(1) In the Old Testament period loans were not of a commercial nature, i.e. they were not granted to enable a man to start or run a business. They were really a form of charity, and were made by the lender only to meet the pressure of poverty. To the borrower they were esteemed a form of misfortune (Deut 12:28) GOD will throw open the doors of his sky vaults and pour rain on your land on schedule and bless the work you take in hand You will lend to many nations but you yourself won't have to take out a loan and by the lender a form of beneficence. Hence, the tone of the Mosaic legislation on the subject.
(2) Laying interest upon the poor of Israel was forbidden in all the codes (see Exodus 22:25, Deut 23:19, Lev 25:36), because it was looked upon as making unwarranted profit out of a brother's distress: “If thou lend money to any of my people with thee that is poor, thou shalt not be to him as a creditor; neither shall ye lay upon him interest ... and it shall come to pass, when he crieth unto me, that I will hear; for I am gracious.”
(3) The Law, however, allowed interest to be taken of a foreigner, or non-Jew (Deut 23:20 : “Unto a foreigner thou mayest lend upon interest”; compare Deu 15:3); and even among Jews pledges were allowed under limitations, or taken against the law (Deut 24:10; compare Job 24:2, Job 24:3 “There are that remove the landmarks ... they take the widow's ox for a pledge”). In Deut 15:1 there is a remarkable law providing a “release” by the creditor every “seven years,” a “letting drop of loans” (see Driver in the place cited.). In Exodus 3:22, the King James Version “shall borrow” is rendered “shall ask” in the Revised Version (British and American).
Proverbs 22:7 The Message
(7) The poor are always ruled over by the rich, so don't borrow and put yourself under their power.
If a man has sex with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is abhorrent.
(17) No daughter of Israel is to become a sacred prostitute; and no son of Israel is to become a sacred prostitute.
(18) And don't bring the fee of a sacred whore or the earnings of a priest-pimp to the house of GOD, your God, to pay for any vow--they are both an abomination to GOD, your God.
(26) Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God's Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don't know how or what to pray, it doesn't matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans.
(27) He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God.
(28) That's why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good
(1) Jesus told them a story showing that it was necessary for them to pray consistently and never quit.
(2) He said, "There was once a judge in some city who never gave God a thought and cared nothing for people.
(3) A widow in that city kept after him: 'My rights are being violated. Protect me!'
(4) "He never gave her the time of day. But after this went on and on he said to himself, 'I care nothing what God thinks, even less what people think.
(5) But because this widow won't quit badgering me, I'd better do something and see that she gets justice--otherwise I'm going to end up beaten black and blue by her pounding.'"
(6) Then the Master said, "Do you hear what that judge, corrupt as he is, is saying?
(7) So what makes you think God won't step in and work justice for his chosen people, who continue to cry out for help? Won't he stick up for them?
(8) I assure you, he will. He will not drag his feet. But how much of that kind of persistent faith will the Son of Man find on the earth when he returns?"
1 Corinthians 13:1-8
(1) If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don't love, I'm nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.
(2) If I speak God's Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, "Jump," and it jumps, but I don't love, I'm nothing.
(3) If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don't love, I've gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I'm bankrupt without love.
(4) Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn't want what it doesn't have. Love doesn't strut, Doesn't have a swelled head,
(5) Doesn't force itself on others, Isn't always "me first," Doesn't fly off the handle, Doesn't keep score of the sins of others,
(6) Doesn't revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
(7) Puts up with anything, Trusts God always, Always looks for the best, Never looks back, But keeps going to the end.
(8) Love never dies. Inspired speech will be over some day; praying in tongues will end; understanding will reach its limit.
Don't fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear!
(23) Those who hear and don't act are like those who glance in the mirror,
(24) walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like.
(25) But whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God--the free life!--even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it, is no distracted scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action.
Make sure you don't take things for granted and go slack in working for the common good; share what you have with others. God takes particular pleasure in acts of worship--a different kind of "sacrifice"--that take place in kitchen and workplace and on the streets.
1 John 1:8-9
If we claim that we're free of sin, we're only fooling ourselves. A claim like that is errant nonsense.
(9) On the other hand, if we admit our sins—make a clean breast of them—he won't let us down; he'll be true to himself. He'll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing.
But when the Friend comes, the Spirit of the Truth, he will take you by the hand and guide you into all the truth there is. He won't draw attention to himself, but will make sense out of what is about to happen and, indeed, out of all that I have done and said.
The shepherd walks right up to the gate. (3) The gatekeeper opens the gate to him and the sheep recognize his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. (4) When he gets them all out, he leads them and they follow because they are familiar with his voice.
Through the heartfelt mercies of our God, God's Sunrise will break in upon us, (79) Shining on those in the darkness, those sitting in the shadow of death, Then showing us the way, one foot at a time, down the path of peace.
But I'll take the hand of those who don't know the way, who can't see where they're going. I'll be a personal guide to them, directing them through unknown country. I'll be right there to show them what roads to take, make sure they don't fall into the ditch. These are the things I'll be doing for them-- sticking with them, not leaving them for a minute."
Matthew 6:5-13(5) "And when you come before God, don't turn that into a theatrical production either. All these people making a regular show out of their prayers, hoping for stardom! Do you think God sits in a box seat?