John Piper’s Recent Confession: Corporate Worship Saved His Marriage

"Noël and I would have periodic real struggles, real struggles – not communicating, hurting each other with our words, … feeling hopeless that we could be happy."

John Piper (0.15 mark)

https://twitter.com/JohnPiper/status/805239426976772096C.J. Mahaney Interviews John Piper at 2016 SGC Pastors Conference

Several weeks ago Desiring God, a website that produces and distributes resources from the ministry of John Piper (link), featured an interesting post entitled Corporate Worship Saved My Marriage. It focuses on a brief exchange between C.J. Mahaney and John Piper at the 2016 Sovereign Grace Churches Pastors Conference, held in late October. John Piper was a guest speaker, and he also spoke on Making the Authority of Scripture Practical.

What follows is a transcript of the exchange between John Piper and C.J. Mahaney. (Should you wish to hear the entire interview, go here.)


Partial Transcript of C.J. Mahaney's Interview with John Piper

Piper:  I think I'm still married because of corporate worship.

Mahaney:  What do you mean by that? (laughter)

Piper:  I was hoping you would ask. (laughter) Noël and I would have periodic real struggles, real struggles – not communicating, hurting each other with our words, um feeling hopeless that we could be happy. And I would go I would go to church under those awful conditions, and I'm supposed to preach. And in those moments of singing His greatness, His mercy, the Gospel, I would generally be melted, and I would feel hope. I would feel like what an Idiot! I'm an Idiot, that you made that much of that. And that's what happened to me repeatedly in song, in corporate worship God struck me down with hope; He struck me down. You proud arrogant selfish jerk! And He did that with the Gospel. And then picked me up, enabled me to preach and go home and press on. We're quite happy today by the way. (laughter) These are good days.

Mahaney: Excellent. Yes they are.


Now that you have read the words that were exchanged, take a look at the clip, paying close attention to Piper's voice inflections.

Last week Christianity Today reported on this stunning revelation. The CT article states:

Before he admitted it, no one had any inkling that Pastor John Piper—one of the most influential pastors, authors, and theologians in America—had a troubled married life.

But he did, and revealing it for the first time in public stunned his interviewer, fellow Pastor C.J. Mahaney, and an audience of pastors at the 2016 Sovereign Grace Churches Pastors Conference held in late October in Indianapolis, Indiana.

The CT article also highlights Piper's career:

– He was Chancellor of Bethlehem College and Seminary

– He pastored Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis for 33 years

– He is founder and teacher at Desiring God

– He is the author of more than 50 books

John and Noël were married in 1968 and have four sons and one daughter, along with a growing number of grandchildren.

The CT article further states:

As he worshipped, Piper said the power of the Gospel brought real change in him.

Perhaps…

However, we have not forgotten that around five and a half years ago John Piper took a sudden leave of absence. It was announced on the Desiring God website – John Piper's Upcoming Leave – and this is a portion of what Piper wrote:

I asked the elders to consider this leave because of a growing sense that my soul, my marriage, my family, and my ministry-pattern need a reality check from the Holy Spirit. On the one hand, I love my Lord, my wife, my five children and their families first and foremost; and I love my work of preaching and writing and leading Bethlehem. I hope the Lord gives me at least five more years as the pastor for preaching and vision at Bethlehem.

But on the other hand, I see several species of pride in my soul that, while they may not rise to the level of disqualifying me for ministry, grieve me, and have taken a toll on my relationship with Noël and others who are dear to me. How do I apologize to you, not for a specific deed, but for ongoing character flaws, and their effects on everybody? I’ll say it now, and no doubt will say it again, I’m sorry. Since I don’t have just one deed to point to, I simply ask for a spirit of forgiveness; and I give you as much assurance as I can that I am not making peace, but war, with my own sins.

Noël and I are rock solid in our commitment to each other, and there is no whiff of unfaithfulness on either side. But, as I told the elders, “rock solid” is not always an emotionally satisfying metaphor, especially to a woman. A rock is not the best image of a woman’s tender companion. In other words, the precious garden of my home needs tending. I want to say to Noël that she is precious to me in a way that, at this point in our 41-year pilgrimage, can be said best by stepping back for a season from virtually all public commitments.

No marriage is an island. For us this is true in two senses. One is that Noël and I are known inside-out by a few friends at Bethlehem—most closely by our long-time colleagues and friends David and Karin Livingston, and then by a cluster of trusted women with Noël and men with me. We are accountable, known, counseled, and prayed for. I am deeply thankful for a gracious culture of transparency and trust among the leadership at Bethlehem.

The other way that our marriage is not an island is that its strengths and defects have consequences for others. No one in the orbit of our family and friends remains unaffected by our flaws. My prayer is that this leave will prove to be healing from the inside of my soul, through Noël’s heart, and out to our children and their families, and beyond to anyone who may have been hurt by my failures.

The difference between this leave and the sabbatical I took four years ago is that I wrote a book on that sabbatical (What Jesus Demands from the World). In 30 years, I have never let go of the passion for public productivity. In this leave, I intend to let go of all of it. No book-writing. No sermon preparation or preaching. No blogging. No Twitter. No articles. No reports. No papers. And no speaking engagements. There is one stateside exception—the weekend devoted to the Desiring God National Conference combined with the inaugural convocation of Bethlehem College and Seminary in October. Noël thought I should keep three international commitments. Our reasoning is that if she could go along, and if we plan it right, these could be very special times of refreshment together….

Personally, I view these months as a kind of relaunch of what I hope will be the most humble, happy, fruitful five years of our 35 years at Bethlehem and 46 years of marriage. Would you pray with me to that end? And would you stand by your church with all your might? May God make these eight months the best Bethlehem has ever known. It would be just like God to do the greatest things when I am not there. “Neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth” (1 Corinthians 3:7).

I love you and promise to pray for you every day.

Pastor John

Christianity Today reported on John Piper's leave of absence (along with Mahaney's leave that occurred in 2011) in this Christianity Today article (see screen shot of title below)

http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2011/julyweb-only/sexmoneypride.html

Here is a portion of the CT article that mentions John Piper:

http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2011/julyweb-only/sexmoneypride.html

As we recall, John Piper resumed his ministry when the eight months were up. A mere two years later he retired from the pastorate. Of course, he continues to speak at conferences like the one Sovereign Grace Churches recently held.

As John Piper stated to Mahaney in the video clip:

We're quite happy today by the way. These are good days.

And we certainly hope they are…

Thoughts?


Comments

John Piper’s Recent Confession: Corporate Worship Saved His Marriage — 520 Comments

  1. I would be uncomfortable airing my dirty laundry for all the world to see. What is the purpose? I think these “confessions” could be a symptom of celebrity Christianity. Is the stress of being a “one-man show” causing these problems in the pastorate?

  2. From a former “Piperite” concerning Piper’s focus on marital hedonism:

    “There is a passage in Desiring God where Piper talks about taking his wife out to dinner. He says that his motivation is the pleasure he gets in making her happy. This is his hedonism on display–he is focused on the joy internal to him even as he does and outwardly focused action. This is not wrong in his view because God designed this good action to be pleasurable. And while I agree that the action is a good one, the focus (i.e. the motivation) is all wrong. His motivation should not be his own pleasure, or even his love (per se) for his wife, but rather his wife herself whom he loves.”

    http://parablemania.ektopos.com/archives/2005/09/why_i_am_no_lon.html

  3. From the post/clip a JP quote, “You proud arrogant selfish jerk! And He did that with the Gospel. And then picked me up, enabled me to preach and go home and press on. We’re quite happy today by the way. (laughter) These are good days.”

    How about the teaching or theology or recommendation or counseling or church policy that wives are to submit to abuse from their husbands in their marriages? Is that also in the pastor/teacher-as-“proud, arrogant, selfish jerk” category? For those under that teaching, are they “quite happy today by the way. (laughter) These are good days.”?

  4. The first thought I have is what a pampered life these celebrities lead. I wonder how many who have come to Piper for marital counseling are able to take an 8 month paid vacation to tend to the precious garden of their family?

    My second thought is that the Sovereign Grace denomination is in a deplorable state if, at their national conference, they are listening to Mahaney and Piper’s advice on worship.

    My third thought is that perhaps there is something terribly amiss in the church when we have a permanent, paid clergy.

    I have seen multiple examples of these men being totally out of touch with reality. Many, not all, have morphed into a class of highly educated pharisees with a great grasp of the law, but no grasp of love, justice or mercy.

    “What sorrow awaits you Pharisees! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens, but you ignore justice and the love of God. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.”
    Luke 11:42 NLT

  5. I barely knew who John Piper was when he took that leave of absence, but I remember it. I was familiar with his name as a big time popular evangelical guru. I had friends who quoted him and read all his books. I had picked up one of his books, Don’t Waste Your Lffe, read numerous excerpts, and decided I wasn’t interested in his take on what constituted wasting one’s life.

    I remember thinking two things when he made his announcement about taking a leave of absence to “work on his marriage” and focus on his children. 1) There must be some severe marriage problems for such a driven man to announce he had to temporarily quit doing what he clearly thrived upon doing to fix it and 2) ordinary people have to work on their marriage problems and issues with their children While. They. Are. Still. Working. because they have to make a living. I’ve no idea if his church paid him during that time, but real people like John Ordinary Guy have to work.

    One wonders what Mrs. John Piper thinks about their marriage, his “headship” over her, his need to feel in charge of his household and the people in it, and how she does with “joyfully snd willingly submitting” to his “godly masculine leadership”. Sometimes I wonder if the people that camp relentlessly on those subjects live in the real world, even their own real world.

  6. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    I have seen multiple examples of these men being totally out of touch with reality. Many, not all, have morphed into a class of highly educated pharisees with a great grasp of the law, but no grasp of love, justice or mercy.

    I’m not sure how ‘highly educated’ Christian people there are when so many choose to focus intently on legalistic minutiae while turning their backs on the foundation that IS ‘love, justice, mercy’ …..

    among the humbler practitioners of the faith, the more highly educated will know that the same God Who remains mysteriously elusive in Academia will reveal His nearness to those who kneel in prayer

  7. Tree wrote:

    One wonders what Mrs. John Piper thinks about their marriage, his “headship” over her, his need to feel in charge of his household and the people in it, and how she does with “joyfully snd willingly submitting” to his “godly masculine leadership”.

    Chances are there may be a part of her that pities him for his dependence on such transient worldly things to enable himself feel secure. It IS pitiable. And very sad for those who are expected to be subjugated to such self-centered ‘need’.

  8. “Noël and I would have periodic real struggles, real struggles – not communicating, hurting each other with our words, um feeling hopeless that we could be happy. And I would go I would go to church under those awful conditions. …… And in those moments of singing …….. I would feel like what an Idiot! I’m an Idiot, that you made that much of that. …….. in corporate worship God struck ….. me down. You proud arrogant selfish jerk! And He did that with the Gospel. And then picked me up, enabled me to preach and go home and press on.”

    So what is Piper saying here? Ignore your problems, your marriage, whatever …… they’re no big deal. Just put on a happy face and go to church???????
    PS – “awful conditions”. Really????

  9. I read that article about the men stepping down years ago when it was new. I read Piper’s famous book so I knew who he was, but not the other one. Not until I came here and read about the cover-ups. Pride is not a minor problem for any believer. It is extremely dangerous in the hands of a leader in particular. Humility is the first thing that gets built on the foundation of Christ Jesus in our lives. Without that, God is resisting us and we are an effective tool in the hands of Satan. These events are not small things for these leaders. Rather, for me it is a make or break thing. When I see a red flag go off showing any leader is proud, they are on the wrong path and leading others away from Jesus. I would rather have no leaders than have a proud one to follow.
    I have been there. My faith was wrecked for two years when a low level leader I admired had an affair with an old room-mate’s wife. They were getting divorced and in our home fellowship group. The leader “tried to help” and fell into sin. I loved that man and his wife, who ended up divorcing him on Biblical grounds. Pride came before his fall. It always does according to the Word. There are few leaders I trust. We need a new breed of leader. One who does not make things about themselves and stays humble and accountable to others. It is foolish to trust our celebrities. They tend to be spoiled rotten with way too much attention and money from us. I do not promote anarchy. Instead, lets follow what Timothy and Titus states about leaders. A large majority of them are in fact all ready disqualified according to the Word.

  10. How about the teaching or theology or recommendation or counseling or church policy that wives are to submit to abuse from their husbands in their marriages? For those under that teaching, are they “quite happy today by the way. (laughter) These are good days.”?

  11. “in those moments of singing….that’s what happened to me repeatedly in song, in corporate worship God struck me down…then picked me up, enabled me to preach and go home and press on”

    Sounds like this from I Samuel 16:23:

    “David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spirit would leave him.”

  12. Piper: “And in those moments of singing His greatness, His mercy, the Gospel, I would generally be melted, and I would feel hope. I would feel like what an Idiot! I’m an Idiot, that you made that much of that. And that’s what happened to me repeatedly in song, in corporate worship God struck me down with hope; He struck me down. You proud arrogant selfish jerk! And He did that with the Gospel. And then picked me up, enabled me to preach and go home and press on. ”

    Are you an idiot full of pride and arrogance? Just add a dash of Gospel™ and you can press on too! Really?

    Someone needs to diagram out for me what he is saying. Granted, my skepticism kicks in with Piper, but strip away the Christianese and it simply sounds empty. I don’t see in his narrative any semblance of human experience I can relate to.

  13. Mr. Jesperson wrote:

    We need a new breed of leader. One who does not make things about themselves and stays humble and accountable to others.

    I think those are called servants, not leaders.

  14. There was a young man in Chicago who has a cognitive disability, he was kidnapped and systematically tortured by four young people while they live streamed it on facebook according to the news article. I happen to see the entire 25-minute video which will be pulled down again off of youtube. I won’t post the link and I did not download it. The 4 young people made race-related derogatory remarks and used explications concerning President-Elect Trump. I post this here because I was wondering in Piper’s world this is part of God’s overall plan which will bring glory to Him. This poor young man will never forget this. In my work I have dealt with abused children who were adults when I worked with most of them. Many of them had developmental disabilities because they were savagely beaten, sexually, physically, abused and neglected. This event triggered something in me that I can’t shake. Please pray for this young man, for his healing, and that justice is done. Please also pray it does not turn into another news / rhetorical sound bite. That will not help anyone. Decorum is why I did not post the link to the video or to the news story it is quite graphic as are the comments.

  15. Christian Hedonism has left a wasteland of many many people. Of all the YRRs (with the exception of SGM) his teaching IMO is the worst. Sadly many Presbyterian and Reformed men and women have latched on to the evangelical who has latched on to the 5 pts minus sacraments or reformed church order etc and has tried to become the Baptist Jonathan Edwards of the 20-21st century. Except his teaching is probably worse than Edwards'. An actual Reformed teacher quipped that the New Calvinist have read a lot about Calvin but have never gotten around to reading Calvin. Lord Have mercy

  16. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    My third thought is that perhaps there is something terribly amiss in the church when we have a permanent, paid clergy.

    I have been thinking the same for a long time Todd. Most of these clergy are not Christ-like shepherds who will lay their life down for the sheep. Instead they want to be like CEOs sat in a luxury office all day reading books by Piper and those of his ilk. An example is the recently discussed Thom Rainer who wrote a miserable article called “15 Reasons Why Your Pastor Should Not Visit Often” where he moaned about having to do his job. At the same time he offers a consultancy service to pastors at ridiculous amounts of £££ (obviously pastors who subscribe fund it by the donations of members they refuse to visit). One of his colleagues is called Chuck Lawless and he runs a similar service called “The Lawless Group” which actually sounds very appropriate. You can find them on a Google search.

  17. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    The first thought I have is what a pampered life these celebrities lead. I wonder how many who have come to Piper for marital counseling are able to take an 8 month paid vacation to tend to the precious garden of their family

    We had something similar happen in a church I was very involved in. The senior leader (he is VERY clear that he is not a pastor), had ongoing “issues” with his wife and took a 6 month paid sabbatical (she was paid too). It struck me at the time that no lay person had that luxury. I have been very close to several pastors (leaders) in the churches I have attended and I would agree many are completely out of touch.

    The thing that has concerned me more than anything is their ambition dressed up as “growing the Kingdom” or “revival” – calling things holy that are not holy.

  18. What happens when Mrs. Piper isn’t appreciative enough toward John when he condescends to be nice to her? She steals his joy. How dare she? Piper’s hedonism could make him a bear to live with.

    How about when John invests all that time doing God’s work and He isn’t appreciative enough? He steals his joy. How dare He? I’ll get my joy back by taking an eight month sabbatical and spend some time with my fans in Europe.

  19. GMFS

    Hard to know what to make of this, or where to begin.

    At some point in the last couple of days, somebody commented here on TWW to the effect that “the ministry” isn’t there for the benefit of the minister, but for the people they’re serving. I can’t remember who it was (can’t find it either, but it was DEFINITELY HERE!) – apologies for the consequent lack of proper citation.

    As many have already commented here, nobody in a real job gets to abandon it for months on end at their leisure and return to it when they deem it convenient. If you’re really called to “the ministry”, then if you’re not disqualified from it you should pull your finger out and get on with serving.

    Maybe a big part of the problem is the word “ministry”. It’s an archaic word for “servant” but its usage has changed completely. These men are not servant leaders, but consultant gurus. As soon as you are paid for your opinions, you are no longer a minister.

  20. Looking at all the comments, I do see why the Church of Christ is so divided today. There is a critical spirit in so many Pastors and Christians. I believe repentance is in order???

    I have read most books of John Piper……to him the glory of God is ultimate. One does not have to agree with everything he said…there is place for human error also, but the Holy Spirit will give discernment.

    I believe the confession he made is to help people in similar situations…so Dale, you are not just criticizing, but also very sarcastic. May I suggest you work on your relationship with the Lord first….as I believe this is not how He told you to respond.

  21. Let’s examine his theology here for a second:

    And in those moments of singing His greatness, His mercy, the Gospel, I would generally be melted, and I would feel hope. I would feel like what an Idiot! I’m an Idiot, that you made that much of that. And that’s what happened to me repeatedly in song, in corporate worship God struck me down with hope; He struck me down. You proud arrogant selfish jerk! And He did that with the Gospel.

    “His greatness, His mercy, the Gospel”… The article goes on to state, “Piper then hailed corporate worship, calling it ‘one of the best remedies for our sin-sick souls’.”

    Or not the Gospel, which is Christ’s redemption of us because of His love for us. This makes it pretty clear Piper’s “Gospel” is his “Election” and place in the church. He thinks corporate worship saved his marriage because he thinks he’s one of the elect by going to church.

    Like most Calvinistas, Piper never talks about Christ. He used to, way back when. I saw him speak and He talked about Christ’s sacrifice, but he’s gone wayward away from the cross to the idea that membership in the church is the vehicle of salvation. (ed.) This is not what Christianity stands on.

    “For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” 1 Cor. 2:2

  22. Dale wrote:

    What happens when Mrs. Piper isn’t appreciative enough toward John when he condescends to be nice to her? She steals his joy. How dare she? Piper’s hedonism could make him a bear to live with.

    How about when John invests all that time doing God’s work and He isn’t appreciative enough? He steals his joy. How dare He? I’ll get my joy back by taking an eight month sabbatical and spend some time with my fans in Europe.

    Men like Piper desire to be a god IMO.

  23. The elevation of corporate worship is an oddity in Protestantism. These folks like to say that this is where the real growth comes but I disagree. They have a low view of the Holy Spirit IMO. I wish all of us low-life’s could take 8 months off to work on our problems, as well as get extra funds to put our kids through Christian school. And drive a Jaguar (yes I know a pastor who does). Piper has a need for everybody to focus on him. Ugh!

  24. Good for him on figuring out how to fix marriage. I'm glad someone figured it out. What's the point of this article? To continue gossip trends or something.

  25. I seem to recall reading that Piper's eight month leave of absence was unpaid. Now I can't find that statement. I'll keep looking…

  26. stinks wrote:

    Good for him on figuring out how to fix marriage. I’m glad someone figured it out. What’s the point of this article? To continue gossip trends or something.

    Did he figure it out? I mean, it was not corporate worship that saved his marriage, it was taking eight months off and humbling himself that saved his marriage.

    Piper tried to theologically equate the “Gospel” with corporate worship in the interview. This is not the Christian faith–it’s hyper-Calvinism that places membership in the church as what saves people. There’s no mention of Jesus. He only talks about God. This is not the gospel. This is not Christianity. Hyper-Calvinism is a heresy that attempts to remove Jesus from Christian faith.

