Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act. Do not say to your neighbor, “Come back tomorrow and I’ll give it to you”— when you already have it with you.
Proverbs 3:27-28 NIV
Paying Our Debts
Household debt in Canada has been rising inexorably. At the time of the recession in 2008, it stood at about 80% of the size of the economy, in 2010 it rose to 95%, and by 2021 debt exceeded its size. By contrast, household debt in the U.S. fell from 100% of GDP in 2008 to about 75% in 2021. While U.S. households reduced debt, Canadians increased theirs and this will likely continue to increase due to rising interest rates and the rising cost of houses.
The Bible gives plenty of practical advice on personal finances. The follower of Christ is called to integrity in all things. In our business dealings and personal finances, we are called to be above reproach. This means that we pay our bills on time, and we don’t fudge on our taxes. King Solomon wrote about this in Proverbs 3:27-28: “Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act. Do not say to your neighbor, ‘Come back tomorrow and I’ll give it to you’–when you already have it with you.” Millennia after Solomon wrote these words, nothing has changed. King Solomon is calling God’s people to a high standard – pay your bills, on time. Do not lie about your ability to pay – if you can pay, do so right away. In our day, all of this means that your credit score will be healthy. But more than that, if you are a follower of Jesus, your testimony depends on doing everything with integrity. The God we follow is upright in every way and He calls His people to that same character.
These have been words from the heart.