Steven Furtick — I Know, But I'm Not Nervous
If we, 2 Corinthians 6:1, Apostle Paul writing are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation. Everything I go through serves a purpose. "And if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. Our hope for you is unshaken. For we know," come on somebody shout, we know.
Some good shouting, that. You sound rested. "For we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. For we do not want you to be ignorant brothers" and sisters "of the affliction we experienced in Asia, for we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength, we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that," even when it got so hard, I felt helpless and hopeless, "that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God. I found my foundation when I went through a shaking so that I would trust Him who raises the dead. Now He delivered us from such a deadly peril, and He will deliver us."
Why? He's still God. So on Him, "we have set our hope I want you to give your neighbor my sermon title, but I want you to have a little conversation with them to set the context for it. Tell them, "Neighbor. It's kind of crazy in the world these days. There's a lot going on. The stakes are high."
Now I want you to answer what they just said to you. Look at them and give them my title. Tell them, "I know, but I'm not nervous." Try your other neighbor out. Tell them, "I know. I watched the news. I saw what your cousin Jimmy said on Facebook about a conspiracy theory." Tell them, "But I'm not nervous. I'm not nervous. I am not nervous. I refuse to be. Not going to be. Not about to be. God is too great, and He's been too good for me to be nervous." Amen.
I feel like I've preached already. You may be seated. Paul would like to set the record straight. There are too many rumors circulating. There's too much noise and not enough signal. Come on somebody. We are drowning in opinions and we don't have a drop of truth.
Such was the case in Corinth. They're talking about poor Paul. All he ever did was preach Jesus Christ, and help them, minister to them. These other preachers are seizing a political opportunity to run a smear campaign against poor Paul, that the NRA would have been envious of. That the democratic party I mean, neither one on the right or the left could do any better than these opponents of Paul were doing to discredit him. And he wants to talk to the church that he loves from his heart and set the record straight.
In other words, he wants them to hear it straight It does make a difference where you get your information from. It really does. It's a strange thing that we live in an age where all information is deemed equal, because it takes up the same amount of space on our timeline. And so, we don't know whether we're listening to somebody who knows what they're talking about, or whether there is a commercialized interest that is manipulating the information.
It is safe to assume that most of what we're hearing is diluted, watered down, or polluted, added to. And it's really kind of hard to even trust what you hear these days. Paul was frustrated about that. And in much civil turmoil, under oppression, not only political oppression, but religious oppression, he writes back home to the church, and he wants to tell them not what others say about his situation, but to allow them to see the situation and to hear it straight from the source. Straight from the source.
He says in verse 8, and this could be a whole sermon And he's setting us up here, a little bit. Are some things that we know that we think we know, that we don't really know. And some things that we need to know. He uses here a Greek word, and I wrote it down phonetically so I wouldn't mispronounce it for you. Agnoeo.
Here "ignorant." On the screen it's translated in a more updated version "unaware". And it's translated different ways because it's Paul was speaking to a group of people who have heard a lot. But, in spite of all the information that they have received, they still know very little about the facts.
In spite of all the access that they have, in spite of all the blogs that they've read, in spite of all the 24-7 news stations, what they're hearing isn't very true to reality, because they're not getting it from the source. So, he explains the situations, sourcing it with the reality, because he doesn't want them to be ignorant.
However, Agnoeo doesn't necessarily mean "uninformed." Rather it means more likely, given the Greek shade of meaning, "misinformed." It's not that you haven't heard things or that you have not been exposed to statistics that concerns me. It's just that I'm afraid that what you're hearing and what you're seeing is so far removed from the source that it is not pure in it's essence. And, I don't want you to be ignorant.
Now, Paul said, "I don't want you to be misinformed about the price that was paid. I don't want you to be misinformed about the situation. I don't want you to think that the hope that you enjoy came cheap. It didn't. It came hard." For an ignorant hope is no hope at all. Nothing's stable about a hope that has its head buried in the sand.
I hear you Pastor Rob Parsley. "Anyone can sing a tune on a clear day at noon. God give me a song at midnight." That's what Pastor Rob Parsley used to sing. I like that. Paul said, "My hope came the hard way." I'm burdened. But I set my hope and my hope isn't shaken, although my heart is hurting. I'm utterly burdened.
Watch how bad. Not, I lost a night of sleep. I was beyond my strength. You've ever been there before? I don't know what to do. I don't know which way it's going to go. I have no idea how to rebuild this one. I don't think I can get this one back, it's been too much time. This one's beyond my control. I didn't see this one coming. I was so far out there, beyond what I knew to do, that I despaired of life itself. I didn't even think I was going to make it to see another day.
I wondered would I ever I wondered can we bounce back from this one. I'm burdened. But I'm not nervous. I'm concerned. I'm involved. I'm praying. Doing my part. But I'm not nervous. I love it. I love it so much that I went all up and down the Bible.
I wanted to interview some other people who might be able to corroborate Paul's theory of hope. That you can be burdened and not nervous. That you can be broke and not nervous. That you can lose your job and not be nervous. That you can find drugs in your kid's room and be concerned, and be involved, and beat them half to death, but not be nervous. Come on.