Update from the Pipers

John Piper

Noël and I continue to be deeply thankful to our family at Bethlehem for the gift of these months away. You may recall my explanation for the leave where we said there were three components: soul, marriage and family, and vocational. Each needed a reality check. And of course they are interrelated.

On the soul front, we continue to probe the roots of our most characteristic sins with a view to confessing them and repenting and seeking God’s transforming power through prayer and... Continue Reading

Real Lasting Rest

Paul Tripp
Real Lasting Rest

Do you ever struggle with God’s sovereignty? Do you wonder why he has ordained for you to face the things you face? Are you ever tempted to doubt his goodness or question his love? Or do you experience rest of heart even when your relationships are messy and your circumstances are difficult? The following words are about where the rest can be found.

I did it again and again when our children resisted our instruction and correction. I did it again and again when they debated a command or... Continue Reading

The Importance of Using Your Body in Worship

Tyler Kenney
The Importance of Using Your Body in Worship

Jonathan Edwards says that a lack of external expression in worship can actually destroy Christian community and devotion.

Some bodily worship is necessary to give liberty to our own devotion; yea though in secret, so more when with others . . . 'Tis necessary that there should be something bodily and visible in the worship of a congregation; otherwise, there can be no communion at all. (From Miscellanies #101)

Read his rationale for thinking this way.

Help Your Kids Love God with Their Hearts and Minds

Crossway

Here's the scoop on another great product coming soon from Crossway. We really appreciate their partnership in putting on this year's Desiring God National Conference.

Available this Fall from Crossway, the ESV Seek and Find Bible is a great way to help kids ages 5-9 learn to love God’s Word. The Bible contains the full ESV text along with other helpful resources, like book introductions written for children, character profiles, maps, and a concordance.

The... Continue Reading

Let Him Deny Himself

Jon Bloom

The Christian life is a journey to the greatest joy that exists. But "the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few" (Matthew 7:14). Why is that? Because, paradoxically, in order to pursue our greatest joy, we must deny ourselves.

***

It was a moment of euphoria for the disciples. Jesus was the Christ. Peter had confessed it and Jesus had confirmed it. The long-awaited arrival of Israel's Messiah had come! And the Twelve were at the center of it!

Then oddly, Jesus... Continue Reading

Contrived Humility Vs. Humility from Faith

Mark Priestap

Have you ever found yourself in prayer pleading a case before God when you suddenly get a sick feeling that either God is not listening or he’s not willing to hear you? What do you do when that happens? Hopefully you haven’t followed my example.

I have recently become painfully aware of a tendency of mine, when feeling inadequate to approach God, to try to bend his will through tears and contrite statements. Knowing that God will not despise a humble and contrite... Continue Reading

How Can God Decree Sin Without Sinning?

Tyler Kenney
How Can God Decree Sin Without Sinning?

Jonathan Edwards offers his explanation. (See below for my attempt at restating him.)

That we should say, that God has decreed every action of men, yea, every action that they do that is sinful, and every circumstance of those actions . . . and yet that God does not decree the actions that are sinful as sinful, but decrees [them] as good, is really consistent.

We do not mean by decreeing an action as sinful, the same as decreeing an action so that it shall be sinful;... Continue Reading

Why the Law Makes Us Want to Sin More

Tyler Kenney
Why the Law Makes Us Want to Sin More

Jonathan Edwards explains why Romans 7:8—"But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness"—happens.

[The] reason why man has the more strong inclination to moral evil when forbidden, is because obedience is submission and subjection, and the commandment is obligation. But natural corruption is against submission and obligation, but loves the lowest kind of liberty as one of those apparent goods that it seeks; and when he... Continue Reading

Free Bodies, Bound Wills

Tyler Kenney
Free Bodies, Bound Wills

True and saving faith in Christ is not a thing out of the power of man, but infinitely easy. 'Tis entirely in a man's power to submit to Jesus Christ as a Savior, if he will; but the thing is, it never will be that he should will it, except God works it in him.

—Jonathan Edwards, from Miscellanies #71

Edwards draws a distinction here between two kinds of ability:

  1. Physical ability – having the external means with which to do something, and
  2. Moral ability – having the internal will or... Continue Reading

Thank you, Dad. And Goodbye.

Jon Bloom
Thank you, Dad. And Goodbye.

Today we are burying my father, Marlin Bloom. He died at 8:16 PM on July 8th, just days short of his 78th birthday. Having battled numerous health issues over the years, his body simply wore out. Dad’s wish was to be cremated, and since my brother and his family were traveling to Asia just days after Dad died, we postponed the memorial service until they returned.

Dad was born July 19, 1932, to Elmer and Merle Bloom on a farm in central Minnesota. But he spent most of his... Continue Reading