“For every breach of trust, whether it is for an ox, for a donkey, for a sheep, for a cloak, or for any kind of lost thing, of which one says, “This is it”, the case of both parties shall come before God.” (Ex 22:9)
In Exodus 22, the rules for what should happen when a neighbor has been trusted to watch over his neighbor’s goods are dictated by Moses. If the neighbor steals the goods or loses them, it is described as a ‘breach of trust’. Trust is earned and lost by our actions. If we say that we will do something and fail to do it – the trust has been broken. In an honest and trustworthy person, their words are closely connected to their actions. As James said, they let their “Yes be yes” and their “no be no” (Jas. 5:12). God honors the one that “swears to his own hurt and does not change.” (Ps. 15:4)
Conversely, an untrustworthy man sees little connection between his words and his actions. He will say whatever he feels in the moment and then change it again as the situation suits him.
So what is the Christian to do with this information? We must recognize that forgiveness should flow freely, but trust is earned. A wrong can be forgiven, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you will be trusted to keep their oxen safe in the future. If we wish to be trusted, we must speak and live consistently.
“It is better that you should not vow than that you should vow and not pay.” (Eccl 5:5)
Matt. 4:4 #Biblebites