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For the Love of the World

The Ten Commandmants

Thou Shalt Not Steal



Exodus 20:15 Thou shalt not steal

This is another commandment that appears to be very simple on the surface, but actually relates to a great number of things that most people wouldn't consider stealing. It's also a commandment that, when committed, often involves committing other sins.

Certainly, stealing is against the law, at least in regard to those things that are specifically covered by law. When I say law in that sense, I'm talking about the laws of man.

What I'm concerned with more is the law of God. I like the idea that if a person is living according to the law of God, they will be living according to the laws of man, often referred to as the law of the land.

Unfortunately, there are often laws that tend to force us into positions of doing things we wouldn't ordinarily do, in a perfect world, like break a bad law. God would not want us to break bad laws, and at the same time, He would not want us to have to live under them. That's when He entrusts leaders to intercede on behalf of the citizens.

He would think that a priest or minister would intercede on behalf of citizens. Because, a bad law is stealing liberty from a citizen, and the idea that legislatore would enact laws that steal liberty and rights from citizens makes the oath they took to represent the interests of citizens and the constitution of their nations is a lie, a lie that enables them to steal votes in order to win political office.

It may seem like a stretch, but it really isn't. It's the bottom line truth of how a beguiled mind works.

If your ego is at work, and you take credit for someone else's work or ideas, that's stealing. It's also lying about the source.

The problem is, these days, stealing has become common, it's one of those things like "everyone does it", and then it becomes a matter of a situation where people accept the idea that it's only a crime if you get caught, otherwise, it's fun to get away with something.

I worked at a store, once, where the person who "trainied me" to take over the record department told me that one of the perks of the department was being allowed to take a home a free album now and again. It wasn't a department store or corporate setting, a sort of friendly stereo store, everyone knew each other, and things of this nature didn't seem unusual. So, I took a few that way. I didn't find out until afterward that there was no such "understanding" amongst the employees, but they got a few out of me that way anyway.

I just went along, knowing I should have asked someone in charge, just for my own peace of mind.

Just because, after all, I was responsible for the department.

I'm sure I could go on and on about how wasting time on the job is theft, and all sorts of interesting and creative examples that wouldn't benefit the discussion.

What I would want you to consider, though, is the idea that, especially in today's world, everytime you promise something you don't deliver, you're stealing, even if what you do most is waste someone's time. If you're a news person telling partisan propaganda stories, you're stealing truth from individuals, justice from the world, and you're lying. And the morals and ethics you pretent to represent as journalists steal from the reputations of those who took their jobs and responsibilities serious.

When you look at a bigger picture, how we giv eand take from each other in every moment, in more than material ways, in terms of our spirits and our moods and feelings, stealing means more than just the security of objects: it is the theft of our own goodness, and the goodness of human nature, as we constantly have to defend ourselves from evil.

That defense robs us of love.





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