Bible Stuff That Won't Bore You

Jealousy is one of the easiest ways we lose our identities as Christians

Okay, so we have all been there, whether it was over someone’s spouse, lifestyle, social circle, financial security, education, physical appearance or even their relationship with God, we have all felt jealous of other people’s blessings at some point. Yes, we may desire certain things, but we should ask ourselves why we want anything so badly we get jealous, especially when it means overlooking everything we have already been blessed with in the first place, to the point where we can actually lose our identities as Christians!

The Enemy Uses Jealousy To Separate Us From God, And Each Other

After having talked with a wide range of Christians, it is common that we voice anger, frustration, hopelessness, and a wide range of negative emotions towards God, all because we do not have what we want in some area(s) of life

It is important to remember how the enemy pounces on these feelings, as they do everything they can to make upset with God over whatever they can get their hands on, but when it comes to getting upset with God over what we feel our lives lack, it is especially destructive as it means we have lost perspective on the value of having a relationship with God in the first place

Knowing God and understanding how to be like him is our earthly reward, as he is love, wisdom, and righteousness itself–this relationship is beyond anything material we could ever receive

Genesis 15:1
I am your shield, your very great reward

Many believers misunderstand this concept, as they are not taught God is their reward when they first become Christians, they are typically told they are going to receive blessings, forgiveness of sins, entrace to heaven, etc…, which is good to talk about, but should not be the focal point of our relationship with him, as God called us to be his friends, not just another name on his gift list

Even though getting upset with God is common, what is really odd, is how a lot of Christians feel comfortable admitting to these feelings of anger/frustration/anxiousness/etc…, and will openly ask for prayer, but it is not as common to admit we are jealous of other people’s blessings when they have something we do not

Why is being jealous less acceptable to admit than being upset with God, sin is sin!


I mean honestly, when was the last time you heard someone say things like:

“You have such an amazing relationship with God it makes me angry, I tell God how mad I am that he does not speak to me or reveal his plan for my life, not to mention I get jealous when people ask you for godly advice”

“Your family looks so happy, it makes me realize how awful my family is, as my husband ignores me, and my children are incredibly disobedient, so whenever I see any of your family I get incredibly jealous”

“You have such a financially blessed life, it makes me so angry as I keep asking God for a better job to get me out of all my credit card debt”

“I feel so alone, whenever I see you and your husband I get upset because God does not answer my prayer for a spouse even though I have been good!”

These things are a bit exaggerated, but you get my point

In all fairness, a lot of people get jealous, and have negative emotions, without even realizing it, as these types of situations remind us of what we feel our lives are lacking, but we do not always identify our reactions as envy or jealousy

For example, just because we do not feel like we are jealous of someone directly, if what someone else has causes us to envy, or get upset with God, it is a reflection of the same thing: we are upset someone else has something we do not, which is the very meaning of jealousy

Now, it is important to understand what this kind of attitude does to our relationship with God, as the enemy’s game in all of this is completely obvious

First, they get us to focus intently on earthly, material things, rather than spiritual rewards, which causes us to get our priorities in life completely out of order, as this lead us to value earthly happiness over eternal, spiritual blessings or God’s presence

Then, once we are focused on seeking earthly blessings more than a relationship with God, the enemy will do everything they can to have us get angry with him, trying to make us feel rejected, unloved or unworthy of receiving what we want because we do not have the earthly blessings that are a distraction to us in the first place

See what they did there!

Based on this, it is important to recognize not everything we want is good for us, especially when what we want is rooted in worldly desires, rather than what God wants, as our entire identity as Christians revolves around loving and obeying God, and loving others as ourselves, not seeking out earthly blessings of any kind!

God did not call us to him so we could receive money, spouses, and careers, he called us so we could know him, and share his love with others by loving one another as ourselves

Luke 10:27
‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’ ; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’

John 13:34-35
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another

I mean come on, Jesus told us we would be recognized as his disciples by the way we loved one another, not by our fancy cars, jobs, houses, spouses, picture perfect families, etc…

As Christians, our identities should revolve around living righteously, and loving others with God’s supernatural love, and should in no way reflect a desire for worldly success that eclipses our desire to serve God, either by taking up too much of our time, conversations or identity, especially around other believers, as the biggest topics of conversation should be what God is doing in our lives, how we are growing, etc…, as we should all be focused on growing closer to God with enthusiasm, not talking like the rest of the world

In fact, if we desire anything more than intimacy with God, or to love others as ourselves, we have lost our very identity as Christians–which is what the enemy wants most

If We Desire Anything In The World More Than A Relationship God, We Have Lost Our True Identities

Have you ever noticed how often we talk about how important God is in our lives, yet we chase after so many worldly things before seeking a deeper relationship with God–the contradiction is, honestly, embarrassing

Jesus said our heart will desire whatever we value most, and that we cannot serve both God and the world, which bears true in our lives, as we often seek the world more than God, not to mention far more than we seek to reach others for the sake of bringing them to God

Matthew 6:19-24
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also

The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money

(The word “Money” above in Greek refers to worldly happiness in all of its forms, as Jesus was not only referring to money, he was saying we cannot serve two things wholeheartedly, as we can only serve God or the world, but not both

Think about that when considering whether or not we are living the loving, charitable lives we are commanded to as a reflection of our relationship with God!

