The Lord’s Release


Photo by Colin Moldenhauer on Unsplash

Deuteronomy 15:1-2 (KJV) At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release. 2 And this is the manner of the release: Every creditor that lendeth ought unto his neighbor shall release it; he shall not exact it of his neighbor, or of his brother; because it is called the LORD’S release.

At The End Of Every Seven Years”

The Law of God is filled with SEVENS!

The first SEVEN established was the weekly Sabbath. This is the very first Law that God gave us. Before Adam was created and placed in Eden the Scripture says:

Genesis 2:2-3 (KJV)  And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made.  [3]  And God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had RESTED (שָׁבַת shabath) from all his work which God created and made.

God SABBATHED on the seventh day, and set it aside for mankind.

When God flooded the earth with water during the time of Noah, God did so because man would not heed His Law. Once Noah and his family entered the Ark seven days later the flood waters began to cover the earth (Genesis 7:10). All who believed God’s Word were saved. Those who did not died in the waters. When the water decreased and Noah and his family rested we read:

Genesis 8:4 (KJV)  And the ark RESTED (נוּחַ nuwach) in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, upon the mountains of Ararat.

The Ark did what it was intended to do. It saved believing mankind, and excluded the unbeliever who drowned in the Flood. When Noah and his family left the Ark God gave them SEVEN Laws to live by (see Genesis 9). These Laws were:

Not to worship idols
Not to curse God
To establish courts of justice
Not to commit murder
Not to commit adultery or be sexually immoral
Not to steal
Not to eat flesh torn from a living animal

When God raised up the nation of Israel and saved them from enslavement to Egypt He gave them a Law filled with SEVENS.

The Sabbath rest was given in the Law of Moses:

Exodus 20:8-11 (KJV)  Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.  [9]  Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:  [10]  But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:  [11]  For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

C.H. Spurgeon noted “Next, there were feast days one month in seven—and then there came every seventh year, a year of rest for the land in which they did not till it, but left it to lie fallow. Then after the seven sevens were complete, there came on the 50th year, an extraordinary year of rest, in addition to the usual one—this was called the year of Jubilee. ”

God gave SEVENS to His people to remind them how gracious He is.

The Lord’s Seven Year Release

In our text today the Lord speaks of the SEVEN Year Release. In Israel then – just as in every country – there were poor Israelites and rich Israelites. God did not want His people to suffer deprivation.

God is LOVE (1 John 4:7-21)

If you are saved by God Who is love, you in turn are supposed to love others, especially your brother and sister. God made a provision among His people where a person who was impoverished could sell themselves to a rich Israelite. God told His people:

Deuteronomy 15:7-8 (KJV) If there be AMONG YOU a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates in thy land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother:  [8]  But thou shalt OPEN THINE HAND WIDE unto him, and shalt surely lend him sufficient for his need, in that which he wanteth.

God had given all of Israel a gracious blessing when He led them out of Egypt and established them in Canaan. God was so good to them! If God saves you, and blesses you, then you, dear friends, are to be gracious to others as God is gracious. That’s what this chapter is about. God told His people to look after one another. He commanded them that if an Israelite sold themselves to another Israelite in order to satisfy a debt, then on every SEVENTH YEAR the one in debt would be released from bondage and their debt forgiven. God even went further with this Law. He said:

Deuteronomy 15:9-11 (KJV)  Beware that there be not a thought in thy wicked heart, saying, THE SEVENTH YEAR, THE YEAR OF RELEASE, is at hand; and thine eye be evil against thy poor brother, and thou givest him nought; and he cry unto the LORD against thee, and it be sin unto thee.  [10]  Thou shalt surely give him, and thine heart shall not be grieved when thou givest unto him: because that for this thing the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thy works, and in all that thou puttest thine hand unto.  [11]  For the poor shall never cease out of the land: therefore I command thee, saying, Thou shalt OPEN THINE HAND WIDE UNTO THY BROTHER, to thy poor, and to thy needy, in thy land.

God told His people to not be greedy, and to certainly not attempt to write a loophole into this Seventh Year. God told them that to withhold help from another because the Seventh Year was at hand was EVIL, and would surely be punished. To be generous to others is what God required of His people.

If you have received GRACE, you should give GRACE.
If you give GRACE, God gives greater GRACE.
This is “The Lord’s Release”

Christ Is Our Release Today

As we look at this text today we find great truths in it that apply to the Christian. Our Lord Jesus did not come to ERASE the Law. He said:

Matthew 5:17-18 (KJV)  Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.  [18]  For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

The JOT and the TITTLE were tiny marks found in the Hebrew written language. Jesus said that He would fulfill the Law.

Jesus DID fulfill the Law.
He fulfilled CIRCUMCISION.

