January 24, 2005
The Landmine of Covetousness
One of the best-concealed landmines in the life of a believer is covetousness. We tend to think the term simply describes a desire for an item belonging to another person, but it goes deeper than that. Covetousness is an intense yearning for something we do not have coupled with the belief that we will not be happy or satisfied until we get it.
When we are driven by an insatiable longing that distracts us from our relationship with God, then we are in danger - such intense craving is really a form of idolatry. Our preoccupation with satisfying the desire translates into our placing a higher value on the object than on God. That is the very nature of idol worship.
We all have desires of the heart, many of which are planted by God Himself; longings within the framework of His will are acceptable. There is nothing in the Bible that says it is wrong to want a nice house or a reliable car. God has a purpose, plan, and time worked out to meet our needs and supply legitimate wants. However, when we choose to fulfill a God-given desire in a way that is not in keeping with Hs will, we are guilty of covetousness.
The reason covetousness is so damaging is that it has no end. When we achieve one goal that we thought would satisfy, we discover that we are still not content. So we look to something else that we think will bring satisfaction. But nothing can bring peace and genuine contentment to our heart except a relationship with Jesus Christ.
On Jan. 2, 2005, Dr. Stanley begins a ten-week series entitled "Landmines in the Pathway of the Believer" that identifies and helps you disarm the spiritual landmines in your life. For more information, including television listings and airtimes, visit www.landminesofthebeliever.com.
For more about this topic and many more, be sure to visit the "Exploring the Bible" section of intouch.org. http://www.intouch.org/myintouch/exploring/index_76118.html