“You shall not steal.” – Exodus 20:15
Q: What is the eighth commandment?
A: You shall not steal.
What does this mean?
Because we worship and love God, we shouldn’t take other people’s money or property and cheat them, but instead we should help them improve and protect what belongs to them.
Why do you think someone would want to steal? Have you ever felt the urge to steal something? Do you believe that stealing is wrong? If so, why is it wrong?
Sometimes people steal because they are greedy. Sometimes people steal because they are needy. Sometimes people steal to hurt someone else. In all of these cases stealing hurts the person being stolen from but it also hurts the person who does the stealing.
Why would that be?
If you are the one being stolen from you have something taken away from you that is of worth. If you are the one doing the stealing you probably believe that dishonesty is a better way to live and we know that that is a lie. In the end, living a lie always hurts us.
God wants us to not steal because it hurts us and hurts others.
Consider Ephesians 4:28, “Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.”
- Paul exhorts his audience in Ephesus to stop stealing and start doing what?
- Why does he believe that working hard is important?
- Do you know any people who are in need that you could bless?
Our Father, may you give us energy to work hard and not be lazy. Help us to see our work as a way to bless people and not be selfish. May we never dishonor your name in the way that we use our money or respond to a lack of money. Help us to trust you instead of resorting to stealing. You have given us ample reasons to believe that you will provide. In Jesus’ name, Amen.