I came across a headline in the Daily News recently that read: “Local man steals nearly $200,000 in merchandise from NRS.” Eager to make sure that our fellow Greyfriar Chase, who works at NRS, was not this “local man,” I clicked on the article and can happily say that Chase is not a thief.
What did stand out to me in this report was the man’s reasoning behind stealing nearly 200 items from his employer to sell on eBay. He said, “I was trying to do good things to achieve certain goals and made a mistake.” The article goes on to say the man no longer has the money he made, since these “good things” and “certain goals” included a wedding, student loans, and a house.
What this man calls a mere “mistake” God calls a “sin.” But have you ever considered why God commands us not to steal?
We could point to the Golden Rule—do unto others as you would like them to do unto you. We could consider what it means to love your neighbor. Or maybe we could talk about the concept of private property.
But I believe that an even more foundational reason exists. God commands us not to steal because He is the Giver of all good things. David had never seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. Jesus taught that if our earthly fathers give their children good gifts, how much more will our Father in heaven give good things to those who ask. And Paul told the Philippians that “God will supply every need of theirs according to His riches.”
Thievery is simply and fundamentally unbelief. When we sin by stealing, we are saying with our actions that we do not believe our Father in heaven will care for our needs. That He doesn’t give us our daily bread. We are believing that, like this local man, there are “good things” and “certain goals” that must be achieved that He will not provide for.
But this is not the case. We know that God Himself has prepared good works for us to do, and that He will provide for all our needs. So believe God, and do not steal.