5 Kinds of Need

John Piper

Adapted from the sermon, "Bethlehem, Break Forth Like the Dawn."

In addition to the all-important need for faith and forgiveness and personal holiness, there are other needs that Isaiah—and Jesus—are passionately concerned about.

Here are 5 kinds of human need mentioned in Isaiah 58.

1) The need for freedom from bondage and oppression. Four times in Isaiah verse 6 and once in verse 9 he hits on this.

  • Isaiah 58:6 - "Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to... Continue Reading

Prayers that Spring from Promises

Scott Anderson

As an event planner, I am often tempted to worry as I look toward upcoming conferences. Silly questions (that don't sound so silly in my head) come to mind and plague my heart:

  • "Will people want to come? Will the conference be a blessing to them? Will the event be edifying and God-glorifying?"
  • "Did we do enough promotion? What if no one finds out about it? What if the Google Ads don't work?"
  • "What about all the things yet to be done? What if we can't get all the projects... Continue Reading

Thank You, Lord, for Solzhenitsyn

John Piper

Yesterday Alexander Solzhenitsyn died at the age of 89. I pause here on my vacation in the woods of Wisconsin to say, Thank you, heavenly Father, for the inspiration of this man’s life.

No one did more than Solzhenitsyn to expose the horrors of the failed communist experiment in Russia. Hitler’s purge would pale, if such things could pale, when compared to ten times the carnage in Stalin’s gulags.

Solzhenitsyn inspired me because of the suffering he endured and the effect it... Continue Reading

A Mighty Deacon

Jon Bloom

When Sam Crabtree (DG Board member and Executive Pastor at Bethlehem Baptist) recently asked us what he needed to do to get some DWYL stickers, Lukas Naugle replied that Sam needed to write a song about what a deacon does, since they've been discussing that at Bethlehem lately.

Sam, never one to back down from a challenge, has penned what I’m sure will be another classic hymn of the church:

A Mighty Deacon

(to the tune of “A Mighty Fortress”)

A mighty deacon is our man;
He does what... Continue Reading

You Aren't Safe from Adultery

John Piper

Seeing Bathsheba bathing led to David’s adultery with her (2 Samuel 11:2-3).

David was a man after God’s own heart. David was born again. David wrote divinely inspired scripture. David was blessed with wisdom and power. David enjoyed an everlasting covenant relationship with God.

So what chance do you think you have to escape the effect of looking at naked women?

Those who are already gone—who’ve given up and forsaken their relationship with God—may say: Well, if you’ve seen it,... Continue Reading

Sanctifying Unbelieving Spouses

John Piper

Having just preached three messages on the relationship between baptism and church membership, here is a small follow up. Paul Jewett’s compelling book on infant baptism gives a clear and persuasive interpretation to a puzzling text.

Here’s the text and the interpretation.

If any woman has a husband who is an unbeliever, and he consents to live with her, she should not divorce him. For the unbelieving husband is made holy because of his wife, and the unbelieving wife is made... Continue Reading

An Invitation to an Unusual Conference

John Piper

Dear Friends at Bethlehem and Beyond,

I’m writing to invite you to an unusual conference. This Fall’s Desiring God National Conferenceis one of the most extraordinary we have conceived. Our expectationsare very high that its effect will be mind-sharpening, heart-humbling,mouth-seasoning, backbone-strengthening, and Christ-acclaiming. Ourtheme is The Power of Words and the Wonder of God...

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Surrendering Our Children

Noel Piper

Our grandson, Orison, is three years old. Judging by his interests during our Sunday afternoon backyard picnic, I would have said he was aspiring to stardom as an ace batter or as a trumpet player in a marching band (using the wiffle bat as his trumpet).

It would be fine if he achieved either of those goals. But I smiled when I read his mom’s blog this morning and glimpsed much deeper, higher, and broader possibilities: “Mom, I’m going to Kenya.”

That was make-believe, but games... Continue Reading

We Get the Feast; He Gets the Fame

John Piper

Jonathan Edwards put it this way:

God doubtless will entertain his saints according to the state of the King of heaven, when he comes to entertain them at the feast that he has provided.... We read of Ahasuerus, a great king, when he made a feast unto all his princes and servants, he showed the riches of his glorious kingdom, and the power of his excellent majesty, and gave drink in vessels of gold, and royal wine in abundance, according to the state of the king [Esther... Continue Reading

Something Everybody Agrees About

John Piper

My theology is the conviction that this quote from St. Augustine tells us more about God’s good design than our bad depravity.

The desire for happiness is not in myself alone or in a few friends, but is found in everybody. If we did not know this with certain knowledge, we would not want it with determination in our will. But what does this mean?

If two people are asked if they want to serve in the army, it may turn out that one of them replies that he would like to do... Continue Reading