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Deuteronomy 15 lays down the rules for how people should treat one another and refrain from sin in order to honor God (Berlin et al.). The Sabbath is the day that God the Creator rested after creating the earth and heaven, together with everything that is in them, according to the Holy Bible. To honor their creator, the Israelites were obligated to observe the Sabbath as a sacred day. Exodus Chapter 21 contains instructions on how a master and slave should interact with one another. The relation includes different circumstances under which the debt of the slaves is to be wiped off.
In Deuteronomy 15, the scriptures state that a slave who has worked under his/her master for six years should be let free in the seventh year. Any person indebted for seven years shall not be required to pay the loan since the creditor is to forgive him/her (Berlin et al.). The main reason for using the number seven is to make it coincide with the Sabbath day. The scriptures state that God worked for six days while creating different things found in heaven and earth. On the seventh day, God rested and therefore every person was required to respect the seventh day or the Sabbath and keep it holy. On the Sabbath day, no person was required to work in the fields, not even slaves or animals such as donkeys. Every animal and human being were to rest on the Sabbath day to keep it holy. By not doing anything on the Sabbath day, the Israelites were to use that time to worship God the creator (Berlin et al.). After observing all the precepts of observing the Sabbath day, verse 6 of Deuteronomy 15 states that God was to bless the people for their obedience. God would bless the people such that they could have much money that they could lend to other nations. The rich were supposed to help the poor by giving them food and other items such that there will be no poor people amongst them. Refusal to help the needy was considered as a sin and giving was supposed in love. A master was supposed to release a slave on the seventh year and give them flock, winepress, and other important items so that they do not go empty-handed (Berlin et al.).
Exodus Chapter 23 guided people on how to solve differences amicably. A person was not to give a false witness in court or spread false rumors. Justice was to be accorded to everyone and a person was not to be denied justice because he/she is poor. The Sabbath was to be kept holy and the first fruits presented in the house of God. Exodus Chapter 21 provides the principles of how a master and a slave were to relate. A released slave was not supposed to go with children if he was given a wife by the master (Berlin et al.). The children belonged to the master. However, if a slave is due to be freed but feels he/she can continue staying with their master for the love of the master's family then he/she was to be allowed to be a master's slave for life.
In Conclusion, Deuteronomy 15, Exodus 21, and Exodus 23 emphasized the importance of keeping the Sabbath day holy. People were required to stay at peace with one another, helping the needy, and ensuring the accused gets justice in a court of law. Masters were to treat slaves as fellow human beings and give them freedom when it is due.
Berlin, Adele, Marc Zvi Brettler, and Michael A. Fishbane. The Jewish Study Bible: Jewish Publication Society Tanakh Translation. Oxford University Press, USA, 2004.
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