Thieves should stop stealing (Eph. 4:28)

“Thieves

Must give up stealing.

Rather let them labor,

And work honestly

With their hands,

So as to have something

To share

With the needy.”

ὁ κλέπτων μηκέτι κλεπτέτω, μᾶλλον δὲ κοπιάτω ἐργαζόμενος ταῖς ἰδίαις χερσὶν τὸ ἀγαθόν, ἵνα ἔχῃ μεταδιδόναι τῷ χρείαν ἔχοντι.

Paul said, “Thieves (ὁ κλέπτων) must give up or stop stealing (μηκέτι κλεπτέτω).  Rather let them labor (μᾶλλον δὲ κοπιάτω), and work honestly with their hands (ἐργαζόμενος ταῖς ἰδίαις χερσὶν τὸ ἀγαθόν), so as to have something to share (ἵνα ἔχῃ μεταδιδόναι) with the needy (τῷ χρείαν ἔχοντι).”  Paul then explained what the Ephesian Christians should do.  The former thieves in their community should stop robbing people and get an honest job by working with their hands.  Then they too could help the real needy people in the community.  The former converted thieves should get an honest job and contribute to society so that they could share with those who really need help.  The assumption was that needy people did not steal.  Have you ever stolen anything?

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