Compassion in Music

A nearby church has been listening to God through the Ten Commandments.  As part of their effort to hear God speak afresh, they commissioned Ken Medema, well-known Christian recording artist, to write a song about each one of the Commandments. Each week a Commandment song has been presented in the worship services.

The Eighth Commandment — “Thou shalt not steal” — is not normally associated with compassion.  But Medema’s song exposes a compassionate side to the straightforward warning against taking what is not ours.  Here are the first two verses:

If I live as if the world and its wealth were my private property,
While my sisters and my brothers live in grinding poverty,
Is this not stealing?
Surely, it must be,
When some folk live with nothing at all and some in luxury.

If I feast until I am more than filled and throw the rest away,
While my sisters and my brothers live with nothing to eat today,
Is this not stealing?
What is there more to say,
When some folk have too much to each and some are turned away?

Lord forgive us all our stealing ways
And turn our hearts again to you,
Your commandment to obey.

(Ken Medema Music/Brier Patch Music/ASCAP, 2012)

Surely Medema has his finger on the pulse of compassion; it begins with an attitude of stewardship!


  1. Carolyn Schilstra says:

    What is the title of the Ken Medema song that is about the 8th commandment that you quote?
    We would like to sing it during one of our church services.

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