Deuteronomy 15:1-11

The year to forgive debts

1 At the end of every seven years you must remove the debts of people that you have lent money to. 2 This is how you must do it:

Every person who has lent money to someone must remove that debt. He must not demand to get his money back from any other Israelite. It is the Lord's time to remove debts. 3 You can demand to get your money back from a foreign person. But if you have lent money to another Israelite, you must forgive the debt.

4 The Lord will bless you in the land that he is giving you to live in. So there should be no poor people among you. 5 But you must always obey him completely. So be careful to obey all the commands that I am giving to you today. 6 For the Lord your God will bless you, as he has promised to do. You will lend money to the people of many other nations, but you will not borrow money from them. You will rule over many other nations, but they will not rule over you.

7 The Lord your God will bless you in the land that he is giving to you. But perhaps there will be a poor person among the Israelites in one of your towns. Then do not refuse to help him. Do not think only about yourself. 8 Instead, be generous. Lend him the money that he needs.

15:8‘Generous’ means that you do not want to keep things for yourself if someone else needs them more. See verses 10 and 14.

9 Be careful not to think this wicked thought: ‘The seventh year will happen soon. That is the year when I must forgive people's debts. So I will not lend money to people at this time.’ Do not be cruel like that to another Israelite who is poor. Do not refuse to lend him anything. He might complain about you to the Lord. Then the Lord would say that you are guilty of a sin. 10 Instead, you should certainly lend money to him. Do not feel upset about it. If you are generous, the Lord your God will bless you in everything that you do.

11 There will always be some poor people among you in the land where you are going. So I command you to be generous to other Israelites who are poor. Help them with the things that they need.