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A Politician's "Searching and Fearless Moral Inventory"

Have I Obeyed the Eighth Commandment?


The Bible says "Thou shalt not steal." The politician adds, "except by majority vote."

The Bible and the State are moving in diametrically opposed directions.

This page is adapted from our Ten Commandments Checklist, to show the conflict between the Law of God and the State.


The Westminster Larger Catechism (1648) explains our duties under the Eighth Commandment. [Why the Westminster Standards are important for Americans.]

How to use the Catechism for a Moral Inventory

First, you must agree that the Catechism has correctly explained the implications of the Commandment. Assuming it has, you must agree with God that you are obligated to carry out those principles in your life. This page is a checklist for you to discern your agreement.

Second you must ask yourself if you have violated each aspect of the command.

Third, you must take steps to develop the Character of Christ, and eliminate "character defects" from your life.


For each item below, do the following:
 
1. Understand the Scripture proof-text. You will notice that the brilliant Puritan Theologians who compiled the Catechism discerned sins and duties in passages of Scripture which do not begin with the words "Thou shalt" or "Thou shalt not."
Every word of God is a command for us.
But even the "thou shalts" and the "thou shalt nots" demand more from us than we might first think:
How to Study the Ten Commandments

If you do not understand the Scripture proof-text after reading the pages above, write to me.

2. If you understand the Scripture text, but do not agree that the duty spelled out is in fact commanded to God, explain to me why not. I'm open-minded. In fact, you will find several places where I have already indicated my disagreement with the Catechism. On the whole, however, I think the Catechism is amazing in its accuracy.

3. If you can think of other duties which might be meaningful in the lives of others, please send them to me so I can include them here as well.


Question 140: Which is the eighth commandment?
Answer: The eighth commandment is, Thou shalt not steal.

Question 141: What are the duties required in the eighth commandment?
Answer: The duties required in the eighth commandment are, truth, faithfulness, and justice in contracts and commerce between man and man; rendering to everyone his due; restitution of goods unlawfully detained from the right owners thereof; giving and lending freely, according to our abilities, and the necessities of others; moderation of our judgments, wills, and affections concerning worldly goods; a provident care and study to get, keep, use, and dispose these things which are necessary and convenient for the sustentation of our nature, and suitable to our condition; a lawful calling, and diligence in it; frugality; avoiding unnecessary lawsuits and suretyship, or other like engagements; and an endeavor, by all just and lawful means, to procure, preserve, and further the wealth and outward estate of others, as well as our own.

Question 142: What are the sins forbidden in the eighth commandment?
Answer: The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment, besides the neglect of the duties required, are, theft, robbery, man_stealing, and receiving anything that is stolen; fraudulent dealing, false weights and measures, removing land marks, injustice and unfaithfulness in contracts between man and man, or in matters of trust; oppression, extortion, usury, bribery, vexatious lawsuits, unjust enclosures and depopulations; engrossing commodities to enhance the price; unlawful callings, and all other unjust or sinful ways of taking or withholding from our neighbor: What belongs to him, or of enriching ourselves; covetousness; inordinate prizing and affecting worldly goods; distrustful and distracting cares and studies in getting, keeping, and using them; envying at the prosperity of others; as likewise idleness, prodigality, wasteful gaming; and all other ways whereby we do unduly prejudice our own outward estate, and defrauding ourselves of the due use and comfort of that estate which God has given us.


Q. 140. Which is the eighth commandment?
A. The eighth commandment is, Thou shalt not steal. Exod. 20:15

Q. 141. What are the duties required in the eighth commandment?
A. The duties required in the eighth commandment are, truth, faithfulness, and justice in contracts and commerce between man and man; Ps. 15:2, 4; Zech. 7:4, 10; Zech. 8:16-17

Psalms 15:2 He who walks uprightly, And works righteousness, And speaks the truth in his heart; {4} In whose eyes a vile person is despised, But he honors those who fear the LORD; He who swears to his own hurt and does not change; When a politician finds that he cannot keep his campaign promises without alienating a special interest group, does he keep them anyway, "to his own hurt?"
Zechariah 7:4 Then the word of the LORD of hosts came to me, saying, {10} Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, The alien or the poor. Let none of you plan evil in his heart Against his brother.' Has there been a government in the history of man that has not ripped off widows in order to fund its pet projects? (Find out about "Fractional Reserve Banking")
Zechariah 8:16-17 These are the things you shall do: Speak each man the truth to his neighbor; Give judgment in your gates for truth, justice, and peace; {17} Let none of you think evil in your heart against your neighbor; And do not love a false oath. For all these are things that I hate,' Says the LORD." Since 1961, no American politician has taken a true oath.

