Have you ever been jealous of another? They receive praise or some monetary blessing and you find yourself consumed in jealousy instead of excitement for them? Satan loves to use jealousy and pride to drive a wedge between two people, destroying their relationship. They are the very things that led to the demise of Satan. Ezekiel 28:17 speaks of Satan’s sin “Your heart became proud on account of your beauty and you corrupted your wisdom.” He was beautiful and honored by God yet he wanted to be God.
Saul had a problem with pride and jealousy. He was a huge fan of David after Goliath was killed until the people sang their praises to David showing him greater esteem than Saul. In 1 Samuel 18:7 pride and jealousy took root in Saul’s heart “As they danced, they sang: ‘Saul has slain his thousands, and David his tens of thousands.’” Saul allowed jealousy to take root in his heart to the point of clouding his judgment. As a result of the peoples’ praise of David, Saul saw him as his enemy instead of his faithful servant. Once pride and jealousy took root in Saul’s heart they began to grow and gave birth to sin. The next 13 chapters of the book of 1 Samuel are filled with Saul’s obsession with David’s destruction. Over and over David proved to be a faithful servant. He was close enough to King Saul to take his life, but instead, he cut a piece of Saul’s robe and spared Saul’s life to provide proof of his faithfulness [1 Samuel 24:11]. Then again in 1 Samuel 26 David and his men snuck into Saul’s camp and took the spear and water jug by King Saul’s head and left. He held them up to King Saul to demonstrate his faithfulness to the king and yet Saul still was driven by jealousy and pride.
Pride and jealousy took Saul’s life in more ways than one. Not only were they the cause of his physical death, but they stole all he could have done on earth while reigning as king of Israel. Instead of leading Israel in great ways, he spent all of his time consumed with David and his pursuit of him. Saul lost everything and won nothing as a result of pride and jealousy.
Paul speaks boldly of this is Romans 12:3 “For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.” Paul goes on to talk of how we all have gifts and when we work together as one body, God is glorified.
Whenever we follow the path of pride and jealousy, we are going to end up sinning. Psalm 10:4 says “In his pride the wicked does not seek Him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God.”
Is pride something you struggle with? Does jealousy try and take root in your heart? We are all tempted to fall under their spell. Call out to the Lord as King David did in Psalm 51:10 “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.” He is faithful to those who seek Him. He will restore your heart and give you a check in your spirit when pride or jealousy try to creep back in, so you can confess them and move on, not allowing them to take root.