Leviticus 25:43

43 1You shall not rule over him 2ruthlessly but 3shall fear your God.

Leviticus 25:43 Meaning and Commentary

Leviticus 25:43

Thou shalt not rule over him with rigour
As the Egyptians ruled over the Israelites, and made them to serve, ( Exodus 1:13 ) ; where the same word is used as here, and seems designed to put them in mind of it, that so they might abstain from such usage of their brethren, which they had met with from their most cruel enemies; it signifies tyranny and oppression, treating them with great severity, laying hard and heavy tasks and burdens upon them they could not bear; enjoining them things they could not perform, and ordering them to do what were unnecessary, and without any limitation with respect to time: but shalt fear thy God;
that has been good to thee, and has brought thee out of hard and rigorous bondage in Egypt; and which should be remembered with thankfulness, and they should fear to offend so good a God by using a brother cruelly.

Leviticus 25:43 In-Context

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.
45 You may also buy from among the strangers who sojourn with you and their clans that are with you, who have been born in your land, and they may be your property.

Cross References 3

  • 1. [Ephesians 6:9; Colossians 4:1]
  • 2. Exodus 1:13, 14; Ezekiel 34:4
  • 3. ver. 17, 36
The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.