Tuesday, April 16

Jealousy leads to no good.

Scripture: 1 Samuel 18, 1 Chronicles 6, Psalm 11, Matthew 3

Observation

I am struck by the profoundly negative consequences of allowing jealousy to take root.

When Saul heard the women of Israel singing David’s praise over his own (10,000 to 1,000), he became jealous (v. 7-8), very angry (8), suspicious (9), afraid of David (12, 29), dreading David (15), and conniving and murderous.  In the midst of this, an evil spirit came upon him (10) and he hurled a spear at David.  

Application

First, when we allow jealousy to take root, it leads to other very negative emotions such as anger, suspicion, fear, dread and murderous hatred.  Jealousy leads to no good!  Nip all jealousy in the bud.  Don’t allow it room in your heart.  If you catch yourself feeling jealous, pray a blessing on the person who inspires your jealous feeling.  Overcome evil with good.

Second, it’s possible that harboring jealousy and its attendants (anger, fear, suspicion and hate) opens the door to evil spirits.  I’m not being superstitious.  I believe we have a spiritual adversary (the devil) who seeks to destroy us, and uses whatever foothold or opportunity we might give him.  And I think jealousy can be a spiritual stronghold, an opportunity for the enemy to enslave us.  It certainly was for Saul.  It could be for us.  So “don’t give the devil a foothold.” (Ephesians 4:27)  Nip all jealousy in the bud!

Prayer: Lord, help me to recognize jealousy and deal with it immediately.  Help me to rejoice with those who rejoice, and to celebrate others’ successes without jealousy.