Do not envy the wicked

Topics: God, God's Word

Do not fret because of evildoers, be not envious toward wrongdoers.

For they will wither quickly like the grass and fade like the green herb.

I. Look to the Lord

  1. Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will do it (Psalm 37:3-5).
  2. Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who carries out wicked schemes (Psalm 37:7).

II. Look to the future

  1. The wicked plots against the righteous and gnashes at him with his teeth. The Lord laughs at him, for He sees his day is coming (Psalm 37:12, 13).
  2. The Lord knows the days of the blameless, and their inheritance will be forever. They will not be ashamed in the time of evil, and in the days of famine they will have abundance. But the wicked will perish; and the enemies of the Lord will be like the glory of the pastures, they vanish - like smoke they vanish away. The wicked borrows and does not pay back, but the righteous is gracious and gives (Psalm 37:18?21).

III. Look to the reward

  1. The steps of a man are established by the Lord, and He delights in his way (Ps. 37:23).
  2. I have been young and now I am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his descendants begging bread. All day long he is gracious and lends, and his descendants are a blessing (Psalm 37:25, 26).

IV. Look to God's word

  1. The law of his God is in his heart; his steps do not slip (Psalm 37:31).
  2. Wait for the Lord and keep His way, and He will exalt you (Psalm 37:34a).

V. Look to the upright

  1. Mark the blameless man, and behold the upright; for the man of peace will have a posterity (Psalm 37:37).
  2. But the salvation of the righteous is from the Lord; He is their strength in time of trouble. The Lord helps them and delivers them; He delivers them from the wicked and saves them, because they take refuge in Him (Psalm 37:39, 40).

Sermon by Pastor Rod Akins, February 12th, 2023

Life group flow and discussion questions

"Do not envy the wicked"

An important Guideline of Life Groups: Fretting, worrying and envy are three common sins. Discuss as a Life Group how you can help one another overcome them.

Getting Started:

  1. How is David's Psalm 37 very similar to Asaph's Psalm 73?
  2. Have you ever been envious of prosperous people who seem to be having all the fun and luxuries of this life?

Discussing Truths:

  1. What are some real-life examples of the temptation to envy the wicked? Why do you think that coveting is one of the Big 10 on God's 10 commandment list?
  2. Envy is not restricted to the wicked. After Jesus had restored Peter through His three questions asking "Do you love Me?" and Peter's three affirmative answers; He challenged Peter to "Follow Me!". Then Peter asks about John and Jesus gives us the WITTY principle in John 21:22. What is the WITTY principle?
  3. Which of the five ways of fighting this temptation is most helpful for you?
  4. How can we center our hearts on the Lord? What all is involved in Psalm 37:3-7 for us to "trust", "delight", "commit", and "rest" in the Lord?
  5. Jesus is ALWAYS our example! How did Jesus look to the future as He was being brutally beaten and crucified (Hebrews 12:2, 3)?
  6. What does it mean to "Delight yourself in the Lord" How have people misinterpreted Psalm 37:4?
  7. God uses their own weapons against themselves (Psalm 37:14, 15); how is the story of Haman in Esther 7:9, 10 an example of this truth?
  8. Why does God want us to do life with one another (Psalm 37:37)?

Now What? Application:

  1. Ask God to search your heart and weed out any envy or coveting that is present!
  2. Take time daily to delight in the Lord and enjoy His presence!