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Exodus 22:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall pay five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— “If a man steals an ox or a sheep and slaughters it or sells it, he shall pay five oxen for the ox and four sheep for the sheep.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— If a man steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it, he shall restore five oxen for the ox, and four sheep for the sheep.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— When a man stealeth an ox or a sheep, and slayeth it, or selleth it, with five of the herd, shall he make good—for the ox, or with four of the flock, for the sheep.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— 'When a man doth steal an ox or sheep, and hath slaughtered it or sold it, five of the herd he doth repay for the ox, and four of the flock for the sheep.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— If any man steal an ox or a sheep, and kill or sell it: he shall restore five oxen for one ox, and four sheep for one sheep.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— If a man shal steale an oxe, or a sheepe, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore fiue oxen for an oxe, and foure sheepe for a sheepe.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— And if one steal an ox or a sheep, and kill it or sell it, he shall pay five calves for a calf, and four sheep for a sheep.
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
If x3588
(3588) Complement
כִּי
kiy
{kee}
A primitive particle (the full form of the prepositional prefix) indicating causal relations of all kinds, antecedent or consequent; (by implication) very widely used as a relative conjugation or adverb; often largely modified by other particles annexed.
a man 376
{0376} Prime
אִישׁ
'iysh
{eesh}
Contracted for H0582 (or perhaps rather from an unused root meaning to be extant); a man as an individual or a male person; often used as an adjunct to a more definite term (and in such cases frequently not expressed in translation.).
shall steal 1589
{1589} Prime
גָּנַב
ganab
{gaw-nab'}
A primitive root; to thieve (literally or figuratively); by implication to deceive.
z8799
<8799> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 19885
an ox, 7794
{7794} Prime
שׁוֹר
showr
{shore}
From H7788; a bullock (as a traveller). wall used by mistake for H7791.
or x176
(0176) Complement
אוֹ
'ow
{o}
The first form is presumed to be the 'constructive' or genitival form of the second form which is short for H0185; desire (and so probably in Proverbs 31:4); hence (by way of alternative) or, also if.
a sheep, 7716
{7716} Prime
שֶׂה
seh
{seh}
Probably from H7582 through the idea of pushing out to graze; a member of a flock, that is, a sheep or goat.
and kill 2873
{2873} Prime
טָבַח
tabach
{taw-bakh'}
A primitive root; to slaughter (animals or men).
z8804
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
it, or x176
(0176) Complement
אוֹ
'ow
{o}
The first form is presumed to be the 'constructive' or genitival form of the second form which is short for H0185; desire (and so probably in Proverbs 31:4); hence (by way of alternative) or, also if.
sell 4376
{4376} Prime
מָכַר
makar
{maw-kar'}
A primitive root; to sell, literally (as merchandise, a daughter in marriage, into slavery), or figuratively (to surrender).
z8804
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
it; he shall restore 7999
{7999} Prime
שָׁלַם
shalam
{shaw-lam'}
A primitive root; to be safe (in mind, body or estate); figuratively to be (causatively make) completed; by implication to be friendly; by extension to reciprocate (in various applications).
z8762
<8762> Grammar
Stem - Piel (See H8840)
Mood - Imperfect (See H8811)
Count - 2447
five 2568
{2568} Prime
חָמֵשׁ
chamesh
{khaw-maysh'}
A primitive numeral; five.
oxen 1241
{1241} Prime
בָּקָר
baqar
{baw-kawr'}
From H1239; a beeve or animal of the ox kind of either gender (as used for ploughing); collectively a herd.
for x8478
(8478) Complement
תַּחַת
tachath
{takh'-ath}
From the same as H8430; the bottom (as depressed); only adverbially below (often with prepositional prefix underneath), in lieu of, etc.
an ox, 7794
{7794} Prime
שׁוֹר
showr
{shore}
From H7788; a bullock (as a traveller). wall used by mistake for H7791.
and four 702
{0702} Prime
אַרְבַּע
'arba`
{ar-bah'}
The second form is the masculine form; from H7251; four.
sheep 6629
{6629} Prime
צֹאן
tso'n
{tsone}
From an unused root meaning to migrate; a collective name for a flock (of sheep or goats); also figuratively (of men).
for x8478
(8478) Complement
תַּחַת
tachath
{takh'-ath}
From the same as H8430; the bottom (as depressed); only adverbially below (often with prepositional prefix underneath), in lieu of, etc.
a sheep. 7716
{7716} Prime
שֶׂה
seh
{seh}
Probably from H7582 through the idea of pushing out to graze; a member of a flock, that is, a sheep or goat.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Exodus 22:1-4

_ _ Exodus 22:1-31. Laws concerning theft.