  27. In my previous church (not CLC), the pastor was full-time and supported basically by his wife as he developed the church plant. He was very enthusiastic and would expect people to be at his beck and call, even though we all had work, daily life, and family obligations. He would call people at work and want to talk, even though they would tell him they had meetings or urgent projects. It was very annoying and disrespectful.

  28. stinks wrote:

    What’s the point of this article? To continue gossip trends or something.

    BTW, if you make your living telling other people how to live out a faith, them evaluating whether or not what you say is actually true is fair game.

  29. ishy wrote:

    stinks wrote:

    What’s the point of this article? To continue gossip trends or something.

    BTW, if you make your living telling other people how to live out a faith, them evaluating whether or not what you say is actually true is fair game.

    Absolutely! Just this week John Piper addressed an audience of 50,000 18-25 year olds at Passion – something he has been doing since it began in 1997.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JUsyE9W5Ge0

    http://www.ajc.com/news/local/passion-2017-conference-about-faith-and-fellowship/uxwy1p4HyA2TR9LrA7WVWK/

  30. I have been married for 40 years and it has been very difficult at times.
    Many people have the same difficulties and those who don’t are extremely fortunate
    or something.
    When we attended church 20 years ago I couldn’t stand my husband many Sunday mornings. And I know some of my friends felt the same way during rocky patches in their marriages.
    Worship helped me focus on God and not my marriage.
    Isn’t that what worship is supposed to do? Isn’t that why we went to church in the first place?
    Worship led me to God and He helped me stay married for 40 years.

  31. Upon reflection of the early years of married life, John Piper emphatically states he was a proud arrogant selfish jerk!

    Another example of “More Utterly Depraved Than Thou”?

  32. Deb wrote:

    Just this week John Piper addressed an audience of 50,000 18-25 year olds at Passion – something he has been doing since it began in 1997.

    Shouldn’t that be “an audience of 50,000 Piperjugend”?

  33. Johan Bekker wrote:

    I have read most books of John Piper……to him the glory of God is ultimate.

    Johan, have you read any books or articles critical of John Piper and Christian Hedonism? Could you comment on the critiques? Serious charges have been propounded on Piper’s novel idea and ministry. The consequences of living as a hedonist should be investigated. I think that the fruit of Piper’s novel theology of hedonism is toxic to others and also to his marriage. This is not meant to be sarcasm. These are serious issues. Please address the arguments instead of questioning my walk with Jesus.

  34. @ stinks:

    When John Piper teaches some VERY harsh things concerning marriage (for example, that abuse victims must stay married, or that divorced people must stay single), it’s relevant to know that his ability to execute a good plan for his own marriage requires steps that are unavailable or unrealistic in normal people’s lives.

  35. @ Johan Bekker:

    I am critical of John Piper because his teachings were used (in a way completely consistent with his intent) to nearly destroy me, and he has not repented or suggested he even feels bad about that. His view of marriage is not Biblical, reasonable, or healthy. It is downright dangerous and it harms people. And it brings no glory to God.

    He may have shared his struggle to encourage others, but if saving his marriage requires him to take 8 months off work, it’s pretty serious and not steps available to the common man. Especially when he attributes the salvation of his marriage to “worship” and not “taking time off my job”.

    The other point is that the goal of worship is to exalt God, not save our marriages. So what he is tacitly encouraging others in struggling marriages to do is go to worship with an expectation of it having a “fix it” effect on their personal situations, rather than a focus on God who is deserving of our worship and attention without returning promises of fixed marriages.

  36. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Shouldn’t that be “an audience of 50,000 Piperjugend”?

    I’ve been to Passion, and it was a very different audience. Piper was at the Passion conference I went to, but that was before he really went off the deep end. I would say they are in general not a Calvinista crowd, and go more seeking an emotional high. Most of them are nondenom and very young in the faith.

  37. Jeff S wrote:

    The other point is that the goal of worship is to exalt God, not save our marriages. So what he is tacitly encouraging others in struggling marriages to do is go to worship with an expectation of it having a “fix it” effect on their personal situations, rather than a focus on God who is deserving of our worship and attention without returning promises of fixed marriages.

    I think this is consistent with his theology that membership in a Calvinista church is what makes you “Elect”. He went to church, was reminded that he’s “Elect”, and that he’s a worm in the eyes of God. Worm theology at work.

    It always goes back to the fact that Calvinistas try to fix things with their own power, by controlling people and situations. He didn’t look to Jesus to fix his marriage, and I don’t see any mention or hint of surrender or God’s love being his example.

  38. Deb wrote:

    Absolutely! Just this week John Piper addressed an audience of 50,000 18-25 year olds at Passion – something he has been doing since it began in 1997.

    Anyone remember The Pied Piper?
    Leading away the children under the geas of his pipes after the Burghers of Hamelyn stiffed him?

    In the current version of the fairy tale, the Pied Piper simply holds the children hostage (in Faerie?) until he’s paid. In the original, he pipes them to a nearby river where under the geas of his pipes they all walk into the river and drown.

  39. sucks wrote:

    Good for him on figuring out how to fix marriage. I’m glad someone figured it out. What’s the point of this article? To continue gossip trends or something.

    I could not have put it better myself. And that’s saying something, because I have true standards.

    You’re all rubbish.

    Up Yours,
    Roger Bombast

  40. Deb wrote:

    I seem to recall reading that Piper’s eight month leave of absence was unpaid.

    I was working on the assumption that it was unpaid, in the absence of specific evidence to the contrary. Whilst I wish he’d get a real job – indeed, that he’d done so a long time ago – that in itself doesn’t mean he stole 8 months’ salary.

  41. stinks wrote:

    What’s the point of this article? To continue gossip trends      or something.

    old timer wrote:

    Many people have the same difficulties and those who don’t are extremely fortunate
         or something.

    Hmm… I can’t shake the feeling there’s a pattern here…




    …or something.

  42. Deb wrote:

    I seem to recall reading that Piper’s eight month leave of absence was unpaid. Now I can’t find that statement. I’ll keep looking…

    Piper gets lots of money monthly from book royalties anyway. I doubt it mattered very much.

    Now, I don’t have a problem if people can take a leave of absence on their own money. But it’s not a method most people can do, so it’s not something people should instruct other people to do.

  43. “Noël and I are rock solid in our commitment to each other, and there is no whiff of unfaithfulness on either side.”

    Does anybody know if Mrs. Piper also holds to the permanence view of marriage? If they’ve had periods of serious conflict over the years, and it sounds like they have, I’m sure separation and possibly divorce has at least crossed her mind once, maybe more times. This would be disastrous for Mr. Piper’s reputation, even with the rush to restore that tends to characterize Christian celebrity culture.

  44. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    The first thought I have is what a pampered life these celebrities lead. I wonder how many who have come to Piper for marital counseling are able to take an 8 month paid vacation to tend to the precious garden of their family?

    That’s exactly what I thought when I first read of his sabbatical.

  45. NJ wrote:

    “Noël and I are rock solid in our commitment to each other, and there is no whiff of unfaithfulness on either side.”

    Does anybody know if Mrs. Piper also holds to the permanence view of marriage? If they’ve had periods of serious conflict over the years, and it sounds like they have, I’m sure separation and possibly divorce has at least crossed her mind once, maybe more times. This would be disastrous for Mr. Piper’s reputation, even with the rush to restore that tends to characterize Christian celebrity culture.

    Piper does not believe in divorce at all except in one case. Sort through the garbage on his website you may find the ref or I will post it when I am back at my pc.

  46. @ dee:

    This could become a meme or something.

    I almost wonder whether it’s worth adding “OS” to the official Wartburg Acronym Lexicon.

    IHTIH… OS

  47. old timer wrote:

    Worship helped me focus on God and not my marriage.
    Isn’t that what worship is supposed to do? Isn’t that why we went to church in the first place?

    I would appreciate it if you would expand on this idea. I am sure you don’t mean this but I sounds like you are saying that if you go to worship services your marriage will hold together under all circumstances.

    Having been a Christian for many years and married for a long time I have observed committed Christians who love the Lord who go to worship services faithfully and still have marriages break up.

    I agree that marriage is usually very hard for most people. But I am wondering if the capacity to endure comes from a different source. Where does the daily ministry of the Spirit fit in, for example? What about the reality of the faith that pervades one’s daily life. How about an understanding that this life is hard, that we are sinners and we sin with one another?

    There is another aspect of this that is thought provoking, at least to me. A simplistic view “go to worship and all will be well” does not address the very real problems of abuse, substance abuse, personality disorders, etc. which are not necessarily *cured*. by faithful worship attendance.

    Piper has always struck me as *pat* in his answers. *A tornado struck because liberal Lutherans churches accept gay marriage.* *God ordains all bad things for His glory.* *Go to church and all will be well.*

    I admire people who stick it. through with difficult marriages (so long as abuse is not involved. But, I think the answer goes far deeper that attending worship services. I hope this make sense to you.

  48. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    IHTIH… OS

    OK- I admit it. I never know what some of these abbreviations mean. I had to look up IHTIH. At this site:

    http://wikiwordbook.info/ihtih

    It could mean the following which given you penchant for futbol makes sense

    “Al-Ittihad Club (Arabic: نادي الاتحاد‎‎), also simply known as Al-Ittihad, literally meaning The Union, is a Saudi Premier League football club based in Jeddah.”

    Then, it could have something to do with astronumerology (something I did not know existed.

    This page explains the astronumerology analysis of the abbreviation IHTIH. Below, you also find the detailed meaning of each letter in the IHTIH acronym.

    http://meaningsfor.com/meaning-of/ihtih/ihtih-stands-for-ihtih-means

    So, BYH (an abbreviation for the Southern *Bless Your Heart*) could you give me a definition IHTIH?

  49. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    The first thought I have is what a pampered life these celebrities lead. I wonder how many who have come to Piper for marital counseling are able to take an 8 month paid vacation to tend to the precious garden of their family?

    That’s very true.

    I never know what to think of these public recitations. I think half of them are fake, and the other half are a cover for something worse like abuse/adultery. I think it’s interesting these pastors feel the need to say ‘it’s not adultery!!!’ and specifically also say it’s not adultery on the part of their wives. Who thought that? Why did you feel the need to say it? It’s a weird thing to say for a normal person.

    Considering he retired (ish) a couple years later, may he just should have retired.

  50. @ brian:

    I wouldn’t and can’t watch these sorts of things. How awful. I pray the young man recovers. I can’t imagine what makes people do such things.

  51. “I agree that marriage is usually very hard for most people. But I am wondering if the capacity to endure comes from a different source. Where does the daily ministry of the Spirit fit in, for example? What about the reality of the faith that pervades one’s daily life. How about an understanding that this life is hard, that we are sinners and we sin with one another?”

    Hmmmmm. Perhaps my husband and I are an anomaly. Life is difficult, and we occasionally have had conflict, but I can’t honestly say our marriage has been “very hard”. If we could rewind our lives back to the year we got married, there are some things I think we would do differently, but marrying each other would not be one of them.

  52. dee wrote:

    could you give me a definition OS?

    OS = or something

    As the Piper apologists keep exclaiming. 🙂

  53. Dale wrote:

    spend some time with my fans in Europe

    Was that one of the ‘commitments noel thought he should keep’? Reading between the lines, was I the only one who thought Noel was thinking paid/tax write off vacay!

  54. Johan Bekker wrote:

    I have read most books of John Piper……to him the glory of God is ultimate.

    Johan Bekker wrote:

    so Dale, you are not just criticizing, but also very sarcastic. May I suggest you work on your relationship with the Lord first….as I believe this is not how He told you to respond.

    I am sure that you jumping on here and counseling Dale regarding his Christian obligations has caused him to change his life…

    Here is the problem with pat little drive by suggestions. You don’t take the time to get to know Dale or those who are criticizing here. Do you know their pain? Do you know if the church hurt them? Could it be that John Piper himself has caused hurt to many people?

    We have written extensively on Piper and I am quite well aware of Piper’s theology. But, his theology has serous flaws. You do know he is sitting there being interviewed by CJ Mahaney whose ministry has been rocked by numerous child sex abuse scandals but Piper doesn’t care. He boosted up Mark Driscoll whose failed ministry left many people driving over by the bus. he proceeds since he knows all about the glory of God which doesn’t seem to have anything to apply to God’s beloved created beings.

    You can talk about the glory of God all you want but when you support ministries that have hurt the cause of Christ, I wonder if that glory involves love, accountability, insightfulness, etc.

    I would suggest that you take a step back, open your heart and think about why people have been hurt by men like John Piper. It might, like the Grinch, cause your heart to grow 3 sizes today.

  55. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    This could become a meme or something.
    I almost wonder whether it’s worth adding “OS” to the official Wartburg Acronym Lexicon.
    IHTIH… OS

    Well, since we are gossiping, I heard that it happened (IHTIH)?

  56. dee wrote:

    So, BYH (an abbreviation for the Southern *Bless Your Heart*) could you give me a definition OS?

    Whoops, I mean IHTIH?

  57. Dale wrote:

    Piper’s hedonism could make him a bear to live with.

    And his complementarianism.

    It’s worth asking whether complementarianism, consistently applied, makes happy marriages. [The big question, of course, is what consistently applied complementarianism really looks like, in practical terms.] I think a comp marriage can be happy, when the couple has enough character and common sense to avoid applying comp principles in ways that are abusive or damaging. Maybe that is what people call functional egalitarianism. It’s a theory, anyway. Thankfully, I have no experience in trying to be a consistent complementarian.

    And I would imagine that Piper’s income from his books and conferences is pretty decent, so that 8 months off would not be a struggle. I don’t begrudge him that… I do envy it, though.

  58. “These are good days” (Piper) … “Yes they are” (Mahaney). Sure they are! You guys are fleecing the flock and living good!

    “Piper said the power of the Gospel brought real change in him.” What he meant to say is that the power of Calvinism (which is his gospel) brought a real change in him and thousands of others who have followed his aberrant teachings over the years. The young reformers who have fed on your words are so darn changed that they may never get a grip on the real Gospel.

    “I see several species of pride in my soul” (Piper). It’s still there Mr. Piper and it is so infectious that you’ve transmitted it to thousands of young reformers who are hitting American pulpits with a mean streak of arrogance. Manufactured humility comes through loud and clear in your interview with Mr. Mahaney, who suffers from the same ailment. There is nothing in your words or demeanor which reflect that you have genuinely repented from a proud heart. And so the beat goes on as you enter a new year. The things your poor wife Noel experienced in your marriage through the “beauty of complementarity” is begin multiplied across the church landscape through your New Calvinist clones. Congratulations … the American church will have to endure your ministry legacy for years to come.

  59. Bill M wrote:

    Just add a dash of Gospel™ and you can press on too! Really?
    Someone needs to diagram out for me what he is saying.

    Maybe Piper himself can interpret:
    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”
    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

  60. stinks wrote:

    I’m glad someone figured it out.

    Also, you are saying that taking 8 months off as well as attending worship services *fixes* marriages? Good night!

  61. Dave A A wrote:

    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”
    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

    Holy Mackerel!!! He said this? Am going to tweet this out and may write a post in it.

  62. Deb wrote:

    I seem to recall reading that Piper’s eight month leave of absence was unpaid. Now I can’t find that statement. I’ll keep looking…

    Maybe it was unpaid by Bethlehem Baptist Church, but what about from the Desiring God organization or from his book royalties? Desiring God’s 990 form for 2010 says Piper received $124,871 from “related organizations” and from “estimated compensation.”

  63. dee wrote:

    stinks wrote:
    To continue gossip trends or something.

    Of course we are just gossips. Does that make it easier for you?

    I’m not sure why someone would make a bunch of public statements about their marriage, unasked, if they don’t want people to talk about it.

  64. Bridget wrote:

    dee wrote:
    could you give me a definition OS?
    OS = or something
    As the Piper apologists keep exclaiming.

    Apologies – I thought these were embedded! :”>

    Here’s the set I’m aware of:

    IHTIH: I Hope This Is Helpful (usually accompanies useless information)
    BIPN: But It’s Probably Not (usually follows “IHTIH”)
    ION: In Other News
    TWW: The Wartburg Watch, obviously
    OS: Or Something (new as of today)
    AWWBA: As Wartburgers Will Be Aware – used when stating the obvious
    GMFS: Good Morning From Scotland (with variations)

    There are a few others I didn’t invent:
    BHLH: Bless His Little Heart (usually applied to a laddie called Owen Strachan for some reason)
    IOW: In Other Words (or “Isle of Wight” in Blighty sometimes)
    ISTM: It Seems To Me
    IIRC: If I Recall Correctly
    IMHO: In My Humble Opinion
    USA: United States of America




    IHTIH…

  65. “I Hope This Is Helpful” is something I remember that Nick Bulbeck often wrote when he broke up our serious commentary with an off -topic report on sports or hiking or some such. Eventually, he shortened it to IHTIH.

    I have remembered it because it always amused me! And I believe that was his purpose.

  66. dee wrote:

    I admire people who stick it. through with difficult marriages (so long as abuse is not involved. But, I think the answer goes far deeper that attending worship services. I hope this make sense to you.

    My parents were occasional churchgoers. But they stayed together (until my father’s death) through 54 years of marriage and through my mother’s severe mental illness. Not to be flippant, because this is serious business, but I rather doubt that corporate worship would have helped my parents to come to grips with the myriad effects of paranoid schizophrenia on the family. Oh yeah, and my dad had to work his job through all those years to pay the bills from mom’s illness. He didn’t have the privilege to take eight months off to work on his marriage.

    Piper, like so many high-end pastors these days, doesn’t have a clue about the stresses and strains of real life.

  67. Dave A A wrote:

    and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting…

    … and they’re still treated like babies.

  68. dee wrote:

    Holy Mackerel!!! He said this?

    Yep, he did! And sitting on stage with him is Darrin Patrick, who was cast out of his church and Acts 29 leadership because he personally experienced “navigating” through the New Calvinist community where “women are loving this.”

  69. Bill M wrote:

    Just add a dash of Gospel™ and you can press on too!

    Personally, I’m getting sick and tired of these characters dragging the Gospel into the mess they have created in the American church.

  70. Dave A A wrote:

    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. …And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”

    What on earth?????

  71. John Piper has had struggles in his marriage. Haven’t we all at some point? The difference here is that John Piper has influenced marriages with his horrible teachings.

    I guess one who is influenced by Piper could take this “confession” in one of two ways….You could think, “Whew! He’s just like us. We can get through this,” or, you could be angry at him that his marriage isn’t any better than yours yet he gets to tell you how to do your marriage.

    I certainly do not wish him and his wife any ill will. I’m glad that they are able to work on their marriage. However, for someone who is as influential as he is on people’s lives, I find this to be nothing more than publicity.

    Personally, I find these confessions to be self-indulgent. Why bring up such a personal matter in front of a group of people? I’m guessing in his mind he’s thinking that he’s helping people. I find it as a way for him to garner sympathy and support.

  72. NJ wrote:

    Perhaps my husband and I are an anomaly. Life is difficult, and we occasionally have had conflict, but I can’t honestly say our marriage has been “very hard”. If we could rewind our lives back to the year we got married, there are some things I think we would do differently, but marrying each other would not be one of them.

    I’m curious, NJ, did you all get married young (under 25) or a bit older? Calvinistas heavily push young marriages with very little “courtship” time, and I wonder if that, coupled with their patriarchal theology, has a lot to do with the high rate of marital abuse.

    I think it’d be much harder to be married when you are married before you really knew who you were, especially who you were in Christ.

    I think Lea’s point that Calvinista pastors always make the point “Nobody’s having an affair!” as the proof that they have a stable marriage is a good point. It’s like your house is being ripped apart by a tornado, and you yell, “But it’s not on fire!”

  73. Kathi wrote:

    I find it as a way for him to garner sympathy and support.

    Yep. Mr. Piper is just like me so I’ll continue to buy his books! (Not)

  74. “And as you navigate that [male-dominated] community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”

    Wished every omega male ever.

  75. Dave A A wrote:

    as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this.”
    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

    Because only the male worship leaders are mic’d? This does not make a theological point.

    I value male and voices equally, and while I like hearing men sing, I would not be “loving this” if that was all I ever heard.

  76. ishy wrote:

    I think Lea’s point that Calvinista pastors always make the point “Nobody’s having an affair!” as the proof that they have a stable marriage is a good point. It’s like your house is being ripped apart by a tornado, and you yell, “But it’s not on fire!”