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, rendering to everyone his due; restitution of goods unlawfully detained from the right owners thereof; Lev. 6:2-5; Luke 19:8

Leviticus 6:2-5 "If a person sins and commits a trespass against the LORD by lying to his neighbor about what was delivered to him for safekeeping, or about a pledge, or about a robbery, or if he has extorted from his neighbor, {3} "or if he has found what was lost and lies concerning it, and swears falsely; in any one of these things that a man may do in which he sins: {4} "then it shall be, because he has sinned and is guilty, that he shall restore what he has stolen, or the thing which he has extorted, or what was delivered to him for safekeeping, or the lost thing which he found, {5} "or all that about which he has sworn falsely. He shall restore its full value, add one-fifth more to it, and give it to whomever it belongs, on the day of his trespass offering. If you are robbed, do not expect the State to get your money back. Instead, expect the State to take more money from you in order to pay for the cable TV and weightlifting set which your robber will enjoy during a few short months in prison.

A Biblical Critique of Prisons

Do you want the robber to do what's right, or do you simply want to "punish" him?

Luke 19:8 Then Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, "Look, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold." Restitution 

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, giving and lending freely, according to our abilities, and the necessities of others; Luke 6:30, 38; 1 John 3:17; Eph. 4:28; Gal. 6:10

Luke 6:30,38 "Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back. {38} "Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you." If Jesus says we are not to demand a return of that which was taken from us, is it OK to hire a mafia "enforcer" who will demand our goods back? ("I'll make him an offer he can't refuse.") Can we "vote" for someone to do this for us?
1 John 3:17 But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? If you see someone in need, but do not give him any help, is "I already paid my taxes" an acceptable justification?
Ephesians 4:28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. Politicians do not produce anything of value. They take from others and redistribute it (after taking their cut). Should they get real jobs so that they can give their own money?
Galatians 6:10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith. Is "the State" a good way for us to do good, or is it a way to get others to do good for us?

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, moderation of our judgments, wills, and affections concerning worldly goods; 1 Tim. 6:6-9; Gal. 6:14

1 Timothy 6:6-9 Now godliness with contentment is great gain. {7} For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. {8} And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content. {9} But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and harmful lusts which drown men in destruction and perdition. Will a godly, contented person vote for any politician? What can the State possibly do for a godly, contented person?
Galatians 6:14 But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.  

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, a provident care and study to get, these things which are necessary and convenient for the sustentation of our nature, and suitable to our condition; 1 Tim. 5:8

1 Timothy 5:8 But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. Does the Social Security system make people more provident? Is the Social Security System moral? (Never mind about whether it is "efficient.")

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, a provident care and study to keep, use, and dispose these things which are necessary and convenient for the sustentation of our nature, and suitable to our condition; Prov. 27:23-27; Eccl. 2:24; Eccl. 3:12-13; 1 Tim. 6:17-18; Isa. 38:1; Matt. 11:8

Proverbs 27:23-27 Be diligent to know the state of your flocks, And attend to your herds; {24} For riches are not forever, Nor does a crown endure to all generations. {25} When the hay is removed, and the tender grass shows itself, And the herbs of the mountains are gathered in, {26} The lambs will provide your clothing, And the goats the price of a field; {27} You shall have enough goats' milk for your food, For the food of your household, And the nourishment of your maidservants. When we "delegate" more and more of our responsibilities to the State, does this make us more responsible?
Ecclesiastes 2:24 Nothing is better for a man than that he should eat and drink, and that his soul should enjoy good in his labor. This also, I saw, was from the hand of God.  
Ecclesiastes 3:12-13 I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice, and to do good in their lives, {13} and also that every man should eat and drink and enjoy the good of all his labor; it is the gift of God. Does the State encourage us to labor and to enjoy the fruits of our labor, or does it encourage us to enjoy the fruits of other people's labor?
1 Timothy 6:17-18 Command those who are rich in this present age not to be haughty, nor to trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy. {18} Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share, Do we create a State because we are willing to share, or because we want other people to share?
Isaiah 38:1 In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death. And Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, went to him and said to him, "Thus says the LORD: 'Set your house in order, for you shall die and not live.'" The State promises us security from womb to tomb. Does this not make humanists of us all, putting our focus on the State as organized humanity, rather than God?
Matthew 11:8 "But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. Note the contrast between a genuine prophet of God (John the Baptist) and politicians, who are among the wealthiest in society.

