Blog Posts by Tony Reinke
Take Care How You Listen (Free eBook)
Skillful listening is a non-negotiable skill for everyone who enters a church building on Sunday or plays a sermon through headphones during the week. Scripture calls us not only to consider carefully what sermons we listen to, but also how we listen to those sermons.
It is very easy to slip into what Scripture calls “dullness of hearing,” to hear the weekly sermons without faith, and to see little or…Continue Reading
Vote As Though Not Voting
It is easy to misinterpret the place of voting in the Christian life. For example, a recent StarTribune headline announced that Pastor John was "opting out of the marriage fight" in Minnesota.
So why the misinterpretation?
The misinterpretation may originate in a misunderstanding of the Christian’s priorities. The Christian’s ultimate hope does not rest on political…Continue Reading
Homosexuality and the Church’s Holy Tension
Robert A. J. Gagnon, on the final pages of his opus, The Bible and Homosexual Practice: Texts and Hermeneutics (Abingdon Press, 2001), pens important words about the challenges ahead for the church.
The core proclamation of the gospel declares that God made amends for human sin while humans were still ungodly and hostile sinners, that God experienced the pain and agony of offering Christ up to death in order to…
What’s At Stake in the Homosexuality Debate
The stakes could not be higher in the homosexuality debate, because — to put it rather bluntly — homosexual activity is a sin that parallels idolatry. The Apostle Paul seems to draw this connection in Ephesians 5:5 and Colossians 3:5, and he certainly does in Romans 1:18–27.
Robert Gagnon, a leading scholar on sexuality in Scripture, says these themes are closely related for Paul because both idolatry and same-sex intercourse…Continue Reading
A Father's Day Poem
Pastor John originally penned this poem when Noël’s father, George Henry, passed away. He would later dedicate it to his own father, William Piper, when he died. It is a standing reminder of the profound gift of a godly father’s legacy.
In Memory of George T. Henry and William S. H. Piper, Our Fathers
Reflections on Psalm 1 and Joshua 24:15
No tree however deep the roots,
However high and…
Learning Fatherhood From the Father of Fatherhood
In Ephesians 3:14–15, Paul prays, "For this reason I bow my knees before the Father [patēr], from whom every family [patria] in heaven and on earth is named." In the Greek it is easy to pick up on Paul’s patēr/patria play on words. John Stott chose to translate this phrase as "the Father from whom all fatherhood is named." The ESV translation footnote makes a similar…Continue Reading
Biblical Manhood and Womanhood on Display
Writes John Piper in his book, A Sweet and Bitter Providence (Crossway, 2010), page 132:
The story of Ruth and Boaz is the kind of story that can awaken and feed the masculine and feminine soul in ways that we cannot articulate.
I encourage you to be like a dolphin in the sea of our egalitarian, gender-leveling culture. Don’t be like a jellyfish. The ocean of secularism that we swim…
What the Psalms Do
From Pastor John's sermon, “Songs that Shape the Heart and Mind” (May 25, 2008):
If you read the Psalms only for doctrine, you’re not reading them for what they are. They are psalms, songs, poetry. They’re musical, and the reason human beings express truth with music and poetry is to awaken and express emotions that fit the truth.
One of the reasons the Psalms are deeply loved by…
The Essence of Christian Hedonism
John Piper, Desiring God, page 18:
The chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying Him forever.
(Design submitted by Jennifer Knight.)
Previous quote images —
- Holy Women Who Hope in God (Jennifer Knight)
- The Rock-Solid Foundation of Christian Hedonism (Jacob Abshire)
- Motivating Joy (Jennifer Knight)
- O Mother, Great Is Thy Power (Jennifer Knight)
Is a Wife's Submission Culturally Outdated?
In our egalitarian culture, the debate over a wife’s submission to her husband is not going away anytime soon. Of course we start with Scripture, and the Bible is clear in calling the first-century Greco-Roman wife to submit to her own husband (Ephesians 5:22, 24, Colossians 3:18, 1 Peter 3:1). But is this command now applicable to 21st-century Christian wives?
Many say no, and one opposing argument goes something like…Continue Reading
The Book of 2 Corinthians in 42 Tweets
The Apostle Paul and the Corinthian church had a complicated relationship, and Second Corinthians is a personal letter from Paul that captures the tension. It's a letter that speaks to ministry, leadership, and preaching, and it's a letter that speaks to church conflict, church unity, and the financial support of the church. Along the way we see the mountaintops of the New Covenant and the New Creation in Christ. But…Continue Reading
Why Rooting Joy in Ministry Success Is Disastrous
Is there a greater thrill than to know someone's life has been permanently transformed because you reached out to them?
