In Romans chapter 1 the apostle Paul gives another list of vices. Jealousy is also included.
“Furthermore, since they did not think it worth while, to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things, but also approve of those who practise them.” (Romans 1:28-32/NIV).
This is a description of heathen men in the days of the apostle and in Old Testament times. It does not mean that every single individual among the gentiles was involved in all of this. Yet all these practices and attitudes occurred among those nations.
The root cause of all these sins is that man turned away from God. At one stage after the fall in paradise, man began to worship other gods. They did not want to honour their creator anymore. This also led them to turn against other men that were originally created in the image of God.
They began to worship images and certain animals as their gods. The priorities in their thinking changed.
What you worship in many ways determines how you think and how you behave. What you hold in high esteem guides you in developing attitudes and in taking decisions.
I find it interesting how St. Paul is grouping vices he mentions. He puts ‘envy’ together with ‘murder, strife, deceit and malice’. Jealousy unleashed could easily lead to all of these.
What you hold in honour and high esteem guides you in establishing your value system. It is good to keep this in mind.
The God of the bible is presented as a God of Love. He likes men to love each other even as they love themselves.
In 1 Corinthians 13 Paul is devoting a whole chapter to Christian love. Love is to be a supreme goal for individual Christian living and for church life.
Paul describes love. Envy, he says, is not an aspect of love (cf. 1 Corinthians 13:4).