Pennsville Baptist Church
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  • Pennsville Baptist Church
    3298 Richey Rd, Mt Pleasant, PA 15666, USA
    Sunday 9:45 AM
II Corinthians 11:16-33
“God Knows”

Introduction
1. “Nobody knows what I’m going through.” God knows!
2. II Corinthians 11;16-33 God knows (v. 31) and will give us a field of ministry.
3. In vss. 16-21 Paul was careful to explain why he was boasting in this way. Paul never had any
problem boasting about Jesus (that’s worthwhile) as he told about His love and His suffering.
He was hesitant to speak of his experience, his pain as a servant of God.
The immature and carnal attitude of the Corinthians that forced Paul to write about this was the
reason for his boasting, speaking foolishly.
4. So much of what we hear on Christian television is about ‘my experiences’, what happened to
me. I wonder if much of what is applauded by the Christian world is foolishness to God?!
5. Paul is not denying the inspiration of his words. He was admitting that by boasting he was not
like His Lord. (v. 17; 10:1) He had to speak to prove his love for the Corinthians and protect
them since at Corinth ‘boasting’ was ‘in’. In their fellowship they could understand Paul. At
times Paul is a bit sarcastic to make a point.
6. In verse 20 five verbs are used, each increasing in intensity and expresses indignities suffered
by the Corinthians at the hands of the false teachers. They were selfish. Paul was selfless.
*Degraded Them…make slaves of you…bring you into bondage. *Devoured Them…they ate
up all they could get. *Defrauded Them…to take advantage of, to take you in, snare you.
*Derided Them…put on airs…a man exalted himself not God. *Defamed Them…smite you in
the face…this probably refers to verbal attacks.
7. Verse 21 is inspired irony. They thought meekness was weakness and arrogance was power.

“Nobody knows what I’m going through.” God knows!
I. OUR PLACEMENT 11:22
A. When it came to Jewish heritage Paul was equal to the false teachers. He could prove
his genealogy.
B. Paul’s placement was by God’s design for God’s purpose. So it is with us…where
you work, where you live, the family you are in, the experiences you have
encountered…God knows!

“Nobody knows what I’m going through.” God knows!
II. OUR PROMINENCE 11:23a
In verse 13 ‘false apostles’… ‘deceitful workers’ these said they were ministers of Christ.
A. When it came to ministry for Christ, Paul left his competitors in the dust. He was a super apostle.
B. God had wired Paul up in a certain way, and Paul maximized his potential. God knows who you are. He knows whether you are carrying out the job He has called you to do. He knows whether you are using the gifts He has given. He knows whether you are faithful.
C. The measure is not man…not ‘success’…not applause…God knows!

“Nobody knows what I’m going through.” God knows!
III. OUR PERSECUTION 11:23b-25
God does not exempt his children from suffering unjustly. Paul leaves me here! Each
persecution hurt! God did not step in to alleviate the pain. He was not ‘delivered!’
A. Paul was on the firing line. It was not as he would have planned! Right in the center of God’s will Paul suffered. Maybe God is not trying to teach him anything. It is part of a fallen world.
B. The Jews had a method in those days of delivering 39 stripes. Vs. 24 If they exceeded 40 stripes the executioner would take the stripes. 13 strips on each side and 13 strips were administered to the back. Paul had this kind of torture 5 times. “God, where are You?”
“I’m still in control…” even though you may be in pain!
C. Gentiles beat with rods. You do not go through all of this if you are not a genuine article. 3 times I was stoned. God knows!

“Nobody knows what I’m going through.” God knows!
IV. OUR PERILS 11:26-27
Because he was constantly on the move Paul was exposed to the normal, natural perils of
traveling in those days. The false teachers visited ‘safe places’.
A. God does not exempt His children from natural hardships and dangers of living. Paul was ship wrecked. He spent a day and night in the deep. He was cold, hungry and wet!
B. In perils verse 26 I believe he lists 8…to run a risk…face danger. It is dangerous to
be alive!
C. The result of living (27) “God, where are you?” Our hardships have no reflection on God’s character. As a result of ‘perils’, persecution, it is no wonder that he was filled with weariness, in pain…lack of sleep, lack of food and drink. Do you think he felt alone? God knows! (31)

“Nobody knows what I’m going through.” God knows!
V. OUR PASSIONS 11:28
A. The key to this long section could be paraphrased: “Yes, I have been through many
trials, but the greatest trial of all…the heaviest burden of all is my concern for the
churches.”
The word translated care means, ‘pressure, stress’. The other experiences were external
and occasional. The burden of the churches was internal and constant.
B. As God looks at your heart, what does He see? Are you glad that God knows your
heart? Why did he care so much? What happened to his children touched his heart!

“Nobody knows what I’m going through.” God knows!
VI. OUR PREDICAMENTS 11:32-33
A. Paul was put over the wall in a basket. There was no Holiday Inn! How confining! How beneath the dignity of an apostle. God knows all about it! God sees you in the basket.
B. Verses 30, 31 If I must boast, it will not be in what I have done or what I am. I will glory in the things concerning my infirmities…Just a poor, earthen vessel and yet God has taken him up and used him to give the message of Jesus Christ, of life to a needy world.
C. He could boast in this, that in spite of all his weaknesses and limitations, God has seen fit to speak in and through him.

Isn’t it amazing…God chose such weak, limited instruments to bring glory to Himself?!

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