The jealousy the world needs more of.

But I am speaking to you who are Gentiles.  Inasmuch then as I am an apostle of Gentiles, I magnify my ministry, if somehow I might move to jealousy my fellow countrymen and save some of them. (Romans 11:13-14)

Who has ever been jealous of someone who was worse off than you?  When did you look at an obviously unhappy person and think, “I’m jealous of that person.  I wish I had what she has?”  It just doesn’t happen!

During a time of worship and praise yesterday afternoon I found my heart was rising up in thanksgiving to God.  I thought, “God you are so merciful.  When you reveal your presence around me you graciously make me look good.  So Lord, when I show up I want to make You look good.”  It was a special time of communion we had, the Lord and I.

When the anointing of the Holy Spirit is resting upon a person there is a freedom and flow that is just unmistakable and it is awesome.  People who are anointed are usually more fun, more interesting, more powerful, and more beautiful than those who are not walking in the Holy Spirit’s blessing.  Period. 

Well before we were married, I remember the first night I actually noticed Molly.  It was during a testimony service at our church where she came up and shared.  She was full of God’s life.  There was a glow about her.  It was God.  Any person looks more beautiful, more happy, and more blessed when they are tangibly aware of God’s goodness.

In Romans 11 I think Paul is touching on this reality.  The Jews have rejected Christ and now the Gentiles, who had not sought Him, were receiving Him.  Paul shares his burden and hope that more Jews would come to the Lord as they see what God is doing among the Gentiles and are moved to jealousy.

I find in this a key to reaching self righteous people who do not presently see a moral or spiritual need for Christ in their lives.  They need to be provoked to jealousy!  You don’t do this by criticizing them or giving them more rules.  For in fact, unless you have something they do not have why should they be inclined to listen to you?  But when they see you overflowing with hope and joy they will at least secretly wish they had what you have.

That’s when the Nicodemus’s of this world sneak in under the cover of night and say, “I can tell you’ve got something from heaven that I don’t have.  Tell me what it is.” (see John 3)

George Mueller (the great 19th-Century prayer warrior and man of faith who cared for over 100,000 orphans and raised $1.5 million pounds without publishing his needs) said,  “I saw more clearly than ever that the first great and primary business to which I ought to attend to every day was to have my soul happy in the Lord.”

Self righteous Christians make the world angry.  Happy Christians make the world jealous for what they have!  May God ever teach us the secret to joyful contentment in Christ.  He is more than enough to satisfy our souls…and the souls of everyone in the world.  And there is only one way to get this joy: receive it as a gift on the merits of Christ alone.  You’ll never get there by working.  You either accept it in simple faith or you will forever live without it (and Him)!

 

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