THREE GOOD REASONS NOT TO COVET ANYTHING
In the book of Exodus, God decides to set foundational rules for His people through commands that Moses was ordered to archive and document. God's foundational rules started with the 10 commandments and in Exodus 20:17, He commands the following:
"You shall not covet your neighbor's house. You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor."
The verb 'covet' refers specifically to the 'desire to possess what belongs to another person'.
There are many good reasons as to why we should never covet anything but I am only going to list three reasons:
1. When God commanded His people 'not to covet anything', He wanted them to remove the desire for illegal or immoral dispossession. Because theft or any form of illegal dispossession starts within thoughts germinating in the heart. Before becoming a thief or an illegal dispossessor, the perpetrator has to germinate the thoughts of being one through covetousness. The passage of Proverbs 23:7 states that a 'man will be what he thinks about'. Therefore, thoughts of constant covetousness are likely to transform its bearer as an illegal or immoral dispossessor.
By removing thoughts of covetousness, we will definitely have a better world. Not a perfect world, but surely a better one.
2. The second reason why we should not covet, is because covetousness tends to make its bearers fail to see or acknowledge the beauty and relevance of what they have. You see my friend, when people covet, they shift the spotlight on things that are not theirs and they can barely see what they own.
One of the lessons behind the parable of the talents is the following: 'we are called to multiply what God gave us'. Therefore, even if your God-given gift seems comparatively small, you can still find a Godly way to multiply or extend it. But by coveting what belongs to others, you are more likely to focus on other people stuff and you will be less likely to nurture the time to work and extend on what God gave you.
3. thirdly, covetousness blinds its bearer to the costing reality attached to what others own. In other words, in the process of coveting something, we may easily overlook the cost of having the coveted object.
For the sake of bringing more exactitude, I divide property between the righteous context and the general worldview.
A. Within the righteous context
In Mark 10:29-30, Jesus says:
“Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel 30 will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life.'
Have you noticed the word 'persecutions' in the above passage?
We should not envy or covet what other fellow Christians own especially when considering the persecutions and trials attached to their acquisitions. They may look good on their social media profiles or in the public. However, their choice to follow the call of God ,has brought both beautiful things and horrible persecutions.
B. Within the general context:
Whether people are Christians or not, we should never covet what they have. I have learnt (like many of you) that people are good at showing off the best sides of their lives. And it is not a crime to do so.
But do we sometimes take the time to consciously weight the cost of acquiring and maintaining what those people own?
Do you know that there are seemingly successful people with fame who are always surrounded on TV but in reality they have no friends at all?
Some people look extremely good on social media but in private they meditate on ways to kill themselves...
Don't covet anything...
On the other, instead of chasing other people's properties, let us rather:
*Celebrate the good and legal success of others and,
*learn from what they did to become legally successful.