Leviticus 25:45
Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall you buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession.
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(45) Moreover of the children of the strangers.—Besides the surrounding nations, the Hebrews are also permitted to obtain their slaves from those strangers who have taken up their abode in the Holy Land. By these strangers the ancient authorities understand those who have been permitted to settle down among the Jews on condition that they submit to the seven commandments given to Noah, but have not embraced Judaism. Hence the Chaldee Version translates this phrase, “the children of uncircumcised strangers.”

And they shall be your possession.—These, but not the Hebrews, the masters may hold as their absolute property.

25:39-55 A native Israelite, if sold for debt, or for a crime, was to serve but six years, and to go out the seventh. If he sold himself, through poverty, both his work and his usage must be such as were fitting for a son of Abraham. Masters are required to give to their servants that which is just and equal, Col 4:1. At the year of jubilee the servant should go out free, he and his children, and should return to his own family. This typified redemption from the service of sin and Satan, by the grace of God in Christ, whose truth makes us free, Joh 8:32. We cannot ransom our fellow-sinners, but we may point out Christ to them; while by his grace our lives may adorn his gospel, express our love, show our gratitude, and glorify his holy name.Property in foreign slaves is here distinctly permitted. It was a patriarchal custom Genesis 17:12. Such slaves might be captives taken in war (Numbers 31:6 following; Deuteronomy 20:14), or those consigned to slavery for their crimes, or those purchased of foreign slave-dealers. The price of a slave is supposed to have varied from thirty to fifty shekels. See Leviticus 27:3-4, note; Exodus 21:32, note; Zechariah 11:12-13, note; Matthew 26:15, note. It was the object of Moses, not at once to do away with slavery, but to discourage and to mitigate it. The Law would not suffer it to be forgotten that the slave was a man, and protected him in every way that was possible at the time against the injustice or cruelty of his master. See the notes at Exodus 21.39-46. if thy brother … be waxen poor, and be sold unto thee, thou shalt not compel him to serve as a bond-servant—An Israelite might be compelled, through misfortune, not only to mortgage his inheritance, but himself. In the event of his being reduced to this distress, he was to be treated not as a slave, but a hired servant whose engagement was temporary, and who might, through the friendly aid of a relative, be redeemed at any time before the Jubilee. The ransom money was determined on a most equitable principle. Taking account of the number of years from the proposal to redeem and the Jubilee, of the current wages of labor for that time, and multiplying the remaining years by that sum, the amount was to be paid to the master for his redemption. But if no such friendly interposition was made for a Hebrew slave, he continued in servitude till the year of Jubilee, when, as a matter of course, he regained his liberty, as well as his inheritance. Viewed in the various aspects in which it is presented in this chapter, the Jubilee was an admirable institution, and subservient in an eminent degree to uphold the interests of religion, social order, and freedom among the Israelites. No text from Poole on this verse. Moreover, of the children of the strangers, that do sojourn among you,.... The uncircumcised sojourners as they are called in the Targums of Onkelos and Jonathan, proselytes of the gate, such of the nations round about who came and sojourned among them, being subject to the precepts given to the sons of Noah respecting idolatry, &c. but were not circumcised, and did not embrace the Jewish religion:

of them shall ye buy; for bondmen and bondmaids:

and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land; but, as the Targum of Jonathan adds, are not of the Canaanites; though the Jewish writers (x) say, that one of the nations that lies with a Canaanitish woman, and begets a son of her, he may be bought for a servant; and so if a Canaanitish man lies with one of the nations, and begets a son of her, he may also be bought for a servant:

and they shall be your possession; as servants, as bondmen and bondmaids, and be so for ever to them and their heirs, as follows.

(x) Torat Cohanim apud Yalkut, par. 1. fol. 195. 1.

Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your {t} possession.

(t) For they shall not be bought out at the Jubile.

If he borrowed money, they were not to demand interest; or if food, they were not to demand any addition, any larger quantity, when it was returned (cf. Exodus 22:24; Deuteronomy 23:20-21), from fear of God, who had redeemed Israel out of bondage, to give them the land of Canaan. In Leviticus 25:37 וחי is an abbreviation of וחי, which only occurs here. - From Leviticus 25:39 onwards there follow the laws relating to the bondage of the Israelite, who had been obliged to sell himself from poverty. Leviticus 25:36-46 relate to his service in bondage to an (other) Israelite. The man to whom he had sold himself as servant was not to have slave-labour performed by him (Exodus 1:14), but to keep him as a day-labourer and sojourner, and let him serve with him till the year of jubilee. He was then to go out free with his children, and return to his family and the possession of his fathers (his patrimony). This regulation is a supplement to the laws relating to the rights of Israel (Exodus 21:2-6), though without a contradiction arising, as Knobel maintains, between the different rules laid down. In Exodus 21 nothing at all is determined respecting the treatment of an Israelitish servant; it is simply stated that in the seventh year of his service he was to recover his liberty. This limit is not mentioned here, because the chapter before us simply treats of the influence of the year of jubilee upon the bondage of the Israelites. On this point it is decided, that the year of jubilee was to bring freedom even to the Israelite who had been brought into slavery by his poverty, - of course only to the man who was still in slavery when it commenced and had not served seven full years, provided, that is to say, that he had not renounced his claim to be set free at the end of his seven years' service, according to Exodus 21:5-6. We have no right to expect this exception to be expressly mentioned here, because it did not interfere with the idea of the year of jubilee. For whoever voluntarily renounced the claim to be set free, whether because the year of jubilee was still so far off that he did not expect to live to see it, or because he had found a better lot with his master than he could secure for himself in a state of freedom, had thereby made a voluntary renunciation of the liberty which the year of jubilee might have brought to him (see Oehler's art. in Herzog's Cycl., where the different views on this subject are given).
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