Just before Christmas, an Anglican priest in the northern English city of York told his parishioners that poor people struggling to survive should steal food and other essentials from shops, rather than raise money through prostitution, burglary or mugging.
Rather than a sermon telling his hearers to steal from businesses, he should be telling them to take what they need from his own church's collection plate. If he didn't do that because his church is feeling the economic pinch, that brings into question his motive. If his parishioners take his advice and his weekly collection increases, he is benefiting from the crime he instigated and therefore complicit to it.
The question also arises as to whether or not the priest personally practices what he preaches. Does he himself shoplift? If he doesn't, he's a hypocrite. If he does, then he's a criminal. If he says that he doesn't need to shoplift because he is financially sound, then he should be giving to his poor folks, rather than making them into thieves. [my emphasis]
Here is a well known similar situation, source
A woman was near death from a special kind of cancer. There was one drug that the doctors thought might save her. It was a form of radium that a druggist in the same town had recently discovered. The drug was expensive to make, but the druggist was charging ten times what the drug cost him to produce. He paid $200 for the radium and charged $2,000 for a small dose of the drug. The sick woman's husband, Heinz, went to everyone he knew to borrow the money, but he could only get together about $ 1,000, which is half of what it cost. He told the druggist that his wife was dying and asked him to sell it cheaper or let him pay later. But the druggist said, "No, I discovered the drug and I'm going to make money from it." So Heinz got desperate and broke into the man's store to steal the drug for his wife. Should Heinz have broken into the laboratory to steal the drug for his wife? Why or why not?
The focus here is not what Heinz should or should not do. The focus should be on the reasoning. Kohlberg's stages of moral development suggests that Comfort was operating at Stage one moral development stage.
The problem with the ten commandments from the religious is that it is assuming ALL people would/should operate in Stage one of the moral development stage. As it is "set in stone", its inflexibility is making people like Comfort twisting facts, logic and moral values to fit the dead stone commandments.