DON’T BE ENVIOUS
Date: February 15
Category: Godly Character
"Joshua son of Nun, the minister of Moses, one of his chosen men, said, My lord Moses, forbid them! But Moses said to him, Are you envious or jealous for my sake? Would that all the Lord's people were prophets and that the Lord would put His Spirit upon them!"
The seventy elders that were chosen to help Moses all attended a meeting and began prophesying, meaning they sounded forth the praises of God and declared His will [verse 25]. But according to verse 26, the Spirit of God rested upon two men named Eldad and Medad even though they didn't attend the meeting. So even though they didn't attend, they still prophesied in the camp.
Verse 27 says, "And a young man ran to Moses and said, Eldad and Medad are prophesying [sounding forth the praises of God and declaring His will] in the camp." After Moses' servant, Joshua heard that report, he told Moses to stop them. But it's interesting to notice what Moses says to him. He said in verse 29 "Are you envious or jealous for my sake?"
Envy is when you want to have something that belongs to someone else. Jealousy is fear of losing what you already have to someone else. So Moses is asking Joshua if he is envious or jealous for his sake. He wondered if Joshua was worried that these people were going to become greater than he. Then Moses says that he would like all of God's people to be able to prophesy, as the Lord would put His Spirit upon them. Moses was a very humble man. He was never envious when others moved forward.
When some people see the Spirit of God upon a leader and they see God blessing that person's work, they often become envious. Let's say, for example, a pastor's church is growing abundantly or a ministry is seeing more and more miracles, or a minister's family is prospering, other people take notice of those blessings and envy what that person has. That's sin. That's not a good attitude to have.
People who are envious at someone will do anything they can to stop that person from advancing forward. They will talk about that person, criticize him, and commit wrongful things against him. When somebody is moving forward whether it is in life or in ministry, we shouldn't be envious or jealous. We should rejoice with him. We should thank God for blessing him and his work.
So don't be envious just because somebody else has something you don't have. Be faithful and obedient to God and His Word. If somebody has as much as you do, rejoice! If somebody has more than you do, rejoice! Everything that everyone has came from the Lord's hand anyway. So praise God for blessing others.
At the time, Moses was the most humble man on the face of the earth. He was never envious or jealous. When we look at Moses, we see a very godly man – a mark of godliness. He wanted other people to experience great success in their lives. So we should be like Moses and rejoice when others are experiencing success.
Actually, when we help other people succeed, that puts us on the road to success ourselves. That is the key principle in any society, any company, and any corporation. Help other people succeed and you will succeed too. Don't ever be envious because envy is selfishness, and selfishness is really the root of all unhappiness. So instead of envying people, rejoice with people for their achievements.