Support us on Paypal
Contact Us
Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - Source Material

Steven Furtick - Source Material

Steven Furtick - Source Material

Wherever you are today, whether the weather is gloomy or not, we bring you greetings in Jesus' name. Clap your hands, Elevation Church. Let's welcome our eFam around the world, all over the globe. The joy of the Lord is our strength. "I was glad when they said unto me, 'Let us go to the house of the Lord.'" Well, sometimes you can't get to the house of the Lord. The house of the Lord is coming to you today. We speak God's peace, protection, and favor over your life on every location, whether in a prison or whether you just slept in. God can cover all of that, and I believe that by the time we're done today you're going to say, "It was no accident that my path converged".

This word is just for you. Clap your hands if you believe God has a word for you today. I am continuing in my series called Ghost Writer. We are in Acts 2:1, and I'm going to read 18 verses. I know you didn't read your Bible all week, so I've got to stack a few extra on for you. Take a look at this Scripture with me from Acts 2:1-18. Imagine with me the crushing pressure on the disciples of Jesus Christ as they wait for the Holy Spirit to be poured out, which Jesus has promised them. How many know just because Jesus promised it doesn't mean the process of waiting for it gets any easier? In this predicament you find yourself in in this season of your life, it's not really that you doubt God, is it? It's that you doubt you.

"Can I hold out? Can I be strong? Can I do what's required"? I guess, in a way, that is doubting God, because he made us, and to doubt the product is to insult the manufacturer. If God says you can make it, you can make it. If God says you can do it, you can do it, but that doesn't mean it's easy. So, the Lord sends a word to confirm in those seasons for us, and I believe he's going to do that for you today. The Bible says in Acts 2:1, "When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house…"

Last week I ended on that verse. I talked about Plot Holes in our lives, things we don't understand and can't make sense out of, and how God filled the hole, but I used the word whole versus hole and how God has everything taken into account for your life. Now look at what the Holy Spirit did. "…filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit…" That's what we want too. We want to be filled not with the foolish opinions of this stupid world but with the Holy Spirit.

Not only were they filled with the Holy Spirit, but they began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them. "Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. Utterly amazed, they asked: 'Aren't all these who are speaking Galileans? Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!'"

Now watch this contradiction. Verse 12: "Amazed and perplexed…" Amazed and perplexed. It's like, "God, I believe what you're doing, but I'm still confused". That's how they felt. Amazed and perplexed. Really blown away, but at the same time kind of tossed about, wondering what's going on. "Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, 'What does this mean?' Some, however…" You always have some in every crowd. "…made fun of them and said, 'They have had too much wine.'" "You know what I'm saying"? You know how you do. Anytime God is moving, someone will be mocking. So, if God is moving in your life as a teenager and your friends aren't inviting you to all of the parties and they're making fun of you… "Oh, you're that little Christian kid. You're that little Bible-toting kid. You're that little virgin girl". "Absolutely. God is moving in my life, and I'm getting ready for the next season he's bringing me into".

Their mocking will never stop your God from moving in your life unless you let it. Watch this. Verse 14: "Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: 'Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you…'" "Let me break it down. You're talking about it, but let me say something about it, because I know something about it". "…listen carefully to what I say. These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It's only nine in the morning"! Peter had jokes. Peter had a great opening line. He's building rapport with his audience. "Now, if you come back at 9:00 tonight, they might be drunk. I can't speak. But it's too early for that". "No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: 'In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.'" Tell your neighbor, "You will prophesy". Tell them, "And I prophesy over your life God is going to speak to you today".

Welcome to part 3 of Ghost Writer. The name of our sermon this week is Source Material. Now tell your neighbor on your way to the seat, like New Kids on the Block said, "I've got the right stuff," and be seated. Yeah, Source Material. Week one: Page Turner. Week two: Plot Hole. Week three: Source Material. Source Material doesn't sound very sexy as a title. I understand. Page Turner… That's kind of like, "Ooh, yeah. New chapter. New boyfriend. New neighborhood. New net worth. New zip code. New network. My new network is my new net worth. Put another zero, because it's a Page Turner. Open another chapter; it's a Page Turner". Then Plot Hole… Once you found out what that was last week, you were shouting about it, because you realized sometimes what you think is a Plot Hole is actually God setting up a twist to take your life in a different direction.

