Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I Am a Hedonist by Christian Standards

John Piper discusses why we, as believers, need to 'fight for joy' (excerpts from the book):

- "One is this: It is not John Piper who commands us to rejoice in the Lord; God does. God elevates this experience of the heart to the level of command, not I. And he does so with blood earnestness. (Deuteronomy 28:47-48)...

- The second answer is that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him. Therefore, to make pretensions about honoring him more, while not calling people to the most radical, soul-freeing satisfaction in God alone, is self-contradictory. It won't happen. God is glorified in his people by the way we experience him, not merely by the way we think about him...We do so most fully when we treasure him, desire him, delight in him so supremely that we let goods and kindred go and display his love to the poor and the lost.

- The third reason we should make much of joy and the pursuit of joy in God is that people do not awaken to how desperate their condition is until they measure their hearts by Christian Hedonism - or whatever you may call it. I have found for thirty years that preaching and teaching about God's demand that we delight in him more than in anything else breaks and humbles people, and makes them desperate for true conversion and true Christianity...Nothing shows the direction of the deep winds of the soul like the demand for radical, sin-destroying, Christ-exalting joy in God."

Isn't it amazing that all he wanted was for us to desire him with our whole being, for us to know that through this desire we can be freed and GLORIFY him at the same time? Journey with me as I munch over his words.

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