Love Causes Jealousy

Genesis 37:4

When his brothers saw that their father loved him more than any of them, they hated him and could not speak a kind word to him.

Earlier we saw how favoritism hurt the relationship of Jacob and Esau.  Unfortunately Jacob didn’t completely learn the lesson of the danger that favoritism creates and he showed great favoritism toward his son Joseph.

The story of Joseph and the coat of many colors is a well known Bible story.  Genesis 37:4 tells the aftermath of the story.  Joseph probably doesn’t win any points with his brothers through his actions but ultimately the cause of the problem is that Jacob shows favoritism towards Joseph.

We all want to be loved; this is a universal notion.  Because Joseph’s brothers sense that they are not loved equally they are not happy with Joseph.

Basically no one is blameless in this situation.  Joseph might not have been able to do much about the fact that he was the favorite but he might have been able to do more to calm the problem.  Jacob was the cause of the problem by showing favoritism to begin with.

But none of this excuses the response by Joseph’s brothers.  Love should not bring about jealousy.  Even in such a situation where a person is unhappy they should not have hatred because of another’s love.  The best response is to be happy for the other person even if you’re not happy for your own situation.

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