    Yes! It is deeply bizarre isn’t it? Like ‘Oh I’m a total drunk and we hate each other and we haven’t slept in the same bed for years and sometimes he hits me and we yell constantly, but we haven’t cheated so it’s all ok we’re totally biblical’.

    Um…

  77. Lea wrote:

    ishy wrote:
    Because only the male worship leaders are mic’d?
    Are you being sarcastic or is this a real thing?

    It’s a real thing in Calvinista churches. Women may sing backup, but worship leaders are “in authority” and nearly always male.

    I really wish I could be sarcastic about it.

  78. ishy wrote:

    Lea wrote:
    ishy wrote:
    Because only the male worship leaders are mic’d?
    /
    Women may sing backup, but worship leaders are “in authority” and nearly always male.

    I’ll clarify that women may have a mic on, but they will be turned way down. When I lead worship at one church, we had a sound tech who did this to the women on the worship team. We kept confronting him about it, and he’d just do it again the next week. It does happen.

    I didn’t stay at that church long.

  79. Dale wrote:

    Hedonism

    I urge everyone to read this critique. I have always thought that John Piper was weird and ot-nay oo-tay ight-bray, but now (in addition to the foregoing) I feel he is delusional and heretical. Seriously, this Christian Hedonism stuff (as propounded by Piper), is insane, anti-Christian, and dangerous. IMO.

    Again, read this critique. How does anyone take this man seriously?

  80. Dale wrote:

    Dale wrote:

    Johan, have you read any books or articles critical of John Piper and Christian Hedonism? Could you comment on the critiques?

    Johan, I would recommend “Altar to an Unknown Love” by Michael John Beasley. Or you can read some articles of his at http://www.worldviewweekend.com/news/article/cs-lewis-pipers-troubling-affirmations-hedonism

    Here is the critique I was talking about. The quote thingy didn’t work the first time around…

  81. ishy wrote:

    I’ll clarify that women may have a mic on, but they will be turned way down. When I lead worship at one church, we had a sound tech who did this to the women on the worship team.

    Ugh. *SMH*

    I know you’re a musical person, but I guess they don’t care about balancing harmonies.

  82. Johan Bekker wrote:

    Looking at all the comments, I do see why the Church of Christ is so divided today. There is a critical spirit in so many Pastors and Christians. I believe repentance is in order???

    I have read most books of John Piper……to him the glory of God is ultimate. One does not have to agree with everything he said…there is place for human error also, but the Holy Spirit will give discernment.

    I believe the confession he made is to help people in similar situations…so Dale, you are not just criticizing, but also very sarcastic. May I suggest you work on your relationship with the Lord first….as I believe this is not how He told you to respond.

    Who the heck are you to tell us to repent when we have every right to criticize a christian brother or sister when they are hurting the body of Christ. Maybe you should be telling Piper to repent? Are you God to suggest to Dale to work in his relationship with God?

  83. Gah! HERE is the critique I was talking about. The one by Craig Booth. Sorry for the confusion…

    Dale wrote:

    There is also the issue of “Christian Hedonism.” Piper has replaced love of God with lust of God. This may not be good for his marriage. Craig Booth wrote an excellent article critiquing John Piper and Christian Hedonism: http://www.thefaithfulword.org/wakeupcall.html

  84. Lea wrote:

    I’m not sure why someone would make a bunch of public statements about their marriage, unasked, if they don’t want people to talk about it.

    Amen! Since the Desiring God website is promoting this exchange between Piper and Mahaney, we need to address it.

  85. Johan Bekker wrote:

    I have read most books of John Piper……to him the glory of God is ultimate.

    The Glory of God expressed as a Zero-Sum Game?
    Where in order for God to be Glorified, everyone else has to be crushed down?
    For God to have Supreme Importance, nothing/nobody else can be allowed to have any importance?

  86. ishy wrote:

    I think this is consistent with his theology that membership in a Calvinista church is what makes you “Elect”.

    Not your Perfectly-Parsed, Truly REFORMED Theology?

  87. Johan Bekker wrote:

    Looking at all the comments, I do see why the Church of Christ is so divided today. There is a critical spirit in so many Pastors and Christians. I believe repentance is in order???

    Right. Do not be Bereans, Do not think. Just keep the blinders on and play follow the leader, or worship the leader. It’s okay if Piper is wrong. He means well. That’s all that matters. Didn’t Jesus and the apostles obey the Pharisees?

  88. Tree wrote:

    One wonders what Mrs. John Piper thinks about their marriage, his “headship” over her, his need to feel in charge of his household and the people in it, and how she does with “joyfully snd willingly submitting” to his “godly masculine leadership”.

    Well, she’s definitely not a Muscular Woman(TM)….

    Remember the story of Piper studying Theology in his private third-floor study, ringing a bell for his wife to bring him tea (presumably in a full tea service) from the ground floor kitchen?

    I’m reminded of the scene in Roots where the newly-purchased Kunta Kinte is being whipped almost to death by the overseer until he answers to his slave name while Massa in the Big House “is busy studying Scripture”.

  89. ishy wrote:

    Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:
    Not your Perfectly-Parsed, Truly REFORMED Theology?
    That must be what makes you a “pastor”.

    Or an Inner Party Ideologist.

  90. Nancy2 wrote:

    Johan Bekker wrote:
    Looking at all the comments, I do see why the Church of Christ is so divided today. There is a critical spirit in so many Pastors and Christians. I believe repentance is in order???

    Right. Do not be Bereans, Do not think. Just keep the blinders on and play follow the leader, or worship the leader. It’s okay if Piper is wrong. He means well. That’s all that matters.

    Party First, Comrades.

  91. ishy wrote:

    ishy wrote:
    Lea wrote:
    ishy wrote:
    Because only the male worship leaders are mic’d?
    /
    Women may sing backup, but worship leaders are “in authority” and nearly always male.

    I’ll clarify that women may have a mic on, but they will be turned way down.

    “Women Must Keep Silent in Church. SCRIPTURE!”

    (Are they also going to castrate boys before puberty in order to sing the high notes? Castrati were also justified by That Verse.)

  92. Lea wrote:

    Yes! It is deeply bizarre isn’t it? Like ‘Oh I’m a total drunk and we hate each other and we haven’t slept in the same bed for years and sometimes he hits me and we yell constantly, but we haven’t cheated so it’s all ok we’re totally biblical’.

    Or (actual encounter) a sexual predator who was so proud of his Moral Superiority because he didn’t smoke.

  93. Nancy2 wrote:

    Right. Do not be Bereans, Do not think.

    We aren’t supposed to think anyway Nancy, because girl. I guess we’re just supposed to hang back and use the masculine feel to give us the feminine feels? It’s a bit confusing. Girl brain you know. I’m sure that makes sense to all the menfolk like Piper.

  94. Lea wrote:

    I know you’re a musical person, but I guess they don’t care about balancing harmonies.

    Perfect harmony can only be achieved when women graciously submit.

  95. dee wrote:

    Piper has always struck me as *pat* in his answers. *A tornado struck because liberal Lutherans churches accept gay marriage.* *God ordains all bad things for His glory.* *Go to church and all will be well.*

    He’s a MP3 carousel with a randomizer search function.
    Push the button, get a random sound bite.

  96. Nancy2 wrote:

    Perfect harmony can only be achieved when women graciously submit.

    That’s genius. I’m surprised it’s not inscribed above the doors like the ‘women who wear pants will be turned away’ that was mentioned the other day.

  97. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Tree wrote:

    One wonders what Mrs. John Piper thinks about their marriage, his “headship” over her, his need to feel in charge of his household and the people in it, and how she does with “joyfully snd willingly submitting” to his “godly masculine leadership”.

    Well, she’s definitely not a Muscular Woman(TM)….

    Remember the story of Piper studying Theology in his private third-floor study, ringing a bell for his wife to bring him tea (presumably in a full tea service) from the ground floor kitchen?

    I’m reminded of the scene in Roots where the newly-purchased Kunta Kinte is being whipped almost to death by the overseer until he answers to his slave name while Massa in the Big House “is busy studying Scripture”.

    any man who really loved his wife would not portray her in this way …. as a ‘servant’ to a ‘master’ …… so very very corrupted is this image of ‘married life’ that it degrades marriage as an institution that robs people of their dignity: both the ‘servant’ and the one who acts as the dominant …… why? Why? surely these people realize what they are doing????

  98. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Remember the story of Piper studying Theology in his private third-floor study, ringing a bell for his wife to bring him tea (presumably in a full tea service) from the ground floor kitchen?

    I did wonder if the Piper marriage struggles were due to Noel failing to bring the tea up fast enough, or at all, when JP rang her bell. Maybe she just couldn’t hear the bell. Maybe a simple hearing aid would have solved all of the Piper problems.

  99. Dave A A wrote:

    Maybe Piper himself can interpret:
    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”

    This is just creepy. And revolting. And arrogant and condescending.

  100. Lea wrote:

    Nancy2 wrote:

    Perfect harmony can only be achieved when women graciously submit.

    That’s genius. I’m surprised it’s not inscribed above the doors like the ‘women who wear pants will be turned away’ that was mentioned the other day.

    It really shocks me that men constantly use women as the scapegoat. These men are totally unfamiliar with Jesus view of women. In a day in which women were 2nd class citizens he gladly included them in the spread of the Gospel.

  101. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:

    I have often wondered whether, for Piper, the glory of God was of penultimate importance or if it was the greatest means to the highest ends – in true hedonist fashion, Piper’s satisfaction/pleasure.

    Piper says that God is most glorified when we are most satisfied in Him, but can we be most satisfied in Him until He is most glorified? Or put another way, how can we know we are most satisfied in Him if we do not know whether that satisfaction is bringing Him the most glory? Since he leaves many of the crucial details unsaid, such as how one knows one is most satisfied in God, Piper creates the equivalent of a perpetual philosophical machine…as well as giving many of his (Piper’s) disciples a justifiable reason to become neurotic worriers.

    In reality, however, God, by His very nature, is already most glorified since He is supreme in all ways, at all times. Therefore, I am free to be satisfied in Him because I can objectively know that He is already most glorified.

    BTW, @ Johan Bekker:, the above is what is wrong with Piper’s theology and why I personally do not recommend people taking to heart what he has to say. As some of my old-school Reformed friends say – Piper has subtly changed the first Q/A of the Westminster Shorter Catechism: Man’s chief end is to know God, and enjoy Him forever, to: “Man’s chief end is to know God by enjoying Him forever.

    Put in Biblical terms, Piper takes the doctrines of grace and overwrites it with a system of works. And unless I am mistaken, Paul used a fairly strong word for that type of action…

  102. Debi Calvet wrote:

    Dave A A wrote:

    Maybe Piper himself can interpret:
    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”

    This is just creepy. And revolting. And arrogant and condescending.

    The man is insane. Someone needs to do an intervention.

  103. Dave A A wrote:

    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, ……”

    Does Heaven have a masculine feel, and will praise there be led primarily by men?
    “and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel.” Huh??? Does he mean to say that women flourish when men subjugate us and ignore us?

  104. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    For God to have Supreme Importance, nothing/nobody else can be allowed to have any importance?

    Including Jesus.
    He prolly died on a cross to glorify God and no other reason – didn’t have nuthin’ to do with the salvation of humans, since each one of us is either of the Elect, or we are not.

  105. Burwell wrote:

    Put in Biblical terms, Piper takes the doctrines of grace and overwrites it with a system of works.

    As I push past the cobwebs of my mind and reach further into the distant corners of my memory, I seem to recall reading somewhere that Piper grew up as an IFB or its equivalent near Bob Jones University. If this is true, then much of his works-tainted theology, as well as his overly harsh child behavioral recommendations and his (trigger warning) be quiet woman and get back in the kitchen style of relationship advice, makes sense.

  106. According to the Form 990 for Desiring God Ministries, it generated $4.8 million of revenue in 2015. After salaries and expenses, the “profit” was around $900,000. Net Assets were around $2,000,000 (mostly cash). John Piper’s compensation from the entity was $116,496. There is also a foundation (Desiring God Foundation) that has about a million dollars in assets as of 12/31/14.

  107. Over on SSB, Julie Anne has posted a series of critiques (5 or 6 articles) on a children’s book entitled ” God’s Design”. The book is all about how to raise little men and little gurls in a comp/pat enviro. The people who wrote the book server under JP at Bethlehem and Desiring God for a long time.
    Here is a link one of the SSB articles: https://spiritualsoundingboard.com/2016/08/08/vaccinating-children-with-complementarian-series-introduction-review-of-gods-design-gender-role-book-for-children/

  108. Johan Bekker wrote:

    I have read most books of John Piper……to him the glory of God is ultimate. One does not have to agree with everything he said…there is place for human error also, but the Holy Spirit will give discernment.

    Perhaps you have not appreciated the fact that his “words” may be full of God’s glory but in his private life he could even live peaceably and kindly with his own wife.

    So, as he has been bloviating at his pulpit and in his books, telling everyone else in all his flowery WORDS how marriage is to be properly done, his own is a shambles.

    Why does this not surprise me a bit?

    You go ahead and “repent” for whatever you feel you need to, but I am going to call it what it is.

  109. So the man is living a lie. He is preaching one thing and practicing another. (How nice for him that his wife does not expose him for the fraud that he is.) And when he comes to church to preach it briefly eats at him because he knows he is a hypocrite. But- no worries, the music quickly soothes him and makes HIM feel better (because, after all, it’s all about HIM). And then, in his happier state of mind, he goes on to continue to preach the same baloney that is most likely behind the harshness and bitterness in his own home! And to receive the accolades of those who like what he teaches.

    This is what I see.

  110. stinks wrote:

    Good for him on figuring out how to fix marriage. I’m glad someone figured it out.

    Piper sure wasn’t much help telling us how he “figured it out”. There was little he communicated that I could relate to or find applicable. All I could discern was he waved some slogans over it and called it a day.

    I am glad I no longer labor under a system where the people who spout nonsense blame it on me when I don’t get it.

  111. dee wrote:

    and may write a post in it.

    You wrote several already on the assertion he was trying to clarify, that Christianity has a masculine feel.

  112. @ Max:

    I'm 99% sure that Doug Wilson is seated in the center beside Darrin Patrick. The one beside John Piper looks like Crawford Loritts. Not sure about the two on the right.

  113. @ Deb:
    I couldn’t bring myself to watch it. The thing that most stuck with me over the last 4+ years was his slipping in “and then a voice from God is heard” amongst the masculine and feminine feels. (have enjoyed everyone’s comments about those, BTW) Notice the indefinite article and the passive voice. Did any of those guys push for an explanation? My best guess is he’s saying he heard a still small voice as God struck him down with hope instilled by corporate worship.

  114. @ dee:

    Oh my goodness, how about this quote: “And when you look at a woman who is dominantly and prominently feminine, she will have a backbone, she will be articulate, she will be thoughtful (things we tend to think are male).”

    Being articulate is patently a male quality. As is having a backbone. And being thoughtful.

  115. Deb wrote:

    The one seated in the middle looks like Doug Wilson

    That’s what I thought. Then, there were at least three confirmed oddballs on that panel: Piper, Patrick, and Wilson. The new reformation draws so many weirdos to it.

  116. Lea wrote:

    I think half of them are fake, and the other half are a cover for something worse like abuse/adultery. I think it’s interesting these pastors feel the need to say ‘it’s not adultery!!!’ and specifically also say it’s not adultery on the part of their wives. Who thought that? Why did you feel the need to say it? It’s a weird thing to say for a normal person.

    Exactly.

  117. Point of clarity: not all agree worship is about bringing glory to God. Or bringing anything else to God, for that matter. Some of us believe worship is about extolling, proclaiming, and receiving what God has done for us. To understand this mindset better, read Michael Horton’s Christless Christianity. Good refutation of these modern puritans. Yes, he is a traditional Calvinist but the book has been recommended often in non Calvinist churches.

    Peace!

  118. stinks wrote:

    Good for him on figuring out how to fix marriage. I’m glad someone figured it out. What’s the point of this article? To continue gossip trends or something.

    What makes you think he fixed marriage?

  119. ishy wrote:

    Let’s examine his theology here for a second:

    And in those moments of singing His greatness, His mercy, the Gospel, I would generally be melted, and I would feel hope. I would feel like what an Idiot! I’m an Idiot, that you made that much of that. And that’s what happened to me repeatedly in song, in corporate worship God struck me down with hope; He struck me down. You proud arrogant selfish jerk! And He did that with the Gospel.

    And I don’t see where he goes on to think or behave differently than what caused his issues in the first place. Has he ever changed his teachings due to the fact they were not working in his own life? Has he ever recognized the fact that his comp teachings failed to bring happiness to his own home? Has he stopped teaching others to live in the way that failed in his own life?

  120. Burwell wrote:

    As I push past the cobwebs of my mind and reach further into the distant corners of my memory, I seem to recall reading somewhere that Piper grew up as an IFB or its equivalent near Bob Jones University. If this is true, then much of his works-tainted theology, as well as his overly harsh child behavioral recommendations and his (trigger warning) be quiet woman and get back in the kitchen style of relationship advice, makes sense.

    Yes, John’s father Bill Piper was a traveling evangelist who was a strong early supporter of Bob Jones University. Bill followed the university from Tennessee to Greenville, SC, spending most of his assets to buy land across from the university for development; this is where John grew up. If I recall correctly, Bill Piper fell from the good graces of Bob Jones over his support of the Billy Graham Crusade.

  121. I think Piper is misrepresenting the role of corporate worship in resolving his marital issues. The Holy Spirit is not bound by the context of corporate worship to accomplish his convicting work!! The danger in attributing the restitution of his marriage to the act of corporate worship is that it can lead to false conclusions on the part of his listeners. Perhaps one would conclude that they are not worshiping correctly if they continue to strive in their marriage. One could falsely conclude that worship is about fixing me instead of focusing on God. One partner may feel that all they need to do to address the issues in their marriage is to get the other to go to worship services and God will fix everything through that one experience. Suggesting that corporate worship is a panacea for healing broken relationships is a misrepresentation of what worship should be about and is an irresponsible approach to those that are struggling. For Piper to make the unwise and theologically questionable assertion that corporate worship saved his marriage, I have to conclude that he has a hidden agenda in sharing this to begin with.

  122. Dave A A wrote:

    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.” http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

    Whilst I'm glad Piper wanted to work on his marriage & make his wife happier, all the nonsense he spouts (ed.) ultimately puts forward a version of marriage which is primarily only a good thing for the male & is a form of indentured service-with-a-smile for the female.

  123. FW Rez wrote:

    For Piper to make the unwise and theologically questionable assertion that corporate worship saved his marriage, I have to conclude that he has a hidden agenda in sharing this to begin with.

    More tithes?

  124. ishy wrote:

    Lea wrote:

    ishy wrote:
    Because only the male worship leaders are mic’d?
    Are you being sarcastic or is this a real thing?

    It’s a real thing in Calvinista churches. Women may sing backup, but worship leaders are “in authority” and nearly always male.

    I really wish I could be sarcastic about it.

    Not just Calvinista churches. It is very very normal in the denomination I was raised in.

    It applies to everything. We went to see my folks for Christmas and it was a lovely service, with a special reading of scriptures for Christmas, but it made me cry because all the readers, standing there up on the stage were men. There was not a single women up there, reading and proclaiming the good news alongside the men. How horrible is that. To be reading scriptures that are about freedom and breaking the chains and the gospel, when you don’t even allow a women to stand up on stage and share in the reading. They are still in bondage.

  125. ishy wrote:

    I’m curious, NJ, did you all get married young (under 25) or a bit older? Calvinistas heavily push young marriages with very little “courtship” time, and I wonder if that, coupled with their patriarchal theology, has a lot to do with the high rate of marital abuse.

    I think it’d be much harder to be married when you are married before you really knew who you were, especially who you were in Christ.

    I think Lea’s point that Calvinista pastors always make the point “Nobody’s having an affair!” as the proof that they have a stable marriage is a good point. It’s like your house is being ripped apart by a tornado, and you yell, “But it’s not on fire!”

    I had just turned 26, my husband was still 23 at the time. He was still in school, but we didn’t want to wait. And no, it’s not because we were listening to Al Mohler. We had been in a relationship for several years, and felt it was time. The bigger issue we went on to face later was the pressure to not use birth control and instead have kids; think quiverfull and militant fecundity, even when people didn’t use those words.

    Marriage as young as possible is especially pushed for young women for that reason, as well as avoiding fornication, but I also think it has something to do with intertwining her identity with her husband before having a chance to really develop herself as an individual. If your theology tells you women are never supposed to be independent of a man, then that makes sense.

    I suspect pastors will eagerly point out nobody’s having an affair because sexual sins are treated as more scandalous than most.

