Wisdom Not of God: Is Jealous Part 1 James 3:14-16
What about the green eyed monster, do I have bitter jealousy in my heart?
Yesterday, we saw those who are wise show it by their behavior and deeds in the gentleness of wisdom. Bottom line:
God’s wisdom is all about our lifestyle. It marks whether or not we belong to Jesus.
We are brought into God’s wisdom through faith in Jesus Christ, and then the Holy Spirit teaches us God’s wisdom.
Today, we will begin to LOOK at this wisdom that is not of God, digging into the root of it, beginning with jealousy.
Open the App to the Book of James.
TIP: Work in the Split View or Toggle (go back and forth) between the App and the Blog.
Oh Lord, we come to Your Word today, hungering to know and understand Your Truths. Give us ears to hear and eyes to see. Help us to grasp hold of what You are saying to us. And let us walk in the light of what You teach us. Thank you.
LOOK at What God Says
Let GODcha point the way.
Where will you start off?
READ God’s Word
Read James Ch 3, verses 13-18, asking the 5W’s and H.
You might read out loud as you will not only see the Word, but saying it and hearing it helps you remember it.
Let’s just reflect a minute on what James has said, in verses 14-16.
What is the contrast?
What is at the root of this wisdom that is NOT from above, NOT of God?
What does this wisdom NOT from above produce?
Let’s zoom in on v14.
Unlock the Meaning to the Text
What characteristics, words, are key to this verse?
Understand the Words God Uses
Let’s check out these characteristics which are key.
Bitter, pikrós; Metaphorically it means bitter, cruel, malignant (James 3:14, indicating bitter, harsh, cruel feelings).
Jealousy, zeâlos;it is a zeal in an unfavorable sense. Meaning envy, anger, resentful.
“Aristotle, zeâlos (jealousy) grieves, not because another has the good, but that he himself does not have it and seeks to supply the deficiency in himself.”
Selfish Ambition, eritheía; of those who seek only their own. Contention, strife, rivalry. It represents a motive of self–interest; It means a personal ambition that creates rivalry or a party spirit or antagonism. It also meant canvassing for public office, scheming. (Jam 3:14, 16.)
Heart, kardía; the thoughts or feelings (mind). Values, affections or passions are attributed to the heart or mind.
Now take the definitions back to the text.
“But if you have bitter [harsh, cruel feelings] jealousy [envy, anger, resentfulness] and selfish ambition [personal ambition that creates antagonism and strife] in your heart [passions attributed to the heart or mind]…”
God Uses Truth to Explain Truth
Let’s LOOK and LISTEN carefully to what God says about these characteristics.
1. Who is full of bitterness?
Those who are under sin, not righteous, their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.” (Rom 3:14)
Understand: if we belong to Christ we are no longer under sin, and we have been made righteous. See: (Rom 3:22); (2Co 5:21)
Understand: those who are under sin, not righteous, are not believers.
We see: Bitterness then describes those who are not righteous, meaning – not saved.
2. What is bitterness connected to? What is to be done with bitterness?
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. (Eph 4:31-32)
See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled. (Heb 12:15)
We see: because bitterness causes trouble and defiles, believers have put it away. Thus, bitterness is connected to those who have not been made righteous.
Have I been made righteous and put away all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, slander and malice?
Am I kind and forgiving?
Or, am I still under sin, not righteous, and my mouth is full of cursing and bitterness?
If full of bitterness, who or what do I harbor harsh, cruel feelings towards? Why?
Do I speak harsh, cruel words that spring from anger, designed to wound or injure others?
What must I do to put bitterness away from me, and be on guard against the dangers of bitterness?
Respond to God…LIVE it out!
3. What is jealousy? What is jealousy associated with? What does jealousy lead to?
Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing…those who practice such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (Gal 5:19-25)
We see: Jealousy is a deed of the flesh, preventing one to inherit the kingdom of God.
Understand: If we belong to Christ we have crucified the flesh. See: Rom 6
Do I have bitter jealousy in my heart? If so, why?
Who am I jealous of? Who do I envy? Resent? Why?
Have I been guilty of seeing others and/or other ministries as a competitive threat to me? Why?
What has my jealousy led to?
How can I overcome jealousy?
Respond to God…LIVE it out!
You might use GODcha‘s Word Search to search ‘jealous‘, ‘jealousy‘, and/or ‘envy‘ to see what else God says about jealousy.
Jealousy prompted: the 1st murder (Gen 4:5); Jesus crucifixion (Mat 27:18); and many persecutions (Act 13:45).
Rachel became jealous of Leah, Gen 29 and 30.
Joseph’s brothers became jealous selling him into slavery, Gen 37.
Aaron and Miriam became jealous of Moses. The Lord turned Miriam leprous for her sin, Num 12.
Saul was jealous of David, becoming David’s enemy, 1Sa 18.
The Corinthian church became jealous of each other, (1Co 3:3-4; 10:22; 13:4).
That’s It for Today!
We’ll look at ‘selfish ambition‘ next time.
Think about what God just showed us about bitterness and jealousy. Examine your heart. God loves you. Talk to Him!
Journal Your Discovery
As we close for the day remember, take a minute to put the Definitions and Cross References not only in your Notes but also in your hardbound Bibles next to Jam 3:14-16.
Take it from me, if you don’t do it now, you won’t.
FATHER, YOU ARE THE WISE GOD WHOSE UNDERSTANDING IS INFINITE, knowing each one of us and our hearts, wanting to turn us from the error of our ways and save our souls from death. Oh Father, let the light of Your Word shine upon our hearts. May we be willing to take an honest self-examination. Oh Father, show us our hearts and do not let us be deceived. Do we profess faith, yet our hearts are filled with bitterness, jealousy and envy? Oh Father, please forgive us. May we be willing to hear Your Word, see ourselves and our hearts. May we confess and repent! Cleanse our hearts and minds this day. Please purify us. Help us! Oh Holy Spirit make us more like Christ, our beloved Lord and Savior in whose name we ask these things. Amen!
Rest and worship the Lord!
In a couple of days we will continue to LOOK at these characteristics of this ‘wisdom that is NOT of God’.
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