Steal (גָּנִב, κλέπτω). The Mosaic law on the subject of stealing is contained in Exodus 22 and consists of the following enactments:
1. He who stole and killed an ox or a sheep was to restore five oxen for the ox, and four sheep for the sheep.
2. If the stolen animal was found alive, the thief was to restore double.
3. If a man was found stealing in a dwelling house at night and was killed in the act, the homicide was not held guilty of murder.
4. If the act was committed during daylight, the thief might not be killed, but was bound to make full restitution or be sold into slavery.
5. If money or goods deposited in a man's house were stolen therefrom, the thief, when detected, was to pay double; but
6. If the thief could not be found, the master of the house was to be examined before the judges.
7. If an animal given in charge to a man to keep was stolen from him, i.e. through his negligence, he was to make restitution to the owner. SEE OATH.
There seems to be no reason to suppose that the law underwent any alteration in Solomon's time, as Michaelis supposes; the expression in Pr 6:30-31 is that a thief detected in stealing should restore sevenfold, i.e. to the full amount, and for this purpose even give all the substance of his house, and thus in case of failure be liable to servitude (Michaelis, Laws of Moses, § 284). On the other hand, see Bertheau on Proverbs 6; and Keil, Arch. Hebr. § 154. Man stealing was punishable with death (Ex 21:16; De 24:7). Invasion of right in land was strictly forbidden (27:17; Isa 5:8; Mic 2:2). SEE THEFT.