I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. (John 15:5)
It was a July morning in Manila in 1985 when union with Jesus really became precious to me. I know right where I was sitting having devotions in the courtyard of the YWAM outpost.
I was a twenty-year-old struggling to understand how Christ’s work and mine worked together. What really made me acceptable to God? Something taught in the Discipleship Training School class I was taking that week had confused me, and I had been praying earnestly about it.
In my devotions, I had been slowly making my way through John’s Gospel, and chapter 15 wa…
This is a plea from the younger generation to the older. We desperately need you.
Please don’t phone it in just when the King’s about to call. Don’t retire on the world’s terms and abandon your long-time local church.
As the tsunami of the Baby Boom begins to flood the shores of retirement, please don’t leave us Millennials to fend for ourselves and make the same mistakes all over again. Join John Piper in rethinking retirement, and complete the course, all the way to the finish line, proclaiming Jesus’s might to another generation (Psalm 71:18).
For your joy, and for our good, we need you in this family called “the church.” You are our fathers (1 Timothy 5:1). The apostle wr…
Not everyone will believe the gospel, but everyone should be invited.
We know from Scripture, and experience, that not everyone will trust in Jesus and be saved. In fact, many will not. Many today sitting in churches across this country are cold to Christ, harboring impenitent hearts, deceived into thinking their works will get them to heaven. And even more not in churches. They will refuse Jesus, so why should we invite them to trust him?
Why should the gospel go to everyone? Here are three reasons.
1. We don’t know who will or won’t believe.
This relates to God’s two ways of willing. There is God’s “will of command” and his “will of decree” — that is, what God desires generally (his pu…
Does God find pleasure in you?
When he looks at you, does he smile?
In short, if you’re in Christ, the answer is yes. But the answer to how and why and on what basis needs some explaining.
We can break God’s delight for the redeemed into three categories: (1) a delight in election, (2) a delight in redemption, and (3) a delight in holiness.
1. Delight in Election
First, God has expressed delight in his children in the election. Unconditionally and freely, without a hint of injustice or unfairness, God chooses to set his delight on certain human souls, and this delight is an expression of the delight of the triune God (Luke 10:21).
God freely delights in electing children for re…
I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:11–13)
In the race of faith, it is crucial to remember that our contentment is not determined by our circumstances. We often want to blame circumstances for our discontent, but that’s barking up the wrong tree.
Contentment is determined by what we believe. And our belief is fueled by what we’re seeing. So if you need to lay aside the weight (Hebrews 12:1) of discontentment today—the sinful kind that stems fro…
What is so good about the gospel? Have you ever asked yourself that question? What’s the biggest and best thing God promises us? What is it exactly that makes it such good news?
In a sermon last week in Houston, Piper unwrapped “The Sweetest Good of the Good News.” And it’s something bigger and better than forgiveness, freedom, or an eternity of your favorite hobby — shopping, golfing, or watching movies. Yes, even bigger and better than Houston, San Antonio, and Big D. The greatest good of the gospel is God himself.
It was one of several new messages from Piper over the last week. Below is the buffet of conference talks and sermons from recent trips to Idaho and Texas. You will find somet…
It’s no accident that October 31 is both Halloween and the day remembered for the start of the Reformation. Both key off November 1, All Saints’ Day — or All Hallows’ Day (Hallows from the Latin for saints or holy ones).
On All Hallows’ Eve, October 31, 1517, the Roman Church received the world’s most memorable trick-or-treater at its door — though barely noticed at the time — when a lowly priest named Martin Luther approached the threshold of the Wittenberg branch in Germany and posted his 95 measly theses (they aren’t nearly as impressive as you would expect). The coming All Saints’ Day seemed like an excuse for sparring about the Church’s deplorable sanctioning of indulgences, and Luther…
The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost. (Luke 19:10)
Christianity is summed up in these words: Jesus came to seek and save the lost. If we were asked to describe in a sentence the heart of the gospel, there it is.
There is no other news like this. Every other religion says it backwards. Every other religion tells us to seek. We are advised to climb trees like Zacchaeus, to depend upon our own exertion for any hope of ascending to the divine. We are told to bridge the gulf by our effort. If you want salvation, they say, then seek it.
In a sense, that is the world — we live in a planet full of seekers. We are, in one way or another, tree-climbers, maneuvering ourselves to gain som…
Not everyone will believe the gospel. Why?
“God desires all people to be saved,” 1 Timothy 2:4 tells us. “God does not take pleasure in the death of anyone,” Ezekiel 18:32 says. Then why are there some who refuse to trust in Jesus and therefore die lost in their sins?
There are two different answers to this question.
But we should understand that these two answers go beyond making sense of God’s will of decree and will of command. Those “two wills” in God describe a biblical distinction that’s been expressed various ways in the Scriptures and throughout the centuries. God’s “two ways of willing,” writes John Piper, “implies that God decrees one state of affair while also willing and teach…
I am writing this to plead with Christian parents to require obedience of their children. I am moved to write this by watching young children pay no attention to their parents’ requests, with no consequences. Parents tell a child two or three times to sit or stop and come or go, and after the third disobedience, they laughingly bribe the child. This may or may not get the behavior desired.
Last week, I saw two things that prompted this article. One was the killing of 13-year-old Andy Lopez in Santa Rosa, California, by police who thought he was about to shoot them with an assault rifle. It was a toy gun. What made this relevant was that the police said they told the boy two times to drop th…