SDA Statement: “...the Bible says that we are the salt of the earth, it also calls us the light of the world, but unfortunately many times the world is salting us more than we are salting it. And I'll give you this illustration: let's pretend like someone who does not believe in the Bible, or doesn't follow the Bible's guidance in his everyday living, wants to buy or build a house, how's he going to do it if he doesn't have the money? Well, he'll go to the bank and become qualified and get a loan. Unless he tells the banker different, the loan will be for 30 years. That's the typical thing in the US, but let's just say that a Christian, Bible believer, decides he wants to buy or build a house, he doesn't have the cash to pay for it, so he goes to get a loan, what will he do?
7 years. Deuteronomy 15:1 gives that answer, not longer than 7 years. We're going to be able to understand more about that. You'd say: "I could never pay a house off in 7 years", well, when we get the session #8, we're going to talk about the Christian approach to home ownership.”
Then it adds the provision that:
“From a foreigner you may exact it, but your hand shall release whatever of yours is with your brother.” (Vs. 3)
So while Reid has realized and corrected his previous mistake, he has not done anything to show how his previously taught theory should still be concretely practicable in today’s society. This is all like giving a car that needs a new engine a fresh coat of pain, and then claiming that it now works just fine!?!
Tellingly enough, the example that Reid uses for a mortgage repayment is, even though he says that it has been recently reprinted, a $60,000 mortgage!?! (Seminar #5 50:45ff). Assuming that one gave 20% as a down payment, a $60,000 mortgage means that the home would cost an incredibly low $75,000. Those are late 1980's figures. Today that is normally, absolutely unheard of, except in special situations such as foreclosed home auctions and resales.
Another Pointless Correction/Harmonization Attempt
In this mid-January 2010 presentation [41:11-43:20] Ed Reid here, and evidently, after having read, and/or been made aware, of this blog post, again, and even more resolutely, tries to make Deut 15:1, 2 be reflective, supportive and functional of/in a present-day Capitalistic context. This time he emphatically stresses, in a psychologically reversing, hypocritical attitude of “you-probably-misunderstood-this-passage” (as he did before), that it is ‘the creditor (and not the borrower) who is to release the debt here.’ He then again attempts to make this passage fit a present day scenario, however this time he confusingly, mindlessly ‘mixes his metaphors’, as if the two situations at issue are so synonymous, as tries to makes his still patent, but now edited, “lending example” simultaneously be: a present day scenario and also ‘one back in the Bible times’ where, still here trying to follow his meandering reasoning, apparently there were people engaged in commercial banking in Bible times, who also had “the highest buildings in town,” as bank/bankers do today, because they were such smart lenders’ and would surely not lend someone money that would take e.g., 6 years to repay, when there were 4 years left in a 7 remittance time period?!? Really, no matter which way you try to untwist Reid’s metaphors here they actually do not apply to either age. E.g., bankers today can’t be said to be “smart” because of a shrewd lending in a non-existent 7-year terminative repayment period; Ancient Israel did not engage in commercial lending/banking, especially as interest was not collected on loans among Israelites (Exo 22:25; Lev 25:35-37; Deut 23:19; Ezek. 18:8, 13, 17; 22:12; Psa 15:5); the year of release did not extend to foreigners, etc. So if anyone lent money to another Israelite, it was strictly out of desire to help them out, and not out of any personal, pecuniary or commercial interest.
Furthermore with Israel equivalently distributing its common, national wealth amongst itself (See Num 26:52-56, cf. 34:13-29), lending was done to help someone in extreme need and therefore was a matter of last, emergency resort. By this equal and fair wealth distribution and by the laws of inheritance, no one in Israel was inherently poor (cf. Deut 15:4-6ff). Some only came to be poor, in the case of a sickness or a death of the main provider of a household (cf. 1 Kgs 17:8-16). It was then that others freely lent money to them to help them out of this vital bind, and the fact that this was to be remitted after 7 years showed that this was meant to keep no one in a state of perpetual debt because of such entrenched, poverty-inducing, life misfortune. So it definitely was not a normalized, commercial matter as Reid makes it seem by a comparison with Capitalistic banking today.
