Leviticus 25:42

42 For they are 1my servants,[a] whom I brought out of the land of Egypt; they shall not be sold as slaves.

Leviticus 25:42 Meaning and Commentary

Leviticus 25:42

For they [are] my servants, which I brought forth out of the
land of Egypt
The Lord redeemed them out of Egypt, made a purchase of them, and had a prior right unto them, and being his servants first, they cannot be the servants of others; his right unto them as such antecedes and prevents any other claim upon them: they shall not be sold as bondmen;
or, "with", or, "according to the sale of a bondman" F21; in the manner they are sold, or according to the laws of selling of servants; not in such a public manner as they are sold in markets, nor for such purposes to be used as slaves in a rigorous manner, nor so as to be retained for ever in servitude; not to be sold by proclamation, as Jarchi observes, saying, here is a servant to be sold; nor shall they set him upon the stone of sale; for it seems in public places in markets, where slaves were sold, there was a stone on which they were placed, which showed that they were to be sold; but now an Israelite was not to be sold in such a manner, so Maimonides F23 says, but privately, in an honourable way.


F21 (dbe trkmm) "venditione servi", Drusius.
F23 Hilchot Abadim, c. 1. sect. 5.

Leviticus 25:42 In-Context

40 he shall be with you as a hired servant and as a sojourner. He shall serve with you until the year of the jubilee.
41 Then he shall go out from you, he and his children with him, and go back to his own clan and return to the possession of his fathers.
42 For they are my servants, whom I brought out of the land of Egypt; they shall not be sold as slaves.
43 You shall not rule over him ruthlessly but shall fear your God.
44 As for your male and female slaves whom you may have: you may buy male and female slaves from among the nations that are around you.

Cross References 1

  • 1. ver. 55; [Romans 6:22; 1 Corinthians 7:23]

Footnotes 1

The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.