Awesome Hands – part 76: “The judgments” – Part G

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Awesome Hands – part 76

“The judgments” Part G

March 20th, 2015

Our study today is going to be taken from the next versus in Exodus which covers interest and paying interest.
This is a controversial topic within many churches due to several different passages found in scripture, but as with all topics, we only need to rely on what is written without going above what is written on the topic.

1Co 4:6  And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us not to think of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another.

While covering this topic, we are going to apply physical and spiritual applications which applied to the OT laws as well as the examples given in the New Testament concerning usury.


“Interest / Usury”


Exo 22:25  If thou lend money to any of my people that is poor by thee, thou shalt not be to him as an usurer, neither shalt thou lay upon him usury.

The first and most glaring subject of the verse we are covering today is “my people” that is “the poor by thee”. Most of the church doctrine I have personally heard or know of has lumped all of interest into the category of being bad or evil, but that simply is not a biblical principle.
Here is a supporting set of verses that confirm the subject of who we, as those in the Faith, are not to charge interest to.

Deu 15:1  At the end of every seven years thou shalt make a release.
Deu 15:2  And this is the manner of the release: Every creditor that lendeth ought unto his neighbour shall release it; he shall not exact it of his neighbour, or of his brother; because it is called the LORD’S release.
Deu 15:3  Of a foreigner thou mayest exact it again: but that which is thine with thy brother thine hand shall release;
Deu 15:4  Save when there shall be no poor among you; for the LORD shall greatly bless thee in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance to possess it:
Deu 15:5  Only if thou carefully hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all these commandments which I command thee this day.
Deu 15:6  For the LORD thy God blesseth thee, as he promised thee: and thou shalt lend unto many nations, but thou shalt not borrow; and thou shalt reign over many nations, but they shall not reign over thee.
Deu 15:7  If there be among you a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates in thy land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother:

Notice, there are several groups mentioned here in these verses which are neighbors and brothers, foreigners, the poor among you, and many nations.

Before we cover the groups and what is applied to them in the form of interest, let’s see what scripture teaches us is “usury” as named in the KJV.

Exo 22:25  IfH518 thou lendH3867 moneyH3701 to any of(H853) my peopleH5971 that is(H853) poorH6041 byH5973 thee, thou shalt notH3808 beH1961 to him as an usurer,H5383 neitherH3808 shalt thou layH7760 uponH5921 him usury.H5392

H5392 is used 12 times and is always used as usury in English.

Total KJV Occurrences: 12
usury, 12
Exo_22:25, Lev_25:36-37 (2), Deu_23:19 (3), Psa_15:5, Eze_18:8 (2), Eze_18:13, Eze_18:17, Eze_22:12

However, this Hebrew word has a root which reveals more to us about the mind of God on this topic.

From H5391; interest on a debt: – usury.

Here is the root:

A primitive root; to strike with a sting (as a serpent); figuratively, to oppress with interest on a loan: – bite, lend upon usury.

BDB lists it this way.

BDB Definition:
1) to bite
1a) (Qal) to bite
1b) (Piel) to bite
2) to pay, give interest, lend for interest or usury
2a) (Qal) to give interest
2b) (Hiphil) to make to give interest
Part of Speech: verb
A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: a primitive root
Same Word by TWOT Number: 1430, 1430b

Isn’t that interesting? “To strike with a sting ….. figuratively to oppress with interest on a loan”.
So, where is it used in scripture?

Total KJV Occurrences: 20
bite, 6
Ecc_10:8, Ecc_10:11, Jer_8:17, Amo_9:3, Mic_3:5, Hab_2:7
usury, 4
Deu_23:19-20 (4)
lend, 3
Deu_23:19-20 (3)
bit, 2
Num_21:6, Amo_5:19
biteth, 2
Gen_49:17, Pro_23:32
bitten, 2
Num_21:8-9 (2)
lent, 1

In the interest of time I will not list all of these verses, but I want to read a few to set the tone for what we are going to gather about what this all means spiritually for us today.