This one, Source Material… I'll need to break it down, even though you know what it means, basically. How about this? First of all, let me just write it. I do appreciate all of you who are praying for me while I write on this screen that God would heal my handwriting. I read in the Bible where Jesus healed blind eyes, but I don't know if he ever healed anybody's handwriting. I certainly need that. If you're listening on a podcast, I am writing the words Source Material, and I spelled them right. Praise the Lord. Source material, put simply… Well, let's read the definition. I'm going to read the definition to you. It's the original data, documents, or records used as the basis for creating new work. If you apply it across multiple disciplines, it would look like this. If you are a journalist, your source material should be firsthand accounts, accurate quotes in context, facts, statistics, and things like that, so that when I read your report I can trust your source.

Let me move off that, because I felt like that was a little bit needlessly edgy. Let's talk about music. If you're a musician, you only have so many notes to work with for every song you would ever create. Whether a symphony or whether it's just a bop on the radio, you get 12 notes. Bach had 12 notes. Beethoven had 12 notes. What you do with those 12 notes and what you do with meter and rhythm and melody is largely up to your talent and your ingenuity and creativity, but you get 12 notes. From those 12 notes, millions of songs have been sung and written. If you are a screenwriter trying to write a movie, you might take a book or you might take an original screenplay, but whatever you built that movie from, that would be your source material.

So, a musician might take a sample and make a source material. An author might take a historical account, and then kind of embellish it and make a new story out of source material. I thought about using Barbara Kingsolver. She wrote a book called Demon Copperhead, and she based it on the Charles Dickens book David Copperfield, but she reset that story in a modern context in Appalachia. So, when she did it, it was a fresh story, but it came from a classic source. This book that I brought up here with me today was written in 2004, and it was a New York Times best seller. In 2007, a 27-year-old young man walked by this book just before he went on vacation in Mexico. He needed something to read because he really needed to disengage his mind. When I'm looking for something to disengage my mind, I don't pick a book this thick, but this is a different kind of dude. He walked past it and bought it, and he read it while he was on vacation.

The fact of the matter is I'm pretty sure… I can't prove it. I don't have any records of it, but this particular individual is the same age that I am. I've never met him. I respect him. In the year 2007, we were both 27 years old, and I'm pretty sure I went into a bookstore when I was 27 at some point that year at least once. This book was such a big deal that I'm sure I walked by this book, but I did not look at this book and think, "That would make an amazing Broadway musical where I could recast the founding fathers as hip-hop artists and take the entire world by storm". The book, of course, is the biography of Alexander Hamilton written by Ron Chernow, and the person who picked it up is none other than the great prophet Lin-Manuel Miranda. When Lin-Manuel Miranda walked by this book, he thought, "Huh. I should read that on vacation".

Now, if I picked up this book for vacation, the result would be a nap. No offense to the book, but about page 3, I'd be out. This book would be, for me, a $23 Ambien ($30 in Canada). For him, it captivated audiences. How many of you have seen Hamilton? The rest of you, don't throw away your shot. Go see Hamilton at least on Disney+. Now you can download it. It grossed in 2020, by that point, $650 million on Broadway alone. I don't even know what it made on Disney+ and all of the merchandise and all that. I couldn't find it in ChatGPT. Then I found out it won 11 Tony awards. What I thought was interesting and where I want to bring this into your life is… How was I in the bookstore where this book was, and maybe even walked by it…? I mean, it's not typically the section I walk by in the bookstore, I'll be honest, but possibly I was close by. Why did this book call out to him, and why did he take it…? Do you ever see somebody on Shark Tank and are like, "I could have thought of that"?

You know, I picked up this book… I did. I bought it this week. I didn't read it. I just flipped through it a little bit, skimmed it a little bit. Not once did I think, "Huh. This would make an amazing presentation. I could probably create something so wonderful of this that people would memorize every line of it". I was holding the book this week, and I was thinking about Hamilton, the musical, which I have now seen eight times. Pray for me. I get obsessed. The first time I saw it, I knew I would be seeing it again, and I watched it again and again and again. But when I picked up the book that he said inspired him to write the story of the treasury secretary in the form of a hip-hop musical, here's the question I had: "How did he get that out of this"? Put the picture up. There's Lin-Manuel. There's the cast. One of the greatest musicals of all time started with something I won't even ever look at again.

