Envy and the Abandonment of God’s Love

Envy and the Abandonment of God’s Love

The more we consider the nature of the wealth of our identity in Christ the less and less will we either worry or be anxious about the temporary accumulation of things which our neighbor has. Our envy is born out of not being thankful, taking our eyes off the glory of the cross and the empty tomb, and in some ways more importantly the bounty of our Lord’s reigning as the king of kings. Time spent in the Bible is a vital way to encourage the heart of our soul to be grounded in this peace. 

Our last foray into the Ten Commandments specifically ends with a word on a subject we are all ate up with, if we are honest: envy. It stalks our heart, our soul, and our mind. In some sense it is the motivation for the breaking of all of the laws of God. We want what we don’t have and we are jealous of those who do. This is especially the case when our eyes turn toward the wicked. How is it if we are the chosen people do men who are reprobates seem to have so much and do so well in this life? As we know this was a common lament of the Psalmist, yet as David usually does he reminds us of the vanity of it all. There is a saying which I hear from time-to-time that if you are living your best life now, than there is a problem. Central to our keeping of the Tenth commandment is remembering the simple truth of the value and worth of Jehovah, and in a very real sense, our value to Him. Any attempts of the evil one to move our conscience to quibble or complain is quickly defeated, or at least should be, by meditating on the goodness of God to sinners in Christ.

However, getting to that point can be a difficult climb. That’s why it is helpful in our fight against the old man to heed the challenges presented by our fallenness. There is a reason why when the writers of the Catechism put it together they follow the pattern of the law, its requirements, and ways we break it. All in order to point us to the one who has kept it perfectly on our behalf and calls us likewise to love Him and rest in Him in our keeping of His law.

Here’s this week’s Q/A:

Q. 148: What are the sins forbidden in the tenth commandment?

A. The sins forbidden in the tenth commandment are, discontentment with our own estate; envying and grieving at the good of our neighbour, together with all inordinate motions and affections to any thing that is his.

Taking a positive spin on the warnings we first hear the testimony that in breaking the tenth commandment we show a discontentment with our own condition (that’s what estate means). We’ve talked before about how in the Christian faith what separates us from the Pagan world is this idea that the substance of the love of Jesus for His covenant people, which we experience in our spiritual union with Him, through which flows the benefits born through redemption is our true hope. It is wrong though to think about this in a way where we imagine the goodness of God comes only in the future. You may not be a baseball fan, but there is much hullaballoo right now over Shohei Ohtani’s 10 year contract for $700 million.

Read More

Scroll to top