The Trump Administration recently rescinded rules that protected borrowers from some practices of bill collectors. What is the view of Christianity about debt? Is debt a sin?
Trump’s move against borrowers built upon President W. Bush who helped pass a law making it harder to file for bankruptcy. While Obama had issued an executive order limiting collections procedures, A.G. Sessions has now overturned that order.
Preacher Samuel Moody in the early 1700’s said it was not wrong to be poor, but to be in debt was a sin. The public did not see it this way during various periods since then, but the Republican Party has been quite consistent. It sees those who cannot pay back obligations as free loaders. In short, it still sees debt as sin.
It’s a bit ironic the Trump Administration is moving against those who do not repay loans when the President himself has used bankruptcy several times in his career to avoid paying back loans. He seems to avoid the charge of sin.
Across U.S. society there seems to be some consistent level of concern for the poor in general but little sympathy for the poor who are in debt. I’ve seen writers who say the Lord’s prayer to forgive those who owe you is not about money but something else. It seems to me it is about money.
Both religious and secular people agree stealing is a moral failure. Using bankruptcy laws to avoid paying back debts is not viewed by everyone as stealing.