In fact, I will give this away after church today. Put your name in the offering bucket and I'll find you, because I'm not reading it. How did he get that from this? How was I in the same store, walking by the same book, and he turned it into a cultural phenomenon? He performed this in the White House. I'll be honest with you. I kind of feel the same thing about these disciples that we're looking at in Acts, chapter 2. I'm looking at them, and they're sincere, they are sincere, and they are sincere, but that's about all they have going for them. They're in this small room, and they have a big task. If you look at the disciples on the surface, they do not have the talent that is equal to the task they have been given. They do not have the time that is equal to the task they have been given. They do not have the team…

Remember, these are the boys that only one of them stood up for Jesus when he went to the cross. It's the same team. When you hear about the Eleven, the only one who's missing is Judas. He's replaced by a rookie named Matthias. Peter is the leader of the whole thing, and he was the one who was cursing while Jesus was being crucified. So, I'm looking at them, and I know where the book of Acts ends. By the time you get to the end of the book of Acts, the gospel has gone from this small room, this upper room in Jerusalem, this small, little corner, this small, little place where the disciples were gathered, and it has spread. Within a period of only a couple of decades, it spreads. The message of Jesus Christ spreads. Not only does it penetrate the lower echelons of society so that the poor might be lifted, but by the time you get to the end of the book of Acts, if you ever read it cover to cover, you will see the gospel standing before kings and princes.

You will see the gospel from this little, small room in Jerusalem all the way to the heart of the Roman Empire, the most powerful center of the day, as it journeys through Antioch where the believers are first called Christians; as it makes its way through Ephesus, which was a center of commerce and trade; as it even sweeps through Corinth, which was the most decadent Las Vegas city. What happened in Corinth stayed in Corinth, but what happened in Jerusalem didn't stay in Jerusalem. What happened in Jerusalem spread all throughout the Roman Empire. It spread across dangerous seas. It spread past bandits. It spread through persecution. It spread through government edicts. It spread even though they didn't have technology. It spread without YouTube. It spread without Instagram. It spread without TikTok.

The truth put its shoes on and made a lap around the world. TikTok wasn't even invented, Wi-Fi wasn't even available, and Jesus didn't give them the password anyway. He just left and sent his Spirit, and they did it. You have to wonder. How did this come out of that? How did it get all the way from Palestine to Ballantyne? The truth about it is they did what they did having less than we have. They didn't have the book of Acts to preach a series from. They were living it out. They didn't have the book of Romans to tell them, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me," because Paul was still in prison. He hadn't picked up the pen yet. They had none of this at the time, yet they did all of that.

I bring it up not to discourage you but to encourage you, because there may be a place in your life today where you're saying to yourself…not out loud, but you're saying to yourself…"How am I supposed to do that when all I have is this"? "How am I supposed to do that? How am I supposed to raise these kids when I don't even understand the world they're living in? How am I supposed to raise a family when I came from a broken family? How am I supposed to move up in my job so I can provide for my future when I don't even have the basic education that was required to be in the position I'm in now, let alone the one that's ahead of me? How do I do this? How do I do that when all I have is this"?

Now, fortunately, there is a principle you and I can lean on should we choose to. I want you to take this with you into every situation in your life where you're saying, "How am I supposed to do that"? "All right, Preacher. You're telling me to forgive, move forward, be healed, be sanctified, be free, live for Jesus, do these things, be patient, be kind, and be humble. I hear you. How am I supposed to do that when all I have is this? Because everything you're up here talking about I don't have much of a template for, and every time I try to do it, my old template inserts itself in the place of my good intentions. So, my template is overwriting my intentions every time you say 'Amen' after one of these sermons. How am I supposed to do that? It sounds good. 'Praise him in the midnight hour.' How am I supposed to do that"?

Here's the principle. If you're supposed to do it, you will have God's support for it. Now, I know it doesn't feel like that right now, because sometimes when God is beginning to do something in your life, you do not see his support. So, I went all the way back to the beginning of the whole Bible in Genesis 1:1. I figured since we're talking about the source we should go to the source and see what the source did to create every situation we see. The Bible says in Genesis, chapter 1, verse 1, "In the beginning God…" That's the source. That's why I can move forward into the next season of my life: because "In the beginning God…" What did he do? "…created the heavens and the earth". I love this part. It says, "Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters". Stay right there. "The Spirit of God was hovering over the waters".

