A practice in Old Testament times. The smallest type of "jubilee year" was a sabbath of years - every seventh. It was meant to give the land a rest from farming; presumably everyone would devote that time to spiritual pursuits. A larger jubilee came after seven sabbath years - i.e. every 50; debts were forgiven (see Jubilee 2000), lands were returned to their original owners, and slaves were freed. The Israelites often ignored jubilees; their exile made up for those lost sabbath years.