Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Co-signing Is Stupid

Some instruction in the Bible is just plain hard to swallow. Verses discuss the need for self-control, don't be a glutton, gossip is sinful, etc. I just don't want to hear about it. God did not intend for his people to pick and choose which parts of his word fits their lives best and just lean on them. We are to keep all of his commands if we love him. Sometimes, people go against wise counsel and instruction, not out of rebellion, but what they're confusing as a generous heart. Instruction is given so that in times of weakness and confusion there are established principles to live by.

There are many opportunities to do something we think is helpful, but in reality it is only harmful. When a worm goes into its cocoon and starts to break out, if you tear the cocoon for it in an effort to help its struggle then you have essentially paralyzed it and it will die. The reason being that it did not have the opportunity to build the strength in its wings to fly from the struggle of breaking through the cocoon. People treat their struggling friends and family the exact same way. Solomon wrote, "Whoever puts up security for a stranger will surely suffer harm, but he who hates striking hands in pledge is secure" (Proverb11:15). You might be thinking, this is for a stranger though, if I co-sign for a friend or family that's different. Proverbs 17:18 carries the same principle, but in regards to a "neighbor."

When we start to justify actions that go against the advice of God's word we get into deep mud. If that struggling family member could just get ahead they would be alright. That may be the case, but it is not justification for doing something stupid. If you have the money and want to give it to them to help along the way, that is one thing. As long as you're not enabling their poor choices, it can be helpful. If you don't have the money, but could co-sign a loan with them, the wise man says that is harmful. If you think you are helping, believe God, you're not.

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