There was no light yet, but there was still Spirit. There was darkness, no light, but there was still Spirit. There was no form yet. That means it hadn't taken shape yet, but even before the earth took shape, there was still Spirit. There are some things in your life that have not taken shape yet. There are some things in your life that are formless, empty, dark, and dreary. Just because there's no light yet doesn't mean there's no Spirit yet. Just because there's no apparent solution yet doesn't mean God isn't on the scene yet. The Bible says God hovered over something that seemed empty, but it's not just that the Spirit was there. Now put up verse 3. Because it was dark, because it was formless, because there was no light, and because there was no shape, the Bible says, "God said…"

If you go all the way back to the very beginning, past the founding fathers of the United States of America, past Lin-Manuel Miranda, past the time you were born, past the time you were addicted, past the time you got a divorce, past the time you got the job, past the time you lost a child in a custody battle… If you go all the way back past that, there are two things that were always there: the Spirit of God and the Word of God. God hovered, and he spoke. Verse 3: "And God said, 'Let there be light,' and there was light," because God said it. Everything we see started here with the Spirit and the Word, the Spirit and the spoken Word of God. Now you understand what I mean when I say that if you're supposed to do it, you will have God's support for it.

Here are our disciples, sitting in a small room with a big task. "How are we supposed to take the gospel to the ends of the earth? For one thing, we don't have a car, let alone a plane. How are we supposed to speak their language when we get there"? But as he does so many times in our lives, God had the answer on the way before they even formed the question to ask. Who is this for? God has already dispatched the answer. There's no light yet, but he's already on the scene. Here's where it gets confusing. When we go to our Scripture, at first it looks like maybe God isn't there. Look at this in Acts, chapter 2. I don't always know why people shout about stuff in the Bible that they shout about.

When you say, "The day of Pentecost came…" That was a Jewish festival. It was called the Feast of Weeks. It was the end of the barley harvest and the beginning of the wheat harvest, so you had to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. They would usually see about triple the population in the city, so every street was crowded. Everybody is there. They're coming from all over the world, those who honor and fear God, and they're bringing their firstfruits offering to say, "Thank you, Lord, for this harvest. We believe you for the next. Everything we have comes from your hand". While they're celebrating the harvest, they're waiting on one. They are waiting for the Holy Spirit to be given so they can receive the harvest of souls that would reach to the ends of the earth. The Bible says, "When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came…"

When you read that in a church, everybody will always shout when you say, "Suddenly," and they will shout about the sound of a violent wind, but let's take ourselves out of the fact that this sounds exciting. What is a violent wind? This is called a storm. If you subtract all of the nice… "Oh, the sound. Suddenly the sound of a violent wind. Woo! The sound of a violent wind". That's not something we usually shout about; that's something that we usually close the shutters and try to survive. Then look at the next thing that happened. It said, "The violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting". Verse 3: "They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire…" You say, "Tongues of fire," and everybody will shout. "And tongues of fire". Have you ever put your tongue on a stove? Have you ever even eaten a jalapeño pepper? Why would you shout about that? A fire will burn you.

So, we shout about the storm, and we shout about the fire, but let's be honest. If a wind is uncontrolled, it can kill you. A wind is a blessing if it's in the right amount and you have a sail, but a wind can also take you off course. A wind can also create a hurricane. A wind can also knock you on your back. A wind can destroy. So can a fire. A fire can sweep through everything you love. A fire can reduce to rubbish an entire village, an entire city. We've seen this happen in our time. So why are we shouting about a storm? Why are we shouting about a fire? I'll show you why. This is why you came to church. We're not shouting about what the wind was; we're shouting about where it came from, because the Bible says it came from heaven.

One thing I know about my life… It's not what I go through; it's where it came from that determines the result it will have in my life. I'm trying to say that the Devil is not the source of every storm we go through. I'm trying to say that some fires we walk through were not sent by the Enemy to destroy us; they were sent by the Lord to refine us. So, now I need to know a question. The storm in your emotions, the storm in your household, the storm you're going through in your industry, the storm you're going through as you sort these things out that are happening at this age of your life… Where did it come from? Did it come from the Enemy to destroy you or did it come from the Lord to develop you? Better question: Does it really even matter?

