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The Abomination of Usury and Interest, and the Slavery of Debt

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  • The Abomination of Usury and Interest, and the Slavery of Debt

    The Law of Moses forbids lending at interest in any form,
    “You shall not charge interest on loans to your brother, interest on money, interest on food, interest on anything that is lent for interest. (Deutereonomy 23:19 [ESV])
    In which case, a common form of lending is money lent at interest, and although it was prohibited for the Israelites to do so to each other as brothers, it was permitted for them to do so to foreigners,
    You may charge a foreigner interest, but you may not charge your brother interest, that the LORD your God may bless you in all that you undertake in the land that you are entering to take possession of it. (Deuteronomy 23:20 [ESV])
    Because God intended the Israelites to rule over nations, and also be above them,
    For the LORD your God will bless you as he has promised, and you will lend to many nations but will borrow from none. You will rule over many nations but none will rule over you. (Deuteronomy 15:6 [NIV])
    The LORD will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none.
    The LORD will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the LORD your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom. (Deuteronomy 28:12-13 [NIV])
    Yet they were not permitted to borrow from the nations, because as a people that were freed from slavery from Egypt,
    "Therefore, say to the Israelites: 'I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment. (Exodus 6:6 [NIV])
    Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and the LORD your God redeemed you. That is why I give you this command today. (Deuteronomy 15:15 [NIV])
    They could not then become enslaved by borrowing from nations, since a borrower is a slave to his lender,
    The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender. (Proverbs 22:7 [NIV])
    Which is why Paul says this concerning borrowing,
    Be indebted to no one, except to one another in love, for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the Law. (Romans 13:8 [BSB])
    Because just as the Israelites were freed from slavery in Egypt, so have the elect been freed from the slavery of sin,
    But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end everlasting life.
    (Romans 6:22 [AKJV])
    And in a related manner that the elect are not to file civil suit with the ungodly to settle matters among each other, nor be unequally yoked with unbelievers,
    If any of you has a dispute with another, do you dare to take it before the ungodly for judgment instead of before the Lord's people? (1 Corinthians 6:1 [NIV])
    Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? (2 Corinthians 6:14 [NIV])
    And just as the Israelites were prohibited from borrowing from the nations, so are the elect also prohibited from borrowing from unbelievers and the ungodly, and should thus, owe no man anything. Yet just as the poor or fellow Israelites could borrow from the Israelites without interest, as opposed to borrowing from the nations,
    “If you lend money to any of my people with you who is poor, you shall not be like a moneylender to him, and you shall not exact interest from him. (Exodus 22:25 [ESV])
    So in likewise manner can the elect who are in need also borrow from other fellow believers in the assemblies of God,
    All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. (Acts 4:32 [NIV])
    that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.
    (Acts 4:34-35 [NIV])
    And whoever lends to him must not only lend without interest,
    I took counsel with myself, and I brought charges against the nobles and the officials. I said to them, “You are exacting interest, each from his brother.” And I held a great assembly against them and said to them, “We, as far as we are able, have bought back our Jewish brothers who have been sold to the nations, but you even sell your brothers that they may be sold to us!” They were silent and could not find a word to say. So I said, “The thing that you are doing is not good. Ought you not to walk in the fear of our God to prevent the taunts of the nations our enemies? Moreover, I and my brothers and my servants are lending them money and grain. Let us abandon this exacting of interest. (Nehemiah 5:7-10 [ESV])
    But also in accordance with the new covenant of Jesus Christ, lend to him without expecting anything in return,
    And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. (Luke 6:34 [NIV])
    Which exceeds the requirement of the Law of Moses to release debts on every seventh year,
    At the end of every seven years you must cancel debts. This is how it is to be done: Every creditor shall cancel any loan they have made to a fellow Israelite. They shall not require payment from anyone among their own people, because the LORD's time for canceling debts has been proclaimed. (Deuteronomy 15:1-2 [NIV])