_ _ If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep — The law respects the theft of cattle which constituted the chief part of their property. The penalty for the theft of a sheep which was slain or sold, was fourfold; for an ox fivefold, because of its greater utility in labor; but, should the stolen animal have been recovered alive, a double compensation was all that was required, because it was presumable he (the thief) was not a practised adept in dishonesty. A robber breaking into a house at midnight might, in self-defense, be slain with impunity; but if he was slain after sunrise, it would be considered murder, for it was not thought likely an assault would then be made upon the lives of the occupants. In every case where a thief could not make restitution, he was sold as a slave for the usual term.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Exodus 22:1-6

_ _ Here are the laws,

_ _ I. Concerning theft, which are these: — 1. If a man steal any cattle (in which the wealth of those times chiefly consisted), and they be found in his custody, he must restore double, Exodus 22:4. Thus he must both satisfy for the wrong and suffer for the crime. But it was afterwards provided that if the thief were touched in conscience, and voluntarily confessed it, before it was discovered or enquired into by any other, then he should only make restitution of what he had stolen, and add to it a fifth part, Leviticus 6:4, Leviticus 6:5. 2. If he had killed or sold the sheep or ox he had stolen, and thereby persisted in his crime, he must restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep (Exodus 22:1), more for an ox than for a sheep because the owner, besides all the other profit, lost the daily labour of his ox. This law teaches us that fraud and injustice, so far from enriching men, will impoverish them: if we unjustly get and keep that which is another's, it will not only waste itself, but it will consume that which is our own. 3. If he was not able to make restitution, he must be sold for a slave, Exodus 22:3. The court of judgment was to do it, and it is probable that the person robbed had the money. Thus with us, in some cases, felons are transported into plantations where alone Englishmen know what slavery is. 4. If a thief broke a house in the night, and was killed in the doing of it, his blood was upon his own head, and should not be required at the hand of him that shed it, Exodus 22:2. As he that does an unlawful act bears the blame of the mischief that follows to others, so likewise of that which follows to himself. A man's house is his castle, and God's law, as well as man's, sets a guard upon it; he that assaults it does so at his peril. Yet, if it was in the day-time that the thief was killed, he that killed him must be accountable for it (Exodus 22:3), unless it was in the necessary defence of his own life. Note, We ought to be tender of the lives even of bad men; the magistrate must afford us redress, and we must not avenge ourselves.

_ _ II. Concerning trespass, Exodus 22:5. He that wilfully put his cattle into his neighbour's field must make restitution of the best of his own. Our law makes a much greater difference between this and other thefts than the law of Moses did. The Jews hence observed it as a general rule that restitution must always be made of the best, and that no man should keep any cattle that were likely to trespass upon his neighbours or do them any damage. We should be more careful not to do wrong than not to suffer wrong, because to suffer wrong is only an affliction, but to do wrong is a sin, and sin is always worse than affliction.

_ _ III. Concerning damage done by fire, Exodus 22:6. He that designed only the burning of thorns might become accessory to the burning of corn, and should not be held guiltless. Men of hot and eager spirits should take heed, lest, while they pretend only to pluck up the tares, they root out the wheat also. If the fire did mischief, he that kindled it must answer for it, though it could not be proved that he designed the mischief. Men must suffer for their carelessness, as well as for their malice. We must take heed of beginning strife; for, though it seem but little, we know not how great a matter it may kindle, the blame of which we must bear, if, with the madman, we cast fire-brands, arrows, and death, and pretend we mean no harm. It will make us very careful of ourselves, if we consider that we are accountable, not only for the hurt we do, but for the hurt we occasion through inadvertency.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Exodus 22:1

Five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep — More for an ox than for a sheep, because the owner, besides all the other profit, lost the daily labour of his ox. If we were not able to make restitution, he must be sold for a slave: the court of judgment was to do it, and it is likely the person robbed received the money. Thus with us in some cases, felons are transported to the Plantations, where only, Englishmen know what slavery is. But let it be observed, the sentence is not slavery, but banishment: nor can any Englishman be sold, unless he first indent himself to the captain that carries him over.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Exodus 22:1

If a man shall steal an (a) ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep.

(a) Either a great beast of the herd, or a small beast of the flock.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
sheep:
or, goat

he shall:
There is a smaller compensation required in other things (
Exodus 22:9 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.
), and also a disproportion between an ox and a sheep. The reason of the former is, as Maimonides explains it, because money, goods, etc., are better guarded in houses and cities, than cattle in a field; which consequently can be more easily stolen. The reason of the latter seems to be, as it is explained by Bishop Patrick, that an ox was of greater value, and more useful for the purposes of husbandry.
Leviticus 6:1-6 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, ... And he shall bring his trespass offering unto the LORD, a ram without blemish out of the flock, with thy estimation, for a trespass offering, unto the priest:
Numbers 5:7 Then they shall confess their sin which they have done: and he shall recompense his trespass with the principal thereof, and add unto it the fifth [part] thereof, and give [it] unto [him] against whom he hath trespassed.
2 Samuel 12:6 And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.
Proverbs 6:31 But [if] he be found, he shall restore sevenfold; he shall give all the substance of his house.
Luke 19:8 And Zacchaeus stood, and said unto the Lord; Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor; and if I have taken any thing from any man by false accusation, I restore [him] fourfold.

five oxen:

Proverbs 14:4 Where no oxen [are], the crib [is] clean: but much increase [is] by the strength of the ox.
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Ex 22:9. Lv 6:1. Nu 5:7. 2S 12:6. Pv 6:31; 14:4. Lk 19:8.

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