Skip to content


June 22, 2010


Intro: Oprah – “God is jealous of me?” was big turning point for her.

God is jealous when someone gives to another something that rightly belongs to Him. God’s jealousy is His passion for what should be His.

God is jealous for:

I)                    His own honor

  1. Exclusive worship and love – no idols, carved images, etc.
  2. Linked with His holiness – that His glory should be acknowledged and proclaimed.
  3. Linked w/ His mercy – Ezek. 39:25-27 …not mutually exclusive…cf. Ex.20:4
  4. His right as “God”….all things are His and to act as if they aren’t provokes His jealousy.

                                                               i.      Cf Def’n; “Jealousy is wanting/desiring something that is not rightfully yours.” So what does not belong to God that He’s made???

  1. There is an ‘emotional’ aspect to this attribute of God…cf to some views of Divine aseity…some argue against God’s ‘passions’ only when they are negative ‘emotions’, why not against the positive ones like love, kindness, tenderness, compassion of God?
  2. It would be wrong for God to ‘not be jealous’…the image created in our mind by the word “jealous” is the picture of a lover or a husband who gets angry when someone else competes for the heart of his wife or when her heart goes away after other lovers. This picture is confirmed by verses 15 and 16 which warn Israel against playing the harlot with other gods. The demand of the covenant is: don’t be a harlot. Don’t commit adultery against God. Don’t let your heart turn from him and go after other things. For your God, your husband, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God in Exodus 34.
  3. God is jealous like a powerful and merciful king who takes a peasant girl from a life of shame, forgives her, marries her, and gives her not the chores of a slave, but the privileges of a wife—a queen. His jealousy does not rise from fear or weakness but from a holy indignation at having his honor and power and mercy scorned by the faithlessness of a fickle spouse.
  4. The ten commandments are not a job description for God’s employees. They are the wedding vows that the peasant girl takes to forsake all others and to cleave to the king alone and to live in a way that brings no dishonor to his great name.

II)                  For the faithfulness of His people

  1. Based in His love for His people that expects to be reciprocated…God is not jealous of people as per Oprah, but jealous for the welfare of His people…what’s our ultimate welfare? To love God supremely. To be redeemed, to remember our redemption…cf. Ex. 20:1,2 “brought you out of Egypt”..

                                                               i.      How did God show His jealous love for us? Christ crucified! Look what He has done to defeat our false loves, our straying heart, and our eternal joy in Him

  1. Results in judgment/discipline from God’s hand…key theme in bible “all idolatry is spiritual adultery”  aka the reason why God is jealous as a husband over His bride!
  2. To lead to restoration – READ Zechariah 8:1ff

III)                On behalf of His people

  1. Christ our sin bearer
  2. Christ our righteousness – Matt. 4:10 “love God and serve Him only” from Deut 6 and motivation there is the jealousy of God…
  3. Christ our love restorer …cf John “do you love me?” after Peter denied Him 3x’s
  4. The Lord will fight for you.  Against your enemies, against false lovers who seek to draw away your heart from God. –


1)      If there is no jealousy in God, can there be any meaningful relationships?

  1. First this shows why doctrine of Trinity makes sense. For jealousy to exist, there must exist interdependence in a relationship. Jesus is the bridge for God’s jealousy from God to man because He is the God-man.
  2. Without God’s jealousy, the church dies in relation of community w/ each other and in relation to God.
  3. Cf. western society’s revulsion to ‘exclusivity’ in relationships….flirt w/ co-workers, divorce prevalent, hooking up culture, casual dating, church hopping,
  4. Cf. our therapeutic man-centered culture “self help’ sections at even Christian bookstores, where is the community of God’s people, where’s a God centered approach to life?

2)      So why is it sinful for us to be jealous?

  1. It is a sin when we desire, or we are envious, or we are jealous of someone because he has something that we do not have. It is a different use of the word “jealous” when God says He is jealous. What He is jealous of belongs to Him; worship and service belong to Him alone, and are to be given to Him alone. Jealousy is a sin when it is a desire for something that does not belong to you.
  2. Not all jealousy is…some is godly like for God’s honor, the church to love Christ, and your relationships eg. Paul’s love for the church – 2 Cor 11:2
  3. PIPER: God’s chief jealousy is to be known, admired, trusted, enjoyed, and obeyed above all others. This (God’s self-exaltation) is not megalomania because, unlike our self-exaltation, God’s self-exaltation draws attention to what gives greatest and longest joy, namely, himself. When we exalt ourselves, we lure people away from the one thing that can satisfy their souls—the infinite beauty of God. When God exalts himself, he manifests the one thing that can satisfy our souls, namely, God. Therefore, God is the one being in the universe for whom self-exaltation is the most loving act, since love labors and suffers to enthrall us with what is infinitely and eternally satisfying, namely, God. Therefore, when God exalts God and commands us to join him, he is pursuing our highest, deepest, longest happiness. This is love, not megalomania. God’s pursuit of his glory and our pursuit of our joy turn out to be the same pursuit. This is what Christ died to achieve. “Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God” (1 Peter 3:18 ). When we are brought to God as our highest treasure, he gets the glory and we get the pleasure.

3)      Where should be biblically jealous?:       

  1. For the honor of God…this is passion, this is a willingness to stand and not be complacent…Illustration: Friend admired roommates books on leadership, but my response people need to conviction about what they believe and they’ll lead by default. Cf. Luther, Calvin, Augustine, William Carey didn’t read books on leadership but were jealous for God’s honor in the world!
  2. For each other’s loyalty to Christ and the gospel…cf Paul “For I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy; for I betrothed you to one husband, so that to Christ I might present you as a pure virgin. (2Co 11:2 NAU)…”

4)      So why are we not changed by God’s jealousy?

  1. Going after other gods is in relation to getting rich, fat, comfortable and forgetting God’s salvation. This provokes God’s jealousy. See Deut. 6:10ff..right after very important section on training our children, not the schools, to love the Lord lest the next generation forgets and provokes God’s jealousy!
  2. We don’t know Christ and the forgiveness of sins…We’ve never been changed by the fierce love of Jesus as shown in Calvary.
  3. We have made an idol somewhere and we are jealous of protecting/keeping it.
  4. We don’t understand the deep deep love of God in Christ or the who God is.

5)      It should cause:

                                                               i.      Believers to not flirt with idols, knowing that the Lord will execute vengeance upon our idols and discipline us

                                                             ii.      Unbelievers because they have given their love to a false god that belongs only to YHWH

Next week, Jealousy motivates God to command us (Exod. 34:13-14). But you shall destroy their altars, break their sacred pillars, and cut down their wooden images (for you shall worship no other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God) (Exod. 34:13-14).

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: