If you want to know God better, it will be costly, and it will be worth it.
For in much wisdom is much vexation, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow. (Ecclesiastes 1:18)
That is true. It’s true because the more we know...
- ...the more we know that we don’t know.
- ...the more we know that suffering abounds.
- ...the more we are accountable to live up to.
- ...the more dementia will take away.
But it is worth it.
There is gold and abundance of costly stones; but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel. (Proverbs 20:15)
You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. (John 8:32)
A staff member at Bethlehem asked Pastor John what one or two main things he wants to say to an engaged couple in premarital counseling. His answer is relevant for marriages new and old:
Be joyfully, brokenheartedly, shaped by the death of Christ for you.
Do you both feel the fearfulness of how the death of Christ witnesses to your unspeakable unworthiness to be loved—that it took this much suffering and indignity to the Son of God for you to be saved. And do you both feel the wonder of being forgiven owing to nothing in you?
If you do, it will profoundly shape your patience with each other’s shortcomings (which you will find to be more than you ev…
As I sang "My Hope Is in the Lord" in my devotions, it became a sweet whispering of my faith in Jesus. The thought entered my mind: This would be a beautiful expression of faith for someone who wondered, How do I become a Christian?
So, for any of you who would like to be saved from your sin and be reconciled to God and have eternal life, I invite you to sing this song with me.
No, you don’t have to sing it. You can say it. Mainly, you need to mean it.
If you do, from your heart, God will confirm to you in the coming days that you are his because of your faith in Jesus. You will not be able to forsake him, because he will not forsake you.
Here’s the song with some Bible ve…
In this age, God rescues his people from some harm. Not all harm. That’s comforting to know, because otherwise we might conclude from our harm that he has forgotten us or rejected us.
So be encouraged by the simple reminder that in Acts 16:19-24 Paul and Silas were not delivered, but in verses 25-26 they were.
First, no deliverance:
- “They seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace.” (v. 19)
- “The magistrates tore the garments off them.” (v. 22)
- They “inflicted many blows upon them.” (v. 23)
- The jailer “fastened their feet in the stocks.” (v. 24)
But then deliverance:
About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and si…
John Piper has been on writing leave for about five weeks and has three more. Here's a 4-question interview on how it's going.
What have you finished so far?
I have completed a manuscript titled Seek It Like Silver: The Place of Thinking in the Pursuit of God. It’s the same length as Finally Alive.
To explain the title, here’s the last paragraph of the introduction:
If you...raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver...then you will...find the knowledge of God” (Proverbs 2:3-6). I need all the help I can get to love the knowledge of God more than the profits of silver. I assume you do too. So I wrote this to remind myself of the place of think…
It is very good news that God designs his glory to be magnified through the exercise of his grace.
To be sure, God is glorified through the power of his wrath (Romans 9:22), but repeatedly the New Testament (and OT, e.g. Isaiah 30:18) says that we should experience God’s grace so that God gets glory.
Ponder how this works in the prayer of 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12,
To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Bible says, “Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good” (1 Thessalonians 5:20-21).
David Wilkerson will cause a good many hearts to pound faster with his pronouncement that “AN EARTH-SHATTERING CALAMITY IS ABOUT TO HAPPEN.” New Yorkers especially will swallow hard: “It will engulf the whole megaplex, including areas of New Jersey and Connecticut.”
What shall we make of this? The part that depends on the Bible we should take with absolute seriousness. You don’t need to have special revelation to know that the rejection of Jesus Christ as Lord is the norm in America. Therefore, we stand under the judgment of God and it is only a matter of time till th…
When the disciples asked Jesus why he spoke in parables he said:
To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. (Matthew 13:11)
The parables were part of God’s judgment on blindness.
This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see. (Matthew 13:13)
And the judgment he rendered on blindness was more blindness.
To you it has been given to know.... To them it has not been given, (Matthew 13:11)
But to the disciples he said,
But blessed are your eyes, for they see. (Matthew 13:16)
Do you have “blessed eyes”? The new birth is t…
Does God visit the sins of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation? Some texts seem to say he does and others seem to say he doesn’t. Our job is to figure out the sense in which he does and the sense in which he doesn’t.
On the one hand it seems as if he does:
“Because of their iniquity, and also because of the iniquities of their fathers they shall rot away like them.” (Leviticus 26:39)
On the other hand it seems that he doesn’t:
Fathers shall not be put to d…
The Bible teaches that we are so sinful we are morally unable to please God (Romans 8:7). It also teaches that without faith it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6). Yet salvation is by faith, and we are called again and again in Scripture to believe (Acts 16:31).
How then shall we preach to those who cannot come to Christ, but must come in order to be saved?
John Duncan (1796-1870) was a minister of the Free Church of Scotland and a missionary to the Jews in Hungary. He is often referred to as Rabbi Duncan because of his love for Jewish people. John Macleod wrote that "since the days of the Apostles there is hardly on record such a striking work of grace among the Jews as to…