Debt and borrowing
The key passage in scripture which guides us about how to approach debt is Proverbs 22:7
It is translated, "The borrower is the servant of the lender" in the NIV and, "The poor are always ruled over by the rich, so don't borrow and put yourself under their power" in the Message.
The study of this passage and othersin scriptures leads me to recommend that you ask yourself six questions before taking on a debt:
1. Do you still have a surplus, even with the debt repayments? How much is it?
2. Does taking on this debt meet one of your personal goals that cannot be met in any other way? Which one?
3. Is the benefit of taking out the loan less than the cost of repaying it? For example, to buy a car that you need for work.
4. Do you have a guaranteed way to repay the debt should the need arise (say you lose your job, you lose the use of the asset that you bought or you need to borrow for a more important purpose)?
5. Do you have peace of mind?
6. If you are married, are you and your spouse in complete agreement on the loan? If you are not married, do you have someone to whom you can go for accountability and counsel?
You can listen to the podcast which explains this in more detail by clicking on the accompanying link.
If you are in debt and struggling, here are some contacts for professional advice and help.
Contacts for Debt Counselling
Consumer Credit Counselling Service
(HQ in Leeds, resources from Credit Action)
0800 138 1111
Citizens Advice Bureau
0870 120 2450
Leeds City Credit Union
0113 214 5353
Community Money Advice
Christians Against Poverty