“…idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies…”
“Jealousies” is a strong feeling of resentment against someone else’s success. People having such feelings resent their friends’ good fortune. They try to equal or surpass their friends. They view all others as rivals.
“But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy; and contradicting and blaspheming, they opposed the things spoken by Paul” (Acts 13:45).
“Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy” (Romans 13:13).
“But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there” (James 3:14-16).
Jealousy is the desire to outdo other people.
Jealousies develop between churches when one gets larger than the other. People develop jealousies when someone else has a success that they do not have. They want success for themselves but do not rejoice in the success of others.
Jealousy is the desire to outdo other people. It is a form of spiritual king of the mountain. You pull down others to lift yourself above them. It is an attempt to outdo others. If you envy the way someone dresses, you try to out dress her. If someone else can communicate, you try to outtalk him or her. If he or she has a wonderful personality, you want to develop a better personality.
Some Christians believe that status symbols are more important than God. They hold greater concern about what others think of them than what God may think of them. They strive for a big house in the suburbs that shows their place above others.
“Set me as a seal upon your heart,
As a seal upon your arm;
For love is as strong as death,
Jealousy as cruel as the grave;
Its flames are flames of fire,
A most vehement flame”
(Song of Solomon 8:6).
Jealousy is as cruel as the grave, and we all know how cruel the grave is. The grave does not care if it swallows up a baby, a young person, or a mother. Jealousy will claim us just like the grave. It will strike out at people.
Do you recognize the symptoms in yourself? The very thing we hate in others, we permit in ourselves. We deceive ourselves and rename jealousy by some other name that sounds spiritual. We cannot see our own harshness and censoriousness, but we can see it clearly in other people.
Very few people are quick to admit that they operate in a jealous mode, that they do things and say things because of jealousy. They are afraid to admit that they bought a new car because the other guy in the office bought a new car. Jealousy is the attempt to surpass others for selfish gain. Sometimes this type of person pulls others down by petty faultfinding.