sermon: What if You Are Betrayed?
Betrayal is triggered by a root of bitterness resulting from envy, but turning into hatred, a shoot of bitterness manifesting a spirit of murder. Joseph's brothers displayed all these elements when they conspired to kill him as a teenage boy. The proximate cause of their bitterness to their younger brother was their response to his two dreams. Their hatred (the shoot of bitterness) led them to conspire to kill him, though they later opted to sell him into slavery, agreeing among themselves to deceive their father as to Joseph's true fate. Though Joseph had every right to harbor a root of bitterness, he chose to trust that God had his best interests at heart, the same confidence all of God's called-out ones should have. When a person casts his anxieties upon God, He comforts him, preserving him and saving him in the proper time. Such deliverance is manifest in the Joseph-narrative, as God rescued him from his murderous brothers, placed him in service to Potiphar and later to Pharaoh himself, in time making him the vizier of Egypt. God's timing is never too late nor too early. James instructs God's people that, before they can resist Satan, they must yield to God, cleansing themselves from evil, purging themselves of doublemindedness. Then, and only then, will Satan flee.
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