Fast Forward 2018 – Jesus Judo Part 6: Kindness & Envy

FFp4Today we continue our study of Jesus Judo by contemplating the seven virtues and deadly sins that have been recognized by the Church since well before the seventh century AD. Having already discussed, Chastity / Lust, Temperance / Gluttony, Charity / Greed, Diligence / Sloth and Patience / Wrath, we now move to Kindness and Envy.

Valuing vs Resenting

The character traits of kindness and envy may be viewed through the lens of valuing versus resenting. When we value someone, we tend to think good thoughts about them. We magnify their positive attributes while minimizing their weaknesses and shortcomings. These thoughts naturally manifest themselves in positive actions including kindness toward them, and about them when conversing with others.

Conversely, when we resent someone for whatever reason, we tend to think negatively about them. We magnify their foibles while minimizing their strengths and positive attributes. These thoughts naturally manifest in negative ways when we are around them. They also often lead to gossip and slander about them when interacting with others.

The Partnership of Envy and Pride

Not only is envy listed right before pride in the list of seven deadly sins, they are also very similar. How can we be envious toward someone unless our own pride leads us to believe that the other person is less deserving than we are?

Rather than seeing ourselves as more deserving than others, the Bible instructs us to think of others as better than ourselves. We must remember our own weaknesses and all that God has forgiven us. From this position, we can better consider others. If we aren’t careful we will unwisely judge ourselves by our intentions while judging others by their actions.

Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.[1]

When we perceive others as more important than ourselves, we take on the servant role of Jesus. We are more willing to serve with a grateful heart for all that God has done for us. In so doing, it is easier to remember that the other person is a child of God as well. We also get to pull off a little Jesus Judo since Jesus taught us:

“…whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” [2]

By serving we become great? That’s right! It is definitely not natural – or the way of the world – but it IS the way the Kingdom of God works.

We Must Learn to be Kind

Envy is an innate emotion. Even little children want what others have for themselves. They have to be taught to consider the needs and feelings of others. Even as adults we often need to be reminded. We see these reminders throughout scripture, including:

So get rid of all evil behavior. Be done with all deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy, and all unkind speech. Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment, now that you have had a taste of the Lord’s kindness. [3]

Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behavior.  Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. [4]

A sound heart is life to the body, But envy is rottenness to the bones. [5]

Do not let your heart envy sinners, But be zealous for the fear of the LORD all the day; [6]

And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.  Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another. [7]

Jesus Judo Against Envy

In order to fight the evil forces of envy, we must make kindness a way of life:

· Envy urges us to resent – Kindness urges us to celebrate

· Envy urges us to say “why not me?” – Kindness urges us to sincerely congratulate

· Envy urges us to hate – Kindness urges us to love

· Envy urges us to slander – Kindness urges us to exalt

· Envy urges us to compete – Kindness urges us to support

· Envy urges us to criticize – Kindness urges us to praise

· Envy urges us to humiliate – Kindness urges us to elevate

· Envy urges us to separate – Kindness urges us to draw close

· Envy urges us to mistreat – Kindness urges us to help

· Envy urges us toward pride – Kindness urges us toward humility

· Envy urges us to curse – Kindness urges us to bless

Praying that the kindness of God surrounds you this week both for yourself and others.


[1] Philippians 2:3 (NKJV)

[2] Matthew 20:26-28 (NASB)

[3] 1 Peter 2:1-3 (NLT)

[4] Ephesians 4:31-32 (NLT)

[5] Proverbs 14:30 (NKJV)

[6] Proverbs 23:17 (NKJV)

[7] Galatians 5:24-26 (NKJV)

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.