But if he be found, he shall restore sevenfold; he shall give all the substance of his house.
– Proverbs 6:31
Restoring sevenfold is an expression that refers to the law of restitution (Exodus 22:1-4). Sevenfold expresses a severe penalty paid. Theft was a breach between neighbors and restitution was a means of reconciling them. Jesus taught the law was summed up in love for God first and love for neighbor second (Matthew 22:37-40). Coveting and stealing from your neighbor violates that love and restitution is designed to restore it. So a thief who steals because he is hungry, does not incur the utmost condemnation from society and restitution provides a means for him to be reconciled to his neighbor.