Blog Posts by Jonathan Parnell

Why Homosexuality Is Not Like Other Sins

Jonathan Parnell

Homosexuality is not the only sin mentioned in 1 Corinthians 6:9–10.

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

It’s not the only sin mentioned, but it is different…

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Five Helps for Your Holy Week

Jonathan Parnell

To help you make the most of Holy Week, we’ve ventured into the archive to find five of the best Piper articles related to the Easter season.

Straight-forward and practical, these posts stand as some of the most enduring short-form content on Jesus’s death and resurrection and what it means for our lives.

1. The Overflow of Easter: A Whole Theology of Resurrection in One Chapter

John Piper walks us…

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The Problem of Palm Sunday

Jonathan Parnell

It was the palm branches that made this day unique, and then again, it wasn’t.

For centuries, the church has memorialized today, the first day of Holy Week, as Palm Sunday because of the palm branches and cloaks that the people spread out before Jesus as he entered Jerusalem.

The Gospel writers tell us a crowd gathered, gushing with excitement, and lined the road in front of Jesus as he…

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When Scripture Is the Controversy

Jonathan Parnell

If we learned anything from last week, maybe it’s that the real controversy among evangelicals in the coming days will be about the Bible, not homosexuality.

Beneath the surface of the recent scuffle is the more vital issue of how disciples of Jesus posture themselves toward God’s word. It’s not simply about our grasp of what Scripture is, or our conviction of Scripture’s inerrancy, or even where we land with…

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Don’t Give Up on Joy

Jonathan Parnell

You don’t have to wallow in sadness.

Ben Stuart says this realization was one of the greatest gifts God gave him in his fight against sadness. He learned from the Psalms that we could push back against sad feelings with the truths of God’s word. We can fight back for joy in God.

In this three minute video, Ben talks about three weapons in the fight against sadness and encourages…

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How to Overcome Temptation

Jonathan Parnell

Meet Ben Stuart. He leads Breakaway, a campus ministry at Texas A&M University. Over the past decade, Ben has taught the Bible every week to thousands of students in the throes of college life, often speaking practically into their sins and struggles.

In this short video, building off the Book of James, Ben exposes temptation and explains the two primary ways that we overcome it.


More resources on…

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Doctrine Matters for Deeds of Mercy

Jonathan Parnell

Good works never just happen. How we treat others is always determined by what we think about God, by who he is and what he’s done.

Whether implicit or explicit, this is fundamentally the case. It’s not by accident that the greatest commandment is to love God, and then the second, which “is like it,” is to love others (Matthew 22:36–40). Our vertical relationship inevitability impacts the horizontal. And in…

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How to Fill Your Life with Joy

Jonathan Parnell

Seriously pursue joy in the face of Jesus Christ. That’s what Matt Chandler says is the main lesson he’s learned along the slow, dirt path of sanctification. There’s no silver bullet, he explains, to become like Jesus, but the greatest single means is to fix your eyes on Jesus himself — to fill your life with things that stir your affections for him, and to toss the things that…

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Three Tips on Being a Friend of Sinners

Jonathan Parnell

Jesus was accused of being a friend of sinners. That was the word on the street in first-century Palestine.

The precise phrase — “friend of sinners” — is mentioned twice in the Gospels, in Matthew 11:19 and Luke 7:34. The naysayers of the day, the religious aristocracy, criticized Jesus as a “glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.”

They called him this because it was true.…

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Ten Thousand Things We Can’t See

Jonathan Parnell

“The nearness of God is my good,” says the psalmist.

Though the wicked prosper, though evil carries on, though the circumstances of God’s people are bleak, everything makes sense in God’s presence (Psalm 73:17). There the embittered soul is revived. The beastly attitude is tamed. “Nevertheless,” the psalm goes, “I am continually with you; you hold my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive…

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See Through the Sour Wine

Jonathan Parnell

It was an act of cruelty, not comfort. That is what we see in the last minutes of Jesus’s life, as described in the Gospel of Mark.

Customary of Mark, he gets straight to the point in Mark 15:33. The sixth hour had come and brought darkness. Now it was the ninth hour, three in the afternoon, darkness still smothering the landscape. And Jesus cries out with a loud voice,

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When God Says Wait

Jonathan Parnell

The life of faith involves the miracle of seeing above your circumstances. It means we grasp the unseen that’s been promised, that we orient our lives in the time at hand, on the yet to come.

Psalm 37 exhorts us to this kind of life, and actually models for us what it looks like. David begins the psalm with end-times hope:

Fret not yourself because of evildoers; be not envious…

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Is the Preaching Any Good?

