The Pleasures of God by John Piper

I’m going to try to start giving brief reviews of books after I read them.  It’s mostly for my benefit to remember what I read, but nevertheless, I’m sure you might find it helpful.  I just finished The Pleasures of God by John Piper. Piper takes his thesis from Henry Scougal: “The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by the object of its love” (18).  And in 340 pages, Piper argues that God’s soul is the most worthy and excellent and therefore God himself is the primary object of his love.  Our object of love, therefore, … Continue reading The Pleasures of God by John Piper

Jesus is a Hedonist at Heart

From C.S. Lewis’s The Screwtape Letters: He’s a hedonist at heart.  All those fasts and vigils and stakes and crosses are only a facade.  Or only like foam on the seashore.  Out at sea, out in His sea, there is pleasure, and more pleasure.  He makes no secret of it; at His right hand are ‘pleasures for evermore’.  Ugh!  I don’t think he has the least inkling of that high and austere mystery to which we rise in the Miserific Vision.  He’s vulgar, Wormwood.  He has a bourgeois mind.  He has filled His world full of pleasures.  There are things … Continue reading Jesus is a Hedonist at Heart

God’s Party and Our Praise

God is going to start a party with the best food and finest wine.  Isaiah 25:6 says, “On this mountain the LORD of hosts will make for all peoples a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine.” I imagine that there will be some decent music at this party as well (because every good party has good music). One of the songs that will be sung is in verse 9.  God’s people will sing, “Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us.  This is the LORD; we have waited for him; … Continue reading God’s Party and Our Praise

Discipline is Not Legalism

From John Piper: But the hard truth is that most Christians don’t pray very much. They pray at meals—unless they’re still stuck in the adolescent stage of calling good habits legalism. They whisper prayers before tough meetings. They say something brief as they crawl into bed. But very few set aside set times to pray alone—and fewer still think it is worth it to meet with others to pray. And we wonder why our faith is weak. And our hope is feeble. And our passion for Christ is small. And meanwhile the devil is whispering all over this room: “The … Continue reading Discipline is Not Legalism

The Christian Life is All of Grace

In 1 Timothy 1:11-17, Paul uses some key vocabulary to make it unmistakeably plain to the reader that the Christian life, and its service, is all of grace and none of personal merit.  The gospel-centered life is all about Christ.  We decrease as we make Christ look great.  Listen to Paul.  He writes: That he has been entrusted with the gospel (v. 11). God has given him strength and appointed him to service (v. 12). That he has received mercy (vv. 13, 16) The grace of the Lord has overflowed for him (v. 14). He has faith and love in … Continue reading The Christian Life is All of Grace

Fighting to See and Savor Jesus

I have been really fighting to see and savor Jesus Christ since I’ve been in South Africa.  It’s been a battle.  The greatest thing I have ever learned to help in this fight is to preach the gospel to yourself.  I love to preach and most of my times in the Word are preaching sessions to my own self.  Here’s a paragraph from Martyn Lloyd-Jones that has been a huge help to me over the past few days.  He offers a wonderful perspective on how to handle times in our lives when we are unhappy in the Lord. Have you … Continue reading Fighting to See and Savor Jesus