Call To Die

Then [Jesus] said to them all, "If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of Me will save it. (Luke 9:23-24, HCSB)

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Follower of Christ, husband of Abby, member of Kosmosdale Baptist Church, and tutor/staff member at Sayers Classical Academy.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Liveblogging Pastor John Piper at Southern Seminary Chapel

The service began with President Mohler reading from Hebrews 1, introducing John Piper, then welcoming special guests to the seminary for today’s chapel service, which included Pastors C.J. Mahaney, Mark Dever, John MacArthur, and Ligon Duncan. (So every speaker from the Together for the Gospel conference was present, R.C. Sproul excepting.)

Piper’s text was II Cor. 1:24-2:4 with focus on 1:24, the point of which he summarized as, “I am working with the churches for their joy.” Piper pointed out that the Apostle’s passion for the Church’s joy was not cheap, indicating Paul’s suffering recorded in the second half of II Cor. 11, and concluding his thought on this, saying, “He suffered to advance the joy of the churches.”

“He is not talking about generic joy– joy in just anything.” He is talking about a joy that takes the new birth– that takes the Cross.

Piper cross-referenced Philippians 1:25– another text in which the Apostle links faith and joy.

“I’m coming with a message that could cost you your life– I’m here to make you happy.” If we are truly enraptured with Jesus, we don’t need to be alive. In preaching joy, we are not pampering our people, we are preparing them to suffer. We are not on the path of luxury, but the path of suffering. For an illustration of joy in suffering, Piper referred to II Cor. 8:1-2, which he proclaimed, “The opposite of the prosperity gospel.”

How will this happen?

  1. You will fight with all your might for personal joy in Christ (especially in times of comfort, which can wrongfully divert our joy).
  2. Every time you speak to the congregation (or portion of the congregation), display God in Christ as supremely valuable.
  3. You will sustain your people by grounding them in the truth of God’s sovereignty in suffering.
  4. You will be there with your people in their suffering the way Christ is always there for you.
At the close of the service, President Mohler had us pray for the salvation of the members of Soul Force- a homosexual activist group that showed up at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary yesterday and (apparently) had to be escorted of campus by the police so that classes would not be disrupted.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Tony Kummer said...

Great work. Do you plan to liveblog on Thursday also.

4:15 PM  
Blogger ajlin said...

definitely! (Lord willing.)

7:25 PM  

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