If God is the source, by the time the storm has to pass through his hand, the storm that was sent to destroy you… I don't know why I'm screaming the whole sermon. I'm just passionate about what I say, because I hear the sound. It sounds like a storm, but it came from the Lord, and it will not destroy me; it will only develop me. Do you feel that? It came from heaven. I just want us to read the Bible like it's real. Here comes a violent wind. You're not shouting; you're ducking under stuff. Here come tongues of fire. The Bible doesn't say it was actual fire. Watch this. Read it really slowly. It says it was a sound like the blowing of a violent wind. It seemed to be tongues of fire. It wasn't what it looked like. I know it looked like it was the end for you last year, but it wasn't what it looked like. I know it looked like the reason they pushed you away was because you're no good, but it wasn't what it looked like.

Oh, tell your neighbor, "It wasn't what it looked like". It looked like a dead end, but it was really a doorway, because it wasn't what it looked like. How many have a testimony? "It came from heaven. It hurt like hell, but it came from heaven". I hear the Holy Spirit blowing in my spirit today, telling me to tell you, "It wasn't what it looked like". It looked like it would be the last time, but God has new wine. Open your mouth and fill this atmosphere with praise! It wasn't what it looked like! The Devil thought he had him. They put him in the grave. It looked like he was a criminal there to stay, but it wasn't what it looked like. Three days later… Don't let me preach on the Holy Ghost. I'm telling you right now it wasn't what it looked like. Isn't it interesting the Bible said it filled the house where they were sitting? Sitting. Are you sitting where you're supposed to be sitting?

I don't mean right now in the church. "This is where the usher told me to sit. It's not my fault". Are you sitting where you're supposed to be sitting? See, I think some of you… I don't mean to be confrontational. I'm just trying to help you. I think some of you aren't getting what you should be getting because you're not sitting where you should be sitting. Okay. If the disciples try to go in their own strength and take the gospel all through the Roman Empire, what are the chances that it makes it to Ballantyne today? What are the chances it makes it to Winston-Salem? What are the chances it makes it to Gaston County? What are the chances it makes it to Zimbabwe? What are the chances it makes it to your room, your hospital room right there? What are the chances that we're still preaching about Jesus today if they tried to do it in their own strength?

Recently, in preaching, I had to adjust some things about my style of preaching to sustain my ability to preach. One of the things I decided I would do, in addition to the way I prepare and plan and try to lean more into God and less into this idea that I have to change someone's life when I preach and more that he is the source and I am just a sail and his is the wind… Even in raising your kids, sometimes you have to realize the reason you are so stressed out as a parent is you are trying to fill a role in their life that you are not supposed to fill. All of the teenagers are like, "Thank you, Jesus. Preach, Pastor Steven". I see 13-year-olds waking up all around the church. "Tell them. Leave me alone". No, no, no. You are supposed to be their guide, not their god. Sometimes we get confused about what we're supposed to do.

So, I want to ask you… Are you weary, are you out of stamina, are you out of strength because you are asking God to support something you're not even supposed to be doing, trying to make them what you think they need to be? Are you minding your own business or do you keep borrowing drama from social media, trying to pray away stress you ingested in your own system by mindless scrolling? You weren't supposed to be scrolling at 11:30 p.m.; you were supposed to be sleeping. Then you saw something you weren't supposed to be seeing because you were scrolling on something when you should have been sleeping. You were sitting somewhere you shouldn't have been sitting, and now you're not getting what you could be getting because you're sitting where… Anyway… It's half Holy Ghost, half Dr. Seuss today. I went to see a guy. I said, "One thing I need to work on is my voice," because I would preach a lot of times, and I would feel very hoarse after I preached. I thought the guy… He is a voice coach. His name is Roger Love. I thought he would say, "Stop screaming so much".

So, I came to him and said, "I know you're going to tell me two things to do, and I'm not going to do either one of them. You're going to say, 'Stop drinking Diet Coke.' That's off the table. The Lord and I have an arrangement. That is not my Isaac. Secondly, you're going to tell me to stop screaming, and I'm not doing either". He said, "You can drink Diet Coke. It's going to kill you, but it's not what's messing up your voice". I said, "It's not? I thought you were going to tell me the chemicals came from a conspiracy in China. They're trying to…" He said, "No, no, no. You can drink Diet Coke, and you can scream all you want". He said, "I don't want you to stop screaming; I want you to start breathing". Now, this guy is expensive. I said, "I paid you how much for you to tell me to breathe"? He said, "Yeah. No wonder your voice hurts".