Under the Law the rite of CIRCUMCISION brought you into the Family of God. But CIRCUMCISION was only enacted on the male, not on the female. God gave the practice of circumcision to Abraham (see Genesis 17:10-14) and said:

Genesis 17:14 (KJV)  And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, THAT SOUL SHALL BE CUT OFF from his people; he hath broken my covenant.

You lost your place in Abraham’s Family if you were not circumcised as men. Women were not circumcised. Further, the Law commanded that every sin be covered in the Blood of an animal sacrificed on an altar by a priest. The Law said:

Hebrews 9:22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and WITHOUT SHEDDING OF BLOOD IS NO REMISSION.

The rituals of circumcision and shedding of Blood were written into the Law. These rituals were given to Israel until Christ came. The Bible tells us:

Galatians 3:22-26 (KJV)  But the scripture hath concluded ALL UNDER SIN, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.  [23]  But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed.  [24]  Wherefore the LAW WAS OUR SCHOOLMASTER TO BRING US UNTO CHRIST, that we might be justified by faith.  [25]  But after that faith is come, we are NO LONGER UNDER A SCHOOLMASTER.  [26]  FOR YE ARE ALL THE CHILDREN OF GOD BY FAITH IN CHRIST JESUS.

When Christ came He fulfilled the Law as He was sent to do. The blood of animals and the bloody practice of circumcision showed us all the terror of sin. Sin puts a barrier between us and God.

To remove the barrier of sin the Jewish male was to be circumcised – to shed intimate blood to be in God’s family. The Jewish person whether male or female were to shed animal blood to cover their sins.

That is – until Christ came. The Law of God “was a shadow of good things to come” (Hebrews 10:1). If the animal sacrifices could cleanse us from sin then they would have been done but ONCE. The Bible says:

Hebrews 10:3-4 (KJV)  But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year.  [4]  For it is NOT POSSIBLE THAT THE BLOOD OF BULLS AND OF GOATS SHOULD TAKE AWAY SINS.

The Law taught that we ourselves could not permanently erase our sins. The Law was a schoolmaster that taught us that we needed the Messiah to come. The Law – through its shedding of blood from animals without blemish – demanded that animal sacrifices be made over and over. It demanded that men be circumcised, or be cast out of the Family of God. But then Christ came.

Oh, Praise God for the coming of Christ!
It is with His Blood that our sins are covered.
It is with His sacrifice that we enter the family of God.
He fulfilled the bloodiness of the Law.

Hebrews 10:10-14 (KJV)  By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ ONCE FOR ALL.  [11]  And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:  [12]  But this man, after he had OFFERED ONE SACRIFICE FOR SINS FOR EVER, sat down on the right hand of God;  [13]  From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.  [14]  For BY ONE OFFERING he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.

The Law could not save anyone. It can point out sin, and teach of the need of the Messiah. But only Messiah can save. His Blood was offered once and for all. He freed us by His shedding of Blood from sin and selfishness. His offering was once and for all. And by ONE OFFERING Jesus has made us “perfect” and acceptable to God our Father. We who are His are circumcised with a circumcision made without hands. Read these happy words with me:

Colossians 2:11-14 (KJV)  In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:  [12]  Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.  [13]  And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;  [14]  Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;

Christ was circumcised on the eighth day according to the Law (Luke 2:21). Christ died on the Cross as the once and for all sacrifice for sins. When you receive Him as Lord and Savior – casting yourselves upon Him – then what He did is placed on your your account by God the Father. Praise Him!

Ephesians 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.

Heb 9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

1 Peter 1:18-21 (KJV)  Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;  [19]  But with the PRECIOUS BLOOD OF CHRIST, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:  [20]  Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,  [21]  Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

Jesus Christ paid a debt that we could not pay.

This is what we see in the Law. The Law showed us to be bondslaves to sin and to death. But Christ came and paid our debt. He freed us from sin just as Israel was freed from Egypt. He covers us with His Blood. Does it matter now whether we are circumcised or not? The Scripture says:

Galatians 5:6 For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.

Galatians 6:15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.

Praise Him! If you have received Christ as Lord and Savior then His life has replaced the blood letting of the Law. And listen to me, Beloved. Saved you are not LAWLESS. Let me say that a few more times.

You are STILL to be obedient to God’s Law.
You are commanded to follow Christ.
You are commanded to be holy as God is holy.

What saith the Scripture?

Ephesians 5:1-8 (KJV)  BE YE THEREFORE FOLLOWERS OF GOD, AS DEAR CHILDREN;  [2]  And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savor.  [3]  But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints;  [4]  Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks.  [5]  For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.  [6]  Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.  [7]  Be not ye therefore partakers with them.  [8]  For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:

There are some that teach that once you become a Christian then you may walk contrary to the Law of God. Beloved, it is not so. Jesus fulfilled the blood of the Law, but did not eradicate morality.

Because of Christ the morality of the Law
is greater upon the Christian.

