Summary and Application
The Eighth Commandment
“You shall not steal.” Exodus 20:15
Both public and private sins are included in this prohibition. The eighth commandment condemns theft and robbery. It demands strict integrity in the minutest details of the affairs of life. It forbids overreaching in trade and requires the payment of just debts or wages. Solomon stated this truth when he wrote, “Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in the power of your hand to do so” (Proverbs 3:27). This commandment declares that every attempt to advantage oneself by the ignorance, weakness, or misfortune of another is registered as fraud in the books of heaven. It requires us to practice the golden rule, always treating others the way we desire them to treat us. The eighth commandment requires honesty and fairness in all of our dealings.