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The word “envy” in the New Testament is translated from the Greek word “phthonos” which is “the feeling of displeasure produced by witnessing or hearing of the advantage of prosperity of others.” (Definition from Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, by W. E. Vine, et al., © 1985 Thomas Nelson, Inc., Publishers, Nashville, Tennessee.)
We know that envy is a sin and that it can cause various problems. However, most of us usually don’t give it much thought. The Bible clearly and succinctly describes the consequences of envy for us.
Envy slays (Job 5:2). It rots the bones (Proverbs 14:30). It makes one unclean (Mark 7:20-23) and makes one deserve death (Romans 1:29-32). It is earthly, unspiritual, of the devil, and wherever envy is present disorder and every evil practice will also be found (James 3:14-16). As an opposite of love (1 Corinthians 13:4), envy prevents spiritual maturity (1 Peter 2:1-3), and the one who envies will not inherit the kingdom of God (Galatians 5:19-21). It was envy which handed Jesus over to be crucified (Matthew 27:18 & Mark 15:10).
Envy is a deadly disease. Get rid of it before it gets rid of you.
Copyright © 1998 Kimberly B. Southall. All rights reserved.