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1 Samuel 18:6-16

Overcoming the Spirit of Jealousy

  • Shawn Dean
  • Mid-Week Messages
  • May 11, 2022
  • Sermon Notes
  • Scripture

Overcoming the Spirit of Jealousy 
1 Samuel 18:6-16                 
May 11, 2022

Shakespeare called it the green eyed monster.  It has wrecked more families, ruined more workplace environments, destroyed more friendships and come between more relatives.

We are going to look at a passage where this is the key issue between King Saul and David. It was Saul’s jealousy towards David that ruined their relationship.

We want to talk about how it has a negative and cancerous impact on our lives and ruins relationships. Then we’ll talk about how you and I overcome the power of jealousy in our lives.  We know from the background that David had just beaten Goliath. A tremendous feat. His army was now marching home victoriously.

1 Samuel 18:6-16

A song breaks out; Saul’s 1000’s vs David’s 10,000’s. Now this is a a problem. This young man, David, taking the attention away from Saul in this song. Saul is such a man of ego and pride, he always believed he was on top. A threat to his ego and pride and he didn’t like it one bit.

It wasn’t David’s fault, but that didn’t matter to Saul.  He was not happy according to our passage.

Illustration – Mark McGuire – Major League Baseball

If Saul lived in modern times, he would have been a pitcher. He had the same mentality, took everything personal and he did not enjoy being showed up.

v8 tells us that Saul was very angry. That song galled him so he kept a jealous eye on David.  He saw it as a threat to his entire kingdom.  David grew to be a big fish in Saul’s eyes in a very short time.

v9-11 from that time on Saul’s jealousy grew towards  David.

What impact did this jealousy have on their relationship?

Three ways

  1. v12 – Saul was afraid of David. All trust disappeared between these two men. We know and some of you have experienced this first hand; when trust is gone in marriage, a working relationship or a friendship, the relationship is in trouble.

In ministry, relationships and qualifications can be superior and impressive but personal credibility is the most important thing.  If we lose that, it doesn’t matter about qualifications, degrees or how nice we are. Without trust it is over in ministry. That really doesn’t surprise you because as noted, any relationship without trust quickly dissolves.

Personal Illustration

  1. Saul realized the Lord was with David and he remained David’s enemy the rest of his life. David became Saul’s sworn enemy no matter what he did.

1 Samuel 18:28-29, When Saul saw and knew that the Lord was with David, and that Michal, Saul’s daughter, loved him, then Saul was even more afraid of David. Thus Saul was David’s enemy continually.

David was fully trusted in the beginning and now a sworn enemy. No matter how hard David tried, the jealousy had eaten the trust away.  Did David try to correct that?  Of course, he passed up opportunities to kill Saul; what’s wrong with you Saul?  If I was really your enemy, wouldn’t I have killed you when I had the chance?

Perhaps some of you have had situations where you tried everything you knew how to cure such a relationship with someone that’s estranged? Keep praying!

  1. c19 v1 – Saul told his son Jonathon to kill David.

1 Samuel 19:1, Now Saul told Jonathan his son and all his servants to put David to death. But Jonathan, Saul’s son, greatly delighted in David.

As hard as it might be for us to imagine, Saul obsessed with envy and ordered the cold blooded murder of David. He didn’t even try to hide it. The whole nation new about it. 

His national agenda was not busy with things the nation needed like the Philistines, the living conditions in Israel, how to take the nation spiritually into God’s blessing.  It all deteriorated and the nation suffered.

Anytime jealousy gets into your business or relationships at hand, the relationship is determined and bound to fall apart. Hostility towards others renders our witness ineffective and harmful to the Gospel.

Jesus said in 1 John if you hate someone in your heart, you might as well have murdered them.

So what about this issue of jealousy? 

Saul wasn’t the only one.  We have it all around us. 

I said by the time I’m done you might adjust that and discover to your own surprise that you indeed have instances where jealousy had or is having  impact.

Maybe you still need to deal with it.

Typical examples.

Relationships – guys and girls – often the guys are jealous over the smallest of things.

This is not what we are talking about – We are speaking of the jealousy of possession.

We are talking about the jealousy of envy, resentment, the jaundice eye.  This is a feeling we have towards others – action sins, not feelings (things we do) and attitude sins (more deadly, down in the secret part of the heart) – we’re talking about one of those.

We also need to clarify that jealousy and greed are not the same thing. Greed says I want what you have. Jealousy says I resent what you have, so even if I can’t have it, I want you to lose it too.

