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It's a Lack of Faith

Ron Blue has written 15 books on personal finance and is president of Kingdom Advisors, which advises Christian financial professionals (MasterYourMoney.com).

The Bible offers many warnings about debt, but it never says that borrowing money violates God's commandments. It may, however, be unwise to do so.

Carrying credit card debt violates two biblical principles. First, debt presumes upon the future (James 4:13-15). When we use credit card debt, we assume money will be available to pay off the debt in the future.

Second, using credit card debt may deny God an opportunity to provide. Isaiah 55:8-9 says God's ways are not our ways, that his plans are higher than ours. When we use credit card debt as a quick solution, we effectively deny ourselves the opportunity to let God meet our needs.

In addition, credit card debt is very expensive. Unpaid balances on credit cards can carry monthly interest rates upwards of 25 percent. The cost to carry an unpaid balance from month to month means that you are paying a monthly premium on that balance. If you have a $2,000 outstanding balance on a credit card, and you pay only the monthly minimum, it will take you 32 years to pay off that $2,000. You will have paid the enormous sum of $10,000 to buy something that cost $2,000.

Financial choices and predicaments are always symptomatic of other issues. Some of the more common issues that lead to credit card debt include a lack of contentment, a lack of self-discipline, the search for security, and the search for significance.

The bottom line is that we should avoid putting a lender in the place of God by depending on them to meet our needs, and we should not play God in our own lives by deciding ...

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May 2011

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