This homily benefits greatly from the works of Peter Leithart and Daniel Doriani:
Human life is rife with envy. Envy whispers in our ear about a neighbor who has slightly more than we do—a nicer car, more recognition, a prettier wife, more accomplished children. Envy wants to silence praise for others and grows angry when praise continues.
Enslaved to envy, we rejoice at those who weep, and weep at those who rejoice. We become “insatiable in our outbursts against the happy.” When we don’t achieve our goals, we think, “If I cannot have something, no one is to have anything, no one is to be anything. Let the world perish!”
Envy boils up as hatred. Envy isolates. Envy breeds self-pity and victimization, for envy convinces us that if the world were fair we’d be on top.
Continue reading “The Oppression of Envy: A Homily on Ecclesiastes 4:1-4”