Preaching Magazine Illustrations

In a recent Church and Culture post, James Emery White writes: “Irish writer Oscar Wilde once told a fictional tale about how the devil was crossing the Libyan desert. He came upon a spot where a small number of demons were tormenting a holy hermit. The sainted man easily shook off their evil suggestions. The devil watched as his lieutenants failed to sway the hermit, then he stepped forward to give them a lesson.

“What you do is too crude,” he said. “Permit me for one moment.”

He then whispered to the holy man, “Your brother has just been made Bishop of Alexandria.” Suddenly, a look of malignant envy clouded the once-serene face of the hermit. Then the devil turned to the imps and said, “That is the sort of thing which I should recommend.”

White adds: “When you give in to envy, you not only desire what another person has and resent him for having it; you also want to destroy its presence in the other person’s life. What an envier ultimately wants is not simply what another has; what an envier wants is for another not to have it.”  (from www.ChurchandCulture.org)

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