Is Your Ambition in Life Christian?

Romans 15:18–21

We all must decide how we are going to fill the hours of our week. But how do we know what to commit to? In this lab, John Piper walks us through how Paul found the holy ambition that governed his life.

Some questions to ask as you read and study Romans 15:18–21:

  1. How can we know if our ambition in life is God-centered or us-centered?
  2. Read Romans 15:18–21. What was it Paul’s ambition to do in life? What was his motivation for his mission in Acts 13:46–47?
  3. Write down three ambitions you have this year. Now revisit John Piper’s two tests for discovering if our ambitions are godly or worldly.

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Principles of Bible Reading


An inference is a statement that explains what is or should be based on something already said. An inference is like the top floor of a building because it always rests upon other floors or reasons that have already been given.

Statements that begin with “therefore” are almost always inferences. Because inferences build off of other statements, whenever you see “therefore” in the Bible, ask what it is there for (or what statements it is building upon).


“I just finished cooking; therefore, go wash your hands for dinner.” Because dinner has been cooked, the inference is that your hands should be washed in preparing to eat the meal.

Key Words:

Conjunctions or connecting words are very important in the Bible because they tell us how two statements are related to each other. In this case, an inference is usually identified by “therefore,” “accordingly,” or “so.”