  126. Jeff S wrote:

    @ dee:

    Oh my goodness, how about this quote: “And when you look at a woman who is dominantly and prominently feminine, she will have a backbone, she will be articulate, she will be thoughtful (things we tend to think are male).”

    Being articulate is patently a male quality. As is having a backbone. And being thoughtful.

    That reveals a lot about him and the men in his circles. None of it good.

  127. NJ wrote:

    Marriage as young as possible is especially pushed for young women for that reason, as well as avoiding fornication, but I also think it has something to do with intertwining her identity with her husband before having a chance to really develop herself as an individual. If your theology tells you women are never supposed to be independent of a man, then that makes sense.

    Very true. I guess they assuming that it doesn’t matter if the husband is mature enough.

    I think it does make a difference in how long you’ve known each other. I know in my one long-term relationship, Christians were very cruel about dating longer than 6 months, but it pretty much saved me. Nearly all of my friends who got married in (Christian) college are divorced now.

  128. Nancy2 wrote:

    Does Heaven have a masculine feel, and will praise there be led primarily by men?

    I would not be surprised AT ALL if John Piper actually believes this.

  129. ishy wrote:

    “Very true. I guess they assuming that it doesn’t matter if the husband is mature enough.”

    Given everything I’ve ever heard about how sanctifying marriage is, that could be true. Or maybe…

    “I think it does make a difference in how long you’ve known each other. I know in my one long-term relationship, Christians were very cruel about dating longer than 6 months, but it pretty much saved me. Nearly all of my friends who got married in (Christian) college are divorced now.”

    Gotta avoid fornication at all costs.

  130. Very much agree with Dale. Throw out the weird gender roles and flirtation with fundamentalism and Federal Vision for a moment. Defining the purpose of Christian life as the individual’s personal happiness will achieve the same results of prosperity gospel and Word of Faith. Instead of attaining happiness through health and wealth, you get it through an enlightened state of mind where you don’t recognize those things anymore. It’s nirvana, and that was around long before Jesus came. Jesus said the greatest love is laying down our lives for our friends, which does not sound something that would make you very joyous.

    @ Todd Wilhelm:

    Yes, the ivory tower is growing in the gospel™-centered world. At my previous gospel-centered PCA church, the only people in the young adults community who had no trouble owning property in a desirable neighborhood, providing for a wife and kids on a single income (less the wife’s MLM job), and by their claim paying the tithe, were on the church payroll. And it certainly seemed like the elders and well tenured pastors got this idea that they needed to hire a bunch of staff from Village Church and Acts29 to show our dead church how it’s done. And those elders and pastors are still proud of how they stood up to the nasty PCUSA so long ago.

    So you have people ministering to young men, whose basic issues in life are generally: we’re anxious about being able to provide for a future family, and we’re enduring the bottom of the totem pole at our jobs. And for the ministers, the former does not seem to be an issue, and at their jobs their nominal supervisors defer to them as the holders of the secret gospel wisdom of Matt Chandler and Mark Driscoll. The solution to my friends’ issues and anxieties usually involved kissing a lot of rear end and providing free babysitting. The clear time to go was when another young pastor was hired, who talked normally, until he pronounced God the way John Piper does. “Gwaud!”

  131. Max wrote:

    Yep, he did! And sitting on stage with him is Darrin Patrick, who was cast out of his church and Acts 29 leadership because he personally experienced “navigating” through the New Calvinist community where “women are loving this.”

    Plus all those feminine feels.

    I’ve read just enough of Piper to get the impression that he has a highly romanticized, sentimental view of male/female relations in general, and marriage in particular–whatever the state of his own marriage.

  132. siteseer wrote:

    He is preaching one thing and practicing another.

    Yes. In the video clip, God said to him “You proud arrogant selfish jerk!”

  133. Nancy2 wrote:

    Does Heaven have a masculine feel, and will praise there be led primarily by men?

    If it does, it’s yet another reason why I have no desire to go to Protestant Evangelical heaven. The Jewish version of ‘heaven’ Olam Ha-Ba is way more appealing to me.

  134. Stan wrote:

    So you have people ministering to young men, whose basic issues in life are generally: we’re anxious about being able to provide for a future family, and we’re enduring the bottom of the totem pole at our jobs. And for the ministers, the former does not seem to be an issue, and at their jobs their nominal supervisors defer to them as the holders of the secret gospel wisdom of Matt Chandler and Mark Driscoll. The solution to my friends’ issues and anxieties usually involved kissing a lot of rear end and providing free babysitting. The clear time to go was when another young pastor was hired, who talked normally, until he pronounced God the way John Piper does. “Gwaud!”

    And this is why hyper-Calvinism is not only about subjecting women through complementarianism, but also subjecting men. These pastors and elders don’t want equality with other men, either. They want to rule them.

  135. Debi Calvet wrote:

    This is just creepy. And revolting. And arrogant and condescending.

    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!

  136. Jeff S wrote:

    @ Max:
    To be fair, Piper is only one of the views out there representing New Calvinism.

    Yeah, some are much worse, like Bruce Ware, who says that women are not made in the image of God. We’re lower than pets.

  137. Stan said:

    “At my previous gospel-centered PCA church, the only people in the young adults community who had no trouble owning property in a desirable neighborhood, providing for a wife and kids on a single income (less the wife’s MLM job), and by their claim paying the tithe, were on the church payroll.”

    Sounds about right.

    “So you have people ministering to young men, whose basic issues in life are generally: we’re anxious about being able to provide for a future family, and we’re enduring the bottom of the totem pole at our jobs. And for the ministers, the former does not seem to be an issue, and at their jobs their nominal supervisors defer to them as the holders of the secret gospel wisdom of Matt Chandler and Mark Driscoll.”

    To make it in these YRR and neopatriarchal churches, you need to live like you’re middle to upper-middle class. Wife need to work for more than she’d make at an MLM? Can’t afford to copy the Duggars? You’re in unbelief and/or rebellion. If you trusted and obeyed God, of course He’d come through with that higher paying job that doesn’t go above 40 hours a week and lets him take care of all the big chores, as well as leading family devotions every night.

  138. Jeff S wrote:

    @ NJ:
    There’s that article on CMBW that says women will submit to men in heaven.

    I’ll never forget about that one. It’s actually the logical conclusion of ESS.

  139. Max wrote:

    Debi Calvet wrote:
    This is just creepy. And revolting. And arrogant and condescending.
    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!

    I think many have a genuine desire for truth, and to live a holy life. But, when growing up in Baptist/Presbyterian circles, and one hears Piper and his ilk preached each week, one’s closest friends are from the same circles, the only books promoted are from Crossway, and Calvinism is taught as the only correct understanding of the bible, then the truth that women (and men) find is not very true at all…

  140. …and that desire for living a holy life results in being more “sold out” for the type of teachings espoused by Mr. Piper

  141. Now that Wayne Grudem has illustrated for me how easily one can update the scriptures to portray the correct mindset, I propose a few more updates to the Bible, to make it easier for the lay people to understand what is important.

    Here are the changes I suggest for Matt 25:34-36:

    “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I needed to have the correct doctrine, and you gave it to me; I needed to know who was in authority, and you told me; I needed to know my correct gender role, and you filled me in; I was in need of church discipline, and you shunned me; I had the wrong church polity, and you fixed me; I did not understand how important and above critique your Representatives were, and you set me straight.’”

  142. Jeff S wrote:

    Piper is only one of the views out there representing New Calvinism.

    Yes, that’s why they formed Together for the Gospel (aka Together for Calvinism) … to herd all the various aberrations of reformed theology into one camp.

  143. NJ wrote:

    he has a highly romanticized, sentimental view of male/female relations in general

    Approaching perversion.

  144. @ Nancy2:

    One way to put it is that God wills that men, by virtue of their maleness, have a greater responsibility for personal, directive, spiritual leadership in relation to women than women do in relation to men.
    [snip] With all their differences (which may fit them for far different roles), [b]let there be no talk of greater or lesser value in manhood or womanhood.

    Um…

  145. @ Nancy2:

    Sorry, I messed up the bolding in that last quote. I feel like I could quote the whole thing though. In going over why helper woman is not the same as helper god he mentioned the animals were looked at first. No wonder these guys don’t think highly of women!

    “Now there is a being who is “fit for him,” sharing his human nature. She is infinitely different from an animal, and God highlights her value to man by showing man how no animal can fill her role. Yet in passing through “helpful” animals to woman, God teaches us that woman is the “helper” in the sense of a loyal and suitable assistant in the life of the garden.”

    Yet is just a fancy ‘but’.

  146. Burwell wrote:

    As I push past the cobwebs of my mind and reach further into the distant corners of my memory, I seem to recall reading somewhere that Piper grew up as an IFB or its equivalent near Bob Jones University. If this is true, then much of his works-tainted theology, as well as his overly harsh child behavioral recommendations and his (trigger warning) be quiet woman and get back in the kitchen style of relationship advice, makes sense.

    Piper wants all Marthas and no Marys, but that departs from Our Lord so profoundly.

    It strikes me that when men shame and belittle women, they have to walk away from Our Lord in order to do it. And having done it, sometimes they flounder in the storms of their own making.

  147. @ Nancy2:

    Man, that whole article is garbage. Just got to the ‘curse’.

    I am not at all surprised to find Piper was IFB influenced. It seems like he’s one of the nutty fundamentalists who somehow got mistaken for a respectable normal person and has as a result corrupted a whole group of men on this topic.

  148. Lea wrote:

    Sorry, I messed up the bolding in that last quote. I feel like I could quote the whole thing though. In going over why helper woman is not the same as helper god he mentioned the animals were looked at first. No wonder these guys don’t think highly of women!
    Piper: “Now there is a being who is “fit for him,” sharing his human nature. She is infinitely different from an animal, and God highlights her value to man by showing man how no animal can fill her role. Yet in passing through “helpful” animals to woman, God teaches us that woman is the “helper” in the sense of a loyal and suitable assistant in the life of the garden.”
    Lea: Yet is just a fancy ‘but’.

    I wish JP would say exactly what he thinks the woman’s role in the life of the garden was!
    Was there a household and children to manage? I don’t theeeenk so. Maybe cooking and soap bubbles? Nah. So many say woman was a “suitable helper” or “assistant”, but I’ve never heard anyone say help or assist at what, or in what way.
    And no animal can fill her role because ……… babies?

  149. @ Christiane:
    And people forget that breaking the bread and distributing the food to the five thousand and the cleaning up (gathering of remains) after the meal was the work of men;

    whereas it was a woman, Mary of Magdala, to whom Our Lord gave the great honor of announcing the Resurrection ……

    no wonder the neo-Cals diss Our Lord. He gets in the way of their self-idolatry

  150. Nancy2 wrote:

    So many say woman was a “suitable helper” or “assistant”, but I’ve never heard anyone say help or assist at what, or in what way.

    That’s because the word “ezer”, often translated “helper” by translators, actually means “power” or “strength”. God uses the word to describe Himself in Deuteronomy 33.

  151. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    perhaps there is something terribly amiss in the church when we have a permanent, paid clergy.

    Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    As soon as you are paid for your opinions, you are no longer a minister.

    Gently taking issue here… There have been full-time members of the clergy for centuries. Many military chaplains are full time and paid. I have received a great deal of help from selfless ministers who receive a salary. Most of these salaries have been quite modest, just enough to support them and make them available to the flock throughout the day and even at night, should that need arise.

    Perhaps the problem is that some people today enter the “ministry” because they see a promise of riches and celebrity. But personally, I’m grateful for the humble parson in the humble parsonage.

  152. From Piper’s article on role reversal:

    ‘“Sin has corrupted both the willing submission of the wife and the loving headship of the husband. And so, the rule of love founded in paradise is replaced by struggle, tyranny, domination and manipulation.”
    It will not surprise us then when Jesus brings redemption that the roles of headship and submission are not obliterated but returned to their original purity.’

    Uhmmmmm, Jesus was crucified in order to bring women back under subjugation?
    Honestly, Piper’s teachings makes me wonder about the root cause of the “marital struggles”.

  153. ishy wrote:

    That’s because the word “ezer”, often translated “helper” by translators, actually means “power” or “strength”.

    They can’t handle that.

    Adam was alone. He was lonely. He was, idk, naming animals and hanging out and eating fruit of trees. He didn’t need someone to dictate too, he didn’t need someone beneath him. He need a full partner, an equal.

  154. Nancy2 wrote:

    Honestly, Piper’s teachings makes me wonder about the root cause of the “marital struggles”.

    The thought of him ringing a bell for tea from his wife is just…mind boggling.

  155. Lea wrote:

    The thought of him ringing a bell for tea from his wife is just…mind boggling.

    Speaks volumes about his lowly opinion of her, doesn’t it?

  156. Dave A A wrote:

    Bill M wrote:

    Just add a dash of Gospel™ and you can press on too! Really?
    Someone needs to diagram out for me what he is saying.

    Maybe Piper himself can interpret:
    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”
    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

    What did I just read?

  157. Dave A A wrote:

    Dave AA

    What in the world does that mean? I’ve been a Christian for 40+ years and married for 30+ years, but I have no idea what he is trying to say.

    Also, the 30+ years really have not been a struggle (although we’ve had our share of difficulties). Maybe it’s because we never embraced any of the pet neo-Cal teachings or tried to squeeze ourselves into the mold known as “the beauty of complementarity.”

  158. ishy wrote:

    hat’s because the word “ezer”, often translated “helper” by translators, actually means “power” or “strength”. God uses the word to describe Himself in Deuteronomy 33.

    Exactly. But, that translation is not in the KJV or the ESV, so it must not be important, or even true. After all, everything we need to know is in the Bible.

    I think my husband gets “ezer”. Over the years, I have made a few trips to get/help him when his vehicle broke down. Once, I drove from Kentucky to central Alabama in the middle of the night to “rescue” him when the slave cylinder went out on his truck on I-65.
    When DH fell from a 12′ ladder last spring, he would have been in real trouble if I had sat around and waited for him to exert his God ordained position as my leader!

  159. @ GC:

    Sorry, I meant to include this quote that Dave AA shared for context –
    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”
    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

  160. Mr. Jesperson wrote:

    There are few leaders I trust.

    Tuff, tuff, lesson to learn.
    But… Excellent principle to live by.
    And, well worth it in the long run.

    WE, His Ekklesia, His Body, His Church…
    Can NOT say God did NOT try to warn us about…
    Trusting Mere Fallible Humans. Especially as “Leaders.”

    Isa 3:12
    …O my people, they which **lead thee** cause thee to err,
    and destroy the way of thy paths.

    Isa 9:16
    For **the leaders** of this people cause them to err;
    and they that are led of them are destroyed.

    Jesus even taught **His Disciples** NOT be called **Leaders.**
    For you have “ONE” leader – the Christ.

    And NOT one of **His Disciples** called them self **Leader.**

    Mat 24:4 …Take heed that NO man deceive you.
    Mark 13:5 … Take heed lest any man deceive you:
    Luke 21:8 …Take heed that ye be NOT deceived:
    Eph 5:6 Let NO man deceive you with vain words…
    2 Thes 2:3 Let NO man deceive you by any means…
    1 John 3:7 Little children, Let NO man deceive you…

    Jer 17:5
    Thus saith the LORD;
    Cursed be the man that trusteth in man….

    Ps 118:8-9
    It is better to trust in the LORD
    than to put confidence in man…

    The Bible warns WE, His Sheep, His Ekklesia, about…
    1-False apostles. 2- Many false prophets. 3- False teachers.
    4- False brethren. 5- False Christ’s (false anointed ones).
    6- Deceitful workers. 7- Evil workers. 8- Dogs 9- and Swine.

    Seems, The only “leader” in the Bible…
    WE, His Disciples, His Kings and Priests, His Servants, His sons…
    Can TRUST is…

    The “ONE” Leader…

    {{{{{{ Jesus }}}}}}

  161. @ Mr. Jesperson:

    Yup
    “…lets follow what Timothy and Titus states about leaders.
    A large majority of them are in fact
    all ready **disqualified** according to the Word.”

    Has anyone ever met a “pastor/leader/elder/overseer?”
    Who meets the 17+, very, very, tuff Qualifications, for elder/overseer?
    Given by Paul to Timothy and Titus?

    In my experience, most who call themselves “pastor/elder/overseer”…
    Will “Ignore,” or “Twist,” the 17+, Qualifications in 1 Tim 3:1-7, and Titus 1:5-8…
    So they can maintain their “Titles,” pastor/leader/reverend…
    That comes with Power, Profit, Prestige, Honor, Glory, Reputation.

    Here’s just the first Qualification in both 1 Tim 3, and Titus.

    1 – Must Be *BLAMELESS.*

    Titus 1:5-8 KJV
    5 …ordain elders in every city…
    6 If any be *BLAMELESS,* the husband of one wife,
    having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.
    7 For a bishop “Must Be” *BLAMELESS,*
    as the steward of God; NOT self willed, NOT soon angry,
    NOT given to wine, NO striker, NOT given to filthy lucre;
    8 a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober,
    *JUST,* *HOLY,* temperate;

    1 – *Must Be*
    Strongs #1163, die. – It is necessary (as binding).
    Thayer’s – necessity established by the counsel and decree of God.
    This *must be* is the same Greek word. – You *must be* born again. Jn 3:7
    Seems to be a small word but very important. Yes?

    1 – BLAMELESS
    Strongs #410 anegkletos – unaccused, irreproachable, blameless.
    Thayers – cannot be called into account, unreproveable, unaccused.
    Dictionary – Without fault, innocent, guiltless, not meriting censure.

    How many, pastor/leader/reverends, who honestly examine themselves,
    seriously considering this one qualification,
    can see themselves as BLAMELESS, without fault,
    and thus qualify to be an elder/overseer?

    And if you can see yourself as BLAMELESS?
    Is that pride? Deception? Delusion?
    And NO longer without fault? 🙂

    The Bible talks about elder/overseers. And Qualifications for elder/overseers.
    Can you have one without the other?

    And, if a pastor/elder/overseer does NOT Qualify???

    Will they remove themselves?
    And be a good example to the Flock?

  162. “The CT article states: Before he admitted it, no one had any inkling that Pastor John Piper—one of the most influential pastors, authors, and theologians in America—had a troubled married life.”

    This is news? The type of “troubles” Piper mentions are the type that come up in relationships. What would have been newsworthy is if he’d said they’d never had one trouble in their marriage ever.

  163. @ Max:

    I’ve read the Matt Chandler series “A Beautiful Design”, and I think I’m starting to get it. It’s like Islam or Mormon. Feminity is nominally venerated and women are seen as inherently superior in morality, as long as they’re in their place.

    @ NJ:

    Speaking of Mormon, the family devotion thing! Aside from being straight out of Aaronic priesthood ideology, it’s because they want men to stop their wives from buying Beth Moore, Joyce Meyer, now Jen Hatmaker, etc. Should my friend who spends two weeks at a time on a Gulf oil rig do this over Skype?

    Also, as a younger fella, I will point out that when people use the word “feel” as a noun on the internet, it’s usually a joke

  164. The video is even better… And there is some sort of joke between Piper and Wilson about flag football versus tackle football, which I didn’t catch. I’m surprised the stage didn’t collapse with such an overload of masculinity.

    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

    The song needs to be updated:
    “And they’ll know we are Christians by our masculine feel, and our feminine feel, which works in the context of the masculine feel, and should never be articulated in any way, seen but not heard, but certainly felt, when we in a masculine mood.”

    It amazes me that this fellow has built a small empire by spouting this sort of… nonsense.

  165. @ Tim:
    an old story from the rabbis …. if you would find the Messiah, you must look for Him outside the gates, bandaging the wounds of the lepers ….

    we can also imagine that if we would find those who serve the Messiah, we must also find them outside of the gated communities which now house so many Christian celebrity/pastors

  166. Max wrote:

    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!

    Easy answers and security in those answers. It takes the onus off of you (generic you) to seek out your own answers and to own them.

  167. Stan wrote:

    I will point out that when people use the word “feel” as a noun on the internet, it’s usually a joke

    Especially when you’re talking about the ‘feels’, like Piper was!

    Fitting though, as this whole theology would be a joke if it weren’t so damaging.

  168. Muff Potter wrote:

    Max wrote:
    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!
    Easy answers and security in those answers. It takes the onus off of you (generic you) to seek out your own answers and to own them.

    Yes. Let us not forget, however, that by no means is New Calvinism the first or the only place where people can get easy answers and security in those answers.