It also seems to me that the limiting of amount lent according to the supposed remaining years in 7-year cycle was actually a non-issue, and also contrary to the spirit of that law as clearly stipulated in Deut 15:7-11. Because lending was indeed to be done out of true-needs basis, and not, e.g., to go on a vacation in Dubai, (or was it Cyprus back then), then whatever money was needed to meet someone’s actual vital emergency was to be done regardless of what year of the cycle it was in. Such a greedy attitude, inherently characteristic of the capitalist today, is categorically condemned in this law as “base thinking.” (vs. 9). Evidently Ed Reid did not read, or take into consideration, this part of the passage in preparing/stating his ‘supposed-to-be-godly’ principles, which effectively/Biblically is only such condemned “base thinking.” As they also say, ‘a text without its context, is truly/only a pretext!’ As with capitalism as a whole, one man’s reveredly supposed “smart banking”, is actually God’s abomination.
In order to avoid to sounding so unChristlike and unBiblical in the future, SDA preachers will just have to preach the undiluted and non-compromising Biblical Truth on this topic of ‘The Inherent Evil of Capitalism.’ That will be the day!
 Thanks for the emphasis, but we, or at least, I, can read. In all logical probability, it may only have been Ed Reid who has misunderstood that clear, and explicitly stated, stipulation.
 Indeed to rationalize, as Ed Reid evidently has, that today’s bankers are “smart’ because ‘they do not give 7-year worth loans, with e.g., 4 repayment years left’ is just as fantasaical as arguing that: ‘because elephants are so big and cumbersome, it would be safe if they were preventively fitted with helmets when they fly.’ Sure a helmet is a great safety gear... but elephants don’t fly! In the same non-sequitur, correspondence, today’s bankers are not here “smart” because they simply do not have, nor use, a 7-year, diminishing, loan repayment period. In fact, when they are limited by time, such as in 30 or 40 -year mortgage periods, they just increase one’s monthly payments!
 Ed Reid evidently seems to find an underlying justification/sanction for his non-critical, effective, support/endorsement of Capitalism, resorting instead to giving tips and tricks to cope with/survive in, it, on the fact that he, self-professedly, was effectively, able to achieve the “American Dream” (college education, own your home, car, etc), including ‘putting his two kids through college without student loans,’ all coming from a "relatively poor" background. That somehow convinces him that Capitalism is a neutral economic system that needs not to be condemned and can actually be successfully overcome if one knows these various debt-paying tips and tricks. Notwithstanding the fact that Capitalism is solely interested in profiting in any way, on others, and that at any cost, which leads to all of the economic injustices in the world, and results in what is rightly denounced by people with any shred of an unseared human conscience as “stupid poverty and senseless suffering and deaths”, one could personally not pay me enough, to even begin to endorse this utterly godless and morally bankrupt (pun intended) system. I have personally witnessed 5 out of 6 independent mortgages (i.e., no “2nd mortgages involved”) over now 33 years for a cumulative total of $255,000 (ca. $410,000 in present dollars [U.S. BLS calculator]) be completely paid off, and each in less than 7 years (a 5.5 year average); and with the only non-paid off home/mortgage still providing a substantial equity when sold, -which provided for 73% of the payment for the “empty-nest”, retirement community condo they were then seeking, -which in turn, when sold, after my mother was told, in no uncertain depictions and terms, in a dream to ‘no accept the offer of a prospective, work friend, buyer then, but instead hold’ and that ‘this home’s proceeds will work like their first home’s’, (=EW 57.1) which it indeed did go on to do when it later sold for twice that first offer’s price, (and also +3X its purchase price, [-in just 4 years]), and thus provided for 80% of the payment of their (present), new construction, (relatively) ‘out of the cities’, home. Moreover, all of this was done on a 40% of potential income over these years (i.e., with one or both household income earners being unemployed, voluntary ‘stay-at-home-parenting’ and/or in school 60% of this time); and with 3 of these paid-off homes (having a current combined value of over $615,000 in their local markets), still in full possession, and for nuclear family (2 children) use. [Talk about Reid’s (rightly understood) “immediate lifetime (at adulthood) inheritance” - [22:35ff] -which was indeed the ‘subsistence and property share’ inherently involved in God’s Israel (Num 26:2, 52-56; cf. Pro 13:22a), for owning a mortgage free home is many times, on various levels, much more valuable than having had your college education paid - i.e., in terms of: monetary costs/value, facility of loan procurement, repayment terms & interest, involved financial hardship risks, assured tangible asset, future value, relative peace of mind and freedom, etc.] All this to say that, if anyone should be defending adamantly Capitalism, it should be me. That is if I was using the short-sighted, self-centered, and moronic, ‘if I’m okay, then everything is, or can be, okay’ capitalistic dogma. Indeed, while some people can survive/thrive despite this system, the vast majority of the world is vitally suffering because this economic scheme is pervasively enforced by the relative few who can and have greatly gained and profited from it. However it is the utter whimsical subjectivity and spurious of Capitalism that was actually still seen in this real estate accomplishment that has instead convinced me otherwise because, true Capitalism actually had very little to do with it. In this experience, I have concretely seen and understood that the fact that here that the mortgages on 5 of 6 homes could be entirely paid off at 40% of potential income, was all solely due to the value of a modest, so called “starter house” (netly) tripling in less than 10 years by several key home improvement being made to it over this time and with them either being absolutely free in term of service costs as purely “do-it-yourself” endeavors, and/or way below market-value prices. Still the value of that home quite disproportionately, considerably increased with each such free improvement, starting with the one that literally got this do-it-yourself|home-improvement ball rolling in the getting together, in 1976, of Church brothers (including the then Speaker/Director of the local It Is Written [French]) one Sunday to volunteer their manpower and/or architectural knowledge/skills to help build an upstair master bedroom. A tasks that, by the considerable amount of potent collaboration, was actually completed in that one day. [See in pages 167, 208-209 & 297 of the referenced PDF document for this post for pertinent photos (i.e., first 3 houses (and current one), and first house initial major DIY work.]
Such non-market priced work greatly added to the home’s value, and eventually allowed, when sold, for a 67% down payment on the second, then 11-year old, now, still owned, house, (which has since, long ago more than repaid itself entirely during its first 10 years of 13 as a rental house or unit), whose remaining mortgage was paid off in 3 years, on one income.
Of all the expense that one can make in their lifetime, the purchase of a home is indeed the most significant one, for one really cannot afford in any way to be homeless. One can go without a car, or even a brand new car, especially when living a city, however a home is virtually indispensable. And it is because of this indispensability that (a) home prices are bought and sold a such inflated/elevated prices, (i.e., when compared with the actual value of raw materials used in their construction), and (b) why mortgage lenders arbitrarily impose compounding interest on their home loan, i.e., simply because you will pay this price. Furthermore, such high home pricing is entrenched in society because virtually anyone can command these prices at their personal profit whenever it is that they control such “capital.”
Indeed wherever and whenever Capitalism can corner someone and force them to pay its prices, it surely will. How anyone, especially an SDA Minister, can not openly and unequivocally not condemn such a ruthless system, operating under a guise of ‘true freedom’, back to the Satanic boardroom were it no doubt was drawn up, is beyond me, a system that ultimately literally kills, though with bloodless hands, for that ever elusive, satisfactory profit.
Ed Reid’s attainment of the “American Dream” by being respectful and obedient to this system’s rules of the game may have ingrain him to not dare actually oppose it. However my witnessing and still profiting of also achieving this American Dream, but solely through socialistic means; means which have a concrete basis in Biblical principles and Godly ideals have, quite to the contrary, ingrained me to oppose Capitalism and the senseless damage that it causes/does, at any cost and for however long it will take. (See this major project)
(And it must be added here that Capitalism/(Capitalists) thinks that whatever it does, or incorporates in now either baptized Capitalism or inherent capitalistic principles. In this vein, the ability now for one to declare bankruptcy once every seven year (which was actually influenced by the Biblical law in Deut 15), and have all of their prior debts wiped out while still being able to maintain a current level of living, is now supposedly pure Capitalism. Well it is not. Such debt pardoning, and that at the full loss of a creditor, but which is actually still covered in the interest that was and will be collected from other borrowers who can afford to pay their debt, (i.e., the creditor, if he makes enough viable loans, would only lose from his overall, interest-incurred profits and not from his lending principle), is ultimately pure Socialism. Indeed True Capitalism, i.e., Laissex-faire Capitalism would not exist without having been so diluted, by purely socialistic principles, into its present form of being a Mixed-Economy. Do take that undisputable fact into full consideration before you think to sing the any praise to Capitalism.)