“I have loved you for a thousand years,
I’ll love you for a thousand more.”
Tall promises for finite beings whose lifespan hardly reaches a hundred years. Still our hearts buy the romance because deep within us our souls yearn for an eternity of joy that only Christ can give.
I believe that every particle of dust that dances in the sunbeam does not move an atom more or less than God wishes — that every particle of spray that dashes against the steamboat has its orbit, as well as the sun in the heavens — that the chaff from the hand of the winnower is steered as the stars in their courses. The creeping of an aphid over the rosebud is as much fixed as the march of the devastating pestilence — the fall of…leaves from a poplar is as fully ordained as the tumbling of an avalanche.
Let every student be plainly instructed, and earnestly pressed to consider well [that the] maine end of his life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ… and therefore to lay Christ in the bottome, as the only foundation of all sound knowledge and training.
“If you really understand Reformed theology, we should all just sit around shaking our heads going, ‘It’s unbelievable. Why would God choose any of us?’ You are so amazed by grace, you’re not picking a fight with anyone, you’re just crying tears of amazement that should lead to a heart for lost people, that God does indeed save, when he doesn’t have to save anybody.”
One reason why we are so afraid to share the gospel is because we think we need to be very eloquent and persuasive in order for it to be effective. This is not true. The gospel has a power on its own (Romans 1:16). You only need to proclaim it and allow its power to take effect.
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me” (John 14:1). After 2000 years, the power of these words is not diminished. Whatever is troubling you today, remember that God is far bigger than your worries and you can rest assured that He will come through for you.
John Piper on preaching:
The cross is also the ground of the humility of preaching because the cross is the power of God to crucify the pride of both preacher and congregation. 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 man. “Far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world” (Gal. 6:14).
The paradox of holiness is that God acts to judge everything that is unholy and yet provides a way of cleansing and sanctification for sinners.
David Peterson, Possessed by God (NSBT)
Brothers in seminary preparing for vocational ministry, don’t make the office your goal, make people your goal, and start serving them now.
Our status as believers is not tethered to our performance, but Christ’s. Only the gospel can offer the resources to combat our pride, expose our emptiness, and flood our hearts with peace.
Your church will never esteem the Word of God any higher than you do. If you see a hint of disregard of the Bible in the lives of your church members, that’s probably because they see that example in you.