You shall not steal: A brief sermon on the 8th commandment

This command explicitly says not to steal. In our Scriptures, this is given several applications with respect to its literal meaning.

For instance, it’s considered stealing to sell poor quality goods for high quality prices (Amos 8:4-6), to kidnap, and to manipulate currency values.

But the command also implies two other important things about God’s plan for us.

The first is that God approves of the possession of private property. It is tempting to think God opposes private property due to his strict standards against greed, but if stealing is immoral it must be because the Lord allows people to own things.

Finally, the command against stealing implies that God approves of good hard work, just as the command to observe Sabbath clearly states when God enjoins his people to work six days a week.