New Defender's Study Bible Notes
15:1 every seven years. The seventh year, like the seventh day in the week, was invested with special significance by God in the economy of theocratic Israel. Not only would debtors be released from their debts, but the land itself be given a rest (Leviticus 25:1-7), and indentured Hebrew servants would be freed (Deuteronomy 15:12; also Exodus 21:2). As for as the seventh year debt release is concerned, this was done at the time of the annual feast of tabernacles (Deuteronomy 31:10).
15:11 poor shall never cease. This prophecy was confirmed and continued by the Lord Jesus in John 12:8 and Matthew 26:11. Government welfare and wealth redistribution programs will never be able to eliminate poverty, and thus the responsibility of Christian charity to the needy will continue until the millennial kingdom is finally established.
15:17 servant for ever. See notes on Exodus 21:6; Psalm 40:6; and Hebrews 10:5.
16:2 the passover. For the seven annual “feasts of JEHOVAH,” see Leviticus 23. These included, in order, the feasts of: Passover, Unleavened Bread, Firstfruits, Weeks (or Pentecost), Trumpets, Atonement and Tabernacles (or Ingathering). In this chapter, the Lord through Moses reminds the people again of their solemn obligation to keep the Feasts of Passover and Unleavened Bread (Deuteronomy 16:1-8), the Feast of Weeks (Deuteronomy 16:9-12), and the Feast of Tabernacles (Deuteronomy 16:13-15). These were not more significant than the other feasts, but at these three (with the Passover and Unleavened Bread feast associated together), all the men of Israel were to make a special offering to the Lord from their increase (note also Exodus 23:14-17).