8th commandment you shall not steal

8th Commandment: You Shall Not Steal

Exodus 20:15

What is the Eighth Commandment?

Exodus 20:15

You shall not steal.

Any time we 1) take anything that belongs to someone else, or 2) keep from others what we owe them, we have broken the eighth commandment.

Integrity in the Bible

There are many ways to live without integrity.

Direct Stealing

Shoplifting. Burglary. Embezzlement and pilfering at work. Fraud. All of these things will receive the sure judgment of Almighty God.

Halfhearted Work

If you do not give your employer an honest day of good work, you have stolen from him. (See Colossians 3:22.)

If you are an employer and you do not pay a man what he is worth, you have stolen from him. God sees when you do not pay what you ought to. (See James 5:4; also Colossians 4:1.)


Nobody can win at gambling without somebody else losing. Gambling is an attempt to get what belongs to someone else into your possession, without giving him anything for it. “Woe to him who increases what is not his…” (Habakkuk 2:6b).

Withholding Love

“Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law” (Romans 13:8). Some spouses defraud each other of sexual love. (See 1 Corinthians 7:5.) Some people defraud their parents of honor. Some parents defraud their children of guidance, love, and instruction.

“Will a Man Rob God?”

Stealing from God

You are His, by creation and by redemption. (See 1 Corinthians 6:20.) But when you live as if Jesus Christ never lived and died, you are stealing from God. You walk God’s Earth, you breathe God’s air, and you live with the life God has given you. If you do not pour your life back out to God, you are stealing.

The Tithe

Don’t think that 10% of what you have belongs to God. All that you have belongs to God, because the One who owns the sheep owns the wool—and you happen to belong to Him. “Will a man rob God? Yet you have robbed Me! But you say, ‘In what way have we robbed You?’ In tithes and offerings” (Malachi 3:8).

Working With Your Hands

The Bible is clear about the necessity of work. “If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10b).

Ecclesiastes 5:18

Here is what I have seen: It is good and fitting for one to eat and drink, and to enjoy the good of all his labor in which he toils under the sun all the days of his life which God gives him; for it is his heritage.

This is biblical: you cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the industrious out of it. When somebody receives something without working, somebody else had to work without receiving.

Teach your boys and girls how to work. Start early. “It is good for a man to bear the yoke in his youth” (Lamentations 3:27). Let them work, and their play will be a whole lot sweeter.

It Is Better to Give Than to Receive

“Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need” (Ephesians 4:28; emphasis added). This kind of living frees us from selfishness.

The Apostle Paul wrote,

Acts 20:34-35

Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me. I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

Known for his evangelistic zeal and uncompromising commitment to the Word of God, Adrian Rogers was one of the greatest preachers, respected Bible teachers, and Christian...

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