Ecc 10:8  He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him.

Ecc 10:11  Surely the serpent will bite without enchantment; and a babbler is no better.

Jer 8:17  For, behold, I will send serpents, cockatrices, among you, which will not be charmed, and they shall bite you, saith the LORD.

Amo 9:3  And though they hide themselves in the top of Carmel, I will search and take them out thence; and though they be hid from my sight in the bottom of the sea, thence will I command the serpent, and he shall bite them:

Mic 3:5  Thus saith the LORD concerning the prophets that make my people err, that bite with their teeth, and cry, Peace; and he that putteth not into their mouths, they even prepare war against him.

Num 21:6  And the LORD sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and much people of Israel died.

Amo 5:18  Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.
Amo 5:19  As if a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house, and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him.

All of these words are the same root word for the Hebrew word used as usury.  Here is one more example of the root word which usury comes from.

Num 21:8  And the LORD said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.
Num 21:9  And Moses made a serpent of brass, and put it upon a pole, and it came to pass, that if a serpent had bitten any man, when he beheld the serpent of brass, he lived.

Getting back to the core verse we are concentrating on today, how does this apply to the poor among us, brothers and neighbors, foreigners and nations?

As with all scripture, there is a positive and negative application as well as a physical and spiritual application.

With usury or interest, what are we learn about when to and when not to apply interest and what does that mean exactly.

To answer those questions, let’s first look at the New Testament examples which will give us a more complete picture.


“Not under the law of Moses”


I believe we are all aware that as Christians we are under the law of Christ and liberty and not the law of Moses. In the law of Moses, the physical application of interest charging allowed interest to be charged to foreigners, as we just read, but it was not allowed to be charged to the poor and our brothers.
I am going to list Matthew 25:14 through verse 46 for the sake of the notes, and then comment on what the parable of the talents reveals to us concerning this topic.

Mat 25:14  For the kingdom of heaven is as a man travelling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods.
Mat 25:15  And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey.
Mat 25:16  Then he that had received the five talents went and traded with the same, and made them other five talents.
Mat 25:17  And likewise he that had received two, he also gained other two.
Mat 25:18  But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord’s money.
Mat 25:19  After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them.
Mat 25:20  And so he that had received five talents came and brought other five talents, saying, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me five talents: behold, I have gained beside them five talents more.
Mat 25:21  His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
Mat 25:22  He also that had received two talents came and said, Lord, thou deliveredst unto me two talents: behold, I have gained two other talents beside them.
Mat 25:23  His lord said unto him, Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
Mat 25:24  Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed:
Mat 25:25  And I was afraid, and went and hid thy talent in the earth: lo, there thou hast that is thine.
Mat 25:26  His lord answered and said unto him, Thou wicked and slothful servant, thou knewest that I reap where I sowed not, and gather where I have not strawed:
Mat 25:27  Thou oughtest therefore to have put my money to the exchangers, and then at my coming I should have received mine own with usury.

Notice that in this parable about the kingdom of heaven, we are told the man traveling into a far country gives His goods to his servants.

As the parable is expounded upon, we notice that the goods are referred to as talents. Finally, we see the talents referred to as money which could GAIN INTEREST.

This is Jesus speaking and He uses and parable to explain to us what He has given us and what He expects us to do with what we have been given.

Jesus Christ, the man who has gone into a far country, demands we take what He gives us and produce “double” from what we have been given.

He describes our talents as something that either gains or does not gain for Him. This would be a positive application of how we are to work for the Kingdom of God. It should be clear that the talents given to us all have root in the Word of God.

However, we are NOT to require interest from those in the Faith, the poor, neighbors and brothers among us, who we share the Word of God which would BENEFIT US in some way. The only gain we have is that whatever we do with our talents will benefit the Kingdom of God.

