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Catching The Thief Called Jealousy–Part 1 of 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer
The Truth Network Radio
April 19, 2024 1:00 am

Catching The Thief Called Jealousy–Part 1 of 2

Running to Win / Erwin Lutzer

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April 19, 2024 1:00 am

When someone else gets the break or has it all, we often feel jealousy. King Saul’s rivalry and comparison of David was all-consuming. In this message from 1 Samuel 13, Pastor Lutzer performs an analysis of seven characteristics of jealousy. Jealously is like a thief that robs us of everything beautiful, wholesome, and fulfilling.

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Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith. So, someone has a nicer car than yours, or they're more attractive, or they seem to get all the breaks. So you get jealous. This is one emotion that has to go if we're to pull together in a world tearing apart. Stay with us for a look at a jealous King Saul in the book of 1 Samuel.

From the Moody Church in Chicago, this is Running to Win with Dr. Erwin Lutzer, whose clear teaching helps us make it across the finish line. Pastor Lutzer, is it possible to get so mature in the Christian life that jealousy becomes a thing of the past? Well Dave, that's a very good question, and I'm not sure that I can give a definitive answer, but I will say this, that the older we get, the less we struggle with jealousy. You know, I've always prayed that God would enable me to rejoice in those who were more successful than I, because one of the things that we can do is to fall into jealousy, envy, covetousness, which the Bible says is idolatry. It is these hidden sins that we need to deal with. I've written a book entitled Living with Your Passions, and I wrote this book because even when you stop to think of lust, for example, it has to do with jealousy, it has to do with desire, covetousness. These are issues that we need to deal with, and one of the last chapters in this book is entitled Emotional Healing. Now for a gift of any amount, we're making it available to you, because we think it'll be a great blessing to you, but also it will enable parents to know how to speak to their children about sexual matters, which of course is really so much a part of our sexualized society. Here's what you do, go to or call us at 1-888-218-9337.

Now I'm going to be giving you that contact info again at the end of this message, but I hope that this book will be yours, Living with Your Passions. When a thief wants to break into your home, he knows what he wants. Probably not going to go for your old broken down refrigerator.

He wants money, artwork, jewelry, something that is valuable. Thieves are always after something that is valuable. But my friend today there are some thieves that cannot be caught by a burglar alarm system.

There are some thieves that actually cannot be detected even by guards stationed at the door. There are thieves that gnaw on the soul. Thieves that destroy us, that rob us of everything that is beautiful, everything that is wholesome, and everything that is fulfilling. And one of those thieves is jealousy. Jealousy is a feeling of rivalry. Jealousy is the feeling that we are hurt because someone else has more than we have. Jealousy is the feeling of anger and betrayal because somebody else makes us look bad and is more successful than we are. Jealousy above all is the flip side of rejection.

If we feel rejected and unloved, we will feel as if life has not dealt us a complete set of cards and will be angry and resentful of other people who are successful. Now God is jealous. The Bible says that the Lord is a jealous God. What that means is that God himself desires all the glory and all the praise and he deserves it.

In that he is so different from us. We can be jealous perhaps in a proper sense if we talk about being jealous for someone else's good and profit. But most of the time jealousy has to do with the internal struggles of our own souls and when we become jealous we actually become and take the place of God. That's why jealousy is so destructive and so sinful.

One of my great problems in preaching this message is today is the number of people to whom I shall preach who say this message does not apply to me. The reason that you say this is because this past week no one has made you look bad. You do not understand the power of rivalry but if you were in a certain situation it may be surprising to you how much jealousy comes to the surface and the anger and the hostility that comes with it. We are all basically jealous people on the inside.

What is it that brings it to the surface? Well the first of course is sibling rivalry. Sibling rivalry. You're brought up in a home with brothers and sisters who are better looking, have more talents, more abilities and if your parents showed favoritism and many parents do though they don't know it. Almost in all homes there is a scapegoat who receives most of the blame and the parents have it in for that child and they don't even see it.

But if you are brought up in a home like that you grow up feeling unloved, unwelcomed and as a result rejected and jealousy begins to grow in your heart. Remember Adam and Eve? They didn't have the opportunity of taking a seminar in basic youth conflicts unfortunately and as a result they raised Cain. Specifically, specifically their two sons Cain and Abel got into it. Abel offered his sacrifice to God and God received it. Cain offered his and God rejected his and Cain became very angry and God tried to talk him out of it. God said Cain do you not know that if you offer a sacrifice to God he will accept you if you are righteous, if you come in humility and receive his forgiveness.

But he says God says if you don't sin like an animal is crouching at the door waiting to devour you and you must master it or it will master you and master him it did. Cain killed Abel and that has been the history of the human race. So sibling rivalry, secondly peer relationships, competitiveness. Some of you know that in business.

You don't want somebody next door who's doing better than you are, particularly somebody who moves in and shows you up to be inadequate or less than he or she is. What is it that makes one mother kill another simply because both of them have daughters who are involved in cheerleading and one mother wants to even the score with another because her daughter beat her daughter out of cheerleading practice. Rivalry among peers. Why was Jesus crucified? Was it because of theology? Was it because people said oh he said that he was the son of God.