  169. Friend wrote:

    Nick Bulbeck wrote:
    As soon as you are paid for your opinions, you are no longer a minister.

    Gently taking issue here… There have been full-time members of the clergy for centuries. Many military chaplains are full time and paid. I have received a great deal of help from selfless ministers who receive a salary. Most of these salaries have been quite modest…

    Your point is a good one, Friend; I kind of meant “paid mainly/solely for your opinions”. You’re quite right that there have always been paid clergy; Jesus himself was supported financially by faithful (female!!!) disciples, Paul received gifts from the church, etc etc… likewise many humble, non-famous, faithful men and women of God, including the ones you’ve mentioned, down the years.

    I suppose my response would be: they’re paid, and rightly – but not simply for their opinions!

  170. Muff Potter wrote:

    Max wrote:
    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!
    Easy answers and security in those answers. It takes the onus off of you (generic you) to seek out your own answers and to own them.

    Cue Mrs. PP: ‘Dorothy Patterson, wife of Paige Patterson and a member of the committee that drafted the family statement, said, “When it comes to submitting to my husband even when he is wrong, I just do it. He is accountable to God.” ‘
    Releases the wimmen from responsibility and accountability.

  171. Christiane wrote:

    Burwell wrote

    Piper wants all Marthas and no Marys, but that departs from Our Lord so profoundly.

    It strikes me that when men shame and belittle women, they have to walk away from Our Lord in order to do it. And having done it, sometimes they flounder in the storms of their own making.

    If we see that Gospel story in a Jewish context, and of course it is a Jewish context, Jesus as rabbi is engaged in Torah instruction with the disciples which involves give and take, questions and answers. So Mary is invited to engage in what was normally the male practice of rabinical Torah discussion. Pretty revolutionary of Jesus.

  172. ION: Climbing

    Not a great session for me tonight; didn’t make any headway with the balancy 6c+ in the corner. Lesley did better, however, having now done all the moves on the slabby 6b+ (two grades harder than anything she’s previously done).

    IHTIH…

    GNFS

  173. Dale wrote:

    There is also the issue of “Christian Hedonism.” Piper has replaced love of God with lust of God. This may not be good for his marriage. Craig Booth wrote an excellent article critiquing John Piper and Christian Hedonism: http://www.thefaithfulword.org/wakeupcall.html

    The root of Christian Hedonism is also celebrity Christianity – you have to come up with something new and edgy to be something in Evangelicalism.

  174. GSD wrote:

    And there is some sort of joke between Piper and Wilson about flag football versus tackle football, which I didn’t catch

    The pun here cannot go without note.

  175. Nancy2 wrote:

    Muff Potter wrote:

    Max wrote:
    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!
    Easy answers and security in those answers. It takes the onus off of you (generic you) to seek out your own answers and to own them.

    Cue Mrs. PP: ‘Dorothy Patterson, wife of Paige Patterson and a member of the committee that drafted the family statement, said, “When it comes to submitting to my husband even when he is wrong, I just do it. He is accountable to God.” ‘
    Releases the wimmen from responsibility and accountability.

    Ms. PP is full of c r a p in my books. Never should have been a statement on just women submitting to husbands.

  176. Max wrote:

    Debi Calvet wrote:
    This is just creepy. And revolting. And arrogant and condescending.
    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!

    Truthfully I enjoyed the feeling of intellectual superiority, even though I often confused Arminianism with Pelagianism. I’ve always been more head than heart (at least for a girl) so the apparent focus on logic and reason as opposed to feelings was very appealing to me. Driscoll and the complementarian movement was just starting to hit my neck of the woods in college, so Calvinism and Complementarianism weren’t one and the same for me. (My pastor was also an older old-school Calvinist who encouraged me to study) What ultimately saved me from this neo-Cal world was meeting and marrying an Arminian with a very high view women, especially independent minded and thoughtful women.

    As far as corporate worship saving someone’s marriage…there have been Sunday mornings we went to church after fighting the night before, or that morning. We’ll smile and act normal because what else are we supposed to do? We are very cognizant of the hypocrisy of standing before the congregation teaching the Word of God all the while knowing what was said the night before and knowing our attitudes. By the time we take communion there is sincere repentance and forgiveness. It doesn’t really happen like that if we go to just a normal social event. But that’s just us. I wouldn’t credit the church with helping our marriage – at times the church has been responsible for the majority of stress in our marriage. I would credit the Holy Spirit and the desire in both my husband and I to work through problems and make changes.

    Piper is nutty, to say the least. The fact that he is being interviewed by Mahaney is almost laughable…Why are they still a thing? But there is a unique pressure churches tend to place on minister’s families that is not there in other jobs. As a teacher, no one expects my husband to do anything with the school or even cares that I have a husband. My principal isn’t concerned about who babysits my child (and then gets offended that I don’t ask his wife or son). Ministry (for us average non-Baptist small church ministers) is a very different sort of job with very different pressures and expectations.

  177. Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    The root of Christian Hedonism is also celebrity Christianity – you have to come up with something new and edgy to be something in Evangelicalism

    And how is this any better than the Prosperity Gospel that Desiring God/TGC always bash? Both pushing a false product to enrich the pockets/reputation of a celebrity few…

  178. Chemie wrote:

    And how is this any better than the Prosperity Gospel that Desiring God/TGC always bash?

    I was thinking the same thing. Everybody wants a ‘thing’. Because the bible itself is not enough. We need a catchy title, even if it makes no sense. Hence Christian Hedonism. Bah.

  179. GC wrote:

    @ GC:
    Sorry, I meant to include this quote that Dave AA shared for context –
    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”
    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

    Piper needs to get out and make some new friends who will teach him better vocabulary and phrases. That whole paragraph sounds dirty and like the beginning scene in an adult film…

  180. Christiane wrote:

    Piper wants all Marthas and no Marys, but that departs from Our Lord so profoundly.

    You need both Marthas and Marys.
    All Marthas and No Marys are out-of-balance.
    All Marys and No Marthas are out-of-balance.

  181. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Christiane wrote:

    Piper wants all Marthas and no Marys, but that departs from Our Lord so profoundly.

    You need both Marthas and Marys.
    All Marthas and No Marys are out-of-balance.
    All Marys and No Marthas are out-of-balance.

    But Piper and his type are threatened by strong women. Bless their hearts.

  182. ishy wrote:

    Jeff S wrote:
    @ Max:
    To be fair, Piper is only one of the views out there representing New Calvinism.
    Yeah, some are much worse, like Bruce Ware, who says that women are not made in the image of God. We’re lower than pets.

    If not something I’ve seen far too often in the imaginary critters of Furry Fandom:
    Just human enough so it isn’t Bestiality.

  183. Max wrote:

    Debi Calvet wrote:
    This is just creepy. And revolting. And arrogant and condescending.
    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!

    When you’ve been raised completely inside the bubble, A Fish Doesn’t Know It’s Wet.

  184. Muff Potter wrote:

    Nancy2 wrote:
    Does Heaven have a masculine feel, and will praise there be led primarily by men?

    If it does, it’s yet another reason why I have no desire to go to Protestant Evangelical heaven. The Jewish version of ‘heaven’ Olam Ha-Ba is way more appealing to me.

    Olam Ha-Ba = Cosmos 2.0, completely debugged.

    I once read a flashfic of a Protestant Minister and Jewish Rabbi (no Catholic Priest involved). Went like this:

    The Minister related a dream to the Rabbi about the Rabbi’s Heaven — a huge bustling city, filled with people going about their daily business and pleasures and just Living Their Lives. And how the dream left him exhausted.

    The Rabbi related that he too had had a dream about the Minister’s Heaven — a small-town Pleasantville of little cottages and white picket fences.

    The Minister asked “And what were the People in Heaven like?”

    The Rabbi answered “What people?”

  185. As a final point of interest for today:

    I have mild lexical-gustatory synesthesia; this means that words have a taste that is largely independent of their meaning. (Thus, although “lemon” does taste of lemon, so does “metal”. “Mettle”, on the other hand, does not.)

    As such, one of my favourite words is “isotropic”.

    IHTIH

  186. Todd Wilhelm wrote:

    I have seen multiple examples of these men being totally out of touch with reality. Many, not all, have morphed into a class of highly educated pharisees with a great grasp of the law, but no grasp of love, justice or mercy.
    “What sorrow awaits you Pharisees! For you are careful to tithe even the tiniest income from your herb gardens, but you ignore justice and the love of God. You should tithe, yes, but do not neglect the more important things.”
    Luke 11:42 NLT

    Spot on, Todd.

    John Piper’s former church Bethlehem Baptist in Minnesota is currently in the process of excommunicating a godly woman Natalie for divorcing her abusive husband of many decades.
    The pastors/elders at BB lied about Natalie before hundreds of church members.

    Her blog is Visionary Womanhood. http://visionarywomanhood.com/

    She is also on Facebook.

  187. I Fear a Cage wrote:

    It applies to everything. We went to see my folks for Christmas and it was a lovely service, with a special reading of scriptures for Christmas, but it made me cry because all the readers, standing there up on the stage were men.

    I’m RCC. You know, the one who refuses to ordain women?

    Well, in the Liturgy of the Word (first half of Mass) every Sunday at St Boniface, the Lectors (Readers) for the OT & NT readings are more often than not FEMALE. As is the Cantor who leads the Psalm between the readings. The male priest only reads the Gospel before the homily and celebrates/consecrates the wafers and wine in the Liturgy of the Eucharist (the second half of Mass). And half the Lay Eucharistic Ministers who assist the priest in distributing Eucharist to the congregation are also FEMALE.

    High Holy Day Masses (Christmas and Easter) have a lot more readings with several Lectors switching off, but even then I’ve never seen more than 2/3 male in the rotation.

  188. Beakerj wrote:

    Whilst I’m glad Piper wanted to work on his marriage & make his wife happier, all the nonsense he spouts…(ed.)

    “You know what a Volt and an Ampere are, but do you know what a Goebbels is? A Goebbels is the amount of nonsense a man can spout in one minute.”
    — A.Hitler, according to an anecdote reported in the 1943 OSS psych profile.

  189. mot wrote:

    Ms. PP is full of c r a p in my books. Never should have been a statement on just women submitting to husbands.

    Mmmm. Like when Sapphira submitted to Annanias. I guess Dottie’s never read that.

  190. siteseer wrote:

    And I don’t see where he goes on to think or behave differently than what caused his issues in the first place. Has he ever changed his teachings due to the fact they were not working in his own life? Has he ever recognized the fact that his comp teachings failed to bring happiness to his own home? Has he stopped teaching others to live in the way that failed in his own life?

    Why should he change when he’s already Perfect?

  191. Nancy2 wrote:

    Lea wrote:
    I know you’re a musical person, but I guess they don’t care about balancing harmonies.

    Perfect harmony can only be achieved when women graciously submit.

    “Fifty billion years of Matter in Motion lead inexorably to the Society of Perfect Harmony.”
    — Shining Path (Peruvian Terrorist Group) justifying the use of children as suicide bombers

  192. Nancy2 wrote:

    mot wrote:

    Ms. PP is full of c r a p in my books. Never should have been a statement on just women submitting to husbands.

    Mmmm. Like when Sapphira submitted to Annanias. I guess Dottie’s never read that.

    The division this submission stuff has caused in Southern Baptist churches is very real.

  193. Nancy2 wrote:

    Perfect harmony can only be achieved when women graciously submit.

    In Semitic languages (such as Arabic), all nouns with the same three-consonant root are normally related in meaning; the different vowels added to that root are what makes different words.

    In Arabic, the words for Submission (“Islam”) and Peace (“Salaam”) both have the same “S-L-M” root. Like the definition of “Peace = When the Weak Submit to The Strong” is hardcoded into the language?

  194. Nancy2 wrote:

    mot wrote:
    Ms. PP is full of c r a p in my books. Never should have been a statement on just women submitting to husbands.
    Mmmm. Like when Sapphira submitted to Annanias. I guess Dottie’s never read that.

    That’s our Nancy2, a spitfire!

  195. To be fair to Piper, he has been openly advertising his aberrant theology for years through his motto "God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him." For someone who screams "sola "scriptura," this phrase has no support from the Bible. It's the same with many of his teachings. So it seems he is being rather transparent about it, but people aren't getting the joke.

  196. Ken F wrote:

    To be fair to Piper, he has been openly advertising his aberrant theology for years through his motto “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.”

    When Desiring God came out, friends at the church I was going to at the time went on and on about Piper. I read the book, and we went to the Desiring God conference in Atlanta. I didn’t get why they were so enamored then. He’s a flowery, emotional writer, but mostly he just sounded pretentious and arrogant, especially in person.

    Now he sounds pretentious, arrogant, and bat crazy. So, not too much has changed in my opinion of him.

  197. Chemie wrote:

    And how is this any better than the Prosperity Gospel that Desiring God/TGC always bash? Both pushing a false product to enrich the pockets/reputation of a celebrity few…

    I think you are spot on. It is terribly inconsistent.

  198. Deb wrote:

    If they peaked at $8 million in 2012, it looks like the Neo-Cal movement is starting to wane.

    Whew! It’s going strong in my area. Piper’s corner of the movement may be on a downhill slide, but there have been more Neo-Cal celebrities show up on the mountain to take his place since 2012. New Calvinism is still cool enough to attract the Generation Xers and Millennials and there has been a proliferation of reformed churches in the past few years to provide homes for them. As Al Mohler says “Where else are they going to go?”

  199. Max wrote:

    Max wrote:

    As Al Mohler says “Where else are they going to go?”

    And these are the leaders who continue to steer the Generations Xers and Millineals into New Calvinism:

    http://t4g.org/about/

    And they will continue to wreak havoc everywhere these “pastors” go.

  200. Friend wrote:

    Perhaps the problem is that some people today enter the “ministry” because they see a promise of riches and celebrity. But personally, I’m grateful for the humble parson in the humble parsonage.

    I’ve been looking for one of those for the last 40 years. I did have one for a few years. Seems they are mighty few and far between.

  201. https://youtu.be/z2CEPBUi8nI

    This is, I think, a close written transcript of the part I was thinking about which starts about 2 minutes into the video. I want you to think about what this says and look at Mr. Piper’s mannerisms. I don’t want to get too much into just how much evidence there is that supports the validity of the Theory of Evolution. Dee and Deb have covered that subject along with some very helpful parts from some very smart people who post here. Here is the transcript which was written by someone else in the comment section of this video. I can’t guarantee it is totally accurate.

    “When we get to the judgment seat…and Mr. Dawkins, and Hitchens, and…and they all say…and God says, ‘Now what was that you said about the way the universe came into being and the way that spider came into being?’ And they say, ‘Well, we thought it was just…nothing…that it was just forces that just kinda…you know…just happened.’ And I…I think God’s going to look at me, he’s gonna to say, ‘Kahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!’ he’s just gonna laugh and the universe is gonna shake.”

    Think on this, he seems to think he will be right up there on the stage/throne with God it really is rather scary. This guy has always given me the willies with all the hand waving but when you actually listen to what he says past the grandfather voice and smile. In my opinion, and I am no expert but I personally believe there may be some hidden pathology there, allegedly. I think I got that worded right.

  202. @ Tim:
    In the ministry bubble, the delusion of perfection is normal.

    BTW, excellent recent “train wreck” jnposts, TFall.

  203. siteseer wrote:

    I’ve been looking for one of those for the last 40 years. I did have one for a few years. Seems they are mighty few and far between.

    I grew up in a church like that, and I’m in one now (by intention), but most of my experience with church has been the opposite.

    I see celebrity culture taught and venerated in many churches, and I wonder if humility was taught, if there’d be a different outcome.

  204. siteseer wrote:

    But personally, I’m grateful for the humble parson in the humble parsonage.

    go to the nursing homes and the hospitals and observe for a while ….. ask which clergymen/women come to see the ones who are disabled/mentally incapacitated, old, senile …. and find out their names …. then you may be on to some REAL servants of Our Lord

    saw a pastor once in an ER stop by a gurney that held a man who was mentally ill and distressed … this pastor spoke to him for a time and prayed for him and stayed by him until the poor man stopped crying and slept …. I don’t know what ‘denomination’ he was, he seemed to be wearing a collar and spoke with a Scottish brogue;

    but does it really matter? Not in my understanding, no. And I’m Catholic. That was a serving minister of the whole Church. He had nothing to gain by helping that poor man. He had no reason to expect any earthly recognition for the way he calmed and stayed by that troubled person til he slept. I don’t know who he was, but Our Lord knows him and he knows Our Lord, of that I am certain.

    Those ministers are ‘out there’. And they are humble in the way of the One they serve. Don’t give up looking.

  205. Christiane wrote:

    go to the nursing homes and the hospitals and observe for a while ….. ask which clergymen/women come to see the ones who are disabled/mentally incapacitated, old, senile …. and find out their names …. then you may be on to some REAL servants of Our Lord

    Great suggestion!

  206. @ mot:

    I don’t believe Mrs PP for a second. My close friend has been in their home (The Manse), had dinner at their table, and watched Mrs PP repeatedly dress down Mr PP, who did exactly what he was told. It’s clear who wears the pants in that marriage. Don’t be fooled by the hat.

    Submission? Yes, Mr PP submits quite well.

  207. Nancy2 wrote:

    “When it comes to submitting to my husband even when he is wrong, I just do it. He is accountable to God.” (Dorothy Patterson, wife of Paige Patterson)

    We will all appear before the judgment seat of Christ to give an individual accounting … there will be no filtering of responsibility through the lives of others. When we submit to someone who is wrong, we are wrong as well.

  208. mot wrote:

    Never should have been a statement on just women submitting to husbands.

    That 1998 amendment to the Baptist Faith and Message was a precursor to a more comprehensive overhaul of the BFM in 2000, trending SBC toward Calvinism. Most Southern Baptists don’t know this history or really give a big whoop it appears.

  209. Max wrote:

    mot wrote:

    Never should have been a statement on just women submitting to husbands.

    That 1998 amendment to the Baptist Faith and Message was a precursor to a more comprehensive overhaul of the BFM in 2000, trending SBC toward Calvinism. Most Southern Baptists don’t know this history or really give a big whoop it appears.

    I ask myself every day what happened to the Southern Baptist Convention that I loved and invested so much of myself and yet I am not wanted because I believe the SBC is wrong on its treatment of women. For those that know the history the FUNDAMENTALISTS stole the Southern Baptist Convention–leadership-seminaries-etc.

  210. @ brian:
    He tells of his study on the 3rd floor where he spent the week writing his sermon. A doorbell at his desk was to ring his wife to bring tea, or whatever else he requested.

  211. okrapod wrote:

    Yes. Let us not forget, however, that by no means is New Calvinism the first or the only place where people can get easy answers and security in those answers.

    True. I spent nearly two decades in the Calvary Chapel brand.

  212. Max wrote:

    Baptist Faith and Message was a precursor to a more comprehensive overhaul of the BFM in 2000, trending SBC toward Calvinism. Most Southern Baptists don’t know this history or really give a big whoop it appears.

    Opened the door for ESS.

  213. JYJames wrote:

    He tells of his study on the 3rd floor where he spent the week writing his sermon. A doorbell at his desk was to ring his wife to bring tea, or whatever else he requested.

    I don’t mind doing things for my husband, but if he tried doing that stunt on regular basis, I’d put a new lock on the 3rd floor door. The lock would be on the outside!

  214. Max wrote:

    That 1998 amendment to the Baptist Faith and Message was a precursor to a more comprehensive overhaul of the BFM in 2000, trending SBC toward Calvinism. Most Southern Baptists don’t know this history or really give a big whoop it appears.

    I think most of us didn’t even know. I sat in an SBC church in rural Southern Kentucky, and never knew a thing about it, until it was toooooooo late.

  215. Johan Bekker wrote:

    Looking at all the comments, I do see why the Church of Christ is so divided today. There is a critical spirit in so many Pastors and Christians. I believe repentance is in order???

    Why is it public discussion of a public statement has to be demonized? You call it a “spirit”. When I look in the bible, Paul and James were doing exactly the same thing. The epistles are ancient blogs. They were meant to be widely read and they are not afraid of discussing things. I would argue that your words are in themselves critical. Are you functioning under a demonic spirit? These questions are asked out of curiosity.

    I was in a church where anyone who asked questions or resisted the NAR (New Apostolic Reformation) doctrine was functioning under a “spirit of religion”.

  216. Ah, Piper. The man who wrote over 50 books, and speaks at conference after conference.

  217. dee wrote:

    I admire people who stick it. through with difficult marriages (so long as abuse is not involved. But, I think the answer goes far deeper that attending worship services. I hope this make sense to you.

