My dad used to always say that “Jealousy is a horribly thing.” And, was he so ever right. Jealousy causes people to behave in evil ways. It usually stems from the fact that someone else has something that you want or wish you had. And, since you can’t have it, one becomes angry and reacts to the other person in cruel ways. Often, they are cruel in the words they use – hoping that in some way they will hurt that person’s feelings or make them feel guilty for what they have.
In Matthew 12:22-37, Jesus just healed a blind man who could not also speak. The crowds of people who watched the miracle are beginning to question if Jesus is the Messiah. Meanwhile, the Pharisees are condemning Jesus for his actions. Jesus has something that they cannot do! The Pharisees want all the power, but Jesus has come and exhibited power in a whole different way that they cannot touch. The Pharisees were jealous of Jesus! So, they claimed that Jesus was from the devil – Beelzebul, which means the ‘devil’ or ‘Satan.’ Jesus warns them, “You can blasphemy against me and your sins can be forgiven; however, but blasphemy against the Spirit and you will not be forgiven” (Matthew 12:30-32). Speaking against the Holy Spirit and the work of the Holy Spirit is a sin that cannot and will not be forgiven!
Here is the thing…As Christians, we believe in the triune God – meaning that God is 3-in-1 – The Father, Son, and the Holy Spirit. Jesus is the Holy Spirit who works in us and through us. Jesus says, “Whoever isn’t with me, opposes me” (v.30). Not acknowledging the work of the Spirit would be to not acknowledge Jesus Christ. It is a very slippery slope.
Therefore, the words you speak will reveal whose side you are on and what is in your heart – “For whatever is in your heart determines what you say” (v.34). How you use your words with others is important.
Let us pray, Jesus, we are human and we do get jealous of what others have – whether material or otherwise. Strengthen us and help us to recognize the precious gifts that you have given us so that we use them for your glory. They are gifts that no one else may have! Help us to see that! In your name we pray, Amen.