Jonathan Parnell

One of the most fundamental truths to understand about the church’s corporate gathering is that Jesus is a giver.

Jesus, our Savior and salvation — the one to whom we are united by faith — gave himself to us by becoming like us. He then gave himself to us by dying in our place. And still today, every week when the church meets, he gives himself to us through the…

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The Chaos of Humility

Jonathan Parnell

Humility, for many of us, might just be mild-mannered niceness. We like to think of it all buttoned up and soft-spoken, cloaked in the quiet gray sweater his grandmother made, sitting by the modest fireplace of a friend’s home, patiently greeting and warming a crowded room of other virtues. Humility, as we might picture him, is the unnoticed nice guy who deflects all the praise and makes everyone else feel…

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Three Questions to Ask Before Watching a Movie

Jonathan Parnell

It’s never been easier to watch movies, and lots of them.

Netflix, which leads the race as the top online streaming service, provides more than 10,000 movie options for its 40 million subscribers — and it’s flanked by formidable competitors like Hulu Plus, Redbox, and Amazon Prime. Considering the sheer crowd on this track, and each one’s continued efforts to specialize its features, the movie industry doesn’t appear to be…

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Now Available: New Messages on Union with Christ

Jonathan Parnell

John Owen once said that our knowledge of the Bible is useless unless it “forms Christ in the soul.” He means that unless truth leads us to Jesus or brings him to us, it stays lifeless and unprofitable. It does us no good.

But when the truth shows us Christ — when we see him and his glory — we are changed. We are transformed into his likeness and image.

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When God Works for You

Jonathan Parnell

But they who wait for the Lᴏʀᴅ shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)

It’s not exactly what we’d think, or could ever imagine. There’s nothing else like it. A God who is so mighty that he doesn’t need anything. A God who displays his glory not by our…

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Three Reasons to Get Some Sleep

Jonathan Parnell

Life is short. Stay awake for it.

So goes the tagline for the second largest coffee franchise in America. It’s catchy and practical. Drink our coffee, it suggests, not merely for its taste, but for its benefits, that is, to be awake to life. And the reason being — here comes the resonating connection — life is short. The clock is ticking. Our days are numbered. And we…

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The Love of God’s Power

Jonathan Parnell

God is faithful. We’ve all heard these words.

We’ve read them, said them, and sung them. And we’ve felt them.

God’s faithfulness is a palatable experience of his love. It’s his love tasted and seen in our history. It’s the mechanics of his love wired to fulfill his promises for our good. In fact, God’s faithfulness and his steadfast love are so closely intertwined that in Psalm 33 they’re basically…

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Backslap Death in the Face

Jonathan Parnell

Cadenced descriptions of Christ’s work have always characterized the voice of his church.

“He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate,” the old creed says, “he suffered death and was buried, and on the third day he rose again.” Straightforward as they are, these words are actually worlds, each one inhabited by more meaning and wonder and — for the poet — endless depths to be mined.

Jackie Hill shows…

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God Doesn’t Want You to Worry

Jonathan Parnell

Philippians 4:6–7,

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.

One of the reasons this passage is so popular is its simplicity. The opposite of anxiety is peace. Anxiety is forbidden; peace is commended. It is…

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Put Your Foot on It

Jonathan Parnell

We definitely wouldn’t let our kids see this.

If the next Bible-inspired movie was about Joshua taking the Promised Land, it might even be one that many adults choose to miss, especially if it stays true to the biblical account. It would likely have more violence than the roughest action film to date, though at the same time, and to much surprise, offer more hope than the best feel-good movie…

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Seven Details to See in Your Past

Jonathan Parnell

The grace of Jesus Christ not only covers our past and sustains our present, but also creates for us a future.

In him our sins are forgiven and we are declared righteous. In him we are sanctified and progressively being transformed into his image. In him we are inseparable from the Father’s love and we can rest assured — no matter what distress may come — he is never letting

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Captive to Glory (Free eBook)

Jonathan Parnell

Today we are releasing a new ebook from John Piper, Captive to Glory: Celebrating the Vision and Influence of Jonathan Edwards. It is a collection of the best snapshots of Edwards’s influence in Piper’s published corpus.

The Focus on Glory

J.I. Packer has written a few book endorsements during his long, fruitful ministry, but he’s only mentioned the ghost of Jonathan Edwards once. Back in 1986, commending the first…

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Dads, Write in Your Bible

Jonathan Parnell

It’s no secret that the word of God and prayer are a personal means of grace that spill over for the good of those around us.

We read the Bible not just for ourselves, but for our families, for our friends, for our community. We know that God doesn’t transform his people into dead-ends, but into rivers of living water. Deciding on a route and digging in on that resolve…

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