Those were the excuses. Pilate who had an excellent understanding of human nature said in the 27th chapter of Matthew that he knew that it was because of envy that they delivered him. Envy, a cousin of jealousy and that's why Jesus died is because he made the religious leaders look bad. The crowds were talking about Jesus. They weren't talking about the Pharisees.

The crowds loved Jesus and they didn't love the Pharisees and the Pharisees said we can't take this. Kill them. That's why jealousy and murder are always so closely tied together. Then of course there's something else that brings it to the surface and that is ruptured family relationships. If you were brought up in the home where there was a lot of abuse, a lot of physical abuse, sexual abuse perhaps, all the favoritism that we've talked about. If you were brought up in that kind of an environment and you felt unloved you will become so possessive of relationships when you begin to date and when you get married you are going to want to control and to be possessive because your heart is so filled with fear of betrayal. And as a result you are going to find yourself to be a very jealous person. So jealous in fact that people are going to find it difficult to live with you and yet you will not see a single thing wrong with your life because remember jealous people also live in denial.

Well what we're going to do today is to do a little analysis. It is going to be a psychological perhaps analysis of someone who is jealous found on the pages of the Bible and what an interesting person this is. 1 Samuel, 1 Samuel chapter 13, the anatomy here analysis of jealousy. 1 Samuel, remember that Saul was the first king of Israel. God says Saul I have chosen you to be king and you are going to reign over the people. And Saul was so humble that on the day of his inauguration they couldn't even find him.

They couldn't find him because he was hiding. He was tall the Bible says he was taller than everyone else. You know that tall people have a certain amount of charisma that comes to them naturally and this was Saul. But one day Saul who was very conscious of public opinion by the way, Saul decided to disobey God and this is what Samuel said to him in 1 Samuel chapter 15 verse 23. 1 Samuel 15 23, Samuel is speaking.

For rebellion is as the sin of divination and insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord he also has rejected you from being king. Notice that clearly God said through Samuel, Saul you're finished you're no longer going to be king. Now notice it says in verse 28, Samuel said to him a second time the Lord has torn the kingdom of Israel from you today and has given it to your neighbor who is better than you. What does Saul do with news like that? Does he say oh God you are the owner of all the kingdoms of the earth I yield myself to you I have disobeyed you and you have every right to wrest me from the throne I will submit to your word.

Oh no no no no. Oh he repents. Saul repented five times. It says in verse 30 here notice same chapter he says I have sinned.

That really sounds good doesn't it? But please honor me now before the elders of my people and before Israel and go back with me. He says I've sinned but oh I will not let this kingdom go. It is mine.

I will hang on to it. Now there's something that happened in Saul's life that brought all of the jealousy to the surface and that was a boy by the name of David. There was a giant by the name of Goliath and one day David said I'll take Goliath on.