    And as such, all the needs of all the assemblies of God will be met, and the elect will be indebted to no one. And in doing thus, will the love of the elect for each other be seen by all people,
    A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35 [ESV])
    And not only must the elect give freely to those in need in the assemblies of God, but also to anyone else who is poor and in need, and even to unbelievers,
    But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. (Luke 6:35 [ESV])
    Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” (Matthew 19:21 [NIV])
    When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” (Luke 18:22 [NIV])
    He and all his family were devout and God-fearing; he gave generously to those in need and prayed to God regularly. One day at about three in the afternoon he had a vision. He distinctly saw an angel of God, who came to him and said, “Cornelius!” Cornelius stared at him in fear. “What is it, Lord?” he asked. The angel answered, “Your prayers and gifts to the poor have come up as a memorial offering before God. (Acts 10:2-4 [NIV])
    And as such, in freely giving to all, the elect demonstrate the mercy of God in how God freely gives to both the righteous and the unrighteous,
    that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. (Matthew 5:45 [NIV])
    Which is the way of those who live in the new covenant of Jesus Christ, who give freely and fulfill the law by not only loving God, but also in loving others as yourself,
    And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
    (Matthew 22:39-40 [ESV])
    Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will repay him for his deed. (Proverbs 19:17 [ESV])
    "If there is a poor man with you, one of your brothers, in any of your towns in your land which the LORD your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart, nor close your hand from your poor brother; but you shall freely open your hand to him, and shall generously lend him sufficient for his need in whatever he lacks. (Deuteronomy 15:7-8 [NASB])
    Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. (Matthew 5:42 [NIV])
    If anyone with earthly possessions sees his brother in need, but withholds his compassion from him, how can the love of God abide in him? (1 John 3:17 [BSB])
    Whoever shuts their ears to the cry of the poor will also cry out and not be answered. (Proverbs 21:13 [NIV])
    Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, "Go in peace; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?(James 2:15-16 [NIV])
    And if you give yourself to the hungry And satisfy the desire of the afflicted, Then your light will rise in darkness And your gloom will become like midday. (Isaiah 58:10 [NASB])
    Those who give to the poor will lack nothing, but those who close their eyes to them receive many curses. (Proverbs 28:27 [NIV])
    And as such, just as Jesus Christ brought forth a new way, where certain commands given to the Israelites were done away with in his new covenant,
    "You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, (Matthew 5:43-44 [NIV])
    “Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.’ But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, (Matthew 5:33-34 [ESV])
    So in likewise manner has the permissibility of the Israelites to lend to foreigners at interest has also been done away with, since the new way brought forth by Jesus Christ is to lend without expectation of repayment. And as such, whoever lends at interest to anyone commits an abomination,
    engages in usury and charges interest. Will he live? He will not! Because he has done all these abominable deeds he will certainly die. He will bear the responsibility for his own death. (Ezekiel 18:13 [NETBIBLE])
    he shall not give his money with interest, and shall not take money by usury; he shall turn his hand from injustice; he shall execute a just judgment between a man and his neighbor; (Ezekiel 18:8 [ABP])
    He who increases his wealth by interest and usury gathers it for him who is gracious to the poor. (Proverbs 28:8 [NASB])
    And not only him who gives at interest, but also he who takes money at usury commits an abomination, as unlike lending at interest, usury is an unjust gain of money that is not earned as a hired laborer,
    For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.” (1 Timothy 5:18 [ESV])
    Nor money earned by renting a property or possession,
    For two whole years Paul stayed there in his own rented house and welcomed all who came to see him. (Acts 28:30 [NIV])
    Nor money earned by selling a property or possession,
    All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. (Acts 2:44-45 [NIV])
    But is money that is unjustly gained from various forms of usury, such as gambling, lotteries, stocks, insurances, pensions, annuities, all of which are evil financial instruments for the greedy to take money to then have a profit of money predicated on chance and time. And as such, whoever pays money into any of these forms of usury commits an abomination just as he who receives money from any of these forms of usury.

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