Deuteronomy 15:11
For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command you, saying, You shall open your hand wide to your brother, to your poor, and to your needy, in your land.
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(11) For the poor shall never cease.—There is no contradiction between this verse and Deuteronomy 15:4 above. There will always be some men falling into poverty; but it is our business to see that they do not remain in want. The poor will never cease, except by the provision made for them by their brethren. God will never make all men absolutely equal in this world.

Thy brother, thy poor, and thy needy.-According to Rashi, the word translated “needy” is stronger than the word for “poor.” The “poor” are in humble circumstances; the “needy” are actually in want. In commenting on this verse, Rashi asks a similar question to that of the lawyer in Luke 10:29, “Who is this brother? Thy poor man.” He might have added that “thy poor” and “thy needy” are expressions teaching the truth that we are “members one of another.” We may not pass by our poorer brethren, and say we have nothing to do with them. Jehovah calls them ours—“thy poor man,” and “thy needy man.” The words are both in the singular number in the Hebrew. We cannot shake off the relationship or the responsibility in any one case.

Deuteronomy 15:11. The poor shall never cease — God, by his providence, will so order it, partly for the punishment of your disobedience, and partly for the trial and exercise of your obedience to him, and charity to your brother.15:1-11 This year of release typified the grace of the gospel, in which is proclaimed the acceptable year of the Lord; and by which we obtain the release of our debts, that is, the pardon of our sins. The law is spiritual, and lays restraints upon the thoughts of the heart. We mistake, if we think thoughts are free from God's knowledge and check. That is a wicked heart indeed, which raises evil thoughts from the good law of God, as theirs did, who, because God had obliged them to the charity of forgiving, denied the charity of giving. Those who would keep from the act of sin, must keep out of their minds the very thought of sin. It is a dreadful thing to have the cry of the poor justly against us. Grudge not a kindness to thy brother; distrust not the providence of God. What thou doest, do freely, for God loves a cheerful giver, 2Co 9:7.literally: "Beware that there be not in thy heart a word which is worthlessness" (compare Deuteronomy 13:13 note). 11. For the poor shall never cease out of the land—Although every Israelite on the conquest of Canaan became the owner of property, yet in the providence of God who foresaw the event, it was permitted, partly as a punishment of disobedience and partly for the exercise of benevolent and charitable feelings, that "the poor should never cease out of the land." The poor shall never cease out of the land; God by his providence will so order it, partly for the punishment of your disobedience, and partly for the trial and exercise of your obedience to me, and charity to your brother, both which are best discovered by your performance of costly duties. For the poor shall never cease out of the land,.... There would be always such objects to exercise their charity and beneficence towards, John 12:8, which is no contradiction to Deuteronomy 15:4 for had they been obedient to the laws of God, they would have been so blessed that there would have been none; so the Targums; but he foresaw that they would not keep his commands, and so this would be the case, and which he foretells that they might expect it, and do their duty to them, as here directed:

therefore I command thee, saying, thou shalt open thine hand wide unto thy brother; not give sparingly, but largely, in proportion to the necessities of the poor, and according to the abilities of the lender or giver; and this must be done to a brother, one that is near in the bonds of consanguinity, and to him a man must give or lend first, as Aben Ezra observes, and then "to thy poor"; the poor of thy family, as the same writer:

and to thy needy in the land; that are in very distressed circumstances, though not related, and particularly such as are in the same place where a man dwells; for, as the same writer remarks, the poor of thy land are to be preferred to the poor of another place,

{c} For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt {d} open thine hand wide unto thy brother, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in thy land.

(c) To try your charity, Mt 26:11.

(d) You shall be liberal.

11. For the poor shall never cease, etc.] See introd. note.

to thy needy, and to thy poor] Two of the three Hebrew synonyms for poor. The first is a passive form, forced, afflicted, then wretched, whether under persecution, poverty or exile, arid so also subdued, mild, meek. The second is the Lat. egenus, needy.Verse 11. - They were to open their hand wide to their poorer brethren, for there should always be such in the land. This statement is not inconsistent with that in ver. 4, for there it is the prevention of poverty by not dealing harshly with the poor that is spoken of; here it is the continuance of occasion for the relief of the poor that is referred to. This blessing would not fail, if the Israelites would only hearken to the voice of the Lord; "for Jehovah blesseth thee" (by the perfect בּרכך, the blessing is represented not as a possible and future one only, but as one already bestowed according to the counsel of God, and, so far as the commencement was concerned, already fulfilled), "as He hath spoken" (see at Deuteronomy 1:11). "And thou wilt lend on pledge to many nations, but thou thyself wilt not borrow upon pledge." עבט, a denom. verb, from עבוט, a pledge, signifies in Kal to give a pledge for the purpose of borrowing; in Hiphil, to cause a person to give a pledge, or furnish occasion for giving a pledge, i.e., to lend upon pledge. "And thou wilt rule over many nations," etc. Ruling is mentioned here as the result of superiority in wealth (cf. Deuteronomy 28:1 : Schultz).
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