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Shorter Catechism

𝒬 74. What is required in the eighth commandment?

𝒜. The eighth commandment requireth the lawful procuring and furthering the wealth and outward estate of ourselves and others.1

  1. Leviticus 25:35

    “If your brother becomes poor and cannot maintain himself with you, you shall support him as though he were a stranger and a sojourner, and he shall live with you.

    Ephesians 4:28

    Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.

    Philippians 2:4

    Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. (ESV)

Larger Catechism

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;1 rendering to everyone his due;2 restitution of goods unlawfully detained from the right owners thereof;3 giving and lending freely, according to our abilities, and the necessities of others;4 moderation of our judgments, wills, and affections concerning worldly goods;5 a provident care and study to get,6 keep, use, and dispose these things which are necessary and convenient for the sustentation of our nature, and suitable to our condition;7 a lawful calling,8 and diligence in it;9 frugality;10 avoiding unnecessary lawsuits,11 and suretyship, or other like engagements;12 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.13

  1. Psalm 15:2

    He who walks blamelessly and does what is right
    and speaks truth in his heart;

    Psalm 15:4

    in whose eyes a vile person is despised,
    but who honors those who fear the Lord;
    who swears to his own hurt and does not change;

    Micah 6:8

    He has told you, O man, what is good;
    and what does the Lord require of you
    but to do justice, and to love kindness,
    and to walk humbly with your God?

    Zechariah 8:16-17

    These are the things that you shall do: Speak the truth to one another; render in your gates judgments that are true and make for peace; do not devise evil in your hearts against one another, and love no false oath, for all these things I hate, declares the Lord.”

    Zechariah 7:4

    Then the word of the Lord of hosts came to me:

    Zechariah 7:10

    do not oppress the widow, the fatherless, the sojourner, or the poor, and let none of you devise evil against another in your heart.” (ESV)

  2. Romans 13:7

    Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed. (ESV)

  3. Leviticus 6:2-5

    “If anyone sins and commits a breach of faith against the Lord by deceiving his neighbor in a matter of deposit or security, or through robbery, or if he has oppressed his neighbor or has found something lost and lied about it, swearing falsely—in any of all the things that people do and sin thereby— if he has sinned and has realized his guilt and will restore what he took by robbery or what he got by oppression or the deposit that was committed to him or the lost thing that he found or anything about which he has sworn falsely, he shall restore it in full and shall add a fifth to it, and give it to him to whom it belongs on the day he realizes his guilt.

    Luke 19:8

    And Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor. And if I have defrauded anyone of anything, I restore it fourfold.” (ESV)

  4. Luke 6:30

    Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back.

    Luke 6:38

    give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”

    1 John 3:17

    But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him?

    Ephesians 4:28

    Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.

    Galatians 6:10

    So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. (ESV)

  5. 1 Timothy 6:6-9

    Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.

    Galatians 6:14

    But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. (ESV)

  6. 1 Timothy 5:8

    But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. (ESV)

  7. Proverbs 27:23-27

    Know well the condition of your flocks,
    and give attention to your herds,
    for riches do not last forever;
    and does a crown endure to all generations?
    When the grass is gone and the new growth appears
    and the vegetation of the mountains is gathered,
    the lambs will provide your clothing,
    and the goats the price of a field.
    There will be enough goats' milk for your food,
    for the food of your household
    and maintenance for your girls.

    Ecclesiastes 2:24

    There is nothing better for a person than that he should eat and drink and find enjoyment in his toil. This also, I saw, is from the hand of God,

    Ecclesiastes 3:12-13

    I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God's gift to man.

    1 Timothy 6:17-18

    As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share,

    Isaiah 38:1

    38:1 In those days Hezekiah became sick and was at the point of death. And Isaiah the prophet the son of Amoz came to him, and said to him, “Thus says the Lord: Set your house in order, for you shall die, you shall not recover.”

    Matthew 11:8

    What then did you go out to see? A man dressed in soft clothing? Behold, those who wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. (ESV)

  8. 1 Corinthians 7:20

    Each one should remain in the condition in which he was called.

    Genesis 2:15

    The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.

    Genesis 3:19

    By the sweat of your face
    you shall eat bread,
    till you return to the ground,
    for out of it you were taken;
    for you are dust,
    and to dust you shall return.” (ESV)

  9. Ephesians 4:28

    Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.

    Proverbs 10:4

    A slack hand causes poverty,
    but the hand of the diligent makes rich.

    Romans 12:11

    Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. (ESV)

  10. John 6:12

    And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost.”

    Proverbs 21:20

    Precious treasure and oil are in a wise man's dwelling,
    but a foolish man devours it. (ESV)

  11. 1 Corinthians 6:1-9

    6:1 When one of you has a grievance against another, does he dare go to law before the unrighteous instead of the saints? Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world is to be judged by you, are you incompetent to try trivial cases? Do you not know that we are to judge angels? How much more, then, matters pertaining to this life! So if you have such cases, why do you lay them before those who have no standing in the church? I say this to your shame. Can it be that there is no one among you wise enough to settle a dispute between the brothers, but brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers? To have lawsuits at all with one another is already a defeat for you. Why not rather suffer wrong? Why not rather be defrauded? But you yourselves wrong and defraud—even your own brothers!

    Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, (ESV)

  12. Proverbs 11:15

    Whoever puts up security for a stranger will surely suffer harm,
    but he who hates striking hands in pledge is secure.

    Proverbs 6:1-6

    6:1 My son, if you have put up security for your neighbor,
    have given your pledge for a stranger,
    if you are snared in the words of your mouth,
    caught in the words of your mouth,
    then do this, my son, and save yourself,
    for you have come into the hand of your neighbor:
    go, hasten, and plead urgently with your neighbor.
    Give your eyes no sleep
    and your eyelids no slumber;
    save yourself like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter,
    like a bird from the hand of the fowler.

    Go to the ant, O sluggard;
    consider her ways, and be wise. (ESV)

  13. Leviticus 25:35

    “If your brother becomes poor and cannot maintain himself with you, you shall support him as though he were a stranger and a sojourner, and he shall live with you.

    Philippians 2:4

    Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.

    Deuteronomy 22:1-4

    22:1 “You shall not see your brother's ox or his sheep going astray and ignore them. You shall take them back to your brother. And if he does not live near you and you do not know who he is, you shall bring it home to your house, and it shall stay with you until your brother seeks it. Then you shall restore it to him. And you shall do the same with his donkey or with his garment, or with any lost thing of your brother's, which he loses and you find; you may not ignore it. You shall not see your brother's donkey or his ox fallen down by the way and ignore them. You shall help him to lift them up again.

    Exodus 23:4-5

    “If you meet your enemy's ox or his donkey going astray, you shall bring it back to him. If you see the donkey of one who hates you lying down under its burden, you shall refrain from leaving him with it; you shall rescue it with him.

    Genesis 47:14

    And Joseph gathered up all the money that was found in the land of Egypt and in the land of Canaan, in exchange for the grain that they bought. And Joseph brought the money into Pharaoh's house.

    Genesis 47:20

    So Joseph bought all the land of Egypt for Pharaoh, for all the Egyptians sold their fields, because the famine was severe on them. The land became Pharaoh's.

    Matthew 22:39

    And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. (ESV)


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Based on Calendar of Readings in the Westminster Standards by Dr. Joey Pipa. Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Copyright ©2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.