It is sweet to know your sister was saved through your series of conversations, or that you helped to disciple a struggling couple whose marriage was headed toward an inevitable divorce, or that you preached a sermon that God was kind enough to use in someone's spiritual awakening.
Each of…Continue Reading
C. S. Lewis on Queen Elizabeth II
Queen Elizabeth II was crowned on 2 June 1953 in London. C. S. Lewis chose not to attend the festivities because the weather was not great, because he did not like crowds, and because he was not in the mood to dress up. Instead he stayed at home and watched the event on TV (it was the first fully televised coronation).
A month later Lewis reflected on the coronation in…Continue Reading
Holy Women Who Hope in God
From John Piper's 1986 Mother's Day sermon:
Women who hope in God are women who look away from the troubles and miseries and obstacles of life that seem to make the future bleak, and they focus their attention on the sovereign power and love of God who rules in heaven and does on earth whatever he pleases.
(Image designed by Jennifer Knight.)
See the previous three image quotes…Continue Reading
The “Mommy Wars” have found a place in the middle of a cultural discussion, recently appearing on the cover of Time magazine and surfacing in the Mitt Romney presidential run.
But the church is not immune to the temptation of competitive mothering, and we enlisted several Christian women to bring a biblical perspective to this cultural hot-topic.
As a wrap-up to last week’s five-part series, here is an index of…Continue Reading
The Joy of Calvinism
However the terms are refined, the main tenets of Calvinism are structured around the five-petaled acronym TULIP. But too often missing in this structure is the “sap of delight,” as Pastor John calls it in his biography of Augustine.
In the following excerpt from that biography, Pastor John explains why we need a delight-drenched theology like that of Augustine.
R. C. Sproul says, “We need an Augustine or…
Behind the Blog: From the Umbrian Hills of Italy
We return to the studio to look back at a few blog highlights from the last week and open with Russell Moore’s post, Fake Love, Fake War, and the story of how the post originated in a bumpy bus on an iPhone in the hills of Italy.
Go behind the blog in five minutes or less.
You can also listen here.
Blog posts mentioned in…Continue Reading
The Music Behind All Music
The creation surrounding us is the product of the triune God. That is incredible enough. But take one more profound step and we discover, as Pastor John explains in The Pleasures of God, that “creation is an expression of the overflow of that life and joy that the Father and the Son have in each other” (72).
To put this another way, we see a kaleidoscope of galaxies, animals,…Continue Reading
What Sanctification Feels Like
From Ray Ortlund's excellent commentary, Proverbs: Wisdom That Works (Crossway, 2012), pages 51–52:
Proverbs 2:1–22 opens a door to every one of us. We all want to grow in Christ. In this passage God is telling us how we can move forward.
If you see a sign in front of a church, “Revival here next week,” you can be sure there won’t be a revival there next week. We do…
Summers Are for Seeking Christ
Memorial Day is here, school is nearly done, and the days are growing longer and hotter. The firstfruits of summer have arrived.
As the summer season approached in 1995, Pastor John reminded his church of the spiritual benefits of summer, along with the annual temptations to spiritual laziness in his article, “Setting Our Minds on Things Above in Summer” (May 31, 1995).
Every season is God’s…
The Rock-Solid Foundation of Christian Hedonism
A Cure for Lame Table Prayers
I find it easy to slip into vague gratefulness, and vague gratefulness is as hollow as a light bulb. Mostly I notice this at the dinner table with my family. The vague verbiage I speak over our food is a reflection of my vague thoughts about God and his provisions spread across the table. (It’s certainly not a reflection of my wife’s cooking!)
If you find this vaguity in your…Continue Reading
20 Quotes from Father Hunger
What follows is a collection of 20 quotes that caught my attention as I read Douglas Wilson’s new book, Father Hunger: Why God Calls Men to Love and Lead Their Families (Thomas Nelson, 2012):
"In human history, there will never be a more perfect father-and-son moment than this moment between Father and Son [Matthew 3:16–17]. This is the keynote — pleasure. This is the pitch that a father/son relationship needs…Continue Reading
Puritan Thomas Watson, A Body of Divinity:
If anything can make us rise off our bed of sloth, and serve God with all our might, it should be this, the hope of our near enjoyment of God forever.
(Design submitted by Jennifer Knight.)
Previous images —
Four superheroes unite in "The Avengers Initiative" — Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Captain America, and the Iron Man — a collaborative of the world's greatest powers, called together when cosmic evil threatens the planet.
This is the storyline behind the The Avengers (2012), a movie that brought together these superheroes into one allegiance. And audiences have responded. In its first three days in U.S. theaters, the movie earned a record-smashing…Continue Reading