit.

For when I kept silent, my nbones wasted away

through my ogroaning all day long.

For day and night your phand was heavy upon me;

my strength was dried up2 as by the heat of summer. Selah

I qacknowledged my sin to you,

and I did not cover my iniquity;

I said, I rwill confess my transgressions to the Lord,

and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah

Therefore let everyone who is sgodly

offer prayer to you at a time when you tmay be found;

surely in the rush of ugreat waters,

they shall not reach him.

You are a vhiding place for me;

you preserve me from wtrouble;

you surround me with xshouts of deliverance. Selah

I will yinstruct you and teach you in the way you should go;

I will zcounsel you with my eye upon you.

aBe not like a horse or a mule, without understanding,

which must be curbed with bbit and bridle,

or it will not stay near you.

10  cMany are the sorrows of the wicked,

but steadfast love surrounds the one who dtrusts in the Lord.

11  eBe glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous,

and fshout for joy, all you gupright in heart!


Keep the King's Command

Who is like the wise?

And who knows the interpretation of a thing?

zA man's wisdom makes his face shine,

and athe hardness of his face is changed.

I say:1 Keep the king's command, because of bGod's oath to him.2 Be not hasty to cgo from his presence. Do not take your stand in an evil cause, for he does whatever he pleases. For the word of the king is supreme, and dwho may say to him, What are you doing? Whoever keeps a command will know no evil thing, and the wise heart will know the proper time and the just way.3 For there is a time and a way efor everything, although man's trouble4 lies heavy on him. For he fdoes not know what is to be, for gwho can tell him how it will be? No man has power to hretain the spirit, ior power over the day of death. There is no jdischarge from war, nor will wickedness deliver those who are given to it. kAll this I observed while applying my heart to all that is done under the sun, when man had power over man to his hurt.

Those Who Fear God Will Do Well

10 Then I saw the wicked buried. They used to go in and out of lthe holy place and were mpraised5 in the city where they had done such things. This also is vanity.6 11 Because nthe sentence against an evil deed is not executed speedily, othe heart of the children of man is fully set to do evil. 12 Though a sinner does evil a hundred times and pprolongs his life, yet I know that qit will be well with rthose who fear God, because they fear before him. 13 But it will snot be well with the wicked, neither will he prolong his days like ta shadow, because he does not fear before God.

Man Cannot Know God's Ways

14 There is a vanity that takes place on earth, that there are righteous people uto whom it happens according to the deeds of the wicked, and there are wicked people vto whom it happens according to the deeds of the righteous. I said that this also is vanity. 15 And I commend joy, for man whas nothing better under the sun but to xeat and drink and be joyful, for this will go with him in his toil through the days of his life that God has given him under the sun.

16 When I applied my heart to know wisdom, and to see ythe business that is done on earth, how neither zday nor night do one's eyes see sleep, 17 then I saw all the work of God, that aman cannot find out the work that is done under the sun. However much man may toil in seeking, he will not find it out. Even though a wise man claims to know, bhe cannot find it out.


Preach the Word

hI charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, iwho is to judge the living and the dead, and by jhis appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; kreprove, rebuke, and lexhort, with complete patience and teaching. mFor the time is coming when people will not endure nsound1 teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and owill turn away from listening to the truth and pwander off into myths. As for you, qalways be sober-minded, rendure suffering, do the work of san evangelist, tfulfill your ministry.

For uI am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my vdeparture has come. wI have fought the good fight, xI have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is ylaid up for me zthe crown of righteousness, which the Lord, athe righteous judge, will award to me on bthat day, and not only to me but also to all cwho have loved his appearing.

Personal Instructions

dDo your best to come to me soon. 10 For eDemas, fin love with gthis present world, hhas deserted me and gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia,2 iTitus to Dalmatia. 11 hLuke alone is with me. Get jMark and bring him with you, for he is very useful to me for ministry. 12 kTychicus I have sent to Ephesus. 13 When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, also the books, and above all the parchments. 14 lAlexander the coppersmith did me great harm; mthe Lord will repay him according to his deeds. 15 Beware of him yourself, for he strongly opposed our message. 16 At my first defense no one came to stand by me, but all deserted me. nMay it not be charged against them! 17 But othe Lord stood by me and pstrengthened me, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and qall the Gentiles might hear it. So rI was rescued sfrom the lion's mouth. 18 The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. tTo him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

Final Greetings

19 Greet uPrisca and Aquila, and vthe household of Onesiphorus. 20 Erastus remained at Corinth, and I left wTrophimus, who was ill, at Miletus. 21 xDo your best to come before winter. Eubulus sends greetings to you, as do Pudens and Linus and Claudia and all the brothers.3

22 The Lord be ywith your spirit. zGrace be with you.4