Proverbs 11:15 (Mini Sermon)


15. Pro 11:15 – "He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: and he that hateth suretiship is sure." A. He that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it: i. Definitions a. Surety n. - II. Means of being sure. 5. A formal engagement entered into, a pledge, bond, guarantee, or security given for the fulfilment of an undertaking. 7. A person who undertakes some specific responsibility on behalf of another who remains primarily liable; one who makes himself liable for the default or miscarriage of another, or for the performance of some act on his part (e.g. payment of a debt, appearance in court for trial, etc.); a bail: = security 9. b. Stranger n. – 1. a. One who belongs to another country, a foreigner; chiefly (now exclusively), one who resides in or comes to a country to which he is a foreigner; an alien. Now somewhat rare; the recent examples show mixture of sense 2 or 4. 2. a. One who is not a native of, or who has not long resided in, a country, town, or place. Chiefly, a new comer, one who has not yet become well acquainted with the place, or (cf. 4) one who is not yet well known. c. Smart v. – 1. intr. Of wounds, etc.: To be a source of sharp pain; to be acutely painful. d. In other words, a man that gives a guarantee to someone he does not know well to ensure that his debt is paid if he defaults will suffer sharp pain. ii. A man that becomes surety for his friend is stupid (void of understanding) (Pro 17:18). a. It is a good way to go broke if something happens and your friend can't pay (Pro 22:26-27). b. It is a good way to lose a friend if he can't pay. c. It is a good way to get sued or killed if you don't have the money to pay your friend's debt if he defaults. iii. If a man that becomes surety for a friend is stupid, then a man that becomes surety for a stranger is exceedingly stupid. a. A friend will be more likely to be sure to pay his debt so you're not left on the hook for it. b. A stranger has little to no incentive to pay it because he doesn't know you and will likely never deal with you again. c. Thus, he that is surety for a stranger shall smart for it. d. Being surety for a stranger (or even a friend) can be a painful experience, both financially and emotionally. e. If a man is stupid enough to be a surety for a stranger, one better take some collateral from him to hedge against the likelihood that neither he nor the stranger will pay (Pro 20:16). iv. If one has been foolish enough to be a surety, guarantor, or a co-signer of another's debt, he should make every effort to get out of that contract as quickly as possible, and in the mean while encourage and exhort the debtor to pay the debt (Pro 6:1-5). (See comments on Pro 6:1-5.) B. and he that hateth suretiship is sure. i. Definitions a. Hate v. – 1. trans. To hold in very strong dislike; to detest; to bear malice to. The opposite of to love. b. Suretyship n. – The position or function of a surety (see prec. 7); responsibility or obligation undertaken by one person on behalf of another, as for payment of a debt, performance of some act, etc. c. Sure adj. – 1. a. Free from or not exposed to danger or risk; not liable to be injured or destroyed; = safe a. 6, secure a. 3. d. In other words, a man that strongly dislikes and detests being responsible and obligated to pay another's debt will be free from financial danger and risk and is not liable to be financially destroyed. ii. It is always a safe bet to not be a guarantor of someone else's debt. iii. It should be a very rare situation that you should even consider being surety for someone else, even if he is family. a. A person should not be going into debt for anything with the exception of buying a house or starting a business (and even borrowing money for these things should be avoided if at all possible). b. All other things including cars, home maintenance and upgrades, appliances, computers, smart phones, tools, equipment, furniture, four-wheelers, motorcycles, boats, other toys, etc. should be paid for in cash. (i) If a person doesn't have the cash to pay for something, he can't afford it, and he shouldn't buy it. (ii) You certainly should not be surety for a loan for any such thing. c. If a man wants to finance a house or a business startup, the bank will determine if he is creditworthy. (i) If he is not creditworthy and they will not give him a loan, then you would be a fool to be surety for him. (ii) If the bank is dumb enough to give him a loan but he can't afford the down-payment, then you would be a fool to loan it to him.
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