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translated by the word "jubilee". The Greek word used in the Septuagint throughout
Leviticus and Numbers is aphesis:
"And ye shall hallow the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty" (Lev. 25: 10).
"The spirit of the Lord is upon Me . . . . . to proclaim liberty to the captives . . . . . to
proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord" (Isa. 61: 1, 2).
This "year" is called in Isa. 63: 4 "the year of the redeemed". Ezek. 46: 17
speaks of "the year of liberty". The N.T. uses the word aphesis as follows:
Eph. 1: 7; Col. 1: 14 (and four other occurrences).
Luke 4: 18.
Luke 4: 18.
Heb. 9: 22 (and eight other occurrences).
The Institution of the Jubilee.
"And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years;
and the space of the seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. Then
shalt thou cause the trumpet of Jubile to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in
the day of Atonement shall ye make the trumpet sound throughout all your land. And ye
shall hallow the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the
inhabitants thereof; it shall be a jubile unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his
possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family" (Lev. 25: 8-19).
The Jubilee and the day of Atonement belong to Israel as a redeemed people and not
otherwise. The year of Jubilee was ushered in by the sound of a trumpet (Lev. 25: 9).
The sounding of the trumpet on the 10th day of the seventh month is "the last trump" of
Israel's festal year, and the type of the "last trump" of I Cor. 15: 50-57. The Jubilee
trumpet not only means deliverance for Israel, but the overthrow of Israel's enemies, for
the very word which is translated "Jubilee" is translated "ram's horns" in Josh. 6: And
here again the seven times encompassing of the city and the blowing of the seven
trumpets perpetuates the symbolism. The symbolism of the Jubilee anticipates:
"The glorious liberty of the children of God" (Rom. 8: 21),
in several particulars.
The bondage suffered was limited in duration to the fiftieth year, and of the freed man
it is said:
He shall go out (because redeemed Exod. 12: 41).
He shall return to his possessions and to his family (Lev. 25: 10).
These blessed results find an echo in Ephesians, for there we read not only of release
("forgiveness" Eph. 1: 7), but of the redemption of a purchased possession, and "the day"
of redemption (Eph. 1: 14; 4: 30), and also of the family to which restoration was
promised (Eph. 3: 15). We turn therefore from the O.T. type to the N.T. reality, and
consider what is involved in the words of Rom. 8: 21:
"The glorious liberty of the children of God."