How Paul Worked to Overcome Slavery

John Piper

The historic and contemporary reality of slavery is never far away from how we think about the Bible. Instead of a frontal attack on the culturally pervasive institution of slavery in his day, Paul took another approach, for example, in his letter to Philemon.

Onesimus was a slave. His master Philemon was a Christian. Onesimus had evidently run away from Colossae (Colossians 4:9) to Rome where Paul, in…

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Why Do We Crave to Be Praised?

John Piper

Here is the answer of the poet Oliver Goldsmith (1730-1774), from his poem "The Traveler."

For praise too dearly loved, or warmly sought,
Enfeebles all internal strength of thought;
And the weak soul, within itself unblessed,
Leans for all pleasure on another’s breast.

So close and yet, I fear, so far. For Goldsmith means we are unblessed because we do not bless ourselves.

The mind still turns where shifting fashion…

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Glorification Now?

John Piper

Have you ever wondered why “sanctification” is missing from this golden chain in Romans 8:29-30?

Those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.

Foreknown,…

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Esther & Jesus: "The Reverse Occurred"

David Mathis

The Hebrew Scriptures point to Jesus in a myriad of ways. One way is narrative patterns, like the one in Esther 9:1:

On the very day when the enemies of the Jews hoped to gain the mastery over them, the reverse occurred: the Jews gained mastery over those who hated them.

And so it happened at the cross. At the very moment when the Enemy of the True Jew hoped…

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An Invitation from John Piper

John Piper

Dear Friends,

If you have just stopped by the website or come often, I am writing this to tell you why I am excited about the Desiring God National Conference, September 25-27, 2009, at the Minneapolis Convention Center. I thought my excitement might rub off on you.

So why do I think ordinary Christians should consider coming to the Desiring God National Conference? I can give my answer in five…

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John Calvin’s Four Laws and His Christian Hedonism

John Piper

The Gospel of John Calvin in Four Laws:

  1. That since God by his Law prescribes what we ought to do, failure in any one respect subjects us to the dreadful judgment of eternal death.
  2. Because it is not only difficult, but altogether beyond our strength and ability, to fulfill the demands of the Law, if we look only to ourselves and consider what is due to our merits, no…
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Clarifying the Tornado

John Piper

Three years ago God sent the tornado of cancer into my life. It split the steeple of my health and shredded the tents of my sexual life. I wrote an article to myself: Don’t Waste Your Cancer. It could have been titled: Don’t waste your tornado. God’s message to me in my tornado was essentially the same as to the ELCA in theirs. My tornado was

a gentle but…

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The Tornado, the Lutherans, and Homosexuality

John Piper

I saw the fast-moving, misshapen, unusually-wide funnel over downtown Minneapolis from Seven Corners. I said to Kevin Dau, “That looks serious.”

It was. Serious in more ways than one. A friend who drove down to see the damage wrote,

On a day when no severe weather was predicted or expected...a tornado forms, baffling the weather experts—most saying they’ve never seen anything like it. It happens right in the city. The…

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What Does It Mean to Seek the Lord?

John Piper

Seeking the Lord means seeking his presence. “Presence” is a common translation of the Hebrew word “face.” Literally, we are to seek his “face.” But this is the Hebraic way of having access to God. To be before his face is to be in his presence.

But aren't his children always in his presence? Yes and no. Yes in two senses: First, in the sense that God is omnipresent…

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