Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Studying the laws of God: Stolen Property

Exodus 22
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.
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.
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.

When I left Houston, Texas in 2004 to go on the road with my boyfriend, I knew that I couldn't take many of the things I valued with me. My son lived with his father just two blocks away from me at the time. His father and I had somehow remained friends through the years.

I decided to give my son his immediate inheritance and leave with nothing but my ID and my clothes; so, I packed up all of my belongings and took them to my son's father's house.

There was one item that I left in his father's care that I wanted back -- my guitar. My dad gave me that guitar when I turned 14 years old. I loved it.

Much has happened since then, and I am sure the guitar is gone for good. I would not expect to ever get it back, and I will not ask for it.

However, if someone had stolen the guitar from my son's father, and he knew who stole it, and if the guitar were found, then the thief would owe me double the value of the guitar with it's return.

If the thief was not found, I could take his father to court to determine whether or not he may have sold it and claimed it was stolen or otherwise. At any rate, in any conflict that concerns stolen property the courts are required to be involved, and the judge has a right to intervene.

If my son's father said, "What guitar? That's MY guitar!" and the judge rules that it is, indeed, HIS guitar (regardless of the truth), then I owe his father double the cost of the guitar just for the trouble of taking him to court.

I traveled over 40 states in four months. I saw the country and learned to appreciate how small the world actually was. I saw the majestic beauty of God's creation unfold in front of me on a daily basis. I learned to love and value my land, my freedom, and my God through this experience. Today, I look back and see that it was worth the loss of my valued property to me in order to have had this experience.

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