Exodus 22:9

9 In all cases of illegal possession of an ox, a donkey, a sheep, a garment, or any other lost property about which somebody says, ‘This is mine,’ both parties are to bring their cases before the judges.a The one whom the judges declareb guilty must pay back double to the other.

Read Exodus 22:9 Using Other Translations

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.
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. The one whom God condemns shall pay double to his neighbor.
“Suppose there is a dispute between two people who both claim to own a particular ox, donkey, sheep, article of clothing, or any lost property. Both parties must come before God, and the person whom God declares guilty must pay double compensation to the other.

What does Exodus 22:9 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Exodus 22:9

For all manner of trespass
With respect to what is committed to a man's trust, and it is lost to the owner of it, there must be somewhere or other a trespass committed, either by the person into whose hands it was put, or by a thief that has stolen it from him:

whether it be for ox, for ass, for sheep, for raiment, or for any
manner of lost thing
by which it appears that either of these, or any other cattle not named, as well as money and vessels, or household goods, or goods in trade, were sometimes, or might be lodged in the hands of another as a depositum for safety or convenience; and for which, or any other so deposited, and lost,

which another challengeth to be his,
or affirms that he put into the hands of his neighbour, to be kept by him for him; "or who shall say this is he", or "he is" the person into whose hands I put it, or this is "it" F18; such and such were the thing or things I delivered to him:

the cause of both parties shall come before the judges;
who were to hear what each party had to say, and to examine the witnesses each of them brought, and consider the nature of the evidence given, and to judge and determine:

and whom the judges shall condemn;
or "pronounce wicked" F19, as having done a wicked thing; either the one as having brought a false accusation against his neighbour, charging him with a depositum he never had, or the other as having converted it to his own use:

he shall pay double unto his neighbour;
either the depositor, who pretended to be so and was not, but brought a false charge against his neighbour, or a false witness, as Jarchi, such as one was to pay double to the person charged wrongfully; or, on the other hand, the person with whom the depositum was put, if it appeared that he had acted a fraudulent part, and abused his trust, then he was to pay double to the depositor.


FOOTNOTES:

F18 (hz awh yk rmay rva) "qui dixerit quod illud hoc", Montanus; "quum dixerit illud ipsum esse", Junius & Tremellius; "de qua dixerit aliquis illum ipsum esse", Piscator; so Ainsworth.
F19 (Neyvry) Vid. Ainsworth.
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