I had had a thing in my throat for about six months, and I couldn't make it go away. I said, "I know when you scream it's supposed to hurt". He said, "It's not supposed to hurt". It's not supposed to hurt. Yeah, we go through things, but I was sustaining damage I didn't need to sustain because of something as simple as I wasn't breathing. Did you hear how much I just screamed at you? My voice still feels strong, because he taught me I can scream if I breathe. If I breathe, I can make the sound I need to make. Whether I should scream or not, that's your business, but I do have a Scripture. Acts 2:14: "Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice…" I have a Scripture I can scream by. He didn't say it softly; he said it from a deep place. It says he stood up, and it says he raised his voice. I have been learning that the only way you can really make a volume is if you take a breath.

The Bible says he raised his voice. What the Bible does not say is that he took a deep breath. However, we have evidence that he took a deep breath before he raised his voice. That day, off of one sermon, he preached about the crucifixion of Jesus, he preached about the resurrection of Jesus, he preached about the judgment of Jesus, he preached about the need for repentance and baptism and confession of sin, and he pierced their hearts, and 3,000 of them became believers that day. There were no microphones. There was no public address system. How did his voice get all the way from here to 3,000 people? He had to breathe. I want to give you a Holy Ghost voice lesson today for your life. You have to breathe. You're not breathing.

There are some things that are hurting in your life that aren't supposed to be hurting, but you're not breathing. If you would get a breath from heaven before you would take that next step, you would feel the wind of God in your sail, and you wouldn't have to row your boat alone. You would have something blowing your sails that would help you get where you're trying to go. But you haven't been breathing. You've been running from one appointment to another. You've been running from one stressful situation to another. You've been running from one hypothetical scenario to another, and you haven't been breathing. You haven't stopped lately and said, "God, I need you for this. God, show me what you have called me to do".

If you are trying to do something in your strength that you are not supposed to do in God's sovereignty, he will not support it. The Holy Spirit will only support what the voice of the Lord orders. That means God will not help you be more like the person you're comparing yourself to. God will not help you reach the goal of somebody who has different gifts than you. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire. They heard what sounded like a rushing wind. Part of my wisdom is knowing what I'm not supposed to do so I am not expecting God to support me in something I'm not even supposed to be doing. You're not supposed to be hanging around them, so you will not have the strength to avoid the temptation if you keep spending the majority of your time with them, because you are not supposed to have them as your inner circle.

I am going to preach this word to help somebody so you don't hurt where you're not supposed to hurt because you are sitting where you are not supposed to sit. This is an amazing revelation for us. The way the Spirit of God moved in the disciples, the way the gospel of Jesus Christ reached the end of the world, the end of the earth, is all through this one little phrase. It says, "The Spirit enabled them". That means they breathed in the same Spirit that was hovering over the waters in Genesis 1. They breathed in the same Spirit that was hovering over the creation when it was still chaos. That same Spirit does not hover over your life today; it lives within your very soul. Breathe it in.

Stop arguing with people and breathe God in. You know, I feel like our whole problem sometimes is we try to ask the right question, but we ask to the wrong crowd. The Bible says there were people staying in Jerusalem from every nation under heaven. If you think I'm pronouncing all of those names again, you're crazy. The Bible says they were amazed and perplexed, and all of the people… Now imagine this. They are hearing the gospel in their own language. When you talk about tongues in church, there are different things that can mean. One is a prayer language that is known to God but unknown by others and spoken by the person who's speaking it, and that is real. This is not that. This is they were speaking in one language, and the people were hearing in another. It was known to the listeners even though it was not previously known to the speakers. So it was a miracle.

"How are we going to get the gospel to the ends of the earth when we don't even speak the language"? The Spirit will enable you. "How am I going to show up in that situation and know what to do"? The Spirit will enable you. "How am I going to be a witness to Jesus Christ when my life is such a mess"? The Spirit will enable you. God hovers over darkness. God fills emptiness. God comes to people who are open and waiting and ready and breathing and needing. The Spirit enabled them. The Bible says that as all of these different crowds gathered around, "Amazed and perplexed, they asked…" Here's the mistake. "…one another…" That will always get you in trouble, trying to process your life with somebody who's at your same level. That's why God gives you the gift of his Spirit.

