Pros and Cons of a Church Borrowing Money for Church Building Projects Thesis

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Church Borrowing Money for Building

"Profit is sweet, even if it comes from deception"

Sophocles

406/5 B.C.), Greek tragedian

Profit, according to Sophocles, as noted in the quote introducing this paper, "is sweet," even if/when particular components, such as factors relating to debt, may be questionable. Today, building or expanding the outreach of a church by borrowing money (going into debt), a common contemporary, yet controversial concept, stimulates disucssions as to whether this "normal" practice proves to be scriptural and/or best for the church. As the majority of churches repay their indebtedness according to contract, the dilemma basically consists of whether or not churches should borrow money to construct buildings.

As the dilemma relating to church borrowing does constitute an emotional and controversial topic, a barrage of controverial opinions regularly confront the routine practice some churches utilize, borrowing money to construct church building projects. This paper, which addresses the pros and cons of the church borrowing money for its building project(s), relates to a number of Scriptural references, along with pragmatic examples for both the pro and the con stances.

THE PRO-STANCE

Debt does not constitute a doctrinal debate, Craig Wieland

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(2006), president of The Wieland-Davco Corp., a Michigan-based construction management firm specializing in churches, asserts. Wieland contends that deciding to borrow money to build a church, instead, needs to be a decision made with prayerful consideration and open-mindedness. "Every church would love to be debt-free," Wieland stresses, "but the realities of today's construction costs might dictate that a prudent amount of equity, coupled with a correspondingly prudent amount of debt, is the best recipe for success."

In fact, just as borrowing money has become a way of life for many individuals, financing buildings has become a way many churches utilze to build.

Thesis on Pros and Cons of a Church Borrowing Money for Church Building Projects Assignment

The use of credit by the church raises a bevy of questions. The questions include:

What does the Bible say about money?

Does church financing have a place in building the kingdom?

Scripture relates the following regarding decisions, which relate to money.

In the following verses, James reminds Believers that they are not to presume anything about the future.

Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit" whereas you do not know what [will happen] tomorrow. For what [is] your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you [ought] to say, "If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that."

Scripture also reminds Believers: "The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower [is] servant to the lender";

that Believers no to place themselves in a position of financial bondage. Some of those who take the pro-stance regarding churches borrowing money to build, albeit, contend that financing the construction of a building does not mean the same as borrowing money. In face, some contned that financing differs from borrowing, that the word carry different connotations, although they are "frequently interchanged to mean the same thing. Their meanings have blurred together over time. The Oxford English dictionary defines borrowing as 'the temporary use of a thing or money,' while financing implies 'the management of money'."

Financing a building is not the same as borrowing, per se, in the financial realm, according to the pro-stance, as borrowing involves the borrower pledging ownership of income or assets prior to the income/assets being acquired, promising what one does not yet possess. Therefore, according to the pro-stance, in contrast to borrowing, financing is consistent with the principles Scriptures present.

Used wisely, in line with the concept that it differs from borrowing, financing provides a safe and economical means for the church to purchase church property and/or construct a building. "There are approximately 440,000 churches in the U.S., and there is somewhere between $30 billion and $40 billion in church building and improvement every year," according to A.J. Braswell, who started Jackson-based Foundation Capital Resources (FCR) during 2000. REIT (real estate investment trust), which Braswell started, would offers churches and faith-based organizations a place other than banks to turn to for loans. As a REIT, FCR makes mortgage-backed loans, from money pooled from investors, who want to invest their money where it will be invested back iinto churches and makes. Organizations such as these, the pro-stance side might argue, confirm financing a church building to be a positive practice.

THE CON STANCE

"A debt is a debt,… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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