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You Meant Evil Against Me

You Meant Evil Against Me
But God meant it for good

Joseph said to them, "Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God? But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive." Genesis 50:19-20 (NKJV)

I cannot say for sure how I would respond if I had brothers who had thrown me into a pit and then pulled me out and sold me to some people passing by as a human slave.  I can say I would forgive them, but I wouldn't really know until I faced the temptation to respond in anger.  In the book of Genesis we can see a story about Joseph, a young man who had been sold by his brothers because they were jealous of their father's love for him, and the position of honor he was being given.  

God's plan for honor prevailed though and Joseph was now the right hand man to Pharaoh and he was given great power.  Realizing what had ultimately happened to Joseph his brothers threw themselves at his feet and offered themselves as slaves (see Gen. 50:18).

Joseph's response is an unusual one by most peoples' standards in this world, which in itself tells us a lot.  Most of us would relish the opportunity to punish or seek revenge on those who have caused extreme hurt or loss in our lives, because it is in our natural fleshly nature to do so.  We simply justify it as being fair justice.  But this is not true according to God's Word.

Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: "It is mine to avenge; I will repay, says the Lord." Romans 12:19 (NKJV)

What should catch our attention in this story in addition to Joseph's disposition of mercy and grace for his brothers is everything that had been done to him with the intention of harming him, was in fact, used for good by God.  And not just for Joseph, but for the good of many.  We should take note of this fact because it can shift our entire view of the way we perceive those things happening to us.  

It could have been very easy for Joseph to play the victim role for what was done to him.  He was thrown into an empty cistern and held captive until he was sold into slavery.  From there, he was wrongly accused of sexually attacking a woman and put in prison.  If anyone could justify anger and a vindictive attitude, it was Joseph.   But God had a divine plan in all of this every last detail would be used for the good.  Every one of us has a story of how we were wronged in our personal life. But there is a common denominator in each of them God allowed every one of these things.  

But as Christians we need not fear.  We can have the same assurance Joseph derived from his afflictions; knowing whatever comes against us with intention of harming us, God will either stop it, or He will use it for good in our lives and the lives of others.

Q:  How should knowing these biblical truths affect how we view any future attacks, afflictions, or tough times?

We need to trust our Heavenly Father and His perfect plans for our life!  This includes listening to the Holy Spirit's guidance and reading God's Word daily.  

One more thing, if you've had something happen in your life something greatly impacting you even continuing to cause you pain, then I would greatly encourage you to talk to God about it.  Let Him use this for good.  Let it go, forgive the offender, and experience the freedom from the bondage it has enslaved you in.  God can heal this situation, and He can even use it to help others who have suffered from the same type of situation.  But we need to allow Him to use it and know with confidence He has a plan for it, and it doesn't include our being a victim.

Even the things done with wrong intentions can end up with the right result.

STUDY QUESTION: According to Genesis 50:19-20 what did Joseph conclude about his brothers offenses?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Is there something in your past you have not brought to the Lord and dealt with in His way?

APPLICATION:  Let God use this to help others.  Pray for God's healing and for Him to empower and allow you to help others by this experience.  Even though Satan intended it for harm, allow God to use it for good.

Heavenly Father, thank You for using everything in my life for Your glory.  Help me today, to utilize these situations for good. May my situation be used in their life, and may help guide them and draw them unto You.  In Jesus' precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000