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If God is described as being jealous, then why is it wrong for us to be jealous?

Is God being hypocritical?

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The Bible does not teach that it is wrong for us to be jealous. The Bible teaches that jealousy can be good or bad depending upon (a) what we are jealous about; and (b) what we action we take as a result of our jealousy.
God is jealous for his name and standing amongst men. This is good and sensible because there is only one God. He alone can bestow eternal life on his creation. Those who invent their own gods destroy not only themselves but those who are taken in by their deception.
God makes this clear through Moses.
Exodus 20:1 And God spake all these words, saying, 2 I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. 3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; 6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
Exodus 34:14 For thou shalt worship no other god: for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:
Isaiah 45:20 Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save.
God chose Abraham and made his offspring into the nation of Israel. He took Israel for a special people to himself. Because of this special relationship God is jealous for his people and has future plans for them.
Ezekiel 39:25 Therefore thus saith the Lord God; Now will I bring again the captivity of Jacob, and have mercy upon the whole house of Israel, and will be jealous for my holy name; 26 After that they have borne their shame, and all their trespasses whereby they have trespassed against me, when they dwelt safely in their land, and none made them afraid. 27 When I have brought them again from the people, and gathered them out of their enemies' lands, and am sanctified in them in the sight of many nations;
Joel 2:18 Then will the Lord be jealous for his land, and pity his people.
Zechariah 1:14 So the angel that communed with me said unto me, Cry thou, saying, Thus saith the Lord of hosts; I am jealous for Jerusalem and for Zion with a great jealousy.
God's jealousy for his people is a good thing because it will result in their salvation.
Jeremiah 30:11 For I am with thee, saith the LORD, to save thee: though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee:
God's relationship with Israel is likened to that of a husband for his wife. It guarantees the future restoration of the nation.
Jeremiah 3:14 Turn, O backsliding children, saith the Lord; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion:
Jealousy on the part of a husband for his wife is a good thing, for in marriage they become ‘one flesh’.
Ephesians 5:28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church... 31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
A man’s wife is as precious to him as the pupil of his eye.
Zechariah 2:8 For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye.
Jealousy on the part of a man for the things of God is also a good thing as demonstrated by Elijah.
1 Kings 19:10 And he said, I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.
Jealousy on the part of Paul for the Corinthian ecclesia was a good thing
2 Corinthians 11:2 For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.
In the King James Version, the Hebrew and Greek words translated ‘jealousy’ are also translated ‘zeal’.
Phinehas saved the lives of many of the people of Israel by his zeal for God. Phinehas' zeal forestalled or tempered the jealousy of God.
Numbers 25:11 Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the children of Israel, while he was zealous for my sake among them, that I consumed not the children of Israel in my jealousy. 12 Wherefore say, Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace: 13 And he shall have it, and his seed after him, even the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was zealous for his God, and made an atonement for the children of Israel.
Paul makes clear that it is a good thing to have zeal (be jealous) for that which is good.
Galatians 4:18... it is good to be zealously affected always in a good thing...
He commends the Corinthians for their zeal in doing the right thing.
2 Corinthians 7:11 For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.
The people who call upon God are to be ‘zealous of good works’.
Titus 2:14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
Jesus instructs the Laodiceans (described as lukewarm) to be zealous for the things of God.
Revelation 3:19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
In the King James Version, the Hebrew and Greek words translated ‘jealousy’ are also translated ‘envy’. Envy generally is bad and to be avoided.
Proverbs 27:4 Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?
Joseph’s brethren envied (were jealous of) him and sold him to be a slave.
Genesis 37:11... his brethren envied him...
Acts 7:9... the patriarchs, moved with envy, sold Joseph into Egypt: but God was with him,
Envy (Jealousy) was the motivation behind the Jews’ opposition to Paul’s preaching.
Acts 17:5 But the Jews which believed not, moved with envy, took unto them certain lewd fellows of the baser sort, and gathered a company, and set all the city on an uproar, and assaulted the house of Jason, and sought to bring them out to the people.
In conclusion we are required to be jealous/zealous like God in that which is good and to avoid being jealous/zealous/envious in that which is evil.
I hope you have found this helpful.
God bless,
Glenn
thisisyourbible.com
 
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