Watch what Peter said. He stood up, raised his voice, and addressed the crowd. The answer was not coming from the crowd; it had to be given to the crowd. Peter raised his voice and said to the crowd, "Fellow Jews…" Let me do it louder. "Fellow Jews"! Let me get a deep breath. "Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say". Stop asking one another. Stop looking for solutions from people who don't know any more than you do about it. He raised his voice, addressed the crowd, and said, "All of you listen to me. These people are not drunk, as you suppose". Ooh, I love that phrase: as you suppose. Here's what happened. The crowd saw this crazy thing happening, and they thought, "They must be crazy. They must be drunk. This is ridiculous. This makes no sense.

What do you think they're doing"? "I think they're drunk". "What do you think they're doing"? "I think they're crazy". "What do you think they're doing"? As they're passing this around all through the crowd, they begin to support what they have already supposed. Have you noticed in your life that you support whatever you've supposed? So, if you supposed today that you came to Elevation, and you're like, "I heard it's a cult," because somebody told you it was a cult… If you come in here looking for a cult, do you know what you will find? Evidence for the verdict you already created. You thought you were supposed to be the judge, and you're really supposed to be a witness. Even if you suppose somebody doesn't like you… "I don't think they like me". You will find every reason they don't. "Did you see how they just looked at me"? "They smiled at you". "Yeah, but it wasn't a full smile. It was like a three-fourths smile. Did you see that three-quarter smile? Eighty percent at the most. I didn't see any teeth. Did you see any teeth? They don't like me. I told you they don't like me".

We do this all the time. We suppose, and then we support. I suppose it's my destiny to be an addict, so then I find the friends who will support what I suppose. I suppose I'm never going to get out of this cage; I'm never going to break free. I suppose, so then I don't see anything. What happens in your life is you see something, you think something. You think something, you think something, you think something, and then you believe something. You believe something, you become something. I'll do it again. You see something, so then you think something. You think something, you think something, you think something, so you believe something, and then you become something, and then you say, "See"? No, no, no. You saw something, you thought something, you believed something, and then you became something, and then you say, "See? I told you that's how it was".

No, no, no. You just supposed and then supported. You supposed that nothing ever goes your way. You supposed that God can't use someone like you. You supposed that it's too late. You supposed that you're too young. Meanwhile, somebody else who's half your age already did it. Somebody else who's twice your age is still doing it, but you support what you suppose. Sometimes you don't realize that what you have supposed is not coming from the right place. It's not coming from God. I studied it in the Greek because I really wanted to understand what Peter said. He said, "These people are not drunk, as you suppose". The Greek word for suppose is hupolambano. Yeah, it's a Greek kind of week at Elevation Church. Hupolambano. What does it mean? It means to take up from below. You might recognize this verse because it is also in Acts 1:9. He's speaking to his disciples. He's getting ready to leave the earth. He's getting ready to send the Spirit.

Jesus said to them, "You will be my witnesses," and he was taken up before their very eyes. The words taken up is hupolambano. The word suppose is hupolambano. Taken up. He was taken up from below. Where did they get their opinions? Where did they get their conclusions? Hupolambano. They took it up from below. Peter said, "No. This is not a hupolambano situation. This is not something you can take up from the bottom. No, this is what was spoken". So, here's the contradiction. I've got what you suppose and what was spoken. What I want to know is…Which one are you going to go with in your life for this season: what you took up from the bottom or what came down from above? Some of the stuff you've been believing does not have its source in God. If its source is not in God, it will sabotage you, and it will lead you to a conclusion that is absolutely unsustainable.

This is not a "take up from below" moment in your life. This is a "come down from above" moment. Peter said, "This is not a moment for you to take up an assumption from below; this is a moment for you to receive an assignment from on high". I feel God saying, "You are looking up at the wrong thing". You are looking around at the wrong thing, for in this season of your life, you cannot get it from below; it must be given from above. Now, there were two things present at the creation of the cosmos: the Spirit of God and the Word of God. That's the source material. You have both of those things too. What will you do with it? One person will take this word that was given today and say, "God, where have I been looking around where I need to be looking up? What have I been looking up at and giving my attention to that, actually, I should cast under my feet and walk over the top of"?

