One Advantage of Reading Slowly

John Piper

The fact that hundreds of the pages of God’s inspired word are devoted to poetry moves me. One of the effects is to make me aware that God thinks the sound of language matters.

God has blessed and humbled me with the inability to speed read. I read about the same speed that I talk. I hear what I read as I read it. For years I tried not to. Speed reading consultants (I took their courses—in vain.) say that pronouncing the words, even in your head, turns a rabbit reader into a... Continue Reading

Hopeful Post-Christmas Melancholy

Jon Bloom

Each year Christmas night finds members of my family feeling some melancholy. After weeks of anticipation, the Christmas celebrations have flashed by us and are suddenly gone. And we’re left standing, watching the Christmas taillights and music fade into the night.

But it’s possible that this moment of melancholy may be the best teaching moment of the whole season. Because as long as the beautiful gifts remain unopened around the tree and the events are still ahead of... Continue Reading

A Christmas Greeting and Poem

John Piper

Noël and Talitha and I recorded a Christmas greeting for you and a “glimpse” into our home and traditions.

And since I didn’t write the advent poems this year, I wrote this Christmas poem to read at our Christmas Eve services last night, in the hopes of sharing my love for Jesus and my joy in him.

In this smelly place he lay,
Smelly like the swine,
Smelly like the rotting hay,
Like your sin, and mine.
Do you see how low he lay?
Do you see how low?
There is lower yet to go.
... Continue Reading

God in a Manger, Part 3: Jesus Is Treasure

David Mathis

We’ve looked at Jesus’ full divinity under the heading “Jesus Is Lord” and his full humanity under “Jesus Is Savior.” Now we turn to his single personhood and utter uniqueness that makes him our soul-satisfying Treasure.

The term hypostatic union is much easier than it sounds, but the concept is as profound as anything in the universe—the personal union of the eternal Son of God with our humanity.

The English adjective hypostatic comes from the Greek word hupostasis.... Continue Reading

Veiled in Flesh the Godhead See

Jon Bloom

Our good friend,Rick Gamache,preacheda wonderful sermon onIsaiah 9:6last Sunday. And he quotedC.H. Spurgeon reveling in the incarnation:

"Unto us achildisborn,unto us aSonisgiven."As Jesus Christ is a child in his human nature, he is born, begotten of the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary. He is as truly-born, as certainly a child, as any other man that ever lived upon the face of the earth. He is thus in his humanity a child born. But as Jesus Christ is God's Son, he is... Continue Reading

God in a Manger, Part 2: Jesus Is Savior

David Mathis

Yesterday we summed up Jesus’ full divinity under the heading “Jesus Is Lord.” We said that the doctrine of the incarnation could be remembered with John 1:14, “The Word became flesh.” That “Word” is the divine second person of the Trinity, the eternal Word, who we know as Jesus.

Today we shift focus to Jesus’ full humanity. Not only did he remain fully divine when he took humanity to himself, but the humanity that he took was full humanity. And so Jesus has a fully... Continue Reading

Sonnet Written on Our 41st Wedding Anniversary

John Piper

December 21, 2009

In echoes of Capernaum the Lord
Inquired of me, his happy friend, and said,
“Will you, like these five thousand, take my bread
And leave?” But I replied, “Who can afford
To lift his little hand and wield the sword
Of pride, and sever now the hand that fed
Us with his love? No. No. I would be dead
If I should leave, and you be unadored.

I may as well in this exquisite night
Of pleasures—night to mark our wedding day—
Set out to find a harlot before... Continue Reading

God in a Manger, Part 1: Jesus Is Lord

David Mathis

Advent is my yearly reminder to brush up on Christology, the doctrine of the person of Christ. I’ve found it helpful to approach the subject under three headings:

  1. Jesus as Lord (fully divine)
  2. Jesus as Savior (fully human)
  3. Jesus as Treasure (one person)

So here’s part one, with parts two and three on the way in the next couple days.

In this Christological triad (Lord-Savior-Treasure), Jesus’ Lordship is tied to his divinity and to him rightly being called Yahweh, the name... Continue Reading

Proving What Can't Be by Not Seeing It

John Piper

When G. K. Chesterton was arguing against a rationalist who denied miracles on the ground that experience is against it, he cited this:

There was a great Irish Rationalist of this school who, when he was told that a witness had seen him commit a murder, said he could bring a hundred witnesses who had not seen him commit it. (Gilbert Keith Chesterton, 176)

C. S. Lewis on What God Foreknows

John Piper

Reflecting on why God put Abraham’s faith to the test by commanding him to offer his son, Lewis says,

“If God then is omniscient, he must have known what Abraham would do, without any experiment. Why then this needless torture?” But as St. Augustine points out, whatever God knew, Abraham at any rate did not know that his obedience would endure such a command until the event taught him: and the obedience which he did not know that he would choose, he cannot be said to have... Continue Reading