Envy and jealousy are fruits of pride (and false humility) that intimidate you and lead to offenses. It will cause you to mistreat people who could have been a blessing to you. If you don’t take the ax to the root when envy or jealousy reveals themself, it hurts you and others. Envy and jealousy lead to slander and is a relationship and character ruiner. So how do you know if you are struggling with envy? Let’s take a look.
Envy and Jealousy Are Different
- Envy is about things or a situation or position (someone else has something you want).
- Jealousy is about people (you perceive someone else’s closeness with an individual to be threatening your relationships with that person).
17 Fruits of Envy and Jealousy
Fear, insecurity, competition, worry drive envy and jealousy. It will cause you to:
- You never seem impressed with others’ accomplishments
- Believe or tell others their “lucky” for things they work hard for
- You copy or try to outdo
- Quick to rain on others’ parade
- Talk about a person behind their back or have negative thoughts
- You start avoiding the person you’re jealous of
- Go out of your way to mention people who are “better” than them
- You get angry when they offer you advice
- You seem happy when they fail
- Make assumptions
- Twist perceptions
- Justify your responses and behaviors
- Air your grievances in front of others
- Be petty, picking arguments for small things and disguising it as “telling the truth.”
- Humiliate, embarrass, or correct others in front of people to knock the person down a notch
- Elevate yourself
- Abuse your authority or power, making others shrink back so that you can regain your self-perceived superiority.
These are just a few ways to assess if envy or jealousy lives in our hearts. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be the place you live. You can evict the spirit of jealousy.
What Scripture Says About Jealousy
Many scriptures deal with jealousy. Because when we fall into it, our spiritual life also spirals downward. Here are just a few.
- “For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice.” (James 3:16) The KJV version says “evil” in place of vile, meaning foul, wicked, evil, and worthless in Greek.
- Proverbs 14:30 says that “A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.” This verse even implies that you could have physical ramifications from envy. Your bones could rot!
- Proverbs 23:17-18; “Do not let your heart envy sinners, but always be zealous for fear of the LORD. There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.”
- Exodus 20:17; “Do not covet your neighbor’s house. Do not covet your neighbor’s wife, his male or female slave, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”
- This verse talks about Joseph and his brothers. In Genesis 37:4, it says, but when his brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brother, they hated him and could not speak peacefully to him.” It was the beginning of the jealousy that would ruin their relationship with each other and their father. And it would grow, leading them to try killing Joseph and selling him as a slave.
Now that we’ve identified it and discovered what the Bible says about the spirit of envy or jealousy, what can we do to evict it?
Evict the Green-Eyed Monster
The first step toward healing is acknowledging that it exists. Most of us don’t want to admit that we are envious or jealous. But if there’s even a spark, it’s all the enemy needs to fan it until it grows into a wildfire. Remember, Satan’s goal is to kill, steal, and destroy by any means necessary. All he needs is a tiny ember, so we have to be diligent to snuff it out. But first, we have to admit it’s there!
Repent. Renounce. Renew.
Ask the Lord to create in you a clean heart and reveal the hidden areas of jealousy, envy, and comparison. Ask Him to pluck them out.
- Repent for envy or jealousy of that person or persons. It’s very important to say “I repent” when doing this. Example: “I repent for having envy or jealousy in my heart toward (insert name).”
- Renounce a spirit of envy or jealousy in your life.
- Renew. Praise Jesus for your unique gifts and talents, strengths, and calling. Pray for a blessing over those you have been envious or jealous of.
We are all made different for different purposes. God wants the WHOLE BODY to function as one spirit. We can’t do that if we walk in a jealous spirit because it is a tool of the enemy to divide and separate.