John Piper Quotes

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John Stephen Piper (born January 11, 1946, Chattanooga, Tennessee) is a Reformed Baptist minister, author, and theologian, currently serving as senior pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He oversees the evangelical organization Desiring God Ministries, which is named after his book Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist (1986).

The Birthplace of Christian fasting in homesickness for God. Where we will do anything or go without anything if, by means, we might protect ourselves from the deadening effects of innocent delights and preserve the sweet longings of our homesickness for God.

-John Piper

The greatest enemy of hunger for God is not poison but apple pie. It is not the banquet of the wicked that dulls our appetite for heaven, but endless nibbling at the table of the world. It is not the X-rated video, but the prime-time dribble of triviality we drink in every night. For all the ill that Satan can do, when God describes what keeps us from the banquet table of his love, it is a piece of land, a yoke of oxen, and a wife (Luke 14:18-20) The greatest adversary of love to God is not his enemies but his gifts. And the most deadly appetites are not for the poison of evil, but for the simple pleasures of earth. For when these replace an appetite for God himself, the idolatry is scarcely recognizable, and almost incurable.

-John Piper

We easily deceive ourselves that we love God unless our love is frequently put to the test, and we must show our preference not merely with words but with sacrifice.

-John Piper

This is one way that fasting serves all our acts of love to God. It keeps the preferring faculty on alert and sharp. It does not let the issue rest. It forces us to ask repeatedly: do I really hunger for God? Do I miss him? Do I long for him? Or have I begun to become content with his gifts.

-John Piper

Fasting reveals the measure of food’s mastery over us-or television or computers or whatever we submit to again and again to conceal the weakness of our hunger for God.

-John Piper

Which means that bread magnifies Christ in two ways: by being eaten with gratitude for his goodness, and by being forfeited out of hunger for God himself.

-John Piper

The danger of eating is that we fall in love with the gift; the danger of fasting is that we belittle the gift and glory in our willpower.

-John Piper

“Desires for other things”-there’s the enemy. And the only weapon that will triumph is a deeper hunger for God. The weakness of our hunger for God is not because He is unsavory, but because we keep ourselves stuffed with “other things”.

-John Piper

The fight of faith is a fight to feast on all that God is for us in Christ. What we hunger for most we worship.

-John Piper

One of the main reasons many of God’s children don’t have a significant prayer life is not so much that we don’t want to, but that we don’t plan to…we get up day after day and realize that significant times of prayer should be part of our life, but nothing is ever ready. We don’t know where to go. Nothing has been planned. No time. No place. No procedure…if you want renewal in your life of prayer you must plan to see it.

-John Piper

“There is a war going on. All talk of a Christian’s right to live luxuriantly ‘as a child of the King’ in this atmosphere sounds hollow–especially since the King himself is stripped for battle. It is more helpful to think of a ‘wartime’ lifestyle than a merely ‘simple’ lifestyle. Simplicity can be very inward directed, and may benefit no one else. A wartime lifestyle implies that there is a great and worthy cause for which to spend and be spent” (2 Corinthians 12:15)

-John Piper

If you don’t feel strong desires for the manifestation of the glory of God, it is not because you have drunk deeply and are satisfied. It is because you have nibbled so long at the table of the world. Your soul is stuffed with small things, and there is no room for the great. God did not create you for this. There is an appetite for God. And it can be awakened.

-John Piper

When I saw the truth that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him, I was freed from the unbiblical bondage of fear that it was wrong to pursue joy…that my quest for joy and my duty to glorify God were not in conflict. Indeed they were one. Pursuing joy in God was a nonnegotiable way of honoring God. It was essential. This was a liberating discovery. It released the energies of my mind and heart to go hard after all the soul-happiness that God is for me in Jesus.

-John Piper (When I don’t desire God p. 13)

Manageable, duty-defined, decision-oriented, willpower Christianity now seemed easy, and real Christianity had become impossible. The emotions—or affections, as former generations called them—which I was now free to enjoy, proved beyond my reach. The Christian life became impossible. That is, it became supernatural. Now there was only one hope, the sovereign grace of God. God would have to transform my heart to do what a heart cannot make itself do, namely, what it ought to want. Only God can make the depraved heart desire God.

-John Piper

“taste and see that the Lord is good: (Psalm 34:8). I want to help those who are starting to see that conversion is the creation of new desires, not just new duties; new delights, not just new deeds; new treasures, not just new tasks.

-John Piper

God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him. Which means that they are finding their desires, not just their decisions, really matter….Spiritual desires and delights are not commodities to be bought and sold. They are not objects to be handled. They are events in the soul. They are experiences of the heart

-John Piper

The joy I want to awaken is the sustaining strength of mercy, missions, and martyrdom…How can I obtain or recover a joy in Christ that is so deep and so strong that it will free me from the bondage to Western comforts and security, and will impel me into sacrifices of mercy and missions, and will sustain me in the face of martyrdom?” Persecution is normal for Christians. “All who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted” (2Tim. 3:12)

-John Piper

The fight for joy in Christ is not a fight to soften the cushion of Western comforts. It is a fight for strength to live a life of self-sacrificing love. It is a fight to join Jesus on the Calvary road and stay there with him, no matter what. How was he sustained on that road? Hebrews 12:2 answers, “For the joy set before him, he endured the cross”

-John Piper

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