Solomon Success
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Strangers and risk-takers

Financial riskIt’s no secret that King Solomon put a great deal of stock in wisdom and was not a big fan of financial risk and foolhardy haste, especially when it came to business decisions regarding partnerships. Proverb 20:16 says in part, “Take his garment that is surety for a stranger…”

To translate into modern terms, requiring a surety would be like a bank asking for collateral or a co-signer on a note before loaning money. Not a bad idea, whether the person with his hand out is a stranger or friend. But the point of this instruction from Solomon is that you SHOULD judge those who take foolish financial risk in business by not allowing them to do so with you money.

The wise business person realizes that half the battle in growing wealth and capital is to preserve what you already have. Naïve, ignorant optimism or faith in risky ventures can cost you dearly. Prudence requires that you avoid danger and risk. The foolish jump into half-understood schemes with blind eyes and, more times than not, find themselves soundly punished with crippling financial losses.

Remember Bernie Madoff, the Ponzi Scheme billionaire who now resides in prison for the rest of his life and longer? Celebrities and entertainers heard it through the grapevine that Madoff was generating immense returns for their friends. Sure – for some of them – until the scheme imploded and it all came crashing down. Then the poor suckers lost it all.

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, and why would you want to tempt fate and faith to find out anyway? All for a quick score? I think we can agree that God’s view on business is not all about the quick score. By requiring a business arrangement with stranger to include taking a surety in the form of a garment or whatever else of value the stranger possesses, the godly man limits his financial risk.

The Solomon Success Team

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