Is God Really Jealous?

0 comments Posted on June 9, 2014

Jealousby Ava Pennington

After a severe loss, a friend told me she was done with believing in the God of the Bible. She said, “Your God is too cruel. Why does he allow pain and suffering?”

A few months later, a celebrity talk show host said she could no longer believe in the God of the Bible because he called himself a jealous God.

Both of these instances caused me to examine my understanding of God…and theirs. If the source of our understanding is not what God says about himself, then we’re guilty of making God fit our expectations and desires.

Daily Relfections Names of GodIt doesn’t help when names and attributes of God that comforted countless generations are misunderstood. For example, when God calls himself Jealous, what does that mean?

Isn’t jealousy a negative characteristic? Aren’t jealous people simply revealing their insecurities and their desire to possess what they don’t have?

In our culture, we have come to relate jealousy with pettiness or someone who is suspicious of a rival. But jealous can also refer to vigilance in guarding or protecting something or someone.

God wants to protect his people from worshipping anything other than him – not because he is insecure, but because he wants his best for us.

God is jealous in that he guards and protects us from things that are not in our best interests. Loving parents are protective of their children’s choices. They grieve when their children succumb to destructive influences in their lives. I’m glad God does nothing less!

Ava PenningtonAva Pennington’s newest book, Daily Reflections on the Names of God: A Devotional, is endorsed by Kay Arthur, founder of Precept Ministries. Ava has also written numerous magazine articles and is a member of Advanced Writers and Speakers (AWSA) and the Christian Authors Network (CAN). Ava also teaches a weekly, Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) class of 150+ women. She is a passionate speaker who engages audiences with relevant, enjoyable presentations. Visit her at or follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Purchase Daily Reflections on the Names of God at your favorite Christian bookstore or at the MTL bookstore.



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