Sunnyside First Baptist Church
How do we reconcile strength in weakness?
      • 2 Chronicles 7:14ESV

  • Reading 2Corinthians This Morning

    2Cor 4
    2 Corinthians 4 ESV
    1 Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. 2 But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. 3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5 For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So death is at work in us, but life in you. 13 Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak, 14 knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. 15 For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God. 16 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. 17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
    If you were with us last week, Paul left us with a very bold statement. Listen to 2 Cor 3.18.
    2 Corinthians 3:18 (ESV)
    18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being TRANSFORMED into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
    “And we all...” - this language is a continuing reference. Yes, were transformed at your salvation but you will continue to be transformed your whole life. And one day, our transformation will be complete!
    “with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord...” No longer are we looking to Moses and the Glory of God hidden by the veil. Our approach is BOLD and complete. But only for those who have accepted Christ as Savior. Those who have not are still subject to law… All of the law.
    [We] “are being TRANSFORMED in the same image from one degree of glory to another...” We were transformed, we are being transformed, and we will continue to be transformed.
    How and why you ask? “This transformation is from the Lord, by the Spirit…” ONLY! There is no other way that this transformation comes about.
    Let get to 2Cor4 this morning. Turn if you would in your bibles or on your apps.
    Here is our BIG QUESTION FOR THE DAY… How do we understand strength in weakness?
    In the beginning of chapter 4, Paul is proclaiming the beauty of the gospel and all of its wonder.
    It is truly remarkable how profound the glory of Jesus is, along with his mission to be the light in the darkness.
    All of this leads up to the unsuspecting statement about Christians being the jars of clay that hold this treasure, which is the gospel.
    Christians are equated to Jars of Clay in the passage… Why did Paul use Jars of Clay?
    From cooking utensils to storage bins. Jars of clay were part of everyday life during biblical times.
    God wants your faith to be commonplace to us in our everyday life. Like a mechanic reaches for a wrench, Jesus should be in each of our “jars...” Ready for us to open and pour out on a daily basis.
    Jars of clay also signify weakness and fragility. Since their material was inexpensive, they break easily, yet Paul used them as a representation of our position in Christ
    Why a Jar of Clay? the uniqueness of our faith needs to be handled with care.
    We must be careful it.
    In our pots is the STRENGTH of the Holy Spirit,
    1000-Million angels,
    the presence of Jesus Himself.
    BE CAREFUL, be on guard, be ready… And understand that the enemy is lurking.
    In the weakness of the shell of a clay pot, one of many thousands in use, Paul houses the Spirit, Angels, The presence of Jesus, Himself
    We are the clay in the hands of the potter, we are being molded and shaped.
    That is what God does with his people. He is the potter and we are the clay. We are being made weak so that our strength shown is only in the power of the God, through Jesus Christ.
    We, as followers of Jesus, have it all.
    We have the Spirit,
    We have the Word and
    We have His ever presence in our lives!
    YET WE LIVE AS THOUGH WE ARE ONE’S WHO ARE CAPTIVE BY OUR FAITH!
    Listen to the next three verses, listen to the “rawness” of the words, the inevitability of things that are going to happen to us.
    2 Corinthians 4:8–11 ESV
    8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
    Notice what awaits us… This is the “REWARD” for being a follower of Jesus.
    Afflicted… But not crushed
    Perplexed… But not driven to despair
    Persecuted… But not forsaken
    Struck down… But not destroyed
    In our weakness great strength is being shown, Paul is asking us over the time and distance of the first century Jerusalem. To show weakness but to remain strong.
    We cannot remain in any of those states, we cannot remain afflicted, perplexed, persecuted or struck down… The Spirit is the power, we have that power to pull us out of those places.
    Its our responsibility to USE THE HOLY SPIRIT To walk boldly in our present and to focus our lives on our future. [PLEASE SOME SAY “AMEN!!!”]
    I don’t want to skip over verse 10 & 11
    2 Corinthians 4:10–11 ESV
    10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.
    How it is that we should behave because all of what we have been talking about this morning is only possible because of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.
    Romans 6.5 gives us idea. Put your finger or mark this spot and go to Romans 6
    Romans 6:5 ESV
    5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his.
    When you accept Christ as your Lord and Savior, you have been united with him in His death and in His resurrection.
    That’s what awaits us. Death will NOT hold us but death has been BEATEN.
    WE will rise again with Him on resurrection day.
    Back in verse 11 &12…
    2 Corinthians 4:11–12 ESV
    11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So death is at work in us, but life in you.
    The life of Jesus is being manifested in us, in our mortal flesh?
    Jesus came to earth, His ministry, His death, His burial and His resurrection where all about the GOSPEL.
    Bringing life where previously where there was death. Death either by the law or death in a false Gospel.
    That resurrection power of Jesus in his life is not just about identifying with Christ’s sufferings nor mortally bearing witness of his resurrection; it has its ultimate purpose… in bearing new GOSPEL life.
    Notice there isn’t talk of weakness at all… Because when we are operating in the Life of Jesus… We are strong beyond all comparison!
    2Cor4.13-15
    2 Corinthians 4:13–15 ESV
    13 Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak, 14 knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. 15 For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.
    Paul points directly to us! He uses the the personal pronouns
    “I believed and so I spoke, we believe and we also speak.”
    Our chief aim in life is to worship and glorify God… In everything that we do.
    In this instance and many many others… We bring Glory to God by increasing thanksgiving… How, by making it possible for Jesus to add to our number daily.
    How do we make it so that Jesus might just show up and save your friends, your neighbors, your families. Well there are many ways. Here is mine...
    Don’t turn here…just listen...
    Acts 2:42–47 (ESV)
    42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.
    43 And awe came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles.
    44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common.
    45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need.
    46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts,
    47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.
    “And the Lord added to their number day by day those who being saved!”
    Our responsibility is to living and communicating the Gospel in as few a words as possible.
    Fellowship
    Breaking of bread
    And praying for peoples needs
    And a return to our BIG QUESTION for today...How do we understand strength in weakness?
    Well I hope we have laid it out in several different ways this morning.
    Our strength is NOT in the vessel but is instead what is inside the vessel.
    There are really few places that you can reliably use this verse but here is one of those
    Philippians 4:13 ESV
    13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
    Finally V.17
    2 Corinthians 4:17 ESV
    17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,
    ------------------
    As we close today...
    2Cor4.18
    2 Corinthians 4:18 ESV
    18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
  • Battle Belongs
  • Praise You In This Storm
  • I Surrender All
      • 2 Corinthians 4ESV

      • 2 Corinthians 4ESV

      • 2 Corinthians 4:8–11ESV

      • 2 Corinthians 4:10–11ESV

      • Romans 6:5ESV

      • 2 Corinthians 4:11–12ESV

      • 2 Corinthians 4:13–15ESV

      • 2 Corinthians 4:17ESV

      • 2 Corinthians 4:18ESV

  • You Are Holy (Prince Of Peace)
      • 2 Chronicles 7:14ESV

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