Summary: Envy is the second pillar in unhealthy relationships that we’re going to look at this morning.
INTRO: There is a fable that Satan’s agents were failing in their various attempts to draw into sin a holy man who lived as a hermit in the desert of northern Africa. Every attempt had met with failure, so Satan, angered with the incompetence of his subordinates, became personally involved in the case. He said, "The reason you have failed is that your methods are too crude for one such as this. Watch this."
He then approached the holy man with great care and whispered softly in his ear, "Your brother has just been made Bishop of Alexandria." Instantly the holy man’s face showed that Satan had been successful; a great scowl formed over his mouth and his eyes tightened up.
"Envy," said Satan, "is often our best weapon against those who seek holiness."
TS: Envy is the second pillar in unhealthy relationships that we’re going to look at this morning, but first let’s review for those who have missed.
I. We looked at gossiping.
A. We looked at what gossiping does.
-It separates close friends,
-It ignites fights and quarrels,
-It brings division,
-It will change you at the very core of who you are.
B. Imagine the healthy environment we could live in if there was no gossiping. -Imagine what the world would be like.
TS: Imagine what the world would be like without envy.
TITLE: Relationship Busters – Part 2
TEXT: James 3:16
I. What is envy? Let’s first discuss this.
A. Definition of the word.
1.Webster’s: Envy is a painful or resentful awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another, joined with a desire to possess the same advantage.
2.Envy in the original language means a contentious rivalry, jealousy, a stirring of outbursts.
B. Other sayings about envy.
1.Les Parrott (in "High Maintenance Relationships"): Envy is not a gentle emotion, it’s aggressive, unlike jealousy, which focuses on possessing what you desire, envy focuses on taking something you desire away from the person who owns it.
-Envy is not just wanting what the other person has; envy is wanting the other person not to have it.
2.Aristotle: Envy is the sin against the brother.
3.Greek proverb: Envy slays itself by its own arrows.
4.Jewish proverb: Envy is like a disease, it consumes the soul.
5.Martin Luther: Too many Christians envy the sinners their pleasure and the saints their joy because they don’t have either one.
Thought: When you hear people talk about envy, they use the phrase "green with envy". Why do they say this? Maybe because it’s the most sickening thing.
C. What the text says about envy.
1.For where you have envy, there you will find disorder and every evil practice. -Disorder means confusion which comes from instability.
Example. Think of the Tower of Babel as an example. From man’s point of view, the building of the tower was a wise thing to do. But from God’s point of view the project was stupid and sinful. As a result, God brought confusion.
Point: So when envy is in our lives there is confusion (not knowing the right thing). It brings disorder to your mind and life.
-If confusion (disorder) is not bad enough, James tells us