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, a lawful calling, 1 Cor. 7:20; Gen. 2:15; Gen. 3:19

1 Corinthians 7:20 Let each one remain in the same calling in which he was called.  
Genesis 2:15 Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.  
Genesis 3:19 In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread Till you return to the ground, For out of it you were taken; For dust you are, And to dust you shall return." Do those who aspire to political power aim for a lawful calling?

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, a lawful calling, and diligence in it; Eph. 4:28; Prov. 10:4

Ephesians 4:28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. Does the State encourage diligence?
Proverbs 10:4 He who has a slack hand becomes poor, But the hand of the diligent makes rich. Can the State make us rich? Can the State bring prosperity?

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, frugality; John 6:12; Prov. 21:20

John 6:12 So when they were filled, He said to His disciples, "Gather up the fragments that remain, so that nothing is lost." Is the State frugal?
Proverbs 21:20 There is desirable treasure, And oil in the dwelling of the wise, But a foolish man squanders it. Does the State encourage frugality?

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, avoiding unnecessary lawsuits, 1 Cor. 6:1-9

1 Corinthians 6:1-9 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? {2} Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? {3} Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life? {4} If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? {5} I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you, not even one, who will be able to judge between his brethren? {6} But brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers! {7} Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? {8} No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren! {9} Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, Justice: The Overlooked Monopoly

The Costs of Lawsuit abuse (off-site)

Defending Civil Society (off-site)

A "Liberal" Justice System (off-site)

Wacky labels highlight litigious society (off-site)

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, suretiship, or other like engagements; Prov. 6:1-6; Prov. 11:15

Proverbs 6:1-6 My son, if you become surety for your friend, If you have shaken hands in pledge for a stranger, {2} You are snared by the words of your mouth; You are taken by the words of your mouth. {3} So do this, my son, and deliver yourself; For you have come into the hand of your friend: Go and humble yourself; Plead with your friend. {4} Give no sleep to your eyes, Nor slumber to your eyelids. {5} Deliver yourself like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, And like a bird from the hand of the fowler. {6} Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, The Larger Catechism is saying that becoming surety for someone is a violation of God's Commandment, "Thou shalt not steal." How is this so? Have we become sureties for communist dictatorships by allowing our government to give them no-interest or low-interest loans? Is the Social Security system a massive system of suretyship? What about the thousands of students who have government loans, which you will repay if they fail to do so?
Proverbs 11:15 He who is surety for a stranger will suffer, But one who hates being surety is secure.  

The duties required in the eighth commandment are, an endeavor, by all just and lawful means, to procure, preserve, and further the wealth and outward estate of others, as well as our own. Lev. 25:35; Deut. 22:1-4; Exod. 23:4-5; Gen. 47:14, 20; Phil. 2:4; Matt. 22:39

Leviticus 25:35 'If one of your brethren becomes poor, and falls into poverty among you, then you shall help him, like a stranger or a sojourner, that he may live with you. Does this verse say that if we see some in need, that we can "vote" for a politician to levy a tax on someone we don't like to make him help the needy?
Deuteronomy 22:1-4 "You shall not see your brother's ox or his sheep going astray, and hide yourself from them; you shall certainly bring them back to your brother. {2} "And if your brother is not near you, or if you do not know him, then you shall bring it to your own house, and it shall remain with you until your brother seeks it; then you shall restore it to him. {3} "You shall do the same with his donkey, and so shall you do with his garment; with any lost thing of your brother's, which he has lost and you have found, you shall do likewise; you must not hide yourself. {4} "You shall not see your brother's donkey or his ox fall down along the road, and hide yourself from them; you shall surely help him lift them up again. The Bible requires personalism. We must act.
Exodus 23:4-5 "If you meet your enemy's ox or his donkey going astray, you shall surely bring it back to him again. {5} "If you see the donkey of one who hates you lying under its burden, and you would refrain from helping it, you shall surely help him with it.  
Genesis 47:14,20 And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt and in the land of Canaan, for the grain which they bought; and Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh's house. {20} Then Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh; for every man of the Egyptians sold his field, because the famine was severe upon them. So the land became Pharaoh's. We are commanded to "save for a rainy day."

