In the last of the Ten Commandments, God instructs, “You shall not covet…anything that is your neighbor’s” (Exodus 20:17). Covetousness, the lust to have what does not belong to us, is the driving force behind many of the sins forbidden by the Ten Commandments. The Bible records that Satan—originally “the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty” (Ezekiel 28:12)—started on the road to becoming the twisted, evil being he is today when he began coveting God’s position as Most High (Isaiah 14:12-14).
Likewise, if we allow our desire for the forbidden to drive us, we, too, will disqualify ourselves from the incredible future God intends for us. Paul, a servant of God who often found himself in life-threatening and otherwise trying situations, wrote about learning “in whatever state I am, to be content” (Philippians 4:11). He knew that “the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18).
Being content with what we have does not always mean suffering. God wants His children to have the good things in life, but He knows the importance of working for them and being deserving of them. His contentment will not and cannot coexist with covetousness—and it is only with this contentment that we can realize the incredible potential we can have as members of God’s family.
Won’t it be great when the whole world finally keeps the Tenth Commandment?