Exodus 22:1-31



      The following four files contain my comments on chapter 21-23.  They are divided as follows:


1.   21:1-11 - The duty toward Hebrew, male and female purchased servants.

2.   21:12-36 - The duty toward murderers and their victims.

3.   Chapter 22 - The duty in lessor offenses.

4.   Chapter 23 - The duty in lessor offenses and instructions as to the proper worship of God.


The duty in lessor offenses


A.  The duty toward a thief.

1.   Today's judicial system is wrong.

a.   The thief robs actively - when he robs the victim of his property.

b.   The thief robs passively - when he is put in jail and supported by the taxpayers.  His family is probably supported by the taxpayers too.

2.   The bible way is right for all concerned.

a.   Verse 1, If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.  The thief replaced the non-recovered item with for or five additional items.

b.   Verse 4, If the theft be certainly found in his hand alive, whether it be ox, or ass, or sheep; he shall restore double.  The thief replaced the recovered item with two of the item.

c.   Verse 2,3, If a thief be found breaking up, and be smitten that he die, there shall no blood be shed for him. {3} If the sun be risen upon him, there shall be blood shed for him; for he should make full restitution; if he have nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.  If the thief is killed while stealing, nothing shall be done.

d.   Prov. 6:30,31 - If a hungry thief is caught, he shall restore seven times.

e.   Deut. 17:12 - If a man refuses to accept these judgments, he shall be killed.

f.    If these laws of God were carried out, we would have no need of thief insurance, or locks on our doors.  The victim wouldn't have to pay for protection, the criminal would.

B.   Verse 5,6, If a man shall cause a field or vineyard to be eaten, and shall put in his beast, and shall feed in another man's field; of the best of his own field, and of the best of his own vineyard, shall he make restitution. {6} If fire break out, and catch in thorns, so that the stacks of corn, or the standing corn, or the field, be consumed therewith; he that kindled the fire shall surely make restitution.  The duty towards destruction of another property - restitution.

C.   The duty toward borrowed goods.

1.   Verse 7-9, The article is stolen.

a.   Verse 7, If a man shall deliver unto his neighbour money or stuff to keep, and it be stolen out of the man's house; if the thief be found, let him pay double. The thief repays double.

b.   Verse 8, If the thief be not found, then the master of the house shall be brought unto the judges, to see whether he have put his hand unto his neighbour's goods.  The borrower cleared.

c.   Verse 9, For all manner of trespass, whether it be for ox, for ass, for sheep, for raiment, or for any manner of lost thing, which another challengeth to be his, the cause of both parties shall come before the judges; and whom the judges shall condemn, he shall pay double unto his neighbour.  A total consent to the judges decisions.

2.   Verse 10-15 - The article is lost or destroyed.

a.   Verse 10,11, If a man deliver unto his neighbour an ass, or an ox, or a sheep, or any beast, to keep; and it die, or be hurt, or driven away, no man seeing it: {11} Then shall an oath of the LORD be between them both, that he hath not put his hand unto his neighbour's goods; and the owner of it shall accept thereof, and he shall not make it good.  Protection for the borrower from events beyond his control.  No restitution is made.

b.   Verse 12, And if it be stolen from him, he shall make restitution unto the owner thereof.  If it's stolen (and the thief is not found), the borrower shall make restitution for he should have watched more closely.

c.   Verse 13, If it be torn in pieces, then let him bring it for witness, and he shall not make good that which was torn.  He finds the animal torn, no restitution made for he did what he could to save the animal.

3.   Verse 14,15, And if a man borrow ought of his neighbour, and it be hurt, or die, the owner thereof being not with it, he shall surely make it good. {15} But if the owner thereof be with it, he shall not make it good: if it be an hired thing, it came for his hire.  If borrower is using the lenders goods and they are destroyed:

a.   The lender not present - restitution made for the borrower destroyed it.

b.   The lender present - no restitution made for the lender is responsible when he is present.

D.  Verse 16,17, And if a man entice a maid that is not betrothed, and lie with her, he shall surely endow her to be his wife. {17} If her father utterly refuse to give her unto him, he shall pay money according to the dowry of virgins.  Duty towards maid - self-explanatory.

E.   Verse 18, Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.  First reference toward killing witches, for they call upon another power except God.

F.   Verse 19, Whosoever lieth with a beast shall surely be put to death.  Beastalogy condemned by death.

G.   The duty toward being a "Christian".

1.   Verse 20, He that sacrificeth unto any god, save unto the LORD only, he shall be utterly destroyed.  Sacrifice only to God.

2.   Verse 21-24, Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt. {22} Ye shall not afflict any widow, or fatherless child. {23} If thou afflict them in any wise, and they cry at all unto me, I will surely hear their cry; {24} And my wrath shall wax hot, and I will kill you with the sword; and your wives shall be widows, and your children fatherless.  Treat strangers as God treated you in Egypt.  (Matt 7:12 - the "Golden Rule" - the fulfilling of the law and the prophets.)

3.   Verse 25-27, If thou lend money to any of my people that is poor by thee, thou shalt not be to him as an usurer, neither shalt thou lay upon him usury. {26} If thou at all take thy neighbour's raiment to pledge, thou shalt deliver it unto him by that the sun goeth down: {27} For that is his covering only, it is his raiment for his skin: wherein shall he sleep? and it shall come to pass, when he crieth unto me, that I will hear; for I am gracious.  In lending money - don't take so much collateral or interest as to hurt the borrower.  God will count it against you.

4.   Verse 28, Thou shalt not revile the gods, nor curse the ruler of thy people.  Don't bring into contempt by our speech the gods, or the rulers whom God has placed over us.

5.   Verse 29-31, Thou shalt not delay to offer the first of thy ripe fruits, and of thy liquors: the firstborn of thy sons shalt thou give unto me. {30} Likewise shalt thou do with thine oxen, and with thy sheep: seven days it shall be with his dam; on the eighth day thou shalt give it me. {31} And ye shall be holy men unto me: neither shall ye eat any flesh that is torn of beasts in the field; ye shall cast it to the dogs.  Give willingly and quickly to God and just as quickly refuse that which is evil.