If Your Brother Becomes Poor

Could you live with your siblings again? What if they were in dire straights?

Leviticus 25:35, “If your brother becomes poor and cannot maintain himself with you, then you shall support him as if he were a foreigner or a sojourner, so that he may live with you.” Modern English Version

In Bible times, there were no homeless shelters, assisted living programs, soup kitchens, or social security. You had two choices: 1) Get help from your family, or 2) Sell yourself into slavery. Many families lived close together. Moving in with a sibling meant moving across town or out to a farm.

My brother lives in Virginia. If something happened to leave him in dire straights, (God forbid!), he could not move in with me. There is no room in my house for 5 more people! I would not have the funds to move his family from Virginia to Iowa.

What then? What are God’s instructions when moving them into your home is not an option?

Leviticus 25:37, “You shall not lend him your money at interest, nor lend him your food for profit.” Modern English Version

This verse tells me I cannot charge interest on money I send him. I could not make a profit on any food I send him. It is best to give him what I can spare and not to empty my savings to loan him money.

“Lending money to a friend or family member is a bad decision. Someone who lends money to a loved one has their heart – not their head – in the right place. It is okay to give money, but loaning money to someone with whom you have a relationship will lead to broken hearts and broken wallets.” Dave Ramsey



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