A couple Piper thoughts

“The world will not glorify Christ because Christians are wealthy for a very simple reason – that’s what they (already) LIVE FOR…. So you use Jesus, they use other means (to gain wealth) – they are not impressed.”

“This text (sorry, can’t remember which one) says thtat the only people who are of earthly value are those who are so heavenly minded they are free from the things of this world – it’s just STUFF.”

These were both taken from recent podcasts – your thoughts?



10 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Laurel Esser
    May 16, 2008 @ 08:07:04

    I’m not really sure I understand the first quote.


  2. Steve Grove
    May 16, 2008 @ 08:32:50

    The second quote is from 1 John 2:15 “Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world.” (Notice that these 3 categories also line up with the temptations of Jesus as well as what happenned in the Garden of Eden).

    The quote says if we really want to affect this earth for Jesus, it can only be done when we are connected to Him – for it is He who draws people to Himself. It is a paradox to love someone for selfish reasons. Only when we pratice agape love are we really revealing the character of God in us.

    In 1 John 4:12 there is an odd statement that “no one has seen God at any time”. It is in the context of talking about love, and how we love because God’s love is in us. I have come to understand that phrase is there because today, the only Jesus (God)people see is the one revealed through my acts of love.


  3. Steve Grove
    May 16, 2008 @ 08:41:25

    I am not quite sure the context of the first quote, and it is a bit hard to understand the broad references. 2 Corinthians 4 says the God of this world has “blinded the (spiritual) eyes of the unbelieving.” The world hates us, because it hates Jesus. It hates Jesus because He is set up against the world’s system, based on pride and selfishness. His holiness is convicting and damning to the world because “all have sinned” (that’s the Law, which essentially points to God’s holiness). They need to see His love and grace, and understand there is a solution for the sin problem.

    And Ephesians 1 talks about our richness as Jesus followers and the fact that it is spiritually based. Anybody who says otherwise has never read Corrie Ten Boom or aligned their theology with any experience outside of the North American materialistic culture.


  4. Laurel Esser
    May 16, 2008 @ 10:04:28

    Thanks for the thoughts…I don’t know about you guys but I find it forever difficult to not love the things of this world, and I think that the hard thing is often that the things that are distracting aren’t always very bad, some of the most distructive things to our spiritual lives are the most easiest to rationalize.


  5. Steve Grove
    May 16, 2008 @ 10:40:43

    I remember that line from Chariot’s of Fire from so long ago – Eric Liddle’s character talking to his sister about why he was pursuing running in the olympics when people needed Jesus in China. He said, “When I run I feel the pleasure of God”. It was about being connected to the reason of our creation. Philippians 3:12 says “but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.” Jesus laid hold of me for a reason! And that is what I pursue. And when I do that in the context of a life focused on becoming more like Him… to live is Christ, to die is gain!

    It’s a struggle worth having, Laurel. Sometimes it’s about surrender.


  6. Nicole
    May 16, 2008 @ 11:15:09

    sorry – I guess it made more sense when you have context…

    It is from Piper’s message on the supremacy of Christ making us live sacrificial lives. Piper’s point was that when we promote a gospel such as the health and wealth gospel, all we are doing is proving that we have another way to obtain the stuff in this life. The world does not look at our lives, and glorify our God when they see us in the good times – but rather they glorify our God when He is beautiful to us during the tough times.

    Interesting – I read 1 John last night – I took that phrase about know one seeing God to be a reference to the Father? But your understanding works too….

    Amen Laurel. I want to live the life of 1 John, you with me??


  7. Raquelamisto
    May 16, 2008 @ 11:22:36

    I actually just listened to that podcast yesterday (while braiding hair ;P) and the first quote was in reference to how attached to our stuff that we are. He was saying that if we as Christians use Jesus as a tool to say to the world, ‘look how much stuff that I have! You can have it too if you love Jesus!’ then we’re giving the wrong message. That even if we don’t say that, if we simply live that way, we’re giving the wrong message.

    His ultimate point was that money and things don’t impress the world – they already have, want, and try to gain those things. What truly will make a difference is if we show them what Christ truly does give. The sermon is off the hook.

    And Laurel, for me it’s tough to not get distracted by the things of the world. I’m not sure if I necessarily love them but they’re so shiny and pretty! It’s hard to get my eyes to look towards God who calls us to have and cherish Him and Him alone.


  8. Laurel Esser
    May 16, 2008 @ 12:04:20

    The first thing I thought of was the shiny things…lol. I don’t know how to podcast…but maybe that’s a conversation for me and Nikk later. Anyways, found this and it’s sort of on topic:

    Is there something more and I just can’t get it?
    My mind is confused, in frustration I fit.
    The wanting more, it just never stops.
    The things that fill out days and thoughts
    Is there any point before I die?
    that my life has meaning, this is my cry.

    And still deep down I know the truth
    I know the answer, and have the proof
    My every breath and beat of my heart
    Is to glorify God, not just in part
    Every life of my hand, and smile on my face
    Is proof of God’s love and I’m shown His grace.

    Every time I fall down and turn back to Him
    I see His mercy, and my forgiven sin
    And so this will be my only fame…

    To live is Christ, and to die is gain!


  9. Nicole
    May 16, 2008 @ 12:15:31

    Thank you Raquel – your summary was so much better than mine! Guess I need to listen again…

    Great poem Laurel… Piper lives by “there is only one life, ’twill soon be past – only what’s done for Christ will last.”

    It’s an intentional mindset….


  10. Jenn
    May 18, 2008 @ 12:43:04

    “Where your treasure is, there your heart is also”.

    I love, love, love that Jesus was relevant then and still so relevant now. (even when it hurts 😉 )


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