Don’t Envy Sinners Prov. 23:17 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
A problem for many Christians is that they envy sinners. They think that sinners get to have all the fun. Sometimes we talk about peer pressure. But this isn’t peer pressure. This is pressure that you put on yourself because you want to do what you see sinners doing. Don’t envy sinners because:
They are an abomination to the Lord – Prov 3:31-35 – the forward is abomination to the Lord. The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked. God scorns the scorners. Shame shall be the promotion of fools.
Their hearts study destruction – Prov 24:1-2 – they like destruction and mischief. Consider the content of Hollywood movies. But they fall into mischief and they face destruction. It turns back upon them. Drunks die of cirrhosis. Fornicators face many complications with sexually transmitted diseases, including death. Dope addicts die. And on and on, the list grows. They all wind up in hell unless they get saved.
There is no reward to the evil man – Prov 24:19-20 – the candle of the wicked shall be put out. Everything they work for ends up in someone else’s hands. They aren’t rewarded; they are destroyed. Don’t get caught up in their sin. It can kill you.
Don’t envy sinners; rather follow these guidelines:
Choose none of their ways – Prov 3:31 – see the ways that they go and pick something else. They steal; work. They cuss; let your speech be with grace, seasoned with salt. They watch bad movies; read your Bible. They fornicate; flee youthful lusts. They drink alcohol; be filled with the Spirit. They use dope; bear the fruit of the Spirit. They walk with fools; walk with wise men and walk by faith. Anything they do, you do the opposite. They seek worldliness; you seek godliness.
Fear the Lord – Prov 23:17 – surely there is an end, and thine expectation shall not be cut off [Prov 23:18]. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. Everything hinges on fearing God. When you fear God, you will quit envying sinners. You won’t want one thing they have and you won’t want to do one thing that they are doing.
Fret not thyself – Prov 24:19 – to fret is to be worried, to be vexed. When you fret, you are anxious. Don’t worry about sinners. Don’t get worked up because they look down upon you, ridicule you and exclude you. Don’t let what they do or say get under your skin. Don’t lose power with God by trying to gain favor with the wicked. You aren’t cool in their eyes and you never will be cool unless you make a fool out of yourself before God. Find contentment in the Lord and be happy with him. He is the only one in the universe who matters when it comes to correcting a problem with envy against sinners. When you turn to God and away from sinners:
- You enjoy the secret of God with the righteous [Prov 3:32].
- Your habitation is blessed of God [Prov 3:33].
- You are given the grace of God [Prov 3:34].
- You inherit glory with God [Prov 3:35].
Conclusion: envy is a terrible thing to beat. You must identify it for what it is and deal with it the Bible way. Otherwise, you could find yourself in a world of hurt.