We are ignorant, many times, of what God did to that worker to make them fit for service. The group in Philippians 1:15 may have envied Paul’s platform, but it is doubtful they envied his prison cell. Paul’s name was on many lips in a joyous tone, but did they want the hatred of those who wanted to destroy Paul as well? When we envy another’s position, what we normally miss is the breaking, chiseling, and refining it took to get them there.
Some, indeed, preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. –Philippians 1:15
Resolution: Resolved to guard my heart against envy of another servant of Christ by being consciously thankful to God for their ministry, their gifts to the Body, and how God chooses to use them.
In the end, there are two types of preachers. There are those who preach and teach with “good will”, seeking to make Christ known, and there are those who do so for any other reason. Paul mentions the two here, and while the second group is easier to understand, the first group concerns my resolution, rebuking my heart when I feel envy and rivalry, and correcting it back on to the right path. It is interesting that both groups do, outwardly, what Jesus would call us to do, they preach the gospel, maybe even with the same fervor and passion as one another. Yet, outward obedience is the only place their lives agree. Just as both Jesse and Samuel were confused at the choice of David to be king, we must remember God’s sees the heart. We can be taken in by those who preach the gospel from dishonoring motives.
However, and most importantly, I can, if not careful, be grouped with those who preach the gospel from envy and rivalry.