“You need to type up your resume, make copies at Kinkos, and walk around town and give them out to the managers”
I’m sure most of you have heard this from a loving elder at some point in your life. Regardless, they may have the best intentions for you, those pearls of wisdom are…let’s just say…outdated.
But are the principles in the Bible outdated as well. We are going to explore 2 Biblical Finance Principles and see if they still hold up today.
1. Debt makes you a slave
Proverbs 22:7 : The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender.
Before we take a blanket approach to this topic. Let’s look at the word rich. At first glance, we think of money and this is the traditional way to think of riches.
But I want you, for this example, to change that definition to “an abundance of resources”.
The reason is, because someone may have $4MM in real estate and only a few thousand dollars in actual cash. With that said, the rich has the resources. Therefore, the poor must come to them for help.
For a transaction to occur, there must be an exchange. In this case you are exchanging their resource (housing, money, cars, etc.) for yours (time, physical ability, intellectual property). And until there is an equal exchange of resources, you will have to continuously give your resources to them.
So what can you do to protect yourself
One of the biggest contributors to debt is the inability to wait. We want the big house now. We want the fast car now. We want the newest clothes today! It is this thinking that causes us to use other’s resources to obtain the things we lust after.
To overcome this urgency, I encourage you to leverage your own resources and set proper expectations. Maybe it takes you 2 years to buy that car, but that is better than being a slave to the lender
Borrow only what you need, not what you want.
We all fall on hard times sometimes. But in an attempt to reclaim our status, we over extend ourselves. We need to be honest with ourselves and what we are able to afford.
Yes! This biblical finance principle still holds up today. When you borrow, you are giving up your future and current resources until you repay that debt. And if you don’t, that leads to our next scripture.
2. Wicked are those that don't repay their debts
Proverbs 37:21- The wicked borrows and does not repay, But the righteous shows mercy and gives.
It truly is wicked to borrow without the intent to repay. In this verse, it shows that the righteous will show you mercy when they see you in pain and give. So to take advantage of that compassion and not repay, is not aligned with the Word of God.
Regardless of how you feel about the terms of the agreement. Credit card companies are charging almost 20%+ interest on the money that you borrow. That is very high! But millions of Americans still leverage credit cards and continue to get further and further into debt and should pay if they borrowed it.
To avoid falling into this pit consider the following:
Immediately set up a repayment plan
You may not have the resources today, but you can allocate future income to paying off the debt. This will set proper expectations for you and the borrower. Not only does this give you more time, it also builds trust between you and the lender for potentially future transactions.
The worst you can do is go silent. We tend to run from our lenders. We think holding our head under the pillow that the debt will magically go away. That couldn’t be further from the truth. If anything, it makes it worst. Keep the lines of communication open between you and the lender. If the terms need to be adjusted, they will be more inclined to do so, with someone who is honest.
As you can see the 2 Biblical Principles around debt hold up over 2000 years later. Some principles never get outdated, and these are two that did not. The Lord wants us to be prosperous. But if trouble overwhelms us, here are two scriptures to use to help you handle the situation that is pleasing to God.
This doesn’t mean that you can’t use debt or that debt is bad. But taking on unnecessary debt or debt from greed is.
So to summarize, don’t borrow more than you need. If you need to borrow, make sure you communicate and set up a repayment plan. And be patient, you don’t need everything today. Good things come to those who wait.
Thank you for reading!
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About the blog:
Many Christians struggle with the seemingly conflicting views about our faith and the pursuit of financial gain. They were taught that poverty was piety and that a lack of money was the only way to truly detach themselves from the love of money. Our blog debunks some of those claims, teaches you that you can be rich and righteous, and at the same time fulfill your obligation to tithe and give to the less fortunate. We are dedicated to helping you become cheerful givers by organizing your personal finances, providing investment tips to help you create wealth, and encouraging you to create a gifting strategy that will make your family and God proud.
Meet the Author:
A.B. Ridgeway, MBA (email@example.com) is the owner and Christian Financial Advisor with A.B. Ridgeway Wealth Management. With a decade in the finance industry, his goal is to give believers clarity around the most confusing topic in the Bible, money, and tithing. A.B. Ridgeway helps tithing Christians become cheerful givers but unlocking their money-making potential, so they can prosper and be the great stewards of the wealth God has entrusted them with.
This communication is not intended as an offer or solicitation to buy, hold or sell any financial instrument or investment advisory services. Any information provided has been obtained from sources considered reliable, but we do not guarantee the accuracy or the completeness of any description of securities, markets or developments mentioned. This is strictly for information purposes. We recommend you speak with a professional financial advisor.