Jealousy is a cancerous force that destroys feelings for other people. One might think they’d love to see certain people crash and burn. That poisons our relationships.

Who are those relationships?

  • Neighbors – they might be just ahead of you with stuff or maybe complaining to the HOA.
  • Fellow student – getting close to the instructor. No rules seem to apply to them.
  • Co-Worker – butters up to the boss and it seems to work –

Are you able to say honestly, I am happy for them, I’m not jealous or envious at all?  If not, you may have a heart problem to deal with. 

Dr. Paul Tripp states in his book on marriage, “what comes out of the mouth is the condition of our heart.”

James 3:16, For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing.

I’ve struggled with jealousy in my life – hate to disappoint you, but this touches all of us I believe. Baseball opportunities, career set-backs to name a couple.

Let me give you 4 ideas on how to beat this thing.

1 – Be honest about the problem. Don’t sugarcoat it –

Don’t give it a new name; like healthy marketplace competitiveness – no, call it jealousy, envy. They got what I wanted and that’s how it is. As ugly as it may be, we have to be honest to fix it.

Organizations like AA, Narcotics Anonymous, pornography support groups – their programs want people to get to a point of saying, “I am an _________” and these organizations say you can’t conquer a problem until someone admits they have it.

When we look at the biblical perspective, we recognize it is sin in your life and determine if you want to pursue sin against God with this thing that’s got a hold of you. Then you can work with them.

2 – Reassess the value of people in your life

Are people more important?  Jealousy will hurt and damage relationships with people.  Do you realize how damaging this jealousy will be? How do you value people in your life?

3 – Attack jealousy with prayer, a powerful weapon that will work.

Why won’t other weapons work?  You have no conscious control of jealousy day to day to be able to wipe it out.

Galatians 5:19-22, Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

Here our sin nature is exposed – “jealousy” is right there in the list.  A deep seated sin nature – the only weapon that will work is the power of the spirit of God Himself, changing our heart’s desire through prayer.

And in the middle of the verse; hatred, discord, jealousy – a fit of rage – this is telling us that jealousy is a deep seated part of our fleshly nature. Only weapon is prayer – the power of the spirit of God to change us.

4 – Keep your focus on God and not people.  Most important.  Jealousy is an outgrowth of our worldview – I want, I want, I want…and that person is competing with me.

Bible presents a different worldview for us in Psalm 66.

God is big enough to give you the success that God’s plan calls for in your life.  What happens with and to other people makes no difference to God’s plan for you?

What happened to Saul? Saul got his eyes off God and onto David as a threat because of David’s skills and abilities and popularity – Saul simply resented him. 

We should keep our eyes on God and say, I’m here as long as you want me here God and as long as my eyes are on you, I’m good with your plan. Saul failed

We should all be practicing this healthy, Godly attitude right now in our lives.

If we believe God is running the universe and He is, and if we believe He’s in control of our lives and He is, that He’s going to get us exactly where He wants to get us and He is, then what’s there to be jealous about?  You’ll end up exactly where God wants you – the high road.

If you’re here today and have never trusted Christ as your personal savior, I say to you when you get a relationship with Christ as your savior, you get far more than a ticket to heaven – & you do get that.

He will open doors no man can shut and get you where you need to go – This is liberating faith if you see the world the way God sees it.

Chapter 18

Now it happened as they were coming, when David returned from killing the Philistine, that the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet King Saul, with tambourines, with joy and with other [a]musical instruments. The women sang as they [b]played, and said,

“Saul has slain his thousands,
And David his ten thousands.”

Then Saul became very angry, for this lyric [c]displeased him; and he said, “They have given David credit for ten thousands, but to me they have given credit for only thousands! Now what more can he have but the kingdom?” And Saul eyed David with suspicion from that day on.

10 Now it came about on the next day that an evil spirit from God rushed upon Saul, and he raved in the midst of the house while David was playing the harp with his hand, [d]as usual; and [e]a spear was in Saul’s hand. 11 Then Saul hurled the spear, for he thought, “I will [f]pin David to the wall.” But David [g]escaped from his presence, twice.

12 Now Saul was afraid of David, because the Lord was with him but had left Saul. 13 So Saul removed him from [h]his presence and appointed him as his commander of a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people. 14 David was [i]successful in all his ways, for the Lord was with him. 15 When Saul saw that he was [j]very successful, he was afraid of him. 16 But all Israel and Judah loved David, for he would go out to battle and [k]return [l]before them.


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