You should read James 3:16, which states that where there is jealousy, strife, and the expression of selfish ambitions, there is chaos and bad things happen. In our friendships and interactions with others, we should avoid jealousy and strife because they create an ideal environment for bad things to happen. Consider this: when you and your friend fight over who gets the last piece of cake, it’s more than just a silly argument; it’s like watering the plant of bad things. Cain became enraged at his brother Abel, fueled by jealousy, and it resulted in a terrible act: murder.
You want to avoid jealousy, strife, and hostilities of any kind. This will create space for good things to grow. In Genesis 26:12-33, Isaac faced envy and conflict with the Philistines. The Lord blessed him abundantly, and the Philistines were envious of his prosperity. This envy led to strife, and Abimelech, the Philistine king, drove Isaac away. Isaac chose to move on rather than escalating the conflict. He was always prepared to walk away. Later, when Abimelech realised the Lord was with Isaac, he sought peace. They reached an agreement to avoid strife, signalling a shift from envy and conflict to understanding and cooperation.
Isaac’s willingness to walk away from strife demonstrates a powerful lesson: avoiding envy and strife can lead to peaceful resolutions and the avoidance of evil deeds. Here was someone who was more confident in God’s ability to bless him if he walked away than in his own ability to fight Abimelech and the Philistines over land and wells. Isaac simply kept moving. Do not wait for the Cains of this world to make their move; instead, walk away, trusting God to open new wells for you and lead you to your own Rehoboth (Genesis 26:22).