John Piper: The end of the gospel is the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ

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While I am in some ways critical of John Piper, specifically with regards to his association with Rick Warren and a few other issues, I have nonetheless greatly benefited from his ministry, most especially from his sermons and seminars. His passion for the glory of God, which I sense is the focus of his entire ministry and teaching, is also very contagious, and despite my few concerns about him, he remains in a number of ways somewhat of an inspiration to me. I do have a few of his books in my personal library but in general I prefer to read Reformed authors in the Continental Reformed or Presbyterian traditions. But in line with Paul’s advice, my desire is to “prove all things and hold fast that which is good.” (1 Thess. 5:21), and Piper, despite some concerns I have regarding him, does nonetheless have a great deal which is good. In the same way as I have previously on this blog referenced early church and medieval theologians who, despite some concerns regarding their theology, have nonetheless written some good stuff from which we can certainly draw, we can still do the same with contemporary authors, and I view Piper in this way. With this in mind, here is a very good excerpt:

“The Christian gospel is not merely that Jesus died and rose again; and not merely that these events appease God’s wrath, forgive sin, and justify sinners; and not merely that this redemption gets us out of hell and into heaven; but that they bring us to the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ as our supreme, all-satisfying, and everlasting treasure. ‘Christ … suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God’ (1 Pet. 3:18).”

John Piper, God is the Gospel, p. 167

2 thoughts on “John Piper: The end of the gospel is the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ

  1. ben hart says:

    Other than his association with Rick Warren, what don’t you agree with him on?

    Cheers,
    Ben

    Sent from my iPhone

  2. Jake Griesel says:

    Thank you for the comment, Ben. As I said above, in general I find Piper to be helpful and profitable in many regards, and I have greatly benefited from his ministry. But other than his association with Rick Warren (which by itself already brings up flashing red lights), I also have concerns about his teaching of “Christian hedonism”, his view that the charismatic gifts are still operative (I am convinced of the cessationist view), his endorsement of contemplative prayer (which is Romish and can be linked to the 16th century Counter-reformation), his partnership with Federal Visionist Doug Wilson, and also his advocacy of Mark Driscoll, who I find to more closely resemble the Emerging Church movement than historical confessional Reformed Protestant Christianity. That is not to say we cannot learn from Piper profitably, but that I do feel that one needs to be cautious, and that there are many other authors (both old and contemporary) who I’d prefer reading, especially in the Continental Reformed and Presbyterian traditions.

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