One person will take this word and put it on the shelf. How did he create that from this? He worked it. He worked it. This will work in your life if you work it. How did the gospel go from a small room and spread all over the globe to you and me today? The source material, the Spirit of God. The source material, the Word of God. Do you not realize we have the same gospel? Do you not realize you have been given the same gospel that broke chains off Paul and Silas' feet, the same gospel that the Ethiopian eunuch pulled over and stopped his chariot? What are you doing with it? Oh, I believe there is so much more inside of you. I hear a sound. It sounds like a violent wind. I see what seems to be tongues of fire. I hear the voice of the Lord speaking over your life today, and God said… Everyone standing. We will pray and seal this word.

Stop right where you are, nobody moving out of this room. Stay where you are. Hallelujah. You haven't been breathing, baby. You can't run if you don't breathe. You can't lead if you don't breathe. You can't think if you don't breathe. Breathe. Peter raised his voice. He breathed. The sound of the Holy Spirit… That's the breath of almighty God coming to fill your lungs, fill your life. Breathe, baby. Breathe. That's the sound of the wind. It's the Spirit of God. It's not a violent wind; it's a creative breath, and it's coming to you right now. Lift your hands like they're sails and receive it. "I receive the Holy Spirit. I receive a fresh filling of the Holy Spirit for my life. I receive it". Tap into it. "Speak to me, Lord. I'm breathing. Oh, I'm breathing this week. For me to have the Holy Spirit, for me to have the same stuff that created the world and not worship God… I'm breathing this thing in. I'm walking in this word. Peter was able to walk on one word on the top of a stormy sea. I can walk through the situation in my life this week with one word from you. Almighty God, I worship you".

Open your mouth and tell him, "I worship you, God. I worship you, Lord. I worship the one who is and was and is to come". His name is Jesus. He is the almighty God. He is the Ancient of Days. I worship you, Lord. I'm not drunk. I'm not crazy. I just need you, Lord. I worship you, Lord. Lord, now is your wind and your fire coming to light us up again and fill our lungs with your praise. We intend to accomplish every assignment you've given us for our lives this week. No, we're not one of the twelve disciples, but we are your children. I commission these, your children, by your grace, God, that from the upper room of their waiting they will see manifestations of your glory in every area of their lives. I believe it because you've spoken it. We didn't come to church to look around today; we came to look up and look in and to praise you for who you are.

Now every person who receives this word, clap your hands and let the Lord know you're grateful. "When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly…" Your life can change suddenly. Right now, there is someone in this room who needs to receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. It is an amazing moment when you finally stop trying to do in your own strength what can only be done by the Spirit of God. I want to invite you right now to receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. Everybody in here needs the same thing. We need the grace of God. We need the forgiveness of our sin. Today, if you will repent of your sin and believe in Jesus, you will be saved. Everybody who wants to give their life to Jesus today, I want you to repeat this prayer after me. We'll all say it out loud together for the benefit of those who are coming to God. Repeat after me.

Heavenly Father, today is my day of salvation. I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of the world, and today I make Jesus the Lord of my life. I believe he died that I would be forgiven and rose again to give me life. I receive this new life. This is my new beginning. I am a child of God.

On the count of three, shoot your hand up if you prayed that. One, two, three! We celebrate you, a new beginning upon you. We believe God for greater things in your life, new beginnings, new mercies, a fresh foundation. Let's praise God for what he did, for every soul he saved. In Jesus' name. Clap those hands and give God praise in the name of Jesus. Campus pastors, you can take it right here. Church, let's celebrate the Lord who brought us together today. Clap both of those hands if you know who gave you breath. "Let everything that has breath praise the Lord".

Holly is going to come close us in prayer at Ballantyne. Y'all welcome her as she comes today. I saw her at 9:00 a.m., and I said, "That's a stage outfit. I need to get you up on that stage". Holly, I want you to pray for everybody today who feels like, "How am I supposed to do this"? We saw a woman who has been in a wheelchair for 50 years give a testimony this week. She wakes up every day with chronic pain, and she said, "There are days where I just think, 'How am I supposed to do this?'" Well, if you're supposed to do it, God will support you for it moment by moment. I want you to pray, Holly, that God would show us sometimes the support that we walk past, that God would show us what we're walking past that he has put in our lives. How many of you receive today that God wants to show you the source of your strength? Holly, seal this word with prayer. Would you join hands with the person on either side of you, please? Let's join together.
Are you Human?:*