Debt, Church & Christians
It is commonly accepted that both parents have to work today because a
single earner can no longer provide a comfortable lifestyle. And when two
earners can’t support it either, most people, including Christians
take on debt.
The beds in European castles of Medieval kings showcase
mattresses that would be refused by today’s homeless shelters, yet those
kings enjoyed them just fine. What’s the point?
Comfort is ultimately a relative notion. Define it by what our indebted
peers have, and we won’t be “comfortable” until we end up in their
situation. But define it as what we can afford within God’s guidelines, and
we’ll be comfortable regardless of what our peers have, and have a lot
more time for our family and the Lord, who forbid and warned about the
slavery of debt:
“The rich rules over the poor, and the borrower becomes
the lender's slave.”
“Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for
he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.”
“The LORD will open for you His good storehouse, the
heavens, to give rain to your land in its season and to bless all the work
of your hand; and you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow.“
Why isn’t the church speaking out more against debt?
Again, it would be hypocritical because churches are deeply in debt. The largest
evangelical denomination in America internally reports that for every $1 its
churches spend on missions, $5 is spent to pay the interest on the mortgage
on church buildings. And for every $1 spent to meet the physical needs of
people, $8 is spent on those mortgage interest payments.
Jesus told us to feed the hungry and to spread the Gospel. He never told us
to build buildings, and especially not on debt. Yet, much of the money
collected for God in America is heading straight into the pockets of
What should be done?
1. Getting rid of televisions will reduce the desire to spend money, as it
will eliminate the 220 television commercials that bombard our homes
everyday and fuel our desire to buy.
2. We should spend what is earned, possibly by one earner,
less the first fruits offered to God. If that means moving to a smaller
house, buying a used car instead of leasing the latest model, shopping
for clothes at the thrift store, so be it.
3. Churches should delay purchasing or constructing buildings at least until
they can pay for it in cash. If the sum never accumulates, it means the
Lord doesn't want your church to buy or build yet another building with
money that could be put to more biblical use for the body of Christ around
the world (see the Future
this site for recommendations).
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