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Archive for July, 2013

1 Corinthians states, “It (love) does not envy”.  However, I like the synonym jealous better.  The word has a stronger connotation and scripture uses it when describing God, Himself.   If love is not jealous then how can scripture tell us God is?

Sure God has a right to be jealous, for He is the One and only God.  He created everything.  But there has to be more to this jealousy thing than just that.  Take a look at this verse in Exodus.

 

“for you shall worship no other god, for the LORD,

whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.”  Exodus 34:14 (ESV)

When I think of jealousy, the word “negative” comes to mind.  Someone gets jealous over another’s brand name sneakers, or career or degree.  I have a hard time believing God being jealous in this sort of way.  So if this is true, how does His jealousy and love for me fit together?

I looked at the notes for another verse Exodus 20:5 in two different versions and what I read hit hard.

“You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I am the LORD your God am a jealous God…”  Exodus 20:5a

  • The first likened His jealousy to a marriage.  A husband or wife expects that his or her spouse will be faithful, loyal, and love them. When I became one of His children I entered into a relationship with Him. Therefore, when I put others, or things before Him, I am saying in essence, You’re not important to me. God wants me to put Him first, like my husband wants me to put him first before anything else including our children.¹
  • The second stated that His jealousy can be renamed zealousness.  He has a zeal (*a strong interest, intense enthusiasm; fervor) for me and therefore wants the best for me.  When other things or people replace Him, it’s not in my best interest.²

To be honest these two ideas brought real conviction.  Both exhibit how much He loves me and His strong desire to be in relationship with me.

The sad part is I am not always faithful to put Him first.  When I come willing and confess my wrong and ask that He change my heart, He will restore the relationship.

I think that His zealousness (jealousy) for me is one of the mysteries concerning His character I will not understand fully until we are face to face with Him.

How about you? Does knowing that God is zealous for you cause you to think differently about your relationship with Him?  I challenge you to ask Him today to show you how zealous He is for you.  I would love to hear how He chooses to show you His love.

“So that Christ may dwell in your hears through faith – that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.”

Ephesians 3:17-19 (ESV)

*Webster’s dictionary definition of zealousness

¹Taken from Exodus 20:5 notes NIV 1984 Study Bible

²Taken from Exodus 20:5 notes ESV Study Bile

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