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Watch 2022 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - This Promise From God Remains

Steven Furtick - This Promise From God Remains

Steven Furtick - This Promise From God Remains
TOPICS: God's Promises

I believe God knows things about your potential that even in your greatest moments of triumph you can only imagine. I believe he speaks to your life from time to time, not from the vantage point of your performance but from the vantage point of your potential. How many are grateful that God sees your potential when other people want to hold you down to the level of your past, when other people want to hold you down to the level of your worst moments? So he calls him a "rock" even though Peter at this point is very unstable. We know he's unstable because he just got his gold star for correctly identifying Jesus as the Christ, the Son of the living God, and no sooner does he say who Jesus is correctly than he makes a move that is above his pay grade.

I want to show you this in verse 22. It's almost hard to believe he could go from so high to so low in a matter of a moment, from so faith-filled and so accurate in his assessment of Jesus to making a statement that completely contradicted the purpose of God. It might give you hope, because some of you in here have vacillated even this morning in the amount of faith you have. You were a different person in the parking lot than you were during the praise and worship set. Now don't make me ask your husband what you're like when you get home, because I only see you in one condition. From moment to moment, many of us who have the greatest potential for power and purpose also have the greatest potential for pain and failure. Peter demonstrates it in the text. Right after he hears the explanation from Jesus about what's about to happen, the Bible says he takes Jesus aside (verse 22) and begins to rebuke him.

Now, this is always a bad idea for you to explain to the God of the universe how his plan is not correct because it does not conform to your agenda. Watch what he says next. This is what I wanted to preach to you about. He said, "Never, Lord! This shall never happen to you"! The Greek word for never is a strong word. It's not a whisper mumble word; it's an emphatic "Never"! The Greek word is ou me. It's a double negative. It's not even grammatically correct what Peter is saying. He is so confident he knows what God is going to do in his life that he says not only "Never," but watch this: "Never! No, never". I used to say this all the time about the way I would raise my kids until I had them.

I used to say, "I'll never…" "I will never be the kind of dad who screams at his kids that way. Never. Oh, I would never, because what good would that do? To discipline my kids from anger would only create fear, and God has not given us a spirit of fear but power, love, and a sound mind. I will never discipline my kids in a spirit which will contradict the very nature of the God I seek to represent. I want to be a good, good father. I want to give them an accurate presentation of their Father in heaven, so I'll always correct them from a posture of love. I will never raise my voice. Why would I try to correct them in the same spirit that I'm trying to correct? I will always discipline them in a way that will show them that while the behavior may be unacceptable your identity and my love for you are eternally secure".

Now I yell at my kids so much. Somebody say, "Never". Until you had them. We can all get this kind of false confidence, and life will challenge your concept of never. I'm well aware that many people gathered here today are in a situation right now that you never thought you'd find yourself in. "Other people's marriages may fall apart, but my marriage? Never. We will wash one another's feet in the name of our risen Lord. I would never talk to my husband that way. Never"! "I would never struggle with that. I don't know how somebody could get hooked on something like that. I just don't get people like that. I would never". Never. Ou me. You may. Me? Never. "I don't get people who struggle with depression. I've got the joy of the Lord. Rejoice in the Lord always. The Bible says always. Give thanks in all things, in all circumstances. All means all, Steven. Rejoice in the Lord. I will rejoice. This is the day that the Lord has made. I don't understand people…"

Until something happens in your life that knocks you off balance, and you might find yourself… Be careful what you judge me for today. It might be knocking on your door tomorrow. "I never thought I would be the one dealing with anxiety, but now I can't catch my breath". "I never thought I would think a thought that dark. I never struggled with that in my teens. I didn't struggle with that in my 20s. Now it came out of nowhere". Never. No, never. Never, ever, ever, ever. Never. He said that another time too. This was kind of Peter's thing. He's sitting at the table with the Lord at the Passover meal where Jesus was telling them, "Now this is my body broken for you".

He's talking symbolically about what he's going to do practically in 24 hours, and they can't comprehend it. He's telling them, "Not only am I going to die and bleed like this for you, but actually, all of you are going to be unable to take it and your faith will fail and you will all walk away. You will all fall away. One of you is going to betray me. I'm not saying any names. (It's Judas.) But the rest of you, don't get too judgmental, because none of you are going to be there at the cross when it happens. You were there when I was feeding bread, but when the Bread is broken you will all fall away. All of you". What did Peter say about that? You might be surprised. Peter insisted emphatically, "Even if I have to die with you, I will never…" "Not me"! When I first started preaching, I asked a pastor… This was very early on. I was studying the Bible, and I was trying to understand the miracles.

Some of the stuff in there is hard to accept at face value. Y'all never read it before? There's some really crazy stuff in here, like dead people getting up out of the ground. My faith wanted to believe it, but my mind was contradicting it. So I asked this pastor, "Do you ever have doubts"? He said, "No, never". I said, "You never doubt the Bible"? He said, "No, never". Two years later, he was out of ministry, because sometimes it's the people who will not acknowledge their weakness who are the most susceptible to it. God put it on my heart to preach to the people today (this may not be you, and it's okay) who are in a situation where you never thought you would struggle with what you're struggling with. You watched other people struggle with it, but you never thought you would.

What do you do when you find yourself in the situation that you swore you'd never be in, that you never imagined you'd be in? What resurrection does is it challenges my concept of never. It challenges my expectation of never. What it shows me is that although I've never seen somebody get up from the ground after being buried, when God says never it's different than when I say never. What God wants to challenge this Easter Sunday is my understanding of what is possible, my understanding of what could never happen. There are many of us here who have given up on our hope, and the word over your life has been never. "You'll never be happy like they are. You will never be free from this. Your mom wasn't. Her mom wasn't. Her mom wasn't. What makes you think it's possible for you? You are never going to connect. You will never love again. You will never heal from this. You will never recover from that fall. You will never rebuild your reputation. It will never happen for you". But heaven speaks a different never.

See, I want to show you another never. This never doesn't come from the mouth of Peter; this never comes from the mouth of God. It's from Hebrews 13:5. After you've been through all that hell has to throw at you, after you have survived the worst possible assault on your faith and your mind and your sanity, after people have left you, after circumstances have drained you of your human energy, there remains a promise in the Word of God. This is not Peter's prediction; this is God's promise. He said, "Never will I leave you and never will I forsake you". The Greek word is ou me. "They might, but I won't. Never! No, never". "When will I withdraw my love from you? Never! No, never! When will I change my mind about you? Never! No, never! When will I walk away and give up on the plans I made for your life? Never! No, never"! Shout if you have a God who said never! When God says never he means never! There's nothing you can do about it, Devil! I have a living hope!
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