Mat 10:6  But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
Mat 10:7  And as ye go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Mat 10:8  Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give.

Here then is the end game, the goal of what we are to give back unto the Lord.

1Co 2:9  But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
1Co 2:10  But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
1Co 2:11  For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
1Co 2:12  Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
1Co 2:13  Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
1Co 2:14  But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

Likewise, we know that when we share the Word of God with someone who is not of the household of Faith, we DO REQUIRE interest from them.

That may sound like a contradiction, but let us refer back to the root of usury. The root of usury is to bite, to be bitten.

How can being bitten benefit anyone?

The serpent was a primary example of the bite being delivered, but it was also the source of the healing which saved those bitten.

Likewise, we are to deliver the Word of God in deed, in works, coupled with Faith to those that are of the household of Faith for the benefit of the Kingdom of Heaven and God, but we also deliver same “Word coming in Flesh” to bite the old man in those who are placed in front of us as “those nations who God sends our way”.

When we continue to look at the example given to us following the parable of the talents, here are some examples of this being point being true.

This is in context of Jesus telling us what the talents are all about.

Mat 25:28  Take therefore the talent from him, and give it unto him which hath ten talents.
Mat 25:29  For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.
Mat 25:30  And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
Mat 25:31  When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
Mat 25:32  And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:

Notice, there is a separation in how each group is handled. I know we are all familiar with these parables, but in the context of usury/interest, we are told what is required of us.

For those in the household of Faith, the Lord will require of them what He will due to the talents He gives them.

However, for those who are not of the household of Faith now, we are to exact interest from them in the form of delivering the Word of God in example and that will reap coals of fire on their head all without them ever knowing that is what is happening in this age.

Mat 25:33  And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
Mat 25:34  Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
Mat 25:35  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
Mat 25:36  Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
Mat 25:37  Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
Mat 25:38  When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
Mat 25:39  Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
Mat 25:40  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

That is what is said to those on the right side. What is said to those on the left?

Mat 25:41  Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
Mat 25:42  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
Mat 25:43  I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
Mat 25:44  Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
Mat 25:45  Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
Mat 25:46  And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

What should be coming to fruition in this study is that the Lord does this in all of us, but it first starts with the household of God.
Here is the same word used as usury in the new testament.

Total KJV Occurrences: 2
usury, 2
Mat_25:27, Luk_19:23

However, it has a very informative root that connects this all together.

From the base of G5088; interest on money loaned (as a produce): – usury.

A strengthened from of a primary word τέκω tekō (which is used only as an alternate in certain tenses); to produce (from seed, as a mother, a plant, the earth, etc.), literal or figurative: – bear, be born, bring forth, be delivered, be in travail.

Here is where G5088 is used.

Total KJV Occurrences: 29
forth, 9
Mat_1:21, Mat_1:23, Mat_1:25, Luk_1:31, Heb_6:7 (2), Jam_1:15, Rev_12:5, Rev_12:13
delivered, 5
Luk_1:57, Luk_2:6, Heb_11:11, Rev_12:2, Rev_12:4
brought, 4
Mat_1:25, Luk_2:7, Rev_12:5, Rev_12:13
born, 3
Mat_2:2, Luk_2:11, Rev_12:4
bring, 3
Mat_1:21, Mat_1:23, Luk_1:31
bringeth, 2
Heb_6:7, Jam_1:15
bearest, 1
child, 1
travail, 1

Joh 16:21  A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world.

Mat 1:21  And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

Mat 2:2  Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

Rev 12:2  And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.

Jas 1:15  Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

Like a serpent that springs forth instantly to bite its target, so too does the “interest” of the Lord work in what it produces and brings forth.
When we deliver the Word of God, there are differing expectations of what the Lord requires in return. Depending on the audience, the Word of the Lord will affect them differently, but in ALL CASES we are to deliver the interest of the Lord back to Him.
The root of usury is what the Lord gains in return for His investment in us now in this age.

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