Envy: The Case of Israel – Gospel in Life

Envy: The Case of Israel

Tim Keller |  February 26, 1995

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  • Sin
Numbers 11:4-6
RS 57-5

Numbers 11:4–6

Looking at sin helps us understand its big impact on people, like the Israelites in the desert who wanted harmful things even though God was taking care of them. We often say bad things happen because of what’s going on around us, but the real problem is a brokenness inside us, which we call sin. It’s important to spot the signs of sin and know where it comes from to find a cure.

1. The symptom is envy

Envy, a damaging thing, stops us from enjoying what we have now by making us unhappy and unsatisfied. It tricks us into thinking that we’ll only be happy if we have what others have, making us overlook the good things we already have and even see problems in perfect things. To fully enjoy the present, we need to tackle the real reason we’re unhappy.

2. The root cause

Feeling unhappy and unsatisfied comes from not trusting God, making us always want something new and better. This lack of trust also makes us criticize and be unhappy with everything around us. The cure is to fully trust God, knowing that only He can truly satisfy us.

3. The antidote

Not valuing God’s gift of heaven, shown as the real manna or Jesus Christ, leads to unhappiness and criticism. Focusing on God’s kindness and the everlasting life, happiness, and love given by Jesus Christ, who loved us even though we rejected Him, can lead to gratitude and a positive attitude towards others. The main goal is to get past envy and criticism, and instead live a life filled with positivity and thankfulness.



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