Joseph received a direct vision from God, as a part of God's miraculous and supernatural destruction of Pharaoh's Empire. Do ordinary politicians have this kind of direct contact with God? Should we "vote" for them to take money from others to save up for our rainy day?

Philippians 2:4 Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Can we "delegate" this duty to politicians and bureaucrats?
Matthew 22:39 "And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'  

Q. 142. What are the sins forbidden in the eighth commandment?
A. The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment, besides the neglect of the duties required,  James 2:15-16; 1 John 3:17  are,

James 2:15-16 If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, {16} and one of you says to them, "Depart in peace, be warmed and filled," but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Can we instead say, "I voted for compassionate politicians?"
1 John 3:17 But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? Can we say instead, "That's why I pay taxes?"

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, theft, Eph. 4:28

Ephesians 4:28 Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. Taxation is theft.

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, robbery, Ps. 62:10

Psalms 62:10 Do not trust in oppression, Nor vainly hope in robbery; If riches increase, Do not set your heart on them. Politicians are robbers.

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, man-stealing, 1 Tim 1:10

1 Timothy 1:10 for fornicators, for sodomites, for kidnappers, for liars, for perjurers, and if there is any other thing that is contrary to sound doctrine, If I discover that you are using herbs which have not been approved by the FDA, and I lock you up in my basement with a couple of sociopathic psychos, and will not release you until you "post bail," how am I different from (a) the State's prison system (b) kidnappers?

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, and receiving any thing that is stolen; Prov. 29:24; Ps. 50:18

Proverbs 29:24 Whoever is a partner with a thief hates his own life; He swears to tell the truth, but reveals nothing.  
Psalms 50:18 When you saw a thief, you consented with him, And have been a partaker with adulterers.  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, fraudulent dealing, 1 Thess. 4:6

1 Thessalonians 4:6 that no one should take advantage of and defraud his brother in this matter, because the Lord is the avenger of all such, as we also forewarned you and testified.  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, false weights and measures, Prov. 11:1; Prov. 20:10

Proverbs 11:1 Dishonest scales are an abomination to the LORD, But a just weight is His delight.  
Proverbs 20:10 Diverse weights and diverse measures, They are both alike, an abomination to the LORD.  
  Study False Weights and Measures

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, removing landmarks, Deut. 19:14; Prov. 23:10

Deuteronomy 19:14 "You shall not remove your neighbor's landmark, which the men of old have set, in your inheritance which you will inherit in the land that the LORD your God is giving you to possess. See R.J. Rushdoony, "Landmark and Land" under the Eighth Commandment in Institutes of Biblical Law, pp. 448-493.
Proverbs 23:10 Do not remove the ancient landmark, Nor enter the fields of the fatherless; See also "Social Inheritance: Landmarks" in ibid., pp. 328-332. The State establishes itself by destroying landmarks and confiscating property. A State cannot exist without violating these commandments. If all the citizens of a jurisdiction agree voluntarily to pool their property, you have voluntary communism (Acts 2:44-45), but not "the State." By definition, the State is permitted to use force to confiscate property from the uncooperative. To continue confiscating property without too great resistance, the State must also destroy moral standards and social landmarks.

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, injustice and unfaithfulness in contracts between man and man, Amos 8:5; Ps. 37:21

Amos 8:5 Saying: "When will the New Moon be past, That we may sell grain? And the Sabbath, That we may trade wheat? Making the ephah small and the shekel large, Falsifying the scales by deceit,  
Psalms 37:21 The wicked borrows and does not repay, But the righteous shows mercy and gives. The modern debt-state can never repay its debts. Many people consider themselves "progressive," "compassionate," and "righteous" because they "vote" for a system which steals from people today and promises "security" for people tomorrow.
     Senator William Proxmire: "...there are 37 million people, is that right, that get Social Security benefits?"
     Social Security Commissioner James Cardwell: "Today between 32 and 34 million."
     Proxmire: "I am a little high; 32 to 34 million people.
Almost all of them, or many of them, are voters. In my state, I figure there are 600,000 voters that receive Social Security. Can you imagine a senator or congressman under those circumstances saying, 'We are going to repudiate that high a proportion of the electorate?' No.
     "Furthermore, we have the capacity under the Constitution, the Congress does, to coin money, as well as to regulate the value thereof. And therefore we have the power to provide that money. And we are going to do it. It may not be worth anything when the recipient gets it, but he is going to get his benefits paid."
     Cardwell: "I tend to agree."
 
