Friday, May 09, 2008

Piper (and Friends) on Preaching

I just finished reading John Piper's The Supremacy of God in Preaching. Here are a few nuggets. All quotes are from Piper unless otherwise noted.

"God is glorified not only by His glory's being seen, but by its being rejoiced in." (Jonathan Edwards)

"The greatness and glory of God are relevant."

"The great design and intention of the office of the Christian preacher [is] to restore the throne and dominion of God in the souls of men." (Cotton Mather)

"In the New Testament the cross is not only a past place of objective substitution; it is also a present place of subjective execution-- the execution of my self-reliance and my love affair with the praise of men."

"All genuine preaching is rooted in a feeling of desperation."

"A pastor who is not manifestly glad in God does not glorify God. He cannot make God look glorious if knowing and serving this God gives no gladness to his soul."

"Laughter seems to have replaced repentance as the goal of many preachers."

"Not to teach God's counsel with fullness and faithfulness can leave the blood of our people on our hands."

"Theology exists for doxology."

...and my favorite...

"Don't be content to guide people among the foothills of his glory. Become a mountain climber on the cliffs of God's majesty. And let the truth begin to overwhelm you that you will never exhaust the heights of God."


At 10:28 PM, Blogger Elaine said...

I love the comment about seeking laughter vs. repentance. I think it's easy, especially in pomo churches, to steer away from preaching about sin and repentance. But I think that's based on the old paradigms that sin sermons are scary hellfire type sermons. We forget that the fact that we are fallen sinners is GOOD news: our sinfulness means that only God can purify, which God gladly does, over and over. Our sinfulness leads to forgiveness which can deepen our love for God. Only in the topsy turvy economy of Christ is our sinfulness good news, but hey, that's the point of the Resurrection: everything is made new and given new life.

At 9:13 AM, Blogger Kevin said...

I read this one last semester at seminary in my Intro to Preaching class. Really enjoyed it... except for one comment that just left a bad taste in my mouth...

He talks about reading as many books as possible from deceased evangelical theologians. He says "you will discover the path that leads to joy more accurately than many contemporary guides."

Something about that just didn't sit well with me... I've read so many great books and blogs which have been wonderful in drawing me closer to Christ. According to this I shouldn't be reading those...

I guess I'm just overly sensitive to people who harp on the idea that the old way of doing church is the right way :-)

At 9:24 AM, Blogger Heather Z said...

Hey Kevin- yeah, I definitely agree. And there was other stuff in the book that I disagreed with, as well. I also get annoyed with the whole idea that the old way-- and they usually don't mean the old way but rather the Puritan way-- is the only right way.

I think a both/and approach is the best.


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