Why Does Bethlehem Exist?
What I Said at the Leadership Retreat
Bethlehem Exists to Reassert God’s Rightful Place in All of Life
Where is God in the Minneapolis Tribune, or WCCO radio, or all the TV networks, or Time and Newsweek, or the theater, or the school classroom? God is the most important reality in the universe, but is almost totally ignored. He is the most crucial factor in every issue facing the city. But he is disregarded by our cultural leaders in almost all they do. It is as though an ant on his anthill should disbelieve in the earth.
In order to reassert God’s rightful place in the soul of man and all of life, we need a sharpened focus on who he is and what he is like. Without this we will not boldly and graciously reassert his rightful place in all the areas of life. So here is the truth about God that forms the essence of our vision at Bethlehem:
God Exhibits Exuberant Omnipotence to Satisfy the Hearts of Those Who Hope in Him
“The Lord, your God, is in your midst, a warrior who gives victory; he will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing as on a day of festival.” Zephaniah 3:17
“I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them; and I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me. I will rejoice in doing them good...with all my heart and with all my soul.” Jeremiah 32:40-41
“The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show his might in behalf of those whose heart is whole toward him.” 2 Chronicles 16:9
“The Lord will again take delight in prospering you.” Deuteronomy 30:9
“For the Lord takes pleasure in his people; he adorns the humble with victory.” Psalm 149:4
“His delight is not in the strength of the horse, nor his pleasure in the legs of a man; But the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love.” Psalm 147:11
“Great is the Lord, who delights in the welfare of his servant!” Psalm 35:27
“My God will supply all your needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 4:19
“In the coming ages he will show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” Ephesians 2:7
“You shall no longer be termed Forsaken, and your land shall no more be termed Desolate; but you shall be called My delight is in her, and your land Married; for the Lord delights in you. . . As the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.” Isaiah 62:4-5
Reasserting his rightful place in all of life,
P.S. Put this on the fridge.
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Please include the following statement on any distributed copy: By John Piper. ©2013 Desiring God Foundation. Website: desiringGod.org