Also, on the subject of money itself, one often misquoted scripture is about money being the root of evil, as many people quote that verse without understanding its real meaning

Here it is for context:

1 Timothy 6:10
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs

Notice how the verse says “the love of money” is what causes evil, not money itself, as the evil things people do to get money are driven by their intense desire for it–money is an inanimate object, incapable of causing anyone to do evil on its own)

Given that we are told to love one another sincerely, just as Jesus loved us, we should value people tremendously, much more than material things, no matter how much value the world puts on them

Not laying hold of this concept is the very reason we lose our identities as Christians, as we can become so distracted with the world, we miss out on having a deeply intimate relationship with God, and will never know what kind of amazing, life-changing blessings we have available to us, all because we were so caught up with worldly happiness, and never became spiritually mature

Jesus addressed this concept in the parable of the sower:

Luke 8:11-15
This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved. Those on the rock are the ones who receive the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe for a while, but in the time of testing they fall away. The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature. But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop

As examples that illustrate what happens when we value our worldly happiness more than drawing near to God, or sharing God’s love with others, look at some of the situations below:

  • We can be so focused on finding a spouse, we rarely have time, energy or emotions to spend on serving others, or drawing near to God
  • We devote an incredible amount of time trying to earn money, often neglecting our relationship with God, and we often do not give charitably with our money once we do get it, as our goals revolved around our happiness, not other people’s
  • Our appearance is so important to us, we work out fanatically, but do not pick up our Bibles or spend time seeing to the needs of others around us in our free time
  • We are so obsessed with social interactions, and peer validation, we spend all of our time out with friends, cruising Facebook, etc… to the point where it prevents us from spending any quality time with God
  • We like to go out and party to the point where we compromise our morals with what we wear, what we drink, who we hang out with, etc…, to the point where we are incredibly poor witnesses for God’s holiness

It is the pursuit of these things, the friendship of mankind, material success, etc…, that cause our spiritual maturity to be stunted, as we never learn to value our relationship with God more than the world, which prevents us from falling passionately in love with him

Also, if we are so concerned with our own happiness, we are not going to make sacrifices for the sake of helping others, as there is just not enough time in the day, money in the account or desire in the heart to chase anything else other than what we want for ourselves–this is completely selfish!

John taught about this specifically, as he openly says desiring earthly things is not of God, and that if we love the world, the love of God is not in us


1 John 2:15-17
Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world—the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does—comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever

The word “love” in Greek means “be well pleased with, content with”, which shows John was saying do not desire or be content with worldly happiness, as it is not from God, and it is fleeting even if you do achieve it!

Ironically enough, look at the people who live in the poorest areas of the world, for many, their relationship with God has true joy, as they have nothing else to focus on, but for us, the reverse is true, as many talk about feeling a total lack of joy in their relationship with God due to having too many earthly distractions

So, based on all of this, how do we keep ourselves from valuing earthly happiness so much, and keep ourselves from any form of jealousy or envy?

Gratitude, And Sharing With Others Is The Best Way To Keep Ourselves From Coveting

I mean hello, Jesus died for us, if we truly believe this, we will never fall prey to the enemy’s games to make us jealous, as we will be so filled with gratitude, we will not care about anything worldly!

Also, we should be seeking to share this excitement, and demonstrate sincere love for one another by sharing what we have, not hoarding it for ourselves, and truly rejoice for others when they have things we do not as we should never be jealous, but always seeking to further God’s kingdom over any personal pursuit

Romans 12:15
Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn

Matthew 6:28-32
And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well

Galatians 6:10
Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers

Oh right, *that* part of being a Christian, oops!

Also, when we serve others in preference for one another, we are reminded of just how much we have been blessed with, and how much our time, effort, money, and energy can be used to help others, and further God’s kingdom in ways pursuing our own happiness could never provide

Even further to this, living in a way that honors others before ourselves, just as Jesus demonstrated his love for us by laying his life down, is a reflection of whether God’s love is present in our hearts or not

1 John 3:16-18
This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth

Wow, think about that the next time we talk about how much we love God yet do nothing to help the poor or needy, eep!

Also, this:

Do not fall into the enemy’s trap of becoming jealous over things that will pass away, especially considering how jealousy itself can rob us of our eternal reward in heaven

James 3:13-16
Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, of the devil. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice

Galatians 5:19-21
The acts of the sinful nature are obvious
: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God

(Note Paul was talking to believers about how these things, jealousy/selfishness/envy included, will prevent us from inheriting our reward in heaven, he was not talking to unbelievers, he was warning Christians!)

Matthew 16:26
What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?

Matthew 16:19-21
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also

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