The Eighth Commandment

Exodus 20:15 “You shall not steal.” The eighth Commandment.

This one is pretty straight forward, right? Do not take anything from anyone if it isn’t yours. One author says that if you follow this commandment, then you are pretty much obeying all of the commandments. Murder is stealing a person’s life. You steal another person’s spouse when you commit adultery. When you are envious of another person’s possessions, it could lead to stealing the possession. If you don’t tell the truth, you are stealing justice from another.

We have all been given the right to possess property. No one has the right to steal anything that belongs to that person. The reasoning for this is that God has given us these material items in order to be good stewards for Him. Whatever we have, we are to happily and willingly give to others, especially the poor. The Bible talks about tithing 10% of what we have to God. Stealing from what God has given us, is basically stealing from God.

What about when someone steals something that isn’t material? Perhaps like a person’s good name or dignity, or an idea or song. That is stealing. God has given us all gifts or talents which are to be used for Him. God gave me the gift of writing. I know I don’t always use my writing for His glory but, dear Lord, how I try.

It is interesting that when Christ was crucified, He was placed in between two thieves. The first thief to be saved was the one who said to Jesus, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” The thief knew. Jesus took all our sins upon himself and died for us. He died for thieves, so that every thief who trusts in Him will be saved. Is there any way we can possibly thank Jesus for this?

The Fourth Commandment

Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. Exodus 20:8-11

This is the fourth commandment in its entirety. As I am typing this verse, I am wondering, what about the wife? Or does the you imply both man and woman? Husband and wife? Mother and father? That has to be the answer since the fifth commandment is to honor your father and mother. I better move on from this question.

It has been said that this commandment is the longest and has three parts to it. Verse 8 tells us what to do, then verses 9-10 specifies how we are to do it and verse 11 explains the why.

God has explained that we are to work or labor for six days of the week but on the seventh, we are to rest, give God glory and show mercy. Apparently, we were made to work or labor. We are to work for God’s benefit. Any task that we undertake, should be done with happiness and mercy. Every person needs to be working, whether you are employed, unemployed, a student, an at home caregiver, retired or disabled. Each one of us is meant to be able to work at something.

I like those affluent people who think they need to work seven days a week. Some have said it isn’t efficient to believe in God because it takes away from their business. Perhaps they would have a better business if they took one day a week off and observed a day of rest, gave honor to God and spent time with families. Or perhaps doing community work. I just think they are being greedy in wanting more.

Now for those people who provide emergency services, they are needed on Sundays. They are showing mercy to others by attending to those injured or those who need help. These people then do need to take another day off for rest and honoring God.

However, Christians today are just so busy and rush from place to place, job to job, one commitment to another. People are so wrapped up in themselves that they tend to forget others. The day of rest is to honor God, show mercy and spend time with family and loved ones. The biggest issue, these days, is time. Everyone has so little time. If someone infringes on that time, then there is a feeling of desperation. Not being able to finish everything. Do Christians not see that by giving themselves one day off to rest and honor God, this will give them a fresh start to the rest of the week? Just my thoughts.