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Thou Shall Not Steal

(3)

Sermon shared by Carl Allen

October 2009
Summary: This 8th Commandment, is one that is violated more then we can imagine and is a eye opener to even Christians on how we often violate the love of God.
Denomination: Baptist
Audience: General adults
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II. Stealing is a Violation of a Loyalty
a. As an Employee
Employee theft costs companies billions of dollars every year, somewhere in the neighborhood of $120 billion.
o According to USA Today, 48% of all American workers took something from an employer last year.
o People do this by taking things home, selling things without their employers knowledge and pocketing the money, taking kickbacks, falsifying time records, wasting time while at work, and so on.

Many years ago a young boy in a small village was working in a general store when a man entered and ordered some cloth. Observing that the owner of the establishment wasnt there, the customer suggests the boy cheat a little and gives him an extra yard or two. Itll be all right, son, he said. Non one will ever know about it. Your master isnt in. Looking somewhat stunned, the youngster quickly replied, Oh, but youre mistaken, sir. My Master is always in! You see, Im a Christian. He was conscious of the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit.

After one preacher finished preaching on this subject, a young man came to him and said, Pastor, you have put me in a bad fix. Ive stolen from my employer, and Im ashamed to tell him about it. You see, Im a boat builder, and the man I work for is an unbeliever. I have often talked to him about Christ, but he only laughs at me. In my work, expensive copper nails are used because they wont rust in water. Ive been taking some of them home for a boat I am building in my backyard. Im afraid if I tell my boss what Ive done and offer to pay for them, hell think Im a hypocrite, and Ill never be able to reach him for Christ. Yet, my conscience is bothered.
Later when the man saw the preacher again, he exclaimed, Pastor, Ive settled that matter and Im so relieved. What happened when you told your boss? Oh, he looked at me intently and said, George, Ive always thought you were a hypocrite, but now Im not so sure. Maybe theres something to your Christianity after all. Any religion that makes a man admits hes been stealing a few copper nails and offer to stele for them must be worth having.
Anytime we take things that are not ours from an employer, we are guilty of stealing.
o Whether it is time, or materials, the result is the same!
o Notice what God has to say to employers are well though.
b. As an Employer
When employees are underpaid, over worked and treated badly, this too is a form of stealing!
God has certain principles, which are to be followed by employers.
Take Colossians 4:1 for example, Masters grant to your slaves justice and fairness, knowing that you too have a Master in heaven.
However, I am of the opinion that there is less theft among employers than there is among employees!
c. In Our Ethics
Often, we are guilty of stealing in various areas of our lives.
o Things like taxes, keeping our word, honoring our debts, borrowing things and not returning them.
o When we are obligated to do something, we should do it!
o When we dont, we have stolen.
o When we owe a debt, or taxes etc, then we also must pay that, or, again, we are guilty of stealing before God.
One Sunday morning, Charles Finney preached a message entitled The Sin of Borrowing Things and Not Returning Them. He said, When I went to my tool shed yesterday with some men on hand to do
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