    The trap of using the things of God as some kind of magic formula or wand to fix very difficult situations displays, in my opinion, a lack of empathy with real suffering. I have seen and heard it used to burden a parent of a severely disabled child and of course people in very difficult marriages. I believe it is very difficult for many of us to join in the suffering of others and instead offer up the fast cure for what ails. This adds burdens to the backs of already burdened people and they are left, quite often, struggling with feelings of having failed.

  218. JYJames wrote:

    @ brian:
    He tells of his study on the 3rd floor where he spent the week writing his sermon. A doorbell at his desk was to ring his wife to bring tea, or whatever else he requested.

    Wow. Sounds pretty bratty.

    I once had a bad fever as a lass and was given a silver bell to ring when I had a “need”.
    Let’s just say that the silver bell was snatched out of my hands and never given to me again. I learned my lesson and I was a child.

  219. dee wrote:

    Dave A A wrote:

    “If it is done right, this masculine feel creates a space. It is big, it’s roomy, it’s beautiful, it’s peaceful. It’s just full and radiates with all the good things of life and in it women, flourishing, will give it that feel. So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”
    http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/more-on-the-masculine-feel-of-christianity

    Holy Mackerel!!! He said this? Am going to tweet this out and may write a post in it.

    IJTU (I just threw up). The arrogance!

  220. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    “And as you navigate that [male-dominated] community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”

    Wished every omega male ever.

    </blockquote

    Now why did this make me think of Donald Trump?

  221. Piper actually takes none of the money from his royalties. He received a salary from his church, but all book moneys went back to the ministry. You can dislike Piper for other reasons, but love of money isn’t one of them. ishy wrote:

    Deb wrote:

    I seem to recall reading that Piper’s eight month leave of absence was unpaid. Now I can’t find that statement. I’ll keep looking…

    Piper gets lots of money monthly from book royalties anyway. I doubt it mattered very much.

    Now, I don’t have a problem if people can take a leave of absence on their own money. But it’s not a method most people can do, so it’s not something people should instruct other people to do.

  222. Max wrote:

    Then why, for Gwaud’s sake, are so many young women drawn to New Calvinism?!

    Complementarianism as taught by just about any group (not just Neo Cals) is appealing to some women b/c if they were like me-

    They were conditioned while girls NOT to be independent adults, to make choices for themselves, so they arrived at adulthood with a child-like mentality, expecting that a husband would be a protector – provider – Father Figure to them.

    If you don’t teach your daughter as she is growing up to be a full fledged adult with her own identity at some point, you make her feel as though her only way of getting through adulthood is to marry some dude who will care for her, the way dad did.

    And she hears in complementarian church sermons that this indeed is one duty of a husband – to take care of, provide for, and protect the wife.

    That is one reason among a few.

  223. siteseer wrote:

    Nancy2 wrote:
    I saw this on WTVF channel 5 news (Nashville, TN) tonight, so I googled the church. They are a non-denom, but they do life groups and Rick Warren’s “purpose driven”.
    People recently discovered that the former pastor had a camera in the bathroom of his home.
    http://www.newschannel5.com/news/local-news/former-gallatin-church-pastor-charged-with-a-crime
    Note to self: check for cameras when visiting pastors’ restrooms!

    Note to self: find out how to purchase astronaut diapers.

  224. mot wrote:

    But Piper and his type are threatened by strong women. Bless their hearts.

    These types of complementarians seem to feel if women are strong and/or have identities apart from men or A man (such as a husband) then the male loses HIS purpose and/or identity.

    I also suspect some of them like this comp stuff because they want a class of people to rule over.

  225. Jeff S wrote:

    or that divorced people must stay single)

    I just wanted to put it out there that is someone is divorced and is unable for whatever reason to get remarried living your life as a single is not The End of life.

    I’ve made it into my 40s and have never married.

  226. NJ wrote:

    Hmmmmm. Perhaps my husband and I are an anomaly. Life is difficult, and we occasionally have had conflict, but I can’t honestly say our marriage has been “very hard”

    I do see both extremes when I read about married people talk about their marriages
    You have half who go on and on about What Terribly Hard Work Marriage Is, and the other half describe their marriages as being a breeze, a cake walk.

  227. @ brian:
    Praying for him, and for you as well, brian, for God’s peace which passes understanding to guard your heart and mind. I was sickened when I heard the news story earlier this evening.

  228. @ brian:
    have been praying since I heard ….. may God have mercy on those who cannot defend themselves from evil in this world

  229. stinks wrote:

    Good for him on figuring out how to fix marriage.

    Yes, he ought to write a “how to fix your marriage” book. He can go on and on, using hundreds of words to express the thought: “When you’re feeling down in the dumps and you’ve been fighting with your spouse, just go to church and sing a few hymns and all your problems will seem to shrink and be put in perspective. Of course, it’s only a short-term fix. You have to keep doing it over and over, and meanwhile you’re still going to be fighting with your spouse at home. But that’s all fine, because God gets the glory.”

    Or something like that.

  230. @ refugee:
    (p.s. Going to church and singing hymns did not make my spouse a more loving person, and it did not fix our marriage. Family counseling sessions (psychologist, *not* nouthetic) are helping a lot, and making a real difference.)

  231. dee wrote:

    Dale wrote:
    I heard that it happened (IHTIH)?
    Is this the meaning?

    Maybe someone already answered. I need to go to bed and don’t have time to read down the rest of the thread. But for Dee’s sake, I think that it means “I hope this is helpful”. At least, that seems to fit in the context where Nick uses it.

    IHTIH!

    (and if I’m wrong, please help me out with the proper explanation, someone. I will try to continue to read down the thread tomorrow…)

  232. one of the little people wrote:

    So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”

    Who is it who often says that he can tell if a church is comp because the faces of the women in the pews reflect their misery?

  233. refugee wrote:

    one of the little people wrote:
    So that as you walk in on Sunday morning and strong singing, led primarily by men, and then a voice from God is heard, and women are loving this, they’re radiant, they’re intelligent, they’re understanding, they’re processing, they’re interacting. Then all the gifts that were just articulated will flourish in that space. And as you navigate that community there will be feminine feels all over the place.”
    Who is it who often says that he can tell if a church is comp because the faces of the women in the pews reflect their misery?

    Was that Max?

  234. Lea wrote:

    ishy wrote:

    I think Lea’s point that Calvinista pastors always make the point “Nobody’s having an affair!” as the proof that they have a stable marriage is a good point. It’s like your house is being ripped apart by a tornado, and you yell, “But it’s not on fire!”

    Yes! It is deeply bizarre isn’t it? Like ‘Oh I’m a total drunk and we hate each other and we haven’t slept in the same bed for years and sometimes he hits me and we yell constantly, but we haven’t cheated so it’s all ok we’re totally biblical’.

    Um…

    YES. This.

  235. Velour wrote:

    siteseer wrote:

    Nancy2 wrote:
    I saw this on WTVF channel 5 news (Nashville, TN) tonight, so I googled the church. They are a non-denom, but they do life groups and Rick Warren’s “purpose driven”.
    People recently discovered that the former pastor had a camera in the bathroom of his home.
    http://www.newschannel5.com/news/local-news/former-gallatin-church-pastor-charged-with-a-crime
    Note to self: check for cameras when visiting pastors’ restrooms!

    Note to self: find out how to purchase astronaut diapers.

    Apparently in Japan, there are some young people who are too lazy to use public restrooms, so they regularly wear adult diapers instead. They’ve been called “the ultimate slobs”.

  236. (Preacher) Eddie Long Tells Church He’s Ignoring Their Calls Because People Are Asking Too Many Questions
    http://www.christianpost.com/news/eddie-long-tells-church-hes-ignoring-their-calls-because-people-are-asking-too-many-questions-172601/

    Ailing megachurch Pastor Eddie Long of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia, Georgia, whose mysterious illness has sparked speculation that he is suffering from HIV or AIDS, told his congregation in a recent sermon that he stopped answering their calls because they were asking too many questions.

  237. I guess Mrs. Piper endured for a season & had enough.

    This clown espouses a theology of control & dominance – particularly over women.

    I think that’s what CJ found shocking. Piper the arch complementarian having to work on his marriage. Love to have been a fly on the wall at the Piper house for that one.

    I don’t care what the Bible says.

    Men & women are equal. Period. Full stop. I’m no theologian but I don’t think Jesus was complementarian. And Paul didn’t turn down assistance when women offered to foot the bill.

  238. Johanna wrote:

    Piper actually takes none of the money from his royalties. He received a salary from his church, but all book moneys went back to the ministry. You can dislike Piper for other reasons, but love of money isn’t one of them

    I am aware of this and you are correct. I hear he takes his wife to the same dumpy restaurant each week. Piper's love in life is zealotry and he will out zealot the best of them. What I don't understand is that his church allowed him to get away with this nonsense which just goes to prove that elders are simply yes men who occasionally say "I disagree* " with fear and trembling so they can pretend that are actually autonomous.

  239. Jack wrote:

    Piper the arch complementarian having to work on his marriage.

    After years and years of marriage and pretending he had it all together. Of course, his solution is "attend the worship service" and all will be well. Simplistic and doesn't address what thermal work involved, if any.

  240. Jack wrote:

    Men & women are equal. Period. Full stop. I’m no theologian but I don’t think Jesus was complementarian. And Paul didn’t turn down assistance when women offered to foot the bill.

    They lived in a patriarchal culture in which women were subordinate and slaves were common. This does not mean the culture was bibilcal.. It meant that the world, as it was, was on the cusp of change and the male leaders fought to maintain the status quo on the cultural mores of the day.

  241. Someone had mentioned about what real Christians do versus celebrity pastors.

    Right now our area is gripped by a massive cold wave. -29C (-20F).

    We’ve had one homeless death already.

    The Salvation Army van has been out every night with warm drinks. Handing out hats & mitts.

    Last night they helped 14 people. I listened on the news as they tried to reason with a prostitute to get her into a warm place for the night.

    The shelters (mostly Christian missions) are sharing resources so everyone has a bed regardless of faith or creed.

    And these aren’t high rolling organizations.

    That’s the real deal.

  242. dee wrote:

    A storm is coming to Raleigh and I am off to hit the grocery store early.

    Good for you.

    May you be kept in hot coffee by your generator.

  243. Daisy wrote:

    Ailing megachurch Pastor Eddie Long of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia, Georgia, whose mysterious illness has sparked speculation that he is suffering from HIV or AIDS, told his congregation in a recent sermon that he stopped answering their calls because they were asking too many questions.

    Isn’t this the same “Bishop” Eddie Long who had a sex scandal involving teenage boys in his congregation? The same “Bishop” Eddie Long who got called by a Senate investigation for “financial improprieties”?

  244. Daisy wrote:

    I also suspect some of them like this comp stuff because they want a class of people to rule over.

    Hold the Whip or Feel the Whip.

  245. brian wrote:

    “When we get to the judgment seat…and Mr. Dawkins, and Hitchens, and…and they all say…and God says, ‘Now what was that you said about the way the universe came into being and the way that spider came into being?’ And they say, ‘Well, we thought it was just…nothing…that it was just forces that just kinda…you know…just happened.’ And I…I think God’s going to look at me, he’s gonna to say, ‘Kahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!’ he’s just gonna laugh and the universe is gonna shake.”

    That sounds EXACTLY like Slacktivist’s description of the Great White Throne scene in Left Behind: Volume 12(?). Where the only reason given for casting the Beast and False Prophet into Hell is “teaching the lie of Evolution”.

    Think on this, he seems to think he will be right up there on the stage/throne with God it really is rather scary.

    Whatever would God do without Pastor Grima Wormtongue “right up there on the Great White Throne with Him”?
    Fluttery Hands, Flowery Word Salad, and all?
    (Smug Smug Smug, Gloat Gloat Gloat…)

  246. Jack wrote:

    The Salvation Army van has been out every night with warm drinks. Handing out hats & mitts.

    Last night they helped 14 people. I listened on the news as they tried to reason with a prostitute to get her into a warm place for the night.

    The shelters (mostly Christian missions) are sharing resources so everyone has a bed regardless of faith or creed.

    And these aren’t high rolling organizations.

    That’s the real deal.

    Amen!

  247. @ Headless Unicorn Guy:
    P.S.

    Think on this, he seems to think he will be right up there on the stage/throne with God it really is rather scary.

    Velour?

    Do you think Flutterhands will be “right up there on the stage/throne” astride a White Horse personally given to him by God for Armageddon, just like your former Pastor?

  248. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Where the only reason given for casting the Beast and False Prophet into Hell is “teaching the lie of Evolution”.

    Wow that’s dumb. I can’t understand why anyone would think getting science wrong would be a sin in the first place. Do they think the 6k earth people are going to hell if they are wrong?

    I think it’s a fundamental misunderstanding that these are the things that are important to God.

  249. Velour wrote:

    May you be kept in hot coffee by your generator.

    A great blessing for Dee, Velour. I mean this.

    Years ago, hurricane …. lost power for a week. Coffee withdrawal misery big time, long long lines at 7/11 for their hot coffee …. we bought a generator after that fiasco, yes

  250. refugee wrote:

    Who is it who often says that he can tell if a church is comp because the faces of the women in the pews reflect their misery?

    I have commented in the past on my direct observations at a New Calvinist church plant in my area, pastored at the time by a 30-something Driscollite whose preaching was predominantly directed at men. I watched the interaction of folks in that gathering and the “feminine feels” I discerned would not be characterized as peace and joy. There appeared to be an oppression in the countenance of young women there, just something about the way they carried themselves and the way they looked (no smiles). With the exception of a couple of young women in the band and those keeping the nursery, no women held positions in the “ministry.” The congregation was predominantly in their 20s-30s, college students and young professionals … actually, more of a crowd than a congregation which was attracted to the free coffee/pastries, macho pastor and cool band. It was obvious from the sermon podcasts I monitored from this “lead pastor” that he was parroting the complementarian teachings of folks like Driscoll and Piper – he often quoted them. My “masculine feel” was that the “feminine feel” was not healthy in that church. In my 60+ years as a Christian, I have also observed this behavior in authoritarian patriarchal churches of a more traditional nature … the women just don’t appear to be set free in Christ.

  251. @ Max:

    When it comes to patriarchy, which has been cleverly disguised as complementarianism, my husband often says – Why are the women putting up with it?

    No wonder I love my hubby so much!!!

    I’m gonna make a prediction…

    In the not too distant future, Christian women in their 30s and 40s are gonna walk out of these patriarchal churches in droves, never to return again. And their families will be so much better off for it.

    Male domination is NOT what Jesus modeled.

  252. I am no fan of Piper because of his abuse comments….but it seems to me a little two-faced that he is critisized for being honest. If he did not admit to struggles in his marriage….people would say he is not “real”. As he HAS admitted problems he is being analyzed….and again found wanting. I would not look harshly on a married man who is faithful and admitting it is hard. I would have problems with some of his theological beliefs, like no remarriage after divorce, but i simply cant look at him negatively for admitting problems at home. Lets be fair here…..

  253. dee wrote:

    A storm is coming to Raleigh and I am off to hit the grocery store early.

    We got almost two inches of snow here and I still have to go to work in an hour!! Boo.

  254. abigail wrote:

    but i simply cant look at him negatively for admitting problems at home. Lets be fair here…..

    To be fair…
    For many years Piper taught one way and lived another. He led millions astray through his hypocrisy. He has not apologized for that.

  255. Lea wrote:

    dee wrote:
    A storm is coming to Raleigh and I am off to hit the grocery store early.
    We got almost two inches of snow here and I still have to go to work in an hour!! Boo.

    I think that same storm is heading to Atlanta. I picked up groceries yesterday. My husband is leaving work early and my son is being dismissed from school early.

  256. Deb wrote:

    @ Max:

    When it comes to patriarchy, which has been cleverly disguised as complementarianism, my husband often says – Why are the women putting up with it?

    No wonder I love my hubby so much!!!

    I’m gonna make a prediction…

    In the not too distant future, Christian women in their 30s and 40s are gonna walk out of these patriarchal churches in droves, never to return again. And their families will be so much better off for it.

    Male domination is NOT what Jesus modeled.

    I believe your prediction will come true and many of these false churches will dry up.

  257. Deb wrote:

    In the not too distant future, Christian women in their 30s and 40s are gonna walk out of these patriarchal churches in droves, never to return again. And their families will be so much better off for it.

    Amen! I’ve been saying for a while that the Achilles heel of the New Calvinist movement may very well prove to be the complementarian treatment of women … when enough female believers rise up en masse and declare “Wait just a darn minute here!” … and then proceed to drag their sorry husbands/boy friends out of the mess! It is not the church bliss which Matt Chandler preaches that “our girls” love … nor Biblical in its message and method.

  258. Deb wrote:

    No wonder I love my hubby so much!!!

    I often tell my dear wife that she in one of the most godly men I know! I always get “the look” when I do that! We are “complementarian” in the sense that we complement each other with our spiritual giftings … there is no religious distinction of gender in our home … we are one in Christ.

  259. dee wrote:

    A storm is coming to Raleigh and I am off to hit the grocery store early.

    Hoping you don’t have a snowmageddon again! I had to abandon my car in a ditch that year. At least it’s on a weekend.

  260. @ Max:

    Ditto! My husband tells everyone that I am his best friend. And that's very true!

    Complementarianism would totally wreck the fantastic relationship that we have enjoyed for all these years. Next year we will have been married 30 years!

  261. dee wrote:

    A storm is coming to Raleigh and I am off to hit the grocery store early.

    I live in SW Missouri. We were hit with an Arctic blast yesterday, with snow and single digit temps. Pick up some chili ingredients at the store … it’s heading your way.

  262. @ Max:
    I’m right behind Dee heading to pick up some staples. Hope the shelves will not be barren when I get there. It’s CRAZY around here when snow is in the forecast.

    I count my blessings that if the roads are impassible I can walk to the grocery store since it’s just half a mile away.

  263. Deb wrote:

    My husband tells everyone that I am his best friend.

    When a believer’s friendship is rooted with the best friend one could ever have – His name is Jesus – other relationships come into proper balance. This is a disturbing element for me regarding those who choose to be overlords in church and family … do they ‘really’ know Jesus? As the old song says:

    “There’s not a friend like the lowly Jesus (no not one)
    Jesus knows all about our struggles
    He will guide till the day is done”

    I often tell folks that there is nothing good about me but the Jesus who lives within me. Without Him as friend, I couldn’t be a true friend to anybody else.

    (You ain’t going to hear a young whippersnapper new reformer with spiked hair and skinny jeans tell you that … just this old battle-weary guy)

  264. Deb wrote:

    In the not too distant future, Christian women in their 30s and 40s are gonna walk out of these patriarchal churches in droves, never to return again. And their families will be so much better off for it.
    Male domination is NOT what Jesus modeled.

    According to several of my friends who go to Calvinista churches, this is already the case. There’s a lot of single men and no single women (unlike at most other churches which are heavily the opposite). And many married men go, or take their kids, and their wives don’t come. One friend said a pastor was bemoaning it from the pulpit, that women are “not obeying God” to come.

    We all know they are just not obeying God in their treatment of women.

  265. Deb wrote:

    I count my blessings that if the roads are impassible I can walk to the grocery store since it’s just half a mile away.

    When we had an ice storm in our area several years ago, electric power was off for many folks for nearly two weeks. Truck shipments were delayed; store shelves were bare. Grab enough food just in case.

  266. abigail wrote:

    I would not look harshly on a married man who is faithful and admitting it is hard.

    He sees this problem only through his own self-centeredness. But often, you see married men openly ‘admitting’ they are not completely happy and fulfilled in their marriages, and they do this as a ‘come on’ to other women.

    I’m for married folk treating each other with respect in so far as their marital relationship is private between them and not a conversation starter with anyone of the opposite sex. I’m excluding of course reporting abuse to the authorities, if it has occurred, as this is a survival matter and protection is needed, usually with some help getting to a sanctuary\safe house. I always got creeped out by married men speaking around me about their problems with their wives. It seemed like a betrayal of their wives for some reason. But I am from an older generation, so things may have changed in ‘the culture’, just a little bit.

  267. ishy wrote:

    Hoping you don’t have a snowmageddon again! I had to abandon my car in a ditch that year. At least it’s on a weekend.

    That was a horrible event for so little precipitation! It took me 4-5 hours to drive home, a total commute of 9 miles. Many of my co-workers ran out of gas or had to get hotel rooms.

    My wife worked at the elementary school behind our apartment and she got home later than I did due to the kids getting stranded there.

