Blog Posts by John Piper

Know a Christian Who Seems to Love Movies More Than Jesus?

John Piper

What should you do if you know someone who seems to be more excited about movies than Jesus?

Many professing Christians give little evidence of valuing Jesus more than the latest movie they have seen. Or the latest clothing they bought. Or the latest app they downloaded. Or the latest game they watched. Something is amiss.

We are not God and cannot judge with certainty and precision what’s wrong. There…

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What Is Freedom? — Filling Out the Passion 2012 Message

John Piper

Part of my message to Passion 2012 defined true Christian freedom. Here is a fuller statement of what that is taken from a sermon on John 8:32, “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

There are at least four kinds of freedom. And each one adds a crucial dimension of freedom to the last until we get to the full Christian freedom — "free indeed."…

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Christian Hedonist Calvinism

John Piper

What would the doctrines of grace sound like if every limb in that tree were coursing with the sap of Augustinian delight. (that is, Christian Hedonism)?

  • Total depravity is not just badness, but blindness to God’s beauty and deadness to the deepest joy.
  • Unconditional election means that the completeness of our joy in Jesus was planned for us before we ever existed as the overflow of God’s joy in the…
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The Sovereign God of “Elfland” (Why Chesterton’s Anti-Calvinism Doesn’t Put Me Off)

John Piper

Ever since my days at Wheaton College, when I followed Clyde Kilby’s advice to read G. K. Chesterton’s Orthodoxy, it has been one of my favorite books. I think it’s the only book I have read more than twice (except for the Bible).

This is strange. Not only was Chesterton a Roman Catholic, he also hated Calvinism. So what’s up with me and Orthodoxy? I still think at…

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A Word for Those Who Have Forsaken Jesus

John Piper

How eager Jesus was to restore broken fellowship with his apostles after the resurrection! Surely this is a sign of how eager he is to restore us when we have drifted (or bolted) away.

All the apostles had forsaken him. In the garden, at his most sorrowful hour, "They all left him and fled” (Mark 14:50).

Now he was raised. What would he say to those who had abandoned him?…

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Not by Bread Alone: Let’s Live on God’s Word in 2012

John Piper

At Bethlehem we close prayer week with a focus on the value of reading and memorizing Scripture in the new year. I preach on the value of God’s word and the importance of reading and memorizing the Scripture every day.

Justin Taylor has pulled together a list of possible ways to read the Bible in this new year.

I encourage everyone to take the closing days of the year to …

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How Desiring God Works

John Piper

Dear Friends of Desiring God,

Desiring God exists to spread a passion for the supremacy of God in all things for the joy of all peoples through Jesus Christ, especially by focusing on the truth, and its implications, that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.

We want to spread that truth and all of its amazingly God-exalting, practical implications everywhere in the world.…

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What to Do If You Wake Up Feeling Fragile

John Piper

There are mornings when I wake up feeling fragile. Vulnerable. It’s often vague. No single threat. No one weakness. Just an amorphous sense that something is going to go wrong and I will be responsible. It’s usually after a lot of criticism. Lots of expectations that have deadlines and that seem too big and too many.

As I look back over about 50 years of such periodic mornings, I am…

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A Poem on Our 43rd Wedding Anniversary

John Piper

Sometimes I write poems for our anniversary. Sometimes on our anniversary. This one I wrote on our anniversary, December 21st. It addresses the question of where in this baffling, unknown, fragile world certainty and security can be found.

The Bridge and the River
A Poem on Our 43rd Anniversary

I count at least two thousand gray triangles
in the two-lane bridge that links Wisconsin
to the town

where we sat…

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Outwitted and Victorious

John Piper

This is not a plea to be thoughtless. It’s not an argument for ignoring strategy. God uses strategy (Joshua 8:4).

“The horse is made ready for the day of battle, but the victory belongs to the Lord” (Proverbs 21:31). Yes. Make the horse ready. But it is also true: Sometimes the enemy strikes when there is no time to get the horse ready. And victory still belongs to the Lord.

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Should We Be Tenderhearted?

John Piper

The longer I live the more complexities I see in living. They’re not as paralyzing as they used to be. I pray more for a spiritual nose to sniff out the path between precipices.

Take tender-heartedness, for example. I think one of the most practical and important passages in the whole Bible is Ephesians 4:31–32. God put that there for me. It is one of the most important mandates in…

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Christopher Hitchens, the Mission of Desiring God, and God's Word About Death

John Piper

Three things came together in the last thirty-six hours to create this post. The death of Christopher Hitchens, the Desiring God Board meeting Thursday, and the word of God.