When Jesus taught, He BUILT FENCES AROUND THE LAW. Rather than eradicate the morality of the Law Jesus erected barriers to protect the commands of God. In one instance Jesus said:

Matthew 5:19-22 (KJV)  Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.  [20]  For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.  [21]  Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment:  [22]  But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

Jesus took the Sixth Commandment – Thou shalt not murder (Exodus 20:13) – and put a fence of love around it. To carry a grudge against your brother or sister for whom Christ died is as bad as murdering someone. To lust in your heart after a woman (Matthew 5:28, 32) is as bad as committing adultery (Exodus 20:14). Saved by the Blood of Christ you are called to love all – and especially those within the family of God.

That is the heart of our text that we read today. Read it with me one more time.

Deuteronomy 15:1-2 (KJV) At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release. 2 And this is the manner of the release: Every creditor that lendeth ought unto his neighbor shall release it; he shall not exact it of his neighbor, or of his brother; because it is called the LORD’S release.

The Israelite was not to hold indebtedness against another Israelite. They were to be RELEASED every seventh year. The Israelite was indebted to God because He saved them from Egypt and gave them His Promised Land.

Dear Christian, God saved you with a mighty hand when He sent Christ to bear your sins and your failures. When you received Him as Lord and Savior your debts were paid. They were paid not so that you sell yourselves back into slavery with sin and the world, but were paid in full so that you can freely live in God’s Presence. Having been saved freely (for salvation is a free gift from God) you should love others as you have been loved. If the Israelite was supposed to forgive their brother’s debt, then we have a much greater obligation to forgive. We are to love one another fervently. We are to love God with all our hearts and all our works.

We are obligated to love and follow Him Who saved us.
Following Him we will find blessedness and peace.
Following Christ we will love.
We will release our brothers or sisters from their debts.

Deuteronomy 15:13-15 (KJV)  And when thou sendest him out free from thee, thou shalt not let him go away empty:  [14]  Thou shalt furnish him liberally out of thy flock, and out of thy floor, and out of thy winepress: of that wherewith the LORD thy God hath blessed thee thou shalt give unto him.  [15]  And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in the land of Egypt, and the LORD thy God redeemed thee: therefore I command thee this thing to day.

As you have been blessed of God, so you should bless others. And you should REMEMBER. REMEMBER that when Christ died for you, you were a sinner with no concern for God. Yet Christ died for you. REMEMBER that you still stumble – as do we all – and yet “the blood of Christ keeps on cleansing us”:

1 John 1:7-9 (KJV)  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.  [8]  If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.  [9]  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

It is amazing to me that any Christian would carry a grudge against another Christian. We are to forgive as God forgave us. The Blood of Christ keeps on cleansing us from sin. Oh glory, we need not do penance to pay for our sins. Christ paid for them all. So when a lost person sins against you – forgive him anyway.

Matthew 5:44-45 (KJV)  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;  [45]  That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

Both Great And New Commandments Demand Love

Love your brother or sister in Christ. If they offend you, remember you offended God. Love them anyway. You failed God but He keeps on loving you. Let love define us. Let love define His Church. Jesus gave us His Church a Great Commandment and a New Commandment. The Great Commandment states:

Mark 12:30-31 (KJV)  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.  [31]  And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

Whereas the New Commandment says:

John 13:34-35 (KJV)  A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.  [35]  By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

Every seven years those who were bondslaves in Israel were to be released. Yet if the servant willingly wanted to stay in the household of the Master:

Deuteronomy 15:16-17 (KJV)  And it shall be, if he say unto thee, I will not go away from thee; because he loveth thee and thine house, because he is well with thee;  [17]  Then thou shalt take an awl, and thrust it through his ear unto the door, and he shall be thy servant for ever. And also unto thy maidservant thou shalt do likewise.

The servant could choose to stay because of love. If that servant chose to stay then the Master of the house would put his ear on the doorpost of that home, and the Master would pierce his ear with an awl. There is one more beautiful principle found in this text that applies to us who are Christ’s today.

We permanently belong to Jesus.
We willingly belong to Jesus.

When Jesus died on the Cross for my sins, He was pierced through with nails, thorns, and a spear. He died for me. Because He died for me, I live for Him. I am indebted to my Jesus. I have willingly put my ear on the doorposts of Heaven, and my Jesus has pierced my ear through. I no longer belong to myself. I belong to Jesus. Beloved, to Whom do you belong? If you have been saved by faith in Christ then you are NOT your own – you are BOUGHT with a price (1 Corinthians 6:20; 7:23). I belong to Jesus. Do you?

If you do not, today is the time to look toward Him and be saved. Confess Him as Savior and Lord. Let Him lead you out of Egypt and into the Promised Land where He rules and reigns. Oh, what a glory it is to know Christ and enjoy His Presence! Will you not come? Oh that God would lead you to come and dine at His table this very day!

May God touch your hearts with His Word.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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