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Summary: Troubles will make you better if you do not allow it to make you bitter.

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Exodus 1:14 begins with the phrase, “And they made their lives bitter…”

• According to the Strong’s Concordance the root word used for “bitter” can also mean “stronger.”

• As a matter of fact, according to the Bible Reader’s Companion, some suggest that the root translated “bitter” actually was intended to be “strong.”

o Pharaoh intended slavery to crush the spirit of the Jewish people, and to cause many to die.

• Pharaoh sought to make their lives unbearable.

• Instead he served to strengthen them.

• When he intended to make them bitter he instead made them better.

• Bitter became stronger!

• More often than not, trouble and trial comes into our lives because Satan intends to use them to destroy us.

o It is his purpose to crush us under the heavy load of adversity and opposition.

• It is his purpose to make our lives bitter.

• It his purpose to cause us to despise every breath we take.

o But, in the course of his diabolical plan, God makes a way to turn trouble into triumph.

• God makes a way to turn tragedy into growth.

o The Israelites were supposed to give up and become subservient.

• They were supposed to be weakened and bitter until they despised life itself.

o But instead bondage and oppression caused the to grow stronger in body and in number.

• Death and loss became the catalyst for liberty and freedom.

o What Satan intended for evil, God used for good.

• The bondage was imposed to prevent their multiplying: but according to verse 12, “the more they afflicted them the more they multiplied and grew.”

• Some lessons Satan never learns.

o The same transition from bitter to better is repeated throughout the biblical record.

• Satan thought he would tear Job down with bitter trouble and opposition.

• But in the End God multiplied Job and Job emerged from his trial with more than he ever had.

• Nero thought he would crush the church with persecution.

• But in truth he compelled the church to fulfill the great commission as he scattered them to the ends of the earth.

• The church didn’t go underground as it spread, instead it established itself across the entire world.

• Hell has determined that trouble and opposition can take you out of the fight.

• Hell thinks that your life can be made so bitter that you will be rendered spiritually ineffective.

• But what Hell hasn’t counted on is the fact that God turns “bitter” into “better.”

• The thing that was meant to destroy you is the thing that God will use to advance you!

• I want you to know tonight that when Satan brings bitterness into your life.

o When controversy and trouble rise up to attempt to crush you.

o It is important that you recognize the fact that Satan is not in charge of your life, God is.

• And God works all things together for good to those that trust him.

• It may not look good now.

• It may not seem good at this present time.

• But have faith my friend, God has your best interest in mind and he’s working your life out for good!

• When Satan produces bitter God always answers with better.

o It was the bitterness of the cross that resulted in the beauty of salvation.

• It was the bitterness of death that resulted in the beauty of resurrection.

• It was the bitterness of being beaten that resulted in the promise of our healing.

o Every great thing that Jesus did for us was accompanied by the bitter assault of this world.

• But God took the bitter and made it better.

• What was intended to destroy the messiah

o What was intended to cut off salvation

o What was intended to crush the healer

• Instead loosed the mercy and grace of God.

• The bitter wrath of hell loosed the tender mercies of heaven.

Joseph

• In the entire Bible there is no better example of this principle than the story of Joseph in the book of Genesis.

o It all begins when Joseph has a dream that someday he will be exalted above his brothers and even above his parents.

o Naturally his brothers aren’t thrilled to hear this news, and soon their hearts burn with envy, jealousy, and malice against Joseph.

• When opportunity presents itself, they throw Joseph into a pit, intending to leave him for dead.

• They end up selling him into slavery to a caravan of Midianite traders.

• Then they go back home, tell their father Jacob that Joseph is dead, and forget all about him.

o Meanwhile, Joseph is purchased by Potiphar (who was the Pharaoh’s head of security.)

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