  1. Christopher Hitchens died Thursday night. He was, perhaps, the most aggressive of the “new atheists.” I am sobered and made quiet by the probability (though we do not know his final hours) that he is in torment today awaiting his final…
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Can Authentic Faith Be Awakened by a Physical Miracle?

John Piper

Did Jesus teach that miracles are useless for those who reject the word? Here’s the story he told:

From hades the rich man implored Abraham to send Lazarus to warn his five brothers not to come to that place of torment.

But Abraham said, “They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.”

The rich man said, “No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead,

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To See His Supernova God, Put Your Eye to Edwards' Telescope

John Piper

I stand in awe of Michael McClymond and Gerald McDermott’s massive The Theology of Jonathan Edwards (Oxford University Press, 2011). Edwards is worthy of this scope of treatment.

But may I register a disagreement with one way this book is being commended.

Alistair McGrath said that it is “unquestionably the best starting place for anyone wanting to grapple with the ideas of America’s greatest theologian.”

And Kenneth Minkema said, “This…

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The Great Ministry Killer

John Piper

Money is a great ministry killer. Look at what happened to Israel’s spiritual leaders from top to bottom.

The heads of Jacob give judgment for a bribe;
its priests teach for a price;
its prophets practice divination for money;
yet they lean on the Lord and say,
“Is not the Lord in the midst of us? (Micah 3:11)

And what is so shocking — and relevant — is that they…

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How a Book Is Born

John Piper

Did you ever wonder how a book idea is born in an author’s mind? Here is one way it happened.

The Pleasures of God was published in 1991. The first inkling I had of the conception behind this book came to me on September 12, 1986. Here is how it came — a direct quote from my journal from that day:

As I was praying today, the thought came to
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Thank you, Father

John Piper

Thank you, Father, for my life.
Thank you for my precious wife.

Thank you, Father, for my girl.
Thank you for this deep-sea pearl.

Thank you, Father, for my sons,
Fathers, wives, the little ones.

Thank you for the church I serve,
Staff and friends I don’t deserve.

Thank you, Father, for my birth,
Who can measure parents’ worth?

Thank you, Father, for the schools,
Mental tools, and passion fuels.

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Rob Not Your Heart of the Deep Sea Joys

John Piper

In the history of the Christian Church there have been few people more eloquent than Charles Spurgeon. That makes his words about silence all the more striking.

Priceless as the gift of utterance may be, the practice of silence in some aspects far excels it. Do not think me a Quaker. Well, be it so. Herein I follow George Fox most lovingly; for I am persuaded that most of us…

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Helping You Sing “Hallelujah” with True Exuberance

John Piper

The English word “hallelujah” is a transliteration of two Hebrew words, "hallelu" and "jah". The first word, "hallelu", is the second person imperative of “praise.” The second word, "jah," is the short form of "Jahweh" (or "Yahweh").

So when we say, “Hallelujah!” we are exhorting others (people and angels) to join us in praising Yahweh.

What gives a punch to my singing, “Hallelujah,” is that Jah (= Yahweh) is not…

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Jesus Died to End Abortion and Racism

John Piper

Seventeen years ago I linked Martin Luther King Day with Sanctity of Life Sunday for the first time. Since then I have tried to preach a pair of sermons back to back in January — one for the glory of Christ in racial harmony, and one for the glory of Christ in a sacred womb.

This has the unsettling effect of making me sound like a Democrat one week and…

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Thank you, Brazil!

John Piper

This is a photoblog to say thank you publicly to some of the friends we made in Brazil last week. October 3-9 Noël and I, with Bob and Gayle Glenn and Bill and Cindi Walsh, flew to Sao Paulo. Over those seven days there were three different conferences, the Fiel Conference, the conference at Mackenzie University, and the rally in Rio de Janerio.

Thank you, Brazil, for embracing us…

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My Experience with Racism and Reformed Theology

John Piper

The Bible and the Reformed faith have been used to defend racism and slavery. But, if you take the long view, in every case, the day came when the very Bible, and the very faith, that had once condoned racism and slavery, were finally used as part of its undoing.

This was certainly the case in my own experience. It was not Reformed theology that in any way spurred or…

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The Laugh of Faith and the Power of Prayer

John Piper

I praise God for Jason Mandryk and his team who put together the seventh edition of Operation World. The subtitle is The Definitive Prayer Guide to Every Nation. Just the other day I was having my world adjusted by reading and praying over the section on Palestine (The Palestine Authority).

Where does a book of this scope come from? What drives its production? It’s the vision of God,…

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