The Seventh Commandment

The Seventh Commandment

You shall not steal.

When I was a little kid I stole a pack of gum from a grocery store. I can still remember how the devil convinced me that it was ok to take the gum. “It was on the floor in the checkout aisle; someone must have bought it then dropped it. You sure love this kind of gum. No one has to find out you have it.”

Well, my mom found out that I had stolen the gum when we got home. She marched me right back into that store and I had to tell the manager what I had done. The kindly manager proceeded to buy the gum for me, showing me how to properly obtain things from a store. My wonderful mother immediately took the gum from my hands the moment we got in the car and I never saw it again…

Looking back on that day a part of me can’t help but smile. It can be cute at times to see little children sin, and then learn the hard way that whatever they did was wrong.

I wish that I could say I learned from that moment and never stole again…

Did you ever take your brothers toy? Did you succumb to teen pressures and steal from a store in your youth? Have you ever taken something that did not rightfully belong to you? Perhaps there are some out there who can honestly say that they have never taken an object that was not theirs. My hat comes off to you, but that does not mean you have kept this commandment.

You may have noticed a trend with these Commandment blogs. God is just as interested in the attitudes of our hearts as in he is in our keeping the letter of these laws. You may not have murdered but that does not mean you have kept the 5th Commandment. You may not have had sex with anyone but your husband or wife but that does not mean you have kept the 6th Commandment. The same is true for the 7th Commandment.

Have you ever, even just once, had an off day and slacked off a little at work? You realize that you are stealing from your employer when you fail to apply yourself fully to your job, don’t you?

Have you always given your first and best to God in the offering plate on Sunday? Do you realize that everything is from God and belongs to God so that a failure to give back to him what he deserves is stealing from God? Did you know that a misuse of our gifts from God (that includes even our ability to walk, talk, and breathe) is stealing from God because he expects us to use his possessions for his glory at all times and in all places?

Again we find ourselves in a pretty sticky situation. Just one of these lapses is enough to earn us hell. So again we turn to Jesus. He kept this law and all the others perfectly for us. “Through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.” Not only did he keep this law when we couldn’t, but he also paid the debt we owe for our failure to keep the law. “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: ‘Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.’”

Wow. I am forgiven for stealing that pack of gum as a child. I am forgiven for my sins of theft, so are you! So where do we go from here? We are forgiven… now what? I will share with you what Paul shared with some early Christians in Ephesus. “He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.”

You shall not steal.

What does this mean?

We should fear and love God that we do not take our neighbor’s money or property, or get it by dishonest dealing, but help him to improve and protect his property and means of income.

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Posted on October 26, 2011, in Church, Preschool and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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