The Aseret Hadibrot include a commandment against stealing ( לא תגנב) and one against adultery, and then later include לא תחמד, which is usually translated "do not covet" (including by JPS). It then goes on to list the forbidden objects of this verb (your neighbor's house, wife, etc). My question is about what exactly this means -- what is it that we are forbidden to do?
I'm taking it as a given (please correct if I'm wrong) that it has to be different from the other commandments in some way -- each word in torah is there to teach us something and we should not expect redundancy. So, for example, if it's about action, it potentially conflicts with "do not steal" and "do not commit adultery", so those overlaps need to be resolved.
Rashi (and, according to the JPS Miqra'ot G'dolot, the Ramban) resolves the overlap with stealing by saying that the earlier commandment is about kidnapping and the later one about theft, based on position in the list. (The earlier one is listed with capital offenses; kidnapping is a capital offense too but theft is not.) Neither says anything about adultery -- how is not stealing your neighbor's wife different from not committing adultery?
I've heard some others say that the earlier commandments are about adultery and stealing (and that's consistent with גנב being about thievery in some later uses), and thus argue that the last is about intentions. While the mitzvot overwhelmingly are about actions, not thoughts, we do have a couple other thought/feeling-based ones (don't hold a grudge, love God with all your heart, love your fellow as yourself). Again according to the JPS Miqra'ot G'dolot, Hizkuni (whoever that is) says that "don't covet your neighbor's wife" is about neither mere thought nor adultery; rather, it means don't persuade her to divorce (which would make her available). If Hizkuni addresses stealing it's not reported here.
This Shabbat I heard a response to the "covet" (thought) understanding, in the name of Rabbi Joel Hoffman, arguing that it can't just mean "covet" or "desire" because that doesn't make sense when the word is used elsewhere. He points to Sh'mot 34:24, where Yisrael is being commanded in the pilgrimage festivals and God tells them that they needn't worry about leaving their property unguarded -- וְלֹא-יַחְמֹד אִישׁ אֶת-אַרְצְךָ, no man shall (verb) your land. Rabbi Hoffman argues that people can "covet" their land year-round, whether they're there or not, and in context this means they won't take it. But if we follow that reasoning, we still have the adultery problem.
Is לא תגנב about intentions or actions? If actions, which ones and how do we address the overlap with other parts of the Aseret Hadibrot?