Our core values, birthed out of our core beliefs, are characteristics that we believe are essential to our unique ministry calling and which shape the culture and strategies of Desiring God.
1. Prayerful Dependence
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7).
We seek our deepest delight in Jesus Christ and acknowledge that we can do nothing apart from him (John 15:5). Our desire is to abide in him constantly, “[praying] at all times in the Spirit” (Eph. 6:18). Therefore, we will be intentional to build prayer into the visible life of the organization at all levels and to cultivate a shared life together of living by faith in God’s future grace for us.
2. Preaching and Teaching
“And [Jesus] went throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom…” (Matthew 4:23).
“I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word.” (2 Timothy 4:1-2a).
Our belief in and love for the triune God, his written Word, and the particular calling that the Lord has placed on John Piper, compels us to join the early church in filling the city “with their teaching” (Acts 5:28). Sharing their aim to spread a passion for the supremacy of God in all things for the joy of all peoples through Jesus Christ we dare “not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ” (Acts 5:42).
3. Christian Hedonism
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart (Matthew 22:37).
“Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).
“Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ” (Philippians 3:8).
The particular aspect of the gospel that we feel called to emphasize in our preaching and teaching is the truth that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him. “Not what we dutifully will but what we passionately want reveals our excellence or evil” 1. Therefore loving (treasuring) him supremely is not optional but essential as fruit of being born again.
4. Humble Authenticity
“We are not, like so many, peddlers of God's word, but as men of sincerity, as commissioned by God, in the sight of God we speak in Christ” (2 Corinthians 2:17).
“God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6).
We seek to be what we preach and teach. We desire our personal lives and organizational structure and policies to give explicit evidence that we treasure Jesus Christ above all things. We will pursue loving, gracious honesty in all of our communication. We will also seek to serve others and consider them more important than ourselves. In disagreements will seek to assume the best of others and ask clarifying questions before making judgments. When we have offended another we will be quick to confess our errors and sins, pursue reconciliation, and make necessary changes.
5. Undistracting Excellence
“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).
“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men” (Colossians 3:23).
“Whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 4:11).
We believe that God is glorified by diligent, humble, faith-fueled, skillful, vision-driven work performed for the sake of others’ joy in God. Therefore at all levels of the organization we will pursue undistracting excellence in our work so that people’s attention will not be diverted from seeing and savoring Jesus Christ by shoddiness or excessive flair. Individual excellence at the expense of corporate harmony and coordination is not undistracting excellence. Undistracting excellence keeps the overall excellence of Desiring God in view.
6. Radical Generosity
“You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39).
“It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).
“You received without paying; give without pay” (Matthew 10:8).
As men and women who have received incomprehensibly radical grace from God in the forgiveness of all of our sins through the substitutionary atonement of Jesus Christ, we desire to be conduits of God’s grace to others. We long to be like the Macedonians who, though afflicted and impoverished, “overflowed in a wealth of generosity” to bless others because of their satisfaction in God (2 Corinthians 8:1-2). And we believe that in a world enslaved to the love of money a lifestyle of radical generosity proclaims to the world that Jesus is the most valuable treasure in the universe.
- Don't Be Anxious, Lay Up Treasure in Heaven, Part 1
- Don't Be Anxious, Lay Up Treasure in Heaven, Part 2
- Money, Markets, and Ministry
Giving and Selling in the Mission of Desiring God
7. Wartime Approach to Life and Ministry
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).
“No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him” (2 Timothy 2:4).
“Keep your life free from love of money” (Hebrews 13:5).
“I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls” (2 Corinthians 12:15).
As a nation during wartime focuses its collective resources on winning the war, so also we seek as individuals and an organization to focus our resources on the goal of achieving our shared mission. We believe that this involves pursuing strategic simplicity with regard to non-essentials in order that more resources may be channeled to the war effort. As individuals, each person must determine for himself how the Lord wishes for him to live out a wartime lifestyle. As an organization we will seek a wartime approach not only in the use of resources but also in pursuing strategies and processes that are effective in winning the war.
- Walk in Wisdom Toward Those Outside
- Prayer: The Work of Missions
- Money, Markets, and Ministry
Giving and Selling in the Mission of Desiring God
8. Passionate Spreading
“And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14).
“You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 19:19).
“I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings” (1 Corinthians 9:23).
“What then is my reward? That in my preaching I may present the gospel free of charge” (1 Corinthians 9:18).
We desire as many people as possible to experience the Christ-exalting, soul-satisfying truths that we cherish. Therefore our strategies will be determined by what is most biblically effective in spreading a passion for the supremacy of God in all things for the joy of all peoples through Jesus Christ via our resources. And then we will seek to design support mechanisms to serve those strategies.
- A Passion for the Supremacy of Christ — Where He Is Not Named
- A Passion for the Supremacy of God for the Joy of All Peoples
9. Global and Multi-ethnic Vision.
“They sang a new song, saying, ‘Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation’ (Revelation 5:9).
“Jesus came and said to them, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations’” (Matthew 28:18-19).
We aim to be a part of God’s global redemption as he gathers worshippers from all the peoples of the world through the gospel of Jesus Christ. We will lift up our eyes beyond local pressures and pleasures and look toward the less reached places and peoples of the world. We will seek to be a part of healing and harmony among diverse ethnic groups in the church of Christ.
1Piper, John, The Pleasures of God: Meditations on God’s Delight in Being God (Sisters, OR: Multnomah Publishers, 1991, 2000), 18.