Blog Posts on Life of the Mind

Right Thinking Is for Deep Feeling

David Mathis
Right Thinking Is for Deep Feeling

Doctrine is for the sake of delight. Christian theology does not exist for its own sake, but for our desiring and enjoying Christ.

Simply put, the mind is meant to serve the heart. Thinking serves feeling. God gave us the ability to learn and reason, so that we might admire and treasure him above anything else. Right thinking is for deep feeling.

A Message for Every Human

Recently, John Piper addressed the students of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville. The... Continue Reading

Who Is P.G. Wodehouse, and Why Should It Matter to Us?

Douglas Wilson
Who Is P.G. Wodehouse, and Why Should It Matter to Us?

On one level, reading the works of P.G. Wodehouse provides its own justification — provided you are looking to justify the reading of light comedy at the beach. But who actually needs to justify that kind of thing? To consume a literary soufflé brings its own reward, and no heavy, sick feeling afterwards. Tangled plots, no sex or violence, memorable characters, hilarious dialogue . . . what could be better? There is some sin present, to be sure, but it... Continue Reading

Preparing for the Future in the Age of Facebook

Alex Chediak
Preparing for the Future in the Age of Facebook

The regular use of our minds — thinking, reading, studying, analyzing — is a necessary means to loving God in this world. God gave us a Book, and he ordained that insight into its message be given by means of focused mental effort (2 Timothy 2:7; Ephesians 3:4; Acts 17:11–12) combined with supernatural illumination (2 Corinthians 4:4–6; 1 Peter 1:23). We should become attentive readers even if only to see the glory of God in the pages of Scripture and to be... Continue Reading

Writing Like Cicero for the Sake of the Soul

John Piper
Writing Like Cicero for the Sake of the Soul

Marilynne Robinson, whose novels Gilead and Home have moved many of us deeply, has just published a new collection of Essays titled When I Was a Child I Read Books.

Here’s a caution. Her fiction is more easily understood than her nonfiction. She admits, “My style is considerably more indebted to Cicero than to Hemingway” (87). That means her sentences sound like translations of good Latin. In other words, she writes non-fiction like John Owen.

The preface puts the... Continue Reading

New Publications Relating to C. S. Lewis

John Piper
New Publications Relating to C. S. Lewis

Joel Heck, Professor of Theology at Concordia University, Texas, has served us again by publishing rare materials relating to C. S. Lewis. In 2008 he published The Personal Heresy: A Controversy. And now he has published the Socratic Digest (Concordia University Press, 2012), a digest of the biannual publication of the meetings of the Socratic Club at Oxford from 1943 to 1952. Lewis was a regular part of this club and seven of his essays are included, plus other... Continue Reading

Learning from Myself Forty Years Later: Thoughts on the Republication of My Doctoral Dissertation

John Piper
Learning from Myself Forty Years Later: Thoughts on the Republication of My Doctoral Dissertation

Crossway just republished my 1974 doctoral dissertation from the University of Munich. In re-reading parts of Love Your Enemies, I am struck at how solidifying those early days were.

For example, a significant focus of the dissertation was on the nature of motivation for loving our enemies and the role of God’s Spirit in bringing about enemy-love. In one section I asked, If we are born again by the Spirit, and... Continue Reading

15 Tips on Blogging from John Newton

Tony Reinke
15 Tips on Blogging from John Newton

John Newton, the slave-trade ship captain turned pastor and hymn-writer, wasn't exactly a blogger. Many of his writings, however, fit in the category of we today would call blogging. He wrote mostly letters — small, topically oriented and experience-based pieces — and he became increasingly aware those letters would be published for a wider audience. When you pick up a copy of his published letters and begin reading, they remind today’s reader of the blog style many... Continue Reading

12 Short Books Worth Reading

Jonathan Parnell

In one of my daughters' favorite books Dr. Seuss tells us, "The more you read, the more things you will know."

True. Reading is thinking is learning — and there are "mountains of treasures waiting to be mined." But this doesn't mean the books we read have to be long. As Pastor John explains,

What I have learned from [years] of serious reading is this.It is sentences that change my life, not books. What changes my life is some new glimpse of truth, some powerful challenge, some... Continue Reading

How Should We Think About Self-Worth?

Jonathan Parnell
How Should We Think About Self-Worth?

What is self-worth? And whatever it is, do you have the right kind?

Back in 1976, during his college teaching ministry, John Piper was interviewed about the then burgeoning talk of self-esteem. Responding to nine questions, he gives a biblical assessment of what it means to be human and have value.

Read the entire interview.

________

For a preview, here are the questions with short excerpts of Pastor John's response:

  1. What does the term “self worth” mean to you?
  2. . . . Man is... Continue Reading

Seminary: Life or Death?

David Mathis
Seminary: Life or Death?

Seminary is dangerous. Yes, the fragrance is to life for many. But for others — far too many others — the aroma is to death.

Names changed to protect the guilty, Don Carson tells the story of an “Ernest Christian” in the introduction to his infamous Exegetical Fallacies. Ernest was converted as a senior in high school, grew in leaps and bounds through a campus ministry while in college, sensed a call to full-time ministry, was affirmed by his local congregation, and “headed off to... Continue Reading