You know the whole story. And when David killed Goliath David was front page news. He was admired throughout the land. Turn to the 18th chapter of 1 Samuel and we'll pick it up at verse 6. The giant is dead and it says it happened as they were coming when David returned from killing the Philistine that the women came out of all the cities of Israel singing and dancing to meet King Saul with tambourines with joy and with musical instruments and the women sang as they played and said Saul has slain his thousands and David his tens of thousands. And of course Saul was very glad and said oh praise God that David is mightier than I. Verse 8 then Saul became very angry for this saying displeased him and he said they have ascribed to David ten thousands but to me they have ascribed thousands. Now what more can he have but the kingdom and Saul looked at David with suspicion from that day on. Now it came about on the next day that an evil spirit from God came mightily upon Saul and he raved in the midst of the house while David was playing the harp with his hand as usual and a spear was in Saul's hand and Saul hurled the spear for he thought I will pin David to the wall. But David escaped from his presence twice. Now Saul was afraid of David for the Lord was with him but had departed from Saul. Therefore Saul removed him from his presence and appointed him as commander of a thousand and he went out and came in before the people and David was prospering in all his ways for the Lord was with him when Saul saw that he was prospering greatly he dreaded him. Seven characteristics of jealousy and remember they apply to you and to me number one anger very angry won't say anything about that because I preached on anger last week but anger very angry. Secondly suspicion notice it says that Saul looked at David with suspicion from that time onward. You see a jealous person doesn't trust anybody he can't trust his girlfriend he can't trust his wife he's the kind of person who leaves home in the morning and checks the speedometer in the car and then sees how many miles his wife has driven and she had better give an account to him for every single mile because he doesn't trust her even though he has no reason to not trust her destroys a relationship a jealous person says I can trust nobody and because of the insecurity the greater the insecurity the greater the suspicion even acts of love are interpreted suspiciously so obviously he can't receive love because everybody's out to get him. Number two is suspicion number three easily slighted easily slighted you know I think that it was a little unwise for these women to make up a song with these words but I don't really think that they were trying to say Saul David is ten times better than you are they were just being very truthful because David was more courageous than Saul but you see Saul was so slighted David hadn't done anything to get the kingdom for sure but Saul sees in David this rival and there are hidden meanings in everything that David does he eyes him with the suspicion you know if the person is jealous he will be quarrelsome with his neighbors nobody will want to get along with him and he is obsessed with fairness absolutely obsessed with fairness absolutely obsessed with honesty why because he thinks everybody is out there ready to rip him off and therefore you see he hides behind the veil of honesty he will use any cover that he possibly can but his heart is being eaten out because he fears that there's somebody out there who is making him look bad and as a result of this basic distrust he becomes so hard to live with he cannot accept any insults whereas the average person can accept insults and brush them off and say that's part of living oh not someone who is jealous because these insults sink into his soul and what is worse he will take comments that aren't insults and interpret them as insults remember the heart of a jealous person is it's me against the world he likes to belong to organizations that are against something because within his heart he thinks he has to stand up for his own rights and there's nobody else out there who's going to do anything or stand up for him number four filled with fear you heard it twice in the text it says that Saul was afraid of David verse 12 and the last verse that I read verse 15 he dreaded him what was he afraid of that David was going to come and kill Saul absolutely not David had the opportunity to do that and would not touch the Lord's anointed what all this fear it is fear of betrayal the fear that he cannot cannot trust anybody the fear that that there's no way that he can love anybody and he can't love anybody back a jealous person finds it so hard to say that he is sorry just kills him to say that he is sorry but also he cannot receive it when someone else says that they are sorry he does not believe them because he projects his own insecurities and hatreds upon them and thinks to himself nobody can be trusted so he's filled with fear what else he rejoices in the failure of his rivals he rejoices in the failure of his rivals if we read the rest of the chapter we find out that Saul is so angry that he actually tries to set David up so that David will be killed by the Philistines it's an intriguing story but what Saul does is he manipulates because he says there's only one way to get rid of this guy I missed him when I threw a spear at him so I'll have somebody else throw a spear and he'll be dead and out of my way to Saul that was the only logical solution to the jealousy that raged within his heart let me ask you something have you ever had a smug sense of satisfaction because one of your rivals failed have you ever had the experience where if you were honest you would say to yourself that the failure of so-and-so is really what would make my day jealousy sin let's hurry on sixth difficulty in keeping promises difficulty in keeping promises you see Jonathan who is Saul's son talks to his dad and says in effect dad please don't do all these things to David David doesn't want to get back at you David is not going to kill you to get the kingdom and so Saul changes his mind and it says in chapter 19 that Saul said verse 6 in fact he bowed chapter 19 verse 6 as the Lord lives he shall not be put to death and yet in the very same passage we read verse 10 and Saul tried to pin David to the wall with a spear but he slipped out of souls presence so that he struck the spear into the wall and David fled and escaped that night let me ask you something when Saul made a vow and says David shall not die was he sincere of course he was sincere people who have these kinds of torments within the soul are very sincere the only problem is because they have not dealt with the core of their problem they continue to repeat at the same cycle of behavior I've heard it a hundred times maybe that's an exaggeration but it's close an angry vicious jealous man beats up on his wife and so she decides to leave and then he begins to cry and he begins to beg oh please stay I promise you this will never happen again I promise you that I will change I promise I promise I promise does he mean it of course he means it within the limitations of his own shriveled soul does he fulfill his promise of course not because he has not dealt with the basic fundamental problem of who he is before God number seven irrational desire for control an irrational desire for control if you were to read the next chapters what is Saul doing here he is he's the king of Israel he's got business to look after because his job was not just ceremonial I mean he was running a country and what is he doing he is spending 10 years pursuing David sometimes personally can you get this the king running from cave to cave in the hills of Judah trying to pursue David trying to personally kill the guy irrational of course it's irrational but you know I need to emphasize that all sin is irrational isn't it because when we begin to give into sin it leads us to places that we thought we would never go I'll never forget a man who was into child pornography and he told me he said when I began to go to certain places I didn't know where I would eventually end up that's why I've written a book entitled living with your passions it is so important that we face this issue because all of us are born with sexual desires and if those desires are out of control and if they lead us into territory that has been forbidden by God the consequences can be very very serious for a gift of any amount we're making this book available to you now here's what you do I hope that you have a pen or pencil handy go to RTW now as you already I'm sure realize RTW offer is all one word RTW or pick up the phone and call us at 1-888-218-9337 I've said this before but look around you what kind of a society do we live in it is a highly sexualized society and technology has brought it into our homes into our minds and into our lives we need to deal with this issue the title of the book living with your passions go to RTW or call us at 1-888-218-9337 and even as we think about this weekend I hope that if you have the opportunity of going to church you will take that opportunity let us meet together with the people of God and remind ourselves that we cannot fight these battles on our own we really do need one another Paul says that when your hearts are knit together in love you enter into all that you have in Christ. You can write to us at running to win 1635 North LaSalle Boulevard Chicago Illinois 60614 Pastor Erwin Lutzer has begun a look at catching the thief called jealousy another chapter in our study of pulling together in a world tearing apart next time on running to win how control companionship and contentment can stop jealousy in its tracks thanks for listening this is Dave McAllister running to win is sponsored by the Moody Church.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-04-19 02:09:24 / 2024-04-19 02:17:47 / 8

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