‘Ri•bit’ is the word for interest we use today in the banking and financial fields. Unlike its biblical counterpart, the modern word is ‘cleaned up’ of disparaging and offensive connotations. It simply comes from the root words ‘har•beh’ and ‘rav,’ which mean ‘much’ and ‘increase,’ respectively (when it comes to roots, the letters B and V are one letter in Hebrew and it is called ‘Bet’). Apparently, ‘ri•bit’ is a word that simply describes what happens to the loan you take–it increases. No ethical or moral connotation whatsoever is found in this ‘laundered’ ancient word.
But why do we call this word ‘laundered’?
‘Ne•shech’ is the biblical word for interest a debtor charges on a loan. We all know that the Bible has a very unforgiving outlook at the practice of charging interest. The word ‘ne•shech’ demonstrates it better than anything else. A ‘ne•shech’ also means a bite into the flesh. Literally, cutting out a piece of flesh using greedy teeth. This is not an exaggeration! This is how God viewed taking interest.
Honestly, haven’t you felt this bite when the fruits of years of your hard labor were taken away from you just because you were not rich enough to buy your house with cash?
As in many aspects of life, we trust that God knows exactly what is hurting us.
Here is God’s direct words regarding interest:
“If you lend money to any of my people with you who is poor, you shall not be a creditor to him, nor shall you lay upon him interest”
“You shall not lend upon interest to your brother; interest of money, interest of foodstuff, interest of any thing that is lent upon interest”
“…Has given out money for interest, and has taken increase; shall he then live? He shall not live; he has done all these abominations; he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon him”
Can anyone be more explicit about this?!
No wonder that the word ‘mortgage’ actually means: ‘death pledge.’