(The Social Security System, Hearings Before the Joint Economic Committee, Congress of the United States, 94th Cong., 2nd Session, May 26 and 27, 1976, pp. 27-28. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1977.)

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, injustice and unfaithfulness in matters of trust; Luke 16:10-12

Luke 16:10-12 "He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. {11} "Therefore if you have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches? {12} "And if you have not been faithful in what is another man's, who will give you what is your own? Not only has the government been entrusted with a little, but the government owns virtually half the nation, and takes nearly half our income every year. Has it proven itself to be faithful to its promised stewardship?

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, oppression, Ezek. 22:29; Lev. 25:17

Ezekiel 22:29 "The people of the land have used oppressions, committed robbery, and mistreated the poor and needy; and they wrongfully oppress the stranger. Not only does the government steal from the poor, even when it claims to help the poor, it ends up intensifying their plight.
Leviticus 25:17 'Therefore you shall not oppress one another, but you shall . . . . . . how does this verse end?
  • "redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor."
  • "force employers to pay laborers more than they're worth."
  • "give money to single mothers only if the father leaves the house."

No. Here is the opposite of "oppress one another":

but you shall fear your God; for I am the LORD your God.

The modern State, however, says it must never ever endorse the fear of God, for that might "offend" atheists. The State will not promote the true religion, Christianity. As a result, the nation moves continually toward greater oppression.

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, extortion, Matt. 23:25; Ezek. 22:12

Matthew 23:25 "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cleanse the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of extortion and self-indulgence.
extort
[ik-'st˘rt]

Latin extortus, past participle of extorquere to remove by twisting, obtain by force, from ex- out + torquere to twist

: to obtain (as money) from a person by force, intimidation, or undue or unlawful use of authority or power

Legal Dictionary at FindLaw.com

Ezekiel 22:12 "In you they take bribes to shed blood; you take usury and increase; you have made profit from your neighbors by extortion, and have forgotten Me," says the Lord GOD. What is the IRS but institutionalized extortion?

Regulatory extortion

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, usury, Ps. 15:5

Psalms 15:5 He who does not put out his money at usury, Nor does he take a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall never be moved. If you are late paying your taxes, you must pay interest (usury) and penalties. If the IRS is late refunding over-payment, do you think they will pay you interest for the use of your money?

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, bribery, Job 15:34

Job 15:34 For the company of hypocrites will be barren, And fire will consume the tents of bribery. Despite the protestations of leftists, socialism creates a Bribery Culture. It is not against Biblical Law to bribe someone in order to obtain a just result. It is only prohibited to accept a bribe from an unjust source (seeking an unjust result). Power Corrupts. Bribing corrupt governments is a way of life in many nations today. "Indeed, the tax codes of eight European countries, as well as New Zealand and Australia, make foreign bribes a deductible business expense." (Lew Rockwell) The State is institutionalized corruption.

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, vexatious lawsuits, 1 Cor. 6:6-8; Prov. 3:29-30

1 Corinthians 6:6-8 But brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers! {7} Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? {8} No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren! Behind every judge is an armed marshal. Lawsuits begin where persuasion ends. The Bible says that if persuasion fails you, it is better to be cheated than ask the marshal to point his gun at your neighbor. 
Proverbs 3:29-30 Do not devise evil against your neighbor, For he dwells by you for safety's sake. {30} Do not strive with a man without cause, If he has done you no harm. How much worse to employ the armed marshal against someone who has done you no wrong (something that happens hundreds of times a day in post-Christian America). 

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, unjust inclosures and depopulations; Isa. 5:8; Micah 2:2

Isaiah 5:8 Woe to those who join house to house; They add field to field, Till there is no place Where they may dwell alone in the midst of the land! It seems like every other week the State has added another "National Park" to its holdings. The federal government owns most of the western United States.
Micah 2:2 They covet fields and take them by violence, Also houses, and seize them. So they oppress a man and his house, A man and his inheritance. The fate of the family farm is by now common knowledge. Estates are sold to pay inheritance taxes. The government seizes land daily.

