God's Jealousy

I know the scriptures say that God is a jealous God. Jealousy to me is an imperfection because you are not seeing things clearly. And God is perfect so, how can he be jealous? I’m a little confused about this. What is being said?

Bill

Hi!

Take a look at this thread, it might answer your questions:

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=935660&highlight=jealous+god

If you knew for an undeniable fact that you are the real God, the creator and master of the universe, would you feel angry seeing many of your most blessed creatures rejecting you in favor of worshiping dust?

:thumbsup:

When I mentioned at work that God is jealous, all jaws dropped. Frankly, I thought they would understand, since it is a Christian ministry and it was in direct relevance to the reading of the day, namely, Exodus.

As lmelahn mentioned in the other thread:

He wants us to worship Him alone, because He knows that is what is best for us.

God wants us as His own, and of our volition. All of us!! Yes?

You can’t attribute human emotions to God and have God remain God. You might begin with St. Anselm’s Monologion and Proslogion.

Now that makes sense. The idea of “he sits on a throne” sounds all like man trying to speak of the unspeakable.

Bill

The Hebrew word for ‘jealous’ (kana’) is the same as ‘zealous’ or ‘passionate’. When God says He is ‘jealous’ or ‘passionate’, it means He wants exclusive service and loyalty: ‘Look at me - only me - and serve me.’ Yhwh cannot tolerate any rivals; He insists on absolute devotion. It’s like a husband who demands fidelity from his wife.

““You shall have no other gods before me.
You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. **You shall not bow down to them or serve them, for I the LORD your God am a jealous God, **visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments."

But can God be passionate? Is that potency or act? Also I would call God as ONEness and in 3 persons YHWH. YHWH is more like a god. When you really get into the captivities and the lists of captives and various picked up “false doctrines”. They got the god YHWH. Just FYI. Those first 2 sentences is what I would like am answer to.

Bill

Definitely. He is love. If love is not passionate what is it?

Is that potency or act?

Both. There are no divisions between who God is and what he does.

Also I would call God as ONEness and in 3 persons YHWH. YHWH is more like a god. When you really get into the captivities and the lists of captives and various picked up “false doctrines”. They got the god YHWH. Just FYI. Those first 2 sentences is what I would like am answer to.

Bill

Ah no. The whole history of the chosen people from Abraham throughout the OT is about the struggle between YHWH demanding total allegiance against Israel’s inclination to worship gods/idols. Isreal didn’t invent a new god. Rather, God revealed himself to them beginning with Abraham–to whom he showed that he was quite different from the gods of the heathens. I’m afraid it’s your idea that is the invention–not Isreal. :wink:

I dont think I would, actually if I knew I was ‘god’ then I would be well above those types of almost human like emotions, I think Id also recognize my creations did not see ‘the big picture’ either, so it would not be a surprise to see some of them straying.

You misunderstand who God is, then. He who made us is owed our total allegiance, whether we see the “big picture” or not. He has made it abundantly clear that he, and only he, can fulfill our needs. We need no other “lover” but our Beloved who loves us with such a fierce love that he died on the cross. Such love is beyond our human understanding, yes, but it does demand we give him our all in return.

I have thought about these declarations by God about his being a jealous God. I would like to share some thoughts about it.

Imagine you met a woman, who completely captivated your heart. She is breathtakingly beautiful, very intelligent, charming, great sense of humor, everything you could want in a woman. So you propose to her and this is her answer. “I love you also and would like to marry you. I will do all I can to be a loving and devoted wife to you, and a loving and devoted mother to our children should they come. I promise to be faithful to you 364 days a year, but one day a year, I just need to be with another man. If you can accept that, I will marry you.”

What would your answer be? She’s promised to be faithful 99% of the time. No godly man would agree to this arrangement, no matter how much she loved you.

This is how God looked at his covenant people in the Old Testament and how he looks at the bride of Christ in the New Testament. God wants us to give ourselves completely to Him without reservation. To grow in our relationship to God, we must tear down any idols we have erected in our hearts. We must not put any creature or created thing above our Creator. Indeed our love for creatures must stem from our love of God in order to be properly ordered.

So those verses about God being a jealous God should be a source of joy for us. They show how much He loves us! He loves us so much that nothing less than a complete giving of ourselves to the Divine Fire of His Love will be satisfy Him.

God is pure spirit.so no emotion. The inspired writers are attempting to put God’s infinite ‘mind’ into finite form for us to understand. God’s thoughts ,man’ words. Jesus of course spoke for himself as did the apostles.
Through Jesus you see the thoughts of God not through as a glass darkly.
Through Jesus’s Words you can see passion/jealousy of God as love for his creations.He wants us to be his alone so we might be with him for all eternity.

The root of passion comes fromthe Latin for suffering. Makes a neat little tie in.

The root of passion comes fromthe Latin for suffering. Makes a neat little tie in.

[quote=patrick457]The Hebrew word for ‘jealous’ (kana’) is the same as ‘zealous’ or ‘passionate’.
[/quote]

That’s problematic. ‘Jealous’, ‘zealous’ and ‘passionate’ all have quite distinct meanings in English. So the interpretation depends on the translator’s choice, it seems.

[quote=patrick457]He insists on absolute devotion.
[/quote]

[quote=Della]Such love is beyond our human understanding, yes, but it does demand we give him our all in return.
[/quote]

In my mind ‘insisting’ and ‘demanding’ are at odds with the notion of an all-loving God who allows us free-will.

In justice God has the right to demand our love–just as a spouse has the right to demand love in that relationship. When we remember that love is part of God’s nature, not an emotion, it makes more sense. For instance, marital love is not a mere emotion, either, no matter how many romance stories say otherwise. We can’t always feel romantic, but we can always give our love through good times and bad. How can we claim allegiance to love himself without acknowledging that he has a right to our love? Free will does not release us from our obligation to love him who first loved us. :slight_smile:

Exactly. I demand and insist, rightly, that my wife remain loyal and give to me all her spousal love and affection. And she, rightly, demands the same in return from me. It is a legitimate demand of something that is owed to that person.

Indeed. There is a big difference between a right and free will to reject that right. When we reject what is a right we sin. We may have sinned of our own free will or not (which goes to culpability), but merely having free will does not give us the right to sin. :yup:

Within a marriage love is not demanded. It is freely given and promised by the act of marriage. It is the commitment freely entered into that matters. If the suggestion is that God has the right to demand love from those who have committed themselves to Him, then that’s fair enough and analogous to marriage vows, perhaps. But if the suggestion is that God has the right to demand and insist upon love from all persons, then I would have to disagree.

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