Monday, September 29, 2008

Godly Principles for Financial Stewardship: Commitment #5

Living free from financial debt—unless there is a matter of life and death on the line. God’s Word has much counsel to give us on the subject of debt.

The message in Scripture is clear—namely, that debt is bondage. When we make the decision that we will be going into financial debt, we are making a decision to willingly become a servant to our lender. As Proverbs 22:7 states:

The rich ruleth over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender. (Proverbs 22:7, KJV)

Now, if there was a medical necessity in the lives of one of those in my family that required the use of debt, I would willingly become a servant to the lender. However, apart from this extreme circumstance, our commitment is to not live with any debt whatsoever. Jill and I have been blessed to have parents that modeled well this principle as both of our sets of parents did not use any consumer debt (including credit cards and auto loans) and additionally paid off their land debts earlier than the term of their loans. However, our thinking was still clouded on this subject as our attitude was that debt was limited to not paying off credit cards each month and taking out a bank loan for anything other than a home. We viewed a mortgage as a necessity for the astute financial move of owning a home. This thinking did not come from God’s Word, but instead came from worldly wisdom. The Lord communicated to us the importance of becoming entirely free from all debt by opening our eyes to His truth that we are to have no debt outstanding except the debt of love and our mortgage certainly couldn’t be classified under a debt of love. Make a commitment today to take steps to get entirely out of debt, which will lead to greater freedom in many other areas of life. Do not despise the day of small beginnings—start small, but start somewhere!

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