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, ingrossing commodities to enhance the price; Prov. 11:26

Proverbs 11:26 The people will curse him who withholds grain, But blessing will be on the head of him who sells it. Government agriculture policy consists mainly in "ingrossing commodities to enhance the price." When was the last time your pastor preached on this sin? Milk - Cranberries - militia wackos - ADM

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, unlawful callings, Acts 19:19, 24-25

Acts 19:19,24-25 Also, many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted up the value of them, and it totaled fifty thousand pieces of silver. {24} For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith, who made silver shrines of Diana, brought no small profit to the craftsmen. {25} He called them together with the workers of similar occupation, and said: "Men, you know that we have our prosperity by this trade. Ask 100 people on a busy city street in socialist Amerika what they "do for a living." Then ask 100 of America's Founding Fathers what they think about the morality of those vocations.

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, all other unjust or sinful ways of taking or withholding from our neighbour what belongs to him, or of enriching ourselves; Job 20:19; James 5:4; Prov. 21:6

Job 20:19 For he has oppressed and forsaken the poor, He has violently seized a house which he did not build.  
James 5:4 Indeed the wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out; and the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of Sabaoth.  
Proverbs 21:6 Getting treasures by a lying tongue Is the fleeting fantasy of those who seek death.  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, covetousness; Luke 12:15

Luke 12:15 And He said to them, "Take heed and beware of covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of the things he possesses."  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, inordinate prizing and affecting worldly goods; 1 Tim. 6:5; Col. 3:2; Prov. 23:5; Ps. 62:10

1 Timothy 6:5 useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain. From such withdraw yourself.  
Colossians 3:2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.  
Proverbs 23:5 Will you set your eyes on that which is not? For riches certainly make themselves wings; They fly away like an eagle toward heaven.  
Psalm 62:10 Do not trust in oppression, Nor vainly hope in robbery; If riches increase, Do not set your heart on them.  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, distrustful and distracting cares and studies in getting, keeping, and using them; Matt. 6:25, 31, 34; Eccl. 5:12

Matthew 6:25,31,34 "Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? {31} "Therefore do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' {34} "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.  
Ecclesiastes 5:12 The sleep of a laboring man is sweet, Whether he eats little or much; But the abundance of the rich will not permit him to sleep.  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, envying at the prosperity of others; Ps. 73:3; Ps. 37:1, 7

Psalms 73:3 For I was envious of the boastful, When I saw the prosperity of the wicked.  
Psalms 37:1,7 Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. {7} Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass.  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, as likewise idleness, 2 Thess. 3:11; Prov. 18:9

2 Thessalonians 3:11 For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies. Government policies reward lack of employment.
Proverbs 18:9 He who is slothful in his work Is a brother to him who is a great destroyer.  

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, prodigality, wasteful gaming; and all other ways whereby we do unduly prejudice our own outward estate, Prov. 21:17; Prov. 23:20-21; Prov. 28:19

Proverbs 21:17 He who loves pleasure will be a poor man; He who loves wine and oil will not be rich. "Oil" here is not a reference to a commodity that has enriched many of our contemporary politicians.
Proverbs 23:20-21 Do not mix with winebibbers, Or with gluttonous eaters of meat; {21} For the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, And drowsiness will clothe a man with rags.  
Proverbs 28:19 He who tills his land will have plenty of bread, But he who follows frivolity will have poverty enough! Politicians oscillate between prohibiting gaming (gambling) through threats of force and violence, or using gambling to raise funds for their pet projects and to reward special interests ("lottery").

The sins forbidden in the eighth commandment are, defrauding ourselves of the due use and comfort of that estate which God hath given us. Eccl. 4:8; Eccl. 6:2; 1 Tim. 5:8

Ecclesiastes 4:8 There is one alone, without companion: He has neither son nor brother. Yet there is no end to all his labors, Nor is his eye satisfied with riches. But he never asks, "For whom do I toil and deprive myself of good?" This also is vanity and a grave misfortune. Most politicians do not have a problem with this part of the Catechism. It is "do-gooding" liberals who idolize poverty.
Ecclesiastes 6:2 A man to whom God has given riches and wealth and honor, so that he lacks nothing for himself of all he desires; yet God does not give him power to eat of it, but a foreigner consumes it. This is vanity, and it is an evil affliction. God has given man dominion over a planet with abundant wealth. A Godly pursuit of wealth through service and dominion leads to the City of God.
1 Timothy 5:8 But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.