  268. Max wrote:

    Grab enough food just in case.

    when we lived up at the lake in the mountains of New Jersey, we ‘winterized’ by stocking up on certain items during the mid-winter. Our store was further up the mountain about four miles drive on a winding reservoir road, so no fun if it was icy, but it could be done. Something very deep in the genetic memory about laying in supplies if your people come from way up north, I’ve heard. Good excuse that works for me. 🙂

  269. Burwell wrote:

    My wife worked at the elementary school behind our apartment and she got home later than I did due to the kids getting stranded there.

    I also worked at a school, but it wasn’t close to my house, so I started home much later than everyone else, too. I got on a tiny little hill, and the car behind me started sliding, and the car in front of me slid right in front of me, so I just drove into the ditch. They thankfully missed each other, but they would have crushed me.

  270. @ Burwell:
    I believe you’re talking about the ice coating on Raleigh roads twelve years ago. I was out in it trying to get my kids from school, and it was a nightmare! We did get home safely hours after I left home.

  271. @ John:

    “If a man is truly broken by God, transparency will be an accompanying virtue.”
    ++++++++++

    what does it mean to be ‘broken by God’?

    what do you mean by transparency?

  272. @ Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist:

    “The root of Christian Hedonism is also celebrity Christianity – you have to come up with something new and edgy to be something in Evangelicalism.”
    ++++++++++

    just like ‘new & improved’ emblazoned in red on a box of pancake mix.

    wish they’d all disappear into obscurity and honest non-profit-ness.

  273. Southern Kentucky, we got about an inch of snow last night, schools are closed ……….
    ***blizzard of ’78, 12 foot snow drift at he top of a hill two miles from our farm, schools were closed for a month. The night the storm hit, my dad header for work (3rd shift). He spent the night stuck in a snow drift a mile from home……
    ***** ice storm of ’96, (weather guessers said “chance of flurries”) an inch of ice followed by 6 inches of snow followed by another inch of ice, major power outages, massive ice damage, schools with generators were used as emergency shelters……
    ***Ice storm of ’03, ’04, ’09, and 2013
    ****big snowfall last winter. Sheesh, we’re overdue for a mild winter!

    I’m 10 miles from the nearest town, so I stay stocked year ’round – chest freezer, upright freezer, home canning, flour, toilet paper, etc.
    Our gravel driveway is 100 yards long with a hump, so when the weather guessers say winter storm (or even flurries), I park my front-wheel drive 5-speed out at the end of the driveway, in case something happens and we really need to go somewhere! We have wood heat and I have cooked on the wood heater! The top raises on the wood heater, so I can cook right on the fire box, and hot instant coffee is better than none at all! It sure is nice to be ready, so I can just take hikes with our dogs and my camera and enjoy the scenery!

  274. @ Max:

    “I often tell my dear wife that she in one of the most godly men I know!”
    +++++++++

    i suspect she & i both are very impressed at what a godly woman you are, as well. 🙂

  275. abigail wrote:

    I am no fan of Piper because of his abuse comments….but it seems to me a little two-faced that he is critisized for being honest.

    Where I differ from you is that I don’t feel he is honest. The impression is that this was ongoing all through the years he has been teaching other people how to do marriage and the importance of gender roles. And here he is bringing it up just to make a point about what… worship? the importance of going to church?

    Where has he admitted that his teachings did not lead to his own marriage relationship being good? Where has he come to his senses that gender roles are not the way to make marriages strong? No, I think he’s a long way to go yet to earn the title of honest. JMHO

  276. Christiane wrote:

    Snowpalooza expected in the Southeast

    🙂
    Yes, we are already buried under what is heading that way. 0 degrees here last night.
    Not trying to knock being concerned over natural storms. They can be concerning.
    But my mind first went to some sort of churchy kind of storm.

  277. dee wrote:

    A storm is coming to Raleigh and I am off to hit the grocery store early.

    You have to get there before the hoarders! ha ha…

    Stay safe everybody!

  278. Christiane wrote:

    Those ministers are ‘out there’. And they are humble in the way of the One they serve. Don’t give up looking.

    Amen. And sometimes they can use a word of encouragement, too. I spoke a word of thanks to such a hospital minister once after seeing his loving, caring interaction with someone (who I knew had severe PTSD regarding church and all things related). Tears came into his eyes, and he took a moment to share with me how discouraged he’d been recently.

  279. Nick Bulbeck wrote:

    Is a “lead pastor” a pastor who is exceptionally dense?

    Well, there is certainly a denseness in New Calvinist ranks; otherwise, how can one explain so many young folks following this stuff? And the densest of all would be the church’s “lead” pastor – which is a favorite title in their ranks, even if there is just one pastor on church staff. They just want to lead something, to be in authority even if it is illegitimate authority.

  280. A very little ice or snow can be far worse than a few inches of the white stuff. No traction. Be careful out there.

    “Is a “lead pastor” a pastor who is exceptionally dense?” Yes, and potentially toxic. Thanks Nick, now I’m going to have a hard time seeing that title in print, and not pronouncing it like the metal.

  281. @ dee:
    dee UNITED STATES on Thu Jan 05, 2017 at 09:52 AM said:

    old timer wrote: “Worship helped me focus on God and not my marriage.
    Isn’t that what worship is supposed to do? Isn’t that why we went to church in the first place?”

    dee write: “I would appreciate it if you would expand on this idea. I am sure you don’t mean this but I sounds like you are saying that if you go to worship services your marriage will hold together under all circumstances…

    …A simplistic view “go to worship and all will be well” …

    Piper has always struck me as *pat* in his answers. … *Go to church and all will be well.*”
    +++++++++++++++++

    this is not to answer for old timer but to share my thoughts.

    while i think piper belongs tucked away with the 4 & 20 blackbirds baked in a pie, perhaps his comments are on the innocuous side. Perhaps too much is being read into them. (not to say he hasn’t made a hobby of perpetuating that with his audience)

    in my career as a church-goer, i have found the music portion expressed with sincerity (& musical/rhythmic skill) to change me. burdens lift, joy begins to mingle, courage, some clarity & perspective come into focus, ideas sprout.

    on many occasions it’s been the most life-giving thing i can think of. which made a positive difference in whatever conflict or tension may have been at issue in my life at the time.

    and then of course announcements happen (or the sermon). poof. kaput.

    i think “worship” is another one of those things christian culture has analyzed and theologized and monetized(!) — turning it inside out like a styrofoam cup and calling it insight. and then come the rules.

    really, it’s as basic and ordinary as a hug. between us and God. mutually life-giving, comforting, strengthening, relieving. i believe God experiences good & pleasurable things in our interaction with God just as we do.
    ——–

    *BONUS* — hate the word worship – so many weird cultic overtones — seems ridiculously pretentious to import it as an agenda item before or after anouncements (& other mundane uses of the word.)

  282. My thoughts? If he’s determined to make public his marital problems, he ought to at least give his wife equal time. Folks might benefit from her perspective.
    Then again, I find it hard to believe that he considers any woman his equal, so that’s probably not gonna happen.

    Also, the rest of us don’t get a leave of absence from work and other responsibilities when we have some problem with our family or marriage or whatever. We work. Every. Day. To. Provide. For. Our. Families.
    Don’t kid yourself. These celebrity pastors live in a very protected bubble, more so than even other celebs I think.

  283. I’m a regular reader of this blog and usually a fan, but I find this post to be slanderous.

    For one, Piper never kept his marital struggles a secret. He has publicly talked about their struggles and years of counseling together. This “groundbreaking” admission before Mahaney was nothing new to anyone who has followed his ministry. He has been forthright with their struggles.

    Many of these so-called Calvinistas certainly deserve what they get on this blog. But Piper, with all of his quirks and blind-spots, seems quite genuine:

    1) He moved into the impoverished neighborhood his church is in and stayed there.

    2) He kept none of the revenues from his books which could have made him very rich. Sure, $116k is a big salary, but a small fraction of what it could have been had Piper followed the normal “furtick” path of keeping book revenues. He has spoken out about the evils of extra-large pastoral salaries.

    3) He had no scandals in a long ministry at one church

    4) He has been a leader in the discussion of racial diversity and calling more conservative churches to engage with justice issues. He wept with joy over the swearing in of the first black president and openly opposed Trump.

    5) He buys and wears used clothes. As much as he is a celebrity, he hasn’t pursued the status symbols.

    6) He adopted a daughter at a relatively old age.

    7) He had a board at his church that was not just “yes-men,” but people who opposed him at times and even outvoted him.

    8) I had a friend whose daughter was hospitalized and near death for months in Minneapolis. He was not part of Piper’s church. But Piper regularly visited them in the hospital and spent serious time praying with my friend. Nobody tweeted about it, there was no web page devoted to it. He just did real pastoral ministry.

    I just think that if Piper can’t be considered to be legitimate, perhaps our scrutiny is too intense? And we need to ask ourselves if we could stand up under it.

    – Do Piper’s critics live in $40,000 houses and give the majority of their income away like he does?
    – Do Piper’s critics adopt children of a different race while preaching racial reconciliation?
    – Do Piper’s critics have any difficulties in their marriage? Do they handle them openly and with outside help?

    Seems there are more appropriate targets out there.

  284. @ Bob:
    Thanks for your comment.

    Just wondering, what part of the post is slanderous because the information came from a post on the Desiring God website and two articles published by Christianity Today.

  285. Thanks for interacting, Deb.

    I think calling Piper’s words to CJ a “stunning revelation” is misleading. It wasn’t a revelation at all. Your article makes it sound as if he had been keeping these difficulties a secret and now dropped a bomb. He has many issues, but transparency isn’t one of them.

  286. Bob wrote:

    I’m a regular reader of this blog and usually a fan, but I find this post to be slanderous.

    I don’t (for one) care what Piper makes or whether he lives the life of Reilly. My concern is his theology (Christian Hedonism) and its popularity. I don’t think it is slanderous to point out serious issues and to warn people. I agree there can be a tendency to be flippant by some of us commenters, myself included. I think this may come from the passion that people have to see abuse end in Christian churches.

  287. Dale wrote:

    I think this may come from the passion that people have to see abuse end in Christian churches.

    And, we are human. Being human, we tell jokes, use sarcasm, hyperbole, and other forms of writing. This can be a problem and I agree that it can be taken “over the top.” Perhaps slander is too strong a word for what is taking place.

  288. Nancy2 wrote:

    Releases the wimmen from responsibility and accountability.

    And adulthood in general. There seems to be a rule that only one person per household is allowed to be the grownup.

  289. Dale,
    Yes, we often ascribe the best motives to ourselves and the worst to others – people like Piper.

  290. brian wrote:

    he seems to think he will be right up there on the stage/throne with God it really is rather scary.

    The other assumptions are crazy too. Does he really think God is going to debate evolution with dead atheists? I’ll leave out the question of whether it’s at all loving to think someone deserves hell for believing in a particular school of academic thought.

  291. Bob wrote:

    Dale,
    Yes, we often ascribe the best motives to ourselves and the worst to others – people like Piper.

    Bob, I admit that this is our human tendency. It is certainly yours when you defend Mr. Piper and charge Deb with slandering Piper. May I suggest that you contribute your feelings about Christian Hedonism and the problem of celebrity pastors?

  292. Bob wrote:

    He has been a leader in the discussion of racial diversity

    Racial diversity for men, yes; but, sexual discrimination towards women. Any man can be a police officer, but a female police officer would be usurping a man’s manly authority!

  293. Christiane wrote:

    go to the nursing homes and the hospitals and observe for a while ….. ask which clergymen/women come to see the ones who are disabled/mentally incapacitated, old, senile ….

    That’s a wonderful suggestion.

    Years ago, when I was in the hospital overnight, a nurse asked if I was open to a brief visit from a chaplain. I said yes, and the dearest and sunniest old man came in just to say hello and bid me God’s blessings for the night. This was what he did every night on his way home. Over the decades I’m sure he lifted the spirits of thousands and thousands of people.

  294. Velour wrote:

    Note to self: find out how to purchase astronaut diapers.

    Note to self: Never join a church with a rule against wearing astronaut diapers.

    (I’m sure they’re out there.)

  295. Friend wrote:

    I’ll leave out the question of whether it’s at all loving to think someone deserves hell for believing in a particular school of academic thought.

    They don’t deserve hell for what they believe. They deserve hell simply because God chose them to be eternally damned. He could have given them the grace to believe otherwise, but in the secret council of his will and for his own good pleasure and glory he chose to deny them that grace. At least this is what Piper teaches.

  296. Ken F wrote:

    They deserve hell simply because God chose them to be eternally damned.

    And he and his audience are chuckling and guffawing as they imagine people being sent to hell.

  297. Bob wrote:

    I think calling Piper’s words to CJ a “stunning revelation” is misleading. It wasn’t a revelation at all.

    Sounds like you have an issue with Christianity today. The words “revealing” and “stunned” were right out of their article: “But he did, and revealing it for the first time in public stunned his interviewer.” Did you ask the editor of CT to issue a retraction and an apology?

  298. Dale,
    Sure. I think when a pastor is trusted above the Bible, and when people consider someone they’ve never met their pastor (because of his podcast, for example), that’s a serious problem. When pastors accept (or demand) exorbitant salaries, diva-like treatment (security, green rooms), and cease to meet with people so they can focus on sermons and books alone, that is a serious problem. And, that person is no longer a pastor.
    However, for a pastor to be widely read or listened to seems harmless (and can even be helpful and a gift to the church). He should just be very wary of the trappings. Piper seemed to guard against those trappings by publicly repenting of pride and hypocrisy, be capping his salary, by refusing his royalties, and continuing to pastor “the little people” without fanfare.

    As to Christian Hedonism, the philosophy that “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him,” that sounds right to me! Certainly there are secondary parts of that philosophy I’d reject, but pursuing joy in Jesus seems to be essential to the Christian life. What are your thoughts on Christian Hedonism, Dale?

  299. Friend wrote:

    And he and his audience are chuckling and guffawing as they imagine people being sent to hell.

    That and worshiping. Piper teaches that God’s damnation of the reprobate magnifies his glory for the elect. The elect will not be able to see God in his full glory if others are not damned eternally. God’s glory requires it. And of course the hedonist elect will derive infinite pleasure from it.

  300. Bob wrote:

    we often ascribe the best motives to ourselves and the worst to others

    It is interesting that you focused on motives. Christian hedonism is itself a declaration of motives. It replaces God-honoring love with God-diminishing lust as the motive for Christian living.

  301. Bob wrote:

    As to Christian Hedonism, the philosophy that “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him,” that sounds right to me!

    Sounds right?!? Where is it in the Bible? My beef with Piper is his inconsistency. He cries “sola scriptura” and then bases many of his teachings on things not found in the Bible.

  302. Dale and Ken,
    I disagree. I’d recommend critically reading Desiring God. I couldn’t imagine how Piper’s teachings replace God-honoring love with God-diminishing lust. That seems very far from Piper’s writings and, or course, from the Bible. Ken, have you read Desiring God? It would be hard to find a book with more reliance on scripture that has been written in our day.

  303. Bob wrote:

    I find this post to be slanderous.

    1. Slanderous means that a person is deliberately telling a lie, knowing that it is a lie. It could actually be perceived that you somehow know that Deb is deliberately telling a lie since you accuse her of slander. It is therefore incumbent upon the accuser to prove how he/she knows that Deb is telling a deliberate lie.

    I have a couple of more things to say but I want this one to stand alone since an accusation of deliberate lying is deeply disturbing to the Deebs and we want to know how we have done so. Strange…I know Deb far better than most and I can’t find any evidence of her deliberately lying.

  304. Friend wrote:

    Ken F wrote:

    They deserve hell simply because God chose them to be eternally damned.

    And he and his audience are chuckling and guffawing as they imagine people being sent to hell.

    And how do we know who the elect are?

  305. Bob wrote:

    Ken, have you read Desiring God? It would be hard to find a book with more reliance on scripture that has been written in our day.

    I did not ask you about a book. I asked you where the Bible supports Piper’s motto. If it takes hundreds of pages to do so then there is a problem with the motto.

  306. Correction taken. I wish I had said “misleading.” “Slander” is too strong, and I apologize.

  307. mot wrote:

    And how do we know who the elect are?

    No one does. The best Calvinists can do is to track who is persevering in the faith (the 5th point of TULIP). Falling into sin is evidence of not persevering. Hence their emphasis on sin sniffing.

  308. @ Bob:
    I’d like to take back my use of the word “slander” – that was indeed too strong. I apologize for using it. Nobody was deliberately lying about Piper. I believe the post was misleading, more from Christianity Today’s quote than from WW’s.

  309. Bob wrote:

    What are your thoughts on Christian Hedonism, Dale?

    Here are some of my thoughts:

    1) Piper goes so far as to promote hedonism as an essential part of justification. This, I believe, is heretical.
    2) In supporting his theory, he takes truncates bible passages and ignores context.
    3) Hedonism craves pleasure for itself; love craves pleasure for others. Christian hedonism places pleasure at the head of the class. Where love should sit.
    4) Regarding worship, Christian hedonism promotes a “what can I get out of worship” instead of “what can I give?” It seems to me to turn true worship upside down.
    5) Jesus warns of those who receive the gospel with great joy only to fall away when troubles come. I feel Piper is setting people up for just such a reality.

    You may want to read a critical analysis of CH. Like this one: http://www.thefaithfulword.org/wakeupcall.html

  310. Bob wrote:

    I’m a regular reader of this blog and usually a fan, but I find this post to be slanderous.

    I don’t.

    Bethlehem Baptist Church is in the slander business, defaming upright Christians on a regular basis before the entire church membership. The pastors/elders have repeatedly lied about a woman I know (Natalie) who had left her abusive husband of many decades. She was repeatedly lied about by the pastors/elders before the entire church. BBC has done same to others, mostly women.

  311. Bob wrote:

    2) He kept none of the revenues from his books which could have made him very rich. Sure, $116k is a big salary, but a small fraction of what it could have been had Piper followed the normal “furtick” path of keeping book revenues. He has spoken out about the evils of extra-large pastoral salaries.

    I’m glad to hear that Piper’s lifestyle isn’t extravagant. But there are few of us who could afford to take 8 months off from our job to work on our marriage [and write a book]. I know that Sabbaticals are normal in some professions, but not in any of mine.

    I need to talk to my spouse, and see if we could get some time off if we claimed to be having serious marital issues. I hear there are some nice counseling centers in Colorado!

  312. @ Bob:
    Now, you probably know that the Deebs hold MBAs. In the first week of business school we looked at things that people value in terms of compensation. You probably know that compensation is more than just money. For some, it is more leisure time. For others, it is being a position to influence people for one’s pet cause.

    Let me tell you where I am going with this. I don’t care if Piper lives below the poverty line and adopts kids. Money and appearance isn’t his thing-that is obvious by the way he dresses and grooms himself. Piper, instead, gets something more out of his life and I am not convinced it is just about his relationship with God. Piper is now in position in which he can say anything he darn well pleases and get away with it because he is Piper. Read my post tonight.

    As for his elder board, yes, they have disagreed with him once or twice. But you can darn well be sure that BBC is run on Piper’s fumes. They have let him say some outright ridiculous things and didn’t slap him around. So, a few disagreements in decades of time is hardly overwhelming and not indicative of true give and take. We are holding onto a few stories of the so called atmosphere at BBC. We hope to post one in the near future which will shed some light on this situation.

    When my daughter was sick with.a brain tumor in a hospital in Dallas, Ed Young Jr came and visited with us. There was no hoopla about it, etc. Yet, I m sure you would not mention Piper and Ed Young Jr in the same breath. Lots of people, Christian or no, care about sick people.

    Finally, you do not mention the real problem with Piper and that is his absurd statements when it comes to women and gender. His pronouncements border, at times, on the unintelligible. Since he has influence on all the so called “Christian Hedonistic complementary, disciplinary authoritarians” out there, he is quite deserving of our scrutiny.

    As for the political end of things, I don’t go there. It is not my hill to die on. Also, lots of people are concerned about racial justice these days. I assume you are a consumer of all things TGC.

    Enjoy our post tonight. I cannot wait to see how you perceive what he said. It has been tearing up Twitter and it causes me to question what is going on with this man.

    Nope-Piper will continue to be featured on TWW unless he changes for the better.

    I am still hopeful you will tell me how you know that Deb is deliberately lying or, as you call it, slandering Piper.

  313. Bob wrote:

    “misleading.

    Whoops, you still did not extricate yourself from you problem. The following is the definition of misleading.

    https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/mislead

    mislead\-ˈled\misleading
    transitive verb
    : to lead in a wrong direction or into a mistaken action or belief often by deliberate deceit

    It means, usually, deliberately deceive. So, back to square one. How dd Deb deliberately deceived people and how do you know she did so deliberately.

