The last section of the Book of Leviticus is occupied with setting forth laws concerning the outward signs in the land of the proof of possession, together with certain promises and warnings, all ending with instructions concerning making and observing vows.
The signs affecting the land were, first, the Sabbath of the land and, second, redemption in the year of jubilee. These signs served to keep before the people the fact that God is the original Owner and Possessor of the land and that no man can treat it as absolutely his own. In the year of jubilee great human interrelationships were insisted on. The laws of this year of jubilee are carefully set out as they affect the land, dwelling houses, and persons. The only thing to which a man has a right in the land is that which results from his own labor. In the year of jubilee, moreover, the slave was to be liberated, thus reminding men that they could have no absolute and final property in any human being. The law, moreover, emphatically provided that during the period of bondage, the slave was not to be governed with rigor. In these laws the foundations of the social order were firmly laid. The interhuman relationships of both property and possession were conditioned in the fundamental fact of relationship to God.
the Third Sunday after Epiphany