Money does not make people who they are, but it can reveal what they are.
Ever watch the movie the good, the bad, and the ugly? What a chronic place to have a fight over money, in the graveyard! Just about anyone you talk to these days would love to win the lottery, but most people could not handle it, because they lack the wisdom necessary to properly manage it. Societies logic tells young women to marry a rich man, and in most cases that means to marry a man with lots of money, (That’s unfortunate because there are those who have true inner wealth). So their are men running around thinking they are have power because they have a lot of money, and women who are seeking to marry that money. In that scenario you have two people looking to build a relationship on a foundational bankroll. Money can buy materialism such as cars, a big luxurious house, lots of clothes to fill the closets, food to gorge on, and entertainment galore, but money can’t buy anyone love.
People are always fighting over money and financial issues, partly because some peoples goals are built on materialism. The desire for money leads people down the most self centered roads you can imagine. Married couples divorce over money, they have more of a relationship with the money than they do with their own spouses, or instead of sticking together they let it divide them. Money destroys families, it does damage friendships, it can hinder wise decisions, and will lead many to malicious intentions. There are those who do not want to work, they attempt to acquire wealth dishonestly, manipulating others in some way for their own selfish gains. God does not give us the ability to make wealth just so we can hoard it all for ourselves, but so that we can bless others. Keep in mind that wealth comes from the same place love does, (from God), it’s His not ours. So anytime you are fighting with someone over money, remember that it’s Gods wealth you are fighting over. Ill-gotten treasures are of no value… Proverbs 10:2
Whoever loves money will never have enough. Whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. Eccl. 5:10
Dishonest money dwindles away, but he who gathers money little by little makes it grow. Proverbs 13:11
Jealousy is generally wanting what someone else has, however in context of relationships with couples, the trait of jealousy exposes insecurity, it is an instinctive emotion that arises in those who do not feel sufficiently adequate to retain affection and respect purely on their own merits, it is often a lack of self-esteem. Lots of people think it is good to be jealous of their boyfriends or girlfriends, but jealousy can push others away. Cultures will give people numerous reasons why people are insecure and why they have a low self-esteem. However the main reason for the jealousy, the insecurity, and the low self-esteem is that they do not feel affirmed by the Father. Affirmation comes from God, not from people, God made us all unique and we are special to him. It is dangerous to be concerned with what other people think of you, (Proverbs 29:25). Our worthiness does not come from things, from money, or from the opinions of people, but it comes by a relationship with God. You are never without if God is within.
There are times when the result of jealousy exposes our insecurity for good reason. For instance if a woman has sex with a man, (outside of wedlock), and becomes pregnant, she is going to feel insecure in many ways. She would not have any kind of relational commitment with the guy she had sex with, and now there is a baby on the way. This is just another instance that shows why it is best to seek a meaningful relationship within the context of marriage.
Envy is a feeling of grudging admiration and desire to have something possessed by another, it is spite and resentment at seeing the success of another. Envy is when someone wants what you have and they know they can’t have it, so they want to take it away from you so you can’t have it either. The greatest pain someone can live with is having potential and never achieving it. People who lack fulfillment in their lives may often try to take the shortcut in an effort to make them feel better about themselves. They will attempt to take away from someone else and take credit for someone else’s accomplishments. They may feel inadequate because they have not fulfilled the dream that was given to them from their day of birth, the dream God gave them. So since they did not pursue and obtain their dream, they want to take away the dreams of others, so they can’t have them either. (Then I observed that most people are motivated to success by their envy of their neighbors. But this, too, is meaningless, like chasing the wind. Ecclesiastes 4:4)
A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones. Proverbs 14:30
Revenge is the action taken in return for an injury or offense, for a perceived wrong. Taking away what you have is envy, taking away your life is revenge. We have all heard comments like, "I will show them", "I am going to get even", and "I am going to make them pay for this". Regardless of the perceived infraction, two wrongs do not make a right. Revenge is also something that a bitter and resentful person will look to obtain. A key aspect of the definition of revenge above is, "for a perceived wrong". Often times people have misconceptions of instances and occurrences that lead them down the path of revenge, only to find out that they were wrong in the end. People who are be driven by jealousy and envy may attempt to sell you out to obtain your dream or in many cases to obtain your wealth. Some people will actually attempt to cover up their own shame or guilt by taking out revenge on others so they can feel better about themselves. They are in denial and will not accept the ownership of their own actions. Within this context the most significant aspect of the denial, is denying the grace of God. They may be unwilling to accept God and accept his forgiveness.
A Legalist conforms strictly to the letter of the law rather than it’s spirit. It is the strict and literal adherence to the law or to a particular code. The conformity of the rules is more important to them than are their relationships. Legalists have rules that enable them to become easily pained. Often people will use legalism within their society or culture in an effort to show their own immoral actions as approved. They want others to come to faulty conclusions to avoid the consequences of their own actions. The most valuable lessons often come after someone has done something really stupid. People will use every rule obtainable in an effort to show that they have done no wrongs, or to point the finger at someone else just to get away from the real truth that is eating away at them from the inside.
Pay close attention to these words, spoken by Jesus to the Pharisees, whom were legalists; "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean. Matthew 23:25-26
What leads to strife, discord, and feud, and how do conflicts, quarrels and fighting originate amoung you? They arise from your own selfish and sinful desires that are always at war inside you. You are jealous and covet what others have…. You burn with envy and anger and aren’t able to obtain the gratification you seek, so you fight and war. You don’t have because you don’t ask God. James 4:1-2
Wisdom will save you from evil people, from those whose speech is corrupt. These people turn from right ways to walk down dark and evil paths. They rejoice in doing wrong, and they enjoy evil as it turns things upside down. What they do is crooked, and their ways are wrong. Proverbs 2:12-15
To differentiate the boundries of poor character traits and quality character traits, please read this article on Relationship Enhancing Virtues.