Jubilee Year in the Messianic Era

Question

Good Day Rabbi, I am writing a Sci-Fi novel set out at a time when the Messiah sits as king in Jerusalem. My question is about the Jubilee year. From my reading of scriptures it is marked as the 50th year in the cycle.

When was the last year, before the loss of the Temple, that a Jubilee year was celebrated? Please give the CE year and the Jewish year if known.

Additionally, does a Jubilee year include the previous Shabbot Sabbbtical year, the 49th year, meaning that there are 2 years of no planting in the fields?

One more: how would Tevia (Fiddler on the Roof) handle his cows during those 2 years? If it was a 2 year celebration?

My apologies for so many questions.

Just a bit of background, from work my oldest son has done with DNA and census records my father’s family may have been conversos who settled in New Mexico. All males in our family have been circumcised as a family tradition.

Thank you for your answers.

5 months

Answers

  1. I do not know when. The Jubilee year (known in Hebrew as Yovel) was celebrated once every fifty years. It was a time that all Jewish slaves were released from bondage, all ancestral lands were returned to their true owners and all debts were annulled. However, the Jubilee year has a precondition that most of the Jewish People must be living in Israel. Maimonides writes that from the time that the tribes of Reuven, Gad and half of Menashe were exiled to Babylonia, the Jubilee was nullified.

    During the time of the Jubilee, the Jubilee year would follow immediately after the Sabbatical year, which meant that there would be two years straight that the land would lie fallow and nothing would be planted. Due to the intense holiness of the Sabbatical year and the Jubilee year there was special Blessing that rested on the land in the year prior to the Sabbatical year, and when the Jewish People kept all of the laws and the stringencies the land produced huge amounts of produce that was sufficient for four years!

    All the animals would be fed and kept as usual throughout the Sabbatical and Jubilee years – the only thing that they would not do is work on the fields.

    I wish you every success with your novel!

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team