Practised by the Ishmaelites ( Genesis 16:12 ), the Chaldeans and Sabeans ( Job 1:15 Job 1:17 ), and the men of Shechem ( Judges 9:25 . See also 1 Samuel 27:6-10 ; 30 ; Hosea 4:2 ; 6:9 ). Robbers infested Judea in our Lord's time ( Luke 10:30 ; John 18:40 ; Acts 5:36 Acts 5:37 ; 21:38 ; 2 co 11:26 ). The words of the Authorized Version, "counted it not robbery to be equal," etc. (Phil Acts 2:6 Acts 2:7 ), are better rendered in the Revised Version, "counted it not a prize to be on an equality," etc., i.e., "did not look upon equality with God as a prize which must not slip from his grasp" = "did not cling with avidity to the prerogatives of his divine majesty; did not ambitiously display his equality with God."
"Robbers of churches" should be rendered, as in the Revised Version, "of temples." In the temple at Ephesus there was a great treasure-chamber, and as all that was laid up there was under the guardianship of the goddess Diana, to steal from such a place would be sacrilege ( Acts 19:37 ).
Robbery has ever been one of the principal employments of the nomad tribes of the East. From the time of Ishmael to the present day the Bedouin has been a "wild man," and a robber by trade. ( Genesis 16:12 ) The Mosaic law on the subject of theft is contained in ( Exodus 2:2 ) There seems no reason to suppose that the law underwent any alteration in Solomons time. Man-stealing was punishable with death. ( Exodus 21:16 ; 24:7 ) Invasion of right in land was strictly forbidden. ( 27:17 ; Isaiah 5:8 ; Micah 2:2 )