Shmita with Rev. Dr. Daryl Horton & Rabbi Neil Blumofe

"You do not have dominion over the Earth." Rev. Daryl Horton and Rabbi Neil Blumofe talk about "Shmita," the sabbatical year practice described in Exodus, Leviticus, and Deutoronomy, and what it means today.

The Rev and Rav Talk Sabbatical Year (Shmita). Austin clergy Rev. Daryl Horton and Rabbi Neil Blumofe talk about Shmita, the sabbatical year practice described in Exodus, Leviticus, and Deuteronomy—exploring concepts such as economic justice, human nature, faith, and enoughness. Daryl and Neil are each respected faith and community leader in Austin, TX. They've each served as directors of Interfaith Action of Central Texas, working towards a common good for all. 

About Our Guests
Rev. Dr. Daryl Horton
is Pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Austin, TX. He has served the Austin community in different capacities and leadership positions. Pastor Horton stands boldly for equity and justice as a leader and resource. His goal is to mobilize disciples for mission throughout the Austin community. Read his full bio here. Rabbi Neil Blumofe serves as Senior Rabbi at Congregation Agudas Achim in Austin, TX. He is involved in Jewish teaching and learning locally, nationally, and internationally, and is active in civic life and leadership in Austin. Read his full bio here.

Visit the "Rev and Rav" Facebook page here.

Question 1: Adventures
Question: 2 Rest for the Land
Question: 3 The Release of Debts
Question 4: Jubilee (Freedom & Returning Home)

I think it is time to transition to the place, especially in the church, where we understand the need for people to have basic needs met. And so for churches that have enough property, you’re beginning to see churches that are planting gardens… — Daryl

God is saying, "You do not have dominion over the Earth." Rather, the Earth is the Lord’s, as it says in Psalms, and you are in fact part of a larger system, a larger ecosystem, a larger rhythm of how this world, your world, functions." — Neil

God is saying, do you have faith in me enough to let the land lie and rest for a year? And I think that that kind of challenge is an incredible challenge, and it’s something that in every generation we get to decide if we are up to. — Neil

So the land is providing food, but we have to understand too, that underneath all of that, ultimately, God provides for us, and we shouldn’t take that partnership or that sense of obligation of that land for granted in our lives. — Neil

Debt is a burden that can bury one or prohibit one from living a free life… How can we help our young people, teach them how to become financially astute? — Daryl

If we are able to bless God with what God provides for us, then God will help to sustain us. It’s a Faith movement. — Daryl

We as a Christian community should help those who are trying to participate in the economic environment in this country, but not be burdened by it. — Daryl 

Even if we aren’t able to change the system, I think there are some things we can begin to do. — Daryl

If you come to the synagogue we’re gonna feed you, and we’re gonna feed you every time, and that’s a very holy thing. — Neil

(A Shmita practice today) would be a deepening of our faith… there’s always room to learn to trust God more. — Daryl

We have to pay attention to the linkage between our psychology and what we do in the world. — Neil

What role can we play in the Faith community to honor the challenge and the command that God has given us to not just take care and have dominion over this planet, but to love our neighbor. — Daryl

Shmita is not a year issue. It’s actually more like a two year or even three year issue... — Neil

What can we do to set a foundation so that a couple of generations from now it becomes so normal for us to take responsibility for the planet and each other’s financial status that we don’t even second guess it anymore, it's the expectation. — Daryl

I sit with the juxtaposition that in the book of Deuteronomy it both says, “There shall be no needy,” and “Poverty will never disappear,” and this idea that we can generate hope from that place… — Neil

Maybe it’s embodied in Indigenous cultures, but I think we can (have) the best of both worlds. We can recognize the science of how we grow and manufacture and do, but we can also recognize and tap into those who have been doing this much, much longer than Science. — Neil 


Thanks for listening.
This podcast is part of our Winter 2021 series, Shmita Now.
Visit the AllCreation podcast site or for more. 
Produced and edited by Chris Searles.
@BioIntegrity Partnerships