(Proverbs 20:16 KJV) Take his garment that is surety for a stranger: and take a pledge of him for a strange woman.
Jesus told us to loan and give. This is generosity and sharing in action. We see someone in need, we reach out to meet that need. This was much more clear in those days. They did not have food stamps, WIC or EBT. Famine was a constant fear. Crops failed. The fact that it is harder to tell who is in real need does not release us from the responsibility.
This is not the same thing as standing as “surety” (6148) for someone. That is repeatedly condemned. Here the warning is about a “stranger” (2114a). When you stand surety for someone it means that they are not qualified to borrow. In modern terms we would say that they have a poor credit rating. They want something they cannot afford. We are not to guarantee payment.
Understand the difference. One is to meet needs. The other is to satisfy wants.
So? Yes, you can co-sign on your child’s first small loan to get them started. No, you cannot co-sign for the cool little hybrid he wants to drive while he is in college. Let’s get a little discernment here.