Aliya Summary: Moshe commands the Israelites to designate every seventh year as a Shmitah (Sabbatical) Year. During this year, creditors must forgive outstanding loans. The section then discusses the obligation to give charity to the poor with a happy heart, and to lend them money if necessary, even if the Shmitah Year is looming. A Jewish slave must be freed after six years of service and must be given generous severance gifts as he departs.
Because the Torah prescribes a mandatory seven-year reset button on loans, it’s conceivable that as you get closer to the reset, people would stop lending, knowing if they don’t get repaid shortly, they’ll lose their money. Therefore, the Torah urges us to do whatever we can to help others, and if the recipient refuses to accept donations, find other ways to help, like loans, finding them jobs, and even a spouse!