Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Real Life Parable

23 ¶ Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would atake account of his bservants.
24 And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents.
25 But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be asold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made.
26 The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.
27 Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt.
28 But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him aan hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest.
29 And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.
30 And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt.
31 So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very asorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done.
32 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that adebt, because thou desiredst me:
33 aShouldest not thou also have had bcompassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had cpity on thee?
34 And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.

OK, so I cut and pasted a parable from the Bible (Matt. 18:23-34). I want to compare this to our current economic crisis. I think I should state that I don't agree with the approach the government is taking, but what is happening closely parallels the scripture that I cited.

So here is what is going on, in case you live in a cave. Banks got themselves into financial trouble by loaning money to people who were unable to pay the money back. Some banks failed and many more were on the verge of failure, so the government decided to intervene to prevent a complete fallout of the financial market. It was along the lines of $700 billion. For someone who makes under $20,000 a year, that seems like quite a bit of money.

The idea was that this would give banks some cash on hand so that they can continue to make wise loans and provide people with the money that they need to keep the economy afloat.

As we compare this to the above parable, this was the government (the Lord) forgiving the banks a debt. I know that they didn't really 'forgive' anything, but they pumped a bunch of money into the private sector so they didn't fail.

In the parable the servant then turned and demanded payment from one of his fellowservants. In real life, the banks took the money and are decreasing available loans on people who have always payed their bills on time so that the banks can make more money.

I am eagerly awaiting the moment when the banks get to meet their tormentors.

The parable may not be a perfect fit, but when I read what was going on in finances, I thought of that parable.


A Girl Called Dallan said...

Wow. Good point. Very good point.

Vertigo said...

"It was along the lines of $700 billion. For someone who makes under $20,000 a year, that seems like quite a bit of money."

That is great, Sans...just a bit of an understatement maybe?

cyclingred said...

The other part of the parable is the news that has come out the last fews days. The firms that got this money are now setting aside billions for bonuses for the execs and for dividends.

Emily A. W. said...

Wow. Very cool scriptures. You are such an insightful person! Yah, the economic mess is upsetting, so I have decided to just stop paying attention and get out of debt and live within my means so I don't have to be personally effected by it.

I know someone personally who is getting hit by this credit crunch problem where a bank told her they were increasing her interest and decreasing her available credit. The bank is the Bank of America.

I am so thankful that President Hinckley was a prophet and told us to stay out of debt and to be wise and prudent during the times when excess seemed the norm. I think it saved our family some major problems since we have done all we can to live prudently. I feel sorry for those who are caught in the trap.

As a side note, my credit card company just sent me a blank check, increased my credit limit, and practically begged me to spend more money and put it on my credit card. So, for those of us with a good credit history and little debt compared to the national average, we aren't hurting.