Posted by: glorifyhim1 | August 26, 2013

A Jealous Heart

A Jealous Heart

Jealousy can be a very bad thing. In fact, it is included in Paul’s list to the Galatians as a work of the flesh.

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery,[a] fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders,[b] drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

(Galatians 5:19-21)

When we yield to the works of the flesh, we are not living in the power of the Holy Spirit, but are feeding on Satan’s agenda instead. None of us want to do that, but don’t we do it every day? Just consider how we allow jealousy to take root in our hearts, sometimes without our even being aware it’s happening.

  • We’re short on cash while our friends take lavish vacations. We become jealous.
  • No matter how much we do or how hard we work, someone else always gets the recognition and spotlight. We become jealous.
  • Our work seems so insignificant compared to others. We desire talents and abilities that we see in others. And some people seem to have it all. We become jealous.
  • She’s pretty and he’s handsome. They seem to have everything going for them while we, on the other hand, are just plain and simple and a little short on social graces. We become jealous.

Do you get my drift? A jealous heart is usually birthed out of hurt. The desire, envy, and jealousy we feel are usually much deeper than simply desiring what someone else has. We may be struggling to make ends meet and feel that life’s just not fair. We may truly deserve recognition, but continue to be overlooked. We may be faithful in all we’re doing, but it seems so small compared to the ministries of others. We may feel that nothing is going for us and that everything is going for “them.” We hurt, we become defensive, we become jealous.

How do we deal with such jealousy? First, we need to recognize that no matter how justified we may feel we are, jealousy is sin. Jealousy is consumed with “me,” what I want, how I’m being treated, what I need, on and on. The problem is not with the other person. The problem is with us. The answer to jealousy is surrender. Every time it raises its ugly head, we need to run straight to Jesus and allow His power, the power of the Holy Spirit to put it in its rightful place. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another” (Galatians 5:24-26).

But there is another kind of jealousy. I can remember when my kids were young, I was very jealous – not of them – but over them. I didn’t want anything or anyone to harm or hurt them. I jealously guarded them and prayed for God to protect them and keep them from evil and wrong influences. The closest definition for this type of jealousy would probably be what Webster describes as “vigilant in guarding a possession.” While my kids belonged to God and not my husband and me, God had entrusted them to us to nurture and train. So I wanted to be faithful and vigilant in the responsibility God had given me.

In much the same way, God is also jealous. C.H. Spurgeon, in his sermon entitled “A Jealous God,” delivered March 29, 1863, identifies four areas over which God is jealous.

  • God is jealous over His Deity.

God refuses to allow anyone or anything to usurp His throne.

 “You shall have no other gods before Me.“You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God” (Exodus 20:3-5a).

  • God is jealous over His Sovereignty.

Spurgeon identifies three ways in which man attempts to challenge God’s sovereignty – through sin, self-righteousness, and adherence to false doctrine. Each of these elevate man’s desires above that of the Creator and Scripture confirms God’s zealousness for His will and purposes.

Remember the former things of old,
For I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is none like Me,
10 Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things that are not yet done,
Saying, ‘My counsel shall stand,
And I will do all My pleasure,’”
(Isaiah 46:9-10).

 

  • God is jealous over His Glory.

God created us for His glory.  Everyone who is called by My name, Whom I have created for My glory; I have formed him, yes, I have made him” (Isaiah 43:7). We bring God glory and honor when we live in obedience to His Word, when we love Him and trust Him.

 

8” I am the Lord, that is My name;
And My glory I will not give to another,
Nor My praise to carved images”
(Isaiah 42:8).

 

  • God is jealous over His people.

God loves you and me. He loves us so much that He sent His Son to redeem us and give us access to Himself. God takes His love seriously. There is no length to which He will not go to draw us to Himself. In a way much greater than I could ever show to my own children, God is “vigilant in guarding” His people, His possession.

 

“17 The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing”
(Zephaniah 3:17).

Understanding God’s good jealousy can help us deal with our bad jealousy. Why should we be jealous or envious of others when our God loves and cares for each one of us so much? Or why should we doubt God’s love for us? When God’s people (Zion) questioned His love, God said: 15 “Can a woman forget her nursing child, And not have compassion on the son of her womb?
Surely they may forget, Yet I will not forget you” (Isaiah 49:15).
 

Yet God’s jealousy also holds us accountable. Am I allowing anyone or anything to usurp God’s throne? Do I have unconfessed sin in my life? Do I change what the Scriptures say to please myself or others? Do I reflect God’s glory by walking in obedience to His Word, loving, and trusting in Him whatever my lot or situation? A jealous God is vigilantly watching and guarding us. May we, in turn, serve Him in sincerity and truth and unashamedly be jealous for Him!

“20 According to my earnest expectation and hope that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death.

21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”

(Philippians 1:20-21)

 

 

 

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: