Summary: Learn more about the character and attributes of God. It is difficult to please God or respond to Him appropriately if we do not know what He is like.

Jealousy of God

1. God is a jealous God

Exo 34:14 Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.

God is soooooooooo jealous, the Bible says you might as well say His name is called JEALOUS.

2. What does it mean to us?

We must not have other gods before Him

The jealousy of God is so important that the first commandment is one which warns us not to violate this attribute of God

Exodus 20:3 (NIV) "You shall have no other gods before me.

In the strictest sense, it is a call not to worship other gods. However, in a broader interpretation, it is warning us against putting anything (money, career, family) before God. The Bible also uses the word god to refer to anything we attribute importance to.

Philippians 3:19 (NIV) Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is on earthly things.

Discussion : How do we know if we are putting something as our god before God?

Our god is anything we attribute importance to. To many people, time and money are priced possessions. We can find out what our god is by finding out how we spend our time and money.

Question 1 : Write down how many hours of free time we have each week besides working, sleeping, eating, bathing, etc. Next, write down what proportion is spent doing what.

Do we spend 3 hours every night watching the TV and only leave 5 minutes for quiet time? We may exhaust ourselves the whole night watching TV and leave our quiet time to the end when we are tired and sleepy.

Question 2 : How much of your monthly income is spent on what?

Do we spend all our money on clothes and leave the remainder for God.

Mat 22:37 Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' 38 This is the first and greatest commandment.

Luke 14:26 (NIV) "If anyone comes to me and does not hate (ie love less) his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters yes, even his own life he cannot be my disciple.

We must be careful to give God the glory

Psalms 29:2 (NIV) Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendour of his holiness.

All glory belongs to the Lord. It is dangerous not to give glory to God when it is due to Him. Herod was struck dead because he did not give glory to God. While the punishment may seem severe, it may be that Herod was feeling proud when the people called him a god and did not realise that it was God who sits on the throne of the earth.

Acts 12:21 23 (NIV) On the appointed day Herod, wearing his royal robes, sat on his throne and delivered a public address to the people. 22 They shouted, "This is the voice of a god, not of a man." 23 Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died.

God is jealous for His people

Joel 2:18 Then the LORD will be jealous for his land and take pity on his people.

Zec 8:2 This is what the LORD Almighty says: "I am very jealous for Zion; I am burning with jealousy for her." 3 This is what the LORD says: "I will return to Zion and dwell in Jerusalem. Then Jerusalem will be called the City of Truth, and the mountain of the LORD Almighty will be called the Holy Mountain."

This sort of jealousy is different from being jealous of other gods. When we read that God is jealous for his people, it means that God loves His people so much that He is concerned for their rights to a good life. This prompts Him to want to bestow blessings on them. It is very similar to the case of a mother being jealous for his son when his son does not get the best things in life. This type of jealousy is jealous and stems out of love prompting the mother to give good things to the son.

3. Is jealousy a sin?

We are told to love everyone, including our enemies.

Mat 5:43 "You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbour and hate your enemy.' 44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,

We are not showing true love for someone if we are jealous of them.

1 Cor 13:4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.

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