    I am not nitpicking. I am getting really tired of Christian apologists for their pet celebrity coming around and claiming deliberate deceit and lying as if they somehow know that such is the case.

  314. dee wrote:

    Now, you probably know that the Deebs hold MBAs.

    Dee, I graduated from the U of R’s Graduate School of Management in 1979. Welcome, fellow alum!

  315. @ Dale:
    You are kidding me!!!! Do you still live up in the area? Details, I need details!!!

    I have never seen so much snow in my life and that is from someone who grew up in Salem, Mass. However, the redeeming star of the area was Wegmans. They are building two of them not too far from me here in Raleigh/Cary. I almost cried when I heard they were coming.

  316. dee wrote:

    Lots of people, Christian or no, care about sick people.

    ina way, that was a part of Our Lord’s teaching in the parable of the Good Samaritan … that ‘our kind’ may walk past a person in need of help, while the maligned ‘not of our kind’ stops and helps.

    Maybe ‘Christian’ is defined differently by Our Lord than by so many today who call themselves ‘saved’?
    I have always thought this may be true.

    Jean Vanier put it this way:
    ” Love not just those of your own tribe,
    your own class, family or people,
    but those who are different,
    those who are strangers,
    who are strange to your ways,
    who come from different cultural and religious traditions, who seem odd
    those you do not understand.

    Love as the Samaritan loved the man he found
    beaten up by robbers,
    somewhere on the road between Jerusalem and Jericho.”

  317. @ Mara:
    Hang on, Mara. Wait until you read my post tonight. It will take me a bit to get it up. I spent the day standing in grocery store lines, helping my mother have a procedure done at the pain clinic and then treating my driveway. But, this post is going to be a blast. It caused a flurry on twitter and it is thanks to our dear reader, Dave AA!

  318. Ken F wrote:

    Piper teaches that God’s damnation of the reprobate magnifies his glory for the elect.

    this is horrid! what a terrible view of God’s character

  319. @ refugee:
    We hear the ‘I thirst’ resound down through eternity. Yes, ministers need care also. Good to be a ‘servant of the servants of God’, yes.

  320. dee wrote:

    You are kidding me!!!! Do you still live up in the area? Details, I need details!!!
    I have never seen so much snow in my life and that is from someone who grew up in Salem, Mass. However, the redeeming star of the area was Wegmans. They are building two of them not too far from me here in Raleigh/Cary. I almost cried when I heard they were coming.

    Do I still live in the area? Are you kidding me? I had a friend who graduated with me in 1978 and went to Chapel Hill to get his masters in Sociology. I visited him one April (think beautiful campus, coeds) and decided then and there that I was going to request a transfer to North Carolina. I moved to Charlotte in 1982. When I worked in Rochester as a first-year tax professional, I worked on the Wegmans’ tax return! When is Wegmans coming to Charlotte?

  321. Bob wrote:

    As to Christian Hedonism, the philosophy that “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him,” that sounds right to me!

    Hedonism of any sort puts ‘something’ before God. In Piper’s case, that something is a pursuit of pleasure in God with an extreme passion that has hit strange proportions in his teaching and preaching. It’s as if Piper is worshiping desiring God rather than loving Jesus, who often gets second-billing to God in New Calvinism.

  322. Dale wrote:

    3) Hedonism craves pleasure for itself; love craves pleasure for others. Christian hedonism places pleasure at the head of the class. Where love should sit.

    Hmmmm ……. Isaiah, Ezekiel, Elijah, Elisha, John the Baptist ……
    Were they pleasure seekers?

  323. Bob wrote:

    4) He has been a leader in the discussion of racial diversity and calling more conservative churches to engage with justice issues. He wept with joy over the swearing in of the first black president and openly opposed Trump.

    If you had placed the period after president, I wouldn’t have a concern about what you wrote. It’s the adding of the phrase, “and openly opposed Trump” that is troublesome. Did Piper support Hillary?

  324. Bob wrote:

    – Do Piper’s critics live in $40,000 houses and give the majority of their income away like he does?
    – Do Piper’s critics adopt children of a different race while preaching racial reconciliation?
    – Do Piper’s critics have any difficulties in their marriage? Do they handle them openly and with outside help?

    – Do Piper’s critics tell women to “endure abuse for a season”?

  325. Bob wrote:

    – Do Piper’s critics live in $40,000 houses and give the majority of their income away like he does?
    – Do Piper’s critics adopt children of a different race while preaching racial reconciliation?
    – Do Piper’s critics have any difficulties in their marriage? Do they handle them openly and with outside help?
    Seems there are more appropriate targets out there.

    Is Jesus the center of Piper’s theology? I don’t ever see him talking about Christ. This is the singular indicator of the center of someone’s Christian faith.

    I can say with confidence that Jesus is central to the faith of most people here.

  326. Christiane wrote:

    Ken F wrote:

    Piper teaches that God’s damnation of the reprobate magnifies his glory for the elect.

    this is horrid! what a terrible view of God’s character

    In an “Ask Pastor John” segment, Piper was asked “How does it glorify God to predestine people to Hell?”

    After chasing rabbits for five minutes, he concluded:

    “He gets glory because His grace and mercy shine more brightly against the darker backdrop of sin and judgment and wrath, and our worship and our experience of that grace intensifies and deepens because we see we don’t deserve to be where we are.”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vbx-9neSzjU

    Huh?! Further proof that Calvinism (at least, Piper’s style of it) is a misrepresentation of the character of God. God is love – He is not willing that any should perish. Predestined to Hell?! NO!!

  327. Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    It goes beyond vulgar to the realm of disgusting. What kind of omnipotent, omnipresent god needs to burn people alive for eternity in order to glorify himself? That’s not Jesus; that’s Molech.

    A view of God like that makes mere abuse seem like child’s play…

  328. Friend wrote:

    And he and his audience are chuckling and guffawing as they imagine people being sent to hell.

    God doesn’t send anyone to hell, you send yourself to hell if you don’t accept his provision and free gift of salvation…
    — Greg Laurie, head honcho of Harvest Fellowship and Crusade Events —

  329. @ Bob:
    Bob, I am certain that you are capable of more critical thinking if you will set your emotions aside momentarily. Do a small experiment – google “Hitler’s good traits”. I think if you take the time to think about the situation critically you will conclude that any proposed good from anyone in no way negates their less commendable actions.

  330. Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    It goes beyond vulgar to the realm of disgusting. What kind of omnipotent, omnipresent god needs to burn people alive for eternity in order to glorify himself? That’s not Jesus; that’s Molech.

    True. And more like Pharaoh and the gods of the Greeks. Cruel, petulant, and in need of constant ego-stroking.

  331. Johanna wrote:

    Piper actually takes none of the money from his royalties. He received a salary from his church, but all book moneys went back to the ministry. You can dislike Piper for other reasons, but love of money isn’t one of them.

    I’m sorry, but John Piper is paid better than the average American worker, even if he’s not taking royalties from his books. And, to be perfectly honest, given all the sleazy stuff going on at the highest reaches of evangelicaldom, it wouldn’t surprise me that Piper’s not taking the royalties, but it’s being routed through some organization and paid out another way.

    From the Desiring God 990s, with compensation from related groups included:

    2014: $ 64,350
    2013: $ 00,000 (but NOBODY received money in 2013 from DG which I find weird)
    2012: $116,862
    2011: $115,910
    2010: $103,739
    2009: $120,978
    2008: $117,333
    2007: $ 00,000
    2006: $ 00,000
    2005: $ 00,000
    2004: $ 00,000

    So if he’s working a 45 hour week (which is what is standard on these forms for exempt personnel), in the years Piper was paid, he was getting between $27.50/hour and $51.70/hour. The average hourly wage in the USA in December 2016 was $21.80.

    The questions that come up revolve around–what changed in 2008 to where Piper got such a large salary? Why didn’t any of the directors get salaries in 2013? And Piper apparently left his pastorate at Bethlehem Baptist in April 2013, before that, was the pay he getting for being a director at Desiring God in addition to his pastor’s salary? So many questions…

  332. Ken F wrote:

    mot wrote:

    And how do we know who the elect are?

    No one does. The best Calvinists can do is to track who is persevering in the faith (the 5th point of TULIP). Falling into sin is evidence of not persevering. Hence their emphasis on sin sniffing.

    What a very sad way to live one’s life.

  333. Bob wrote:

    – Do Piper’s critics live in $40,000 houses and give the majority of their income away like he does?

    *cough* We don’t know what his total income is, from royalty, speaking fees/honoraria, what he was making as pastor of a big Baptist church in Minneapolis, and so on and so forth. I just posted the salaries he was getting from Desiring God, as reported on the organization’s 990 form. In the years he was getting money from DG, he was getting paid more than the average American hourly income. But we don’t know how much money Piper was getting in toto.

    If people want to claim Piper is giving away all his money, then let’s see the 1040s. Otherwise…don’t make that claim. Thanks in advance.

  334. @ Muslin, fka Dee Holmes & mirele:
    Regarding your comment about no income being paid out by Desiring God in 2013, Dale provided the following information yesterday at 6:48 p.m. (if you want to track down his comment)

    “they changed their fiscal year from 12/31 to 6/30 in 2013. Thus, it reports only half a year of revenue. I think they peaked at about $8 million in revenue in 2012.”

  335. Since Bob brought up financial matters regarding John Piper, are we to assume that he receives no honorariums when he speaks at:

    Together for the Gospel
    The Gospel Coalition events
    Passion Conference
    Cross Conference

    et al

  336. Deb wrote:

    Since Bob brought up financial matters regarding John Piper, are we to assume that he receives no honorariums when he speaks at:

    Together for the Gospel
    The Gospel Coalition events
    Passion Conference
    Cross Conference

    et al

    Deb, Piper is just a very poor preacher according to Bob–definitely being sarcastic.

  337. elastigirl wrote:

    @ John:
    “If a man is truly broken by God, transparency will be an accompanying virtue.”
    ++++++++++
    what does it mean to be ‘broken by God’?
    what do you mean by transparency?

    To be broken is to have one’s spirit of rebellion crushed and thus leading to submission to God and not the insistence upon one’s will.

  338. Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell. God chose some as His elect to receive His mercy. Hw will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God was not under obligation to love or save anyone. He is holy and separate from creation. We marvel that God chose to save whom He did.

  339. Ken F wrote:

    John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine

    How do you know that you were chosen?

    Same question I was thinking to ask John.

  340. John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine.

    No, we are not confused whatsoever. That is insulting to people who have thought long and hard about Calvinism. In fact, our view is a logical counterpoint to your POV and many theologians thoughout history have agreed with this counterpoint. You may disagree with us but we are no more confused than you are.

    If I see a group of children about to walk over a cliff and I have the capacity to save them all without breaking a sweat, and I choose to only save a few, then I have deliberately chosen to allow some to walk over the cliff.

    God did not choose anyone according to any merit. So, is it eenie meenie minie moe? One guy is as good (or as bad) as the next. God doesn’t have to save anyone but he chooses to do so.

    It is just as possible that God created all of us with the capacity to make a choice for God. That doesn’t mean we save ourselves. It means we want to be saved and God graciously deigns to do so.

    I have to admit that I am getting weary by Calvinists telling us that we are confused, uneducated, etc. while obviously implying that they are not. If it was so gosh darn logical, there wouldn’t be dedicated Christians and theologians who have disagreed with it through the years.

    In case you think I obviously am misinformed, ask my co editor Deb about my several years journey to figure this out once and for all. Also, go ahead and question me on Calvin, Spurgeon, Piper, et al.

    And, as an amusing aside, I have found out that my husband is a direct descendant of Jonathan Edwards.

  341. @ mot:
    Another question to ask is how a Calvinist feels that his children (if he has any) my not be one of the elect?

  342. mot wrote:

    Piper is just a very poor preacher according to Bob–definitely being sarcastic.

    he didn’t go onto welfare when he took his 8 month “marriage encounter.” How many of us could afford to do that?

  343. dee wrote:

    John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine.

    No, we are not confused whatsoever. That is insulting to people who have thought long and hard about Calvinism. In fact, our view is a logical counterpoint to your POV and many theologians thoughout history have agreed with this counterpoint. You may disagree with us but we are no more confused than you are.

    If I see a group of children about to walk over a cliff and I have the capacity to save them all without breaking a sweat, and I choose to only save a few, then I have deliberately chosen to allow some to walk over the cliff.

    God did not choose anyone according to any merit. So, is it eenie meenie minie moe? One guy is as good (or as bad) as the next. God doesn’t have to save anyone but he chooses to do so.

    It is just as possible that God created all of us with the capacity to make a choice for God. That doesn’t mean we save ourselves. It means we want to be saved and God graciously deigns to do so.

    I have to admit that I am getting weary by Calvinists telling us that we are confused, uneducated, etc. while obviously implying that they are not. If it was so gosh darn logical, there wouldn’t be dedicated Christians and theologians who have disagreed with it through the years.

    In case you think I obviously am misinformed, ask my co editor Deb about my several years journey to figure this out once and for all. Also, go ahead and question me on Calvin, Spurgeon, Piper, et al.

    And, as an amusing aside, I have found out that my husband is a direct descendant of Jonathan Edwards.

    Since I am not a follower of Calvin, would you John say that I am not saved?

  344. dee wrote:

    @ mot:
    Another question to ask is how a Calvinist feels that his children (if he has any) my not be one of the elect?

    I just do not get this elect stuff!

  345. Dale wrote:

    I visited him one April (think beautiful campus, coeds) and decided then and there that I was going to request a transfer to North Carolina.

    My husband did his cardiology fellowship at Duke. We knew we would never return north again. How long did you live in Rochester? We were there two years.

    Som the flagship store for Wegman; is going to be in Cary. I am planning to be there for their opening day. I was planning on dragging Deb since she has heard me wax eloquent on Wegman’s. You should join us.

  346. mot wrote:

    Since I am not a follower of Calvin, would you John say that I am not saved?

    I think it was Sproul who arrogantly said that you are saved but just barely.

  347. dee wrote:

    mot wrote:

    Since I am not a follower of Calvin, would you John say that I am not saved?

    I think it was Sproul who arrogantly said that you are saved but just barely.

    I do not want Calvin, because I have Jesus.

  348. mot wrote:

    I just do not get this elect stuff!

    They base it on verse in Romans. However, there are other ways to view those passages. For example, Jesus was predestined before time to be out Savior. He is the Elect one calling all to Him. This is just as logical as their interpretation but they are told to believe that they are the ones who really understand it and the rest of us are just stupid and confused, obviously unable to read the Bible the way it is meant to be read.

  349. dee wrote:

    mot wrote:

    I just do not get this elect stuff!

    They base it on verse in Romans. However, there are other ways to view those passages. For example, Jesus was predestined before time to be out Savior. He is the Elect one calling all to Him. This is just as logical as their interpretation but they are told to believe that they are the ones who really understand it and the rest of us are just stupid and confused, obviously unable to read the Bible the way it is meant to be read.

    I will give the ones who think they are the elect this–they are mighty arrogant!

  350. John wrote:

    To be broken is to have one’s spirit of rebellion crushed and thus leading to submission to God and not the insistence upon one’s will.

    How broken are you? Do you not still rebel? You know that you still have your own will and still sin. So, are you broken or merely cracked?

  351. mot wrote:

    they are mighty arrogant!

    There is a reason for this. They are, deep down, uncomfortable with their choice. If one is truly comfortable with what one believes, there is no need for arrogance.

  352. dee wrote:

    mot wrote:

    they are mighty arrogant!

    There is a reason for this. They are, deep down, uncomfortable with their choice. If one is truly comfortable with what one believes, there is no need for arrogance.

    They also do not exhibit the love of Jesus.

  353. Max wrote:

    Hedonism of any sort puts ‘something’ before God. In Piper’s case, that something is a pursuit of pleasure in God with an extreme passion that has hit strange proportions in his teaching and preaching. It’s as if Piper is worshiping desiring God rather than loving Jesus, who often gets second-billing to God in New Calvinism.

    Piper’s 2004 book entitled “When I Don’t Desire God” has an interesting review that warns of Piper’s emphasis on Christian Hedonism. The synopsis of the book indicates he has “trumpeted” this truth for over 25 yrs. You can read J. Redding’s review where he says “But Piper has taken this idea, which he calls “Christian Hedonism,” and built his whole life and ministry around it. The problem is that if you read enough Piper, you will begin to focus on the FEELING of being delighted in Christ, rather than on Christ Himself.”

    https://www.amazon.com/When-Dont-Desire-God-Fight/dp/1581346522

  354. dee wrote:

    Another question to ask is how a Calvinist feels that his children (if he has any) my not be one of the elect?

    Here is how John Piper would respond:

    “I am not ignorant that God may not have chosen my sons for his sons. And, though I think I would give my life for their salvation, if they should be lost to me, I would not rail against the Almighty. He is God. I am but a man. The potter has absolute rights over the clay. Mine is to bow before his unimpeachable character and believe that the Judge of all the earth has ever and always will do right.” (John Piper) http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/how-does-a-sovereign-god-love

  355. John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell. God chose some as His elect to receive His mercy. Hw will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God was not under obligation to love or save anyone. He is holy and separate from creation. We marvel that God chose to save whom He did.

    Blech.

    NeoCalvinism is such a sick, hateful doctrine.

  356. Velour wrote:

    NeoCalvinism is such a sick, hateful doctrine.

    As I realized earlier, it’s because they’ve made God look like themselves, and not the God that was incarnate in Christ, and recorded in Scripture.

  357. Victorious wrote:

    “The problem is that if you read enough Piper, you will begin to focus on the FEELING of being delighted in Christ, rather than on Christ Himself.” (J. Redding)

    The hyper-Calvinists I have known put more faith in doctrinal propositions about grace rather than a direct experience of Grace. You never hear them refer to having experienced an encounter with the living Christ, nor do they even talk about Him much. The hedonist in Piper has him drifting in a la-la land of delight … he desires God, but does he know Jesus?

  358. ishy wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    NeoCalvinism is such a sick, hateful doctrine.
    As I realized earlier, it’s because they’ve made God look like themselves, and not the God that was incarnate in Christ, and recorded in Scripture.

    +100

  359. Velour wrote:

    NeoCalvinism is such a sick, hateful doctrine.

    And America’s youth are flocking to it! It challenges them in their intellect, but not their spirit.

  360. John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell. God chose some as His elect to receive His mercy. Hw will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God was not under obligation to love or save anyone. He is holy and separate from creation. We marvel that God chose to save whom He did.

    That is just one of several reasons I disagree with Calvinism and do not like it.

    By not choosing some to be the elect, God is in effect danging the others to Heck for all eternity.

  361. John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell. God chose some as His elect to receive His mercy. Hw will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God was not under obligation to love or save anyone. He is holy and separate from creation. We marvel that God chose to save whom He did.

    But in the fullness of time, Jesus came! “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.” (John 3:16-18)

    Whosoever will may come!

  362. @ Daisy:
    John’s comment is not congruous with Calvin’s writings nor with the history of Calvinist thought. Those who are “sinners on their way to hell” are such precisely because God created them that way, at least in Calvin’s writings and in the official theology of the PCA. This is an end-around designed to ignore the rational implications of Calvinism.

  363. dee wrote:

    John wrote:
    To be broken is to have one’s spirit of rebellion crushed and thus leading to submission to God and not the insistence upon one’s will.
    How broken are you? Do you not still rebel? You know that you still have your own will and still sin. So, are you broken or merely cracked?

    I have been broken Dee. Brokenness is a work in which God destroys the constant dependence upon one’s self and resources.

  364. Daisy wrote:They were already damned by the passing on of the sin nature by the federal head of the universe, Adam.

    John wrote:
    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell. God chose some as His elect to receive His mercy. Hw will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God was not under obligation to love or save anyone. He is holy and separate from creation. We marvel that God chose to save whom He did.
    That is just one of several reasons I disagree with Calvinism and do not like it.
    By not choosing some to be the elect, God is in effect danging the others to Heck for all eternity.

  365. Max wrote:

    Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    That is a disturbing position indeed.

    Why would anyone in their right mind want to be a Calvinist? Reformed theology has so many dark corners.

    Lets call it what it is– it is h e l l i s h!

  366. Ken F wrote:

    John wrote:
    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine
    How do you know that you were chosen?

    Thanks for the question. I know I am saved because of the same experience as anyone who is saved. I was regenerated by the Holy