Originally posted at Christian Post April 29, 2016.
To learn Biblical answers to your financial questions, you can #AskChuck @AskCrown your questions by clicking here. Questions used may be lightly edited for length or clarity.
I’m a little afraid of selling things on the Internet. This month a man was sentenced to life in prison for helping his stepsister beat to death a man she met on Craigslist that she intended to rob. She’s in prison now too. So many people I know have made a lot money by selling things on the website or buying things at what seems to me to be an international garage sale, but I am a little afraid to use it because of all the stories you read like this one. I know Crown advises people to simplify and to sell things to downsize and earn money when possible, but do you think it is safe to use it?
Scared of the Worldwide Web
It’s very appropriate to be concerned about any exchange on the Internet, whether it’s money or just information on Craigslist or any other site. Just because we are Christians, and hope for the best, that doesn’t mean we don’t want to be wise about how we conduct business. In Matthew 10:16, Jesus said, “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves.”
Here are a few tips that I recommend when using such a service.
- Research what you’re buying or selling and stand your ground. You really need to know the value of things to get a good exchange. Too often people become deceived by a sales pitch or are cleverly discouraged from asking for something’s true worth. Negotiating is part of the sales process and is as old as time, but you need to understand what you have or what you want. Proverbs 20:14 notes the truth about such exchanges, “’It's no good, it's no good!’ says the buyer-- then goes off and boasts about the purchase.”