Filled With Jealousy or The Spirit
But the high priest rose up, and all who were with him (that is, the party of the Sadducees), and filled with jealousy — Acts 5:17
So how the High Priests' and the Sadducees are feeling is evident to everyone. The writer describes them as "filled with jealousy."
So jealousy is an emotion that we experience when we feel threatened by a third party. It usually stems from perceiving an outsider to be a threat socially. And most of the time, outsiders do not know when a person feels jealous because, at the onset, this is a very private and unseen sentiment. It's something we experience personally but not publically. That is until jealously begins to grow. And as it does, we start to see the attitudes and actions that originate from these private feelings.
In this text, it's pretty obvious that the High Priests and the Sadducees feel jealous. They feel threatened by this growing and uncontrollable movement of believers. Their jealousy is so evident that they describe them as "filled with jealousy." In other words, it's not a little of it. There's a lot of it.
This is evidence that jealousy will grow. A small spirit of jealousy left unaddressed will multiply. It results in us becoming overly focused on our needs and finding devious ways to get them met. And to protect ourselves from our insecurities, we will be compelled to act in controlling ways. Thus, it's jealousy that is driving these religious leaders to oppose the movement of God.
As we enter a time of greater persecution, we should ready ourselves as the church. We should address the jealous spirits we have before we become filled with jealousy. Instead, we as a people should be filled with the Spirit. And as God fills us, we focus not on the opposition but God, and together God will do great deeds.
ASK THIS: What jealous spirit do you need to address?
DO THIS: Ask God to fill this need with His Spirit.
PRAY THIS: God, fill me with your Spirit where I am full of jealousy.
PLAY THIS: Jealousy Jealousy — Christ for the Nations.
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