Interest vs. Usury

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by ktn4eg, Jun 17, 2006.

  1. ktn4eg

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    Nov 19, 2004
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    Is there an objectively defined difference between charging interest on a loan and usury?

    A person I once knew was reluctant to accept a job offer as a loan officer at a financial institution because he feared that he might be guilty of charging usury to some of his future clients.

    Someone told me that usury is an "unreasonable" amount of interest. However, it seems as if that's a very subjective definition. What may be "unreasonable" to one person or in one set of circumstances may be "reasonable" to some one else or in a different set of circumstances.

    If this person's concept of the difference between the two is the only accurate one, where then does one precisely draw the line between interest and usury?
  2. James_Newman

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    Aug 27, 2004
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    I don't think God has a very high opinon of credit. But lending money and expecting more in return is the definition of usury. While now it does tend to primarily denote illegal interest, it was not always so.

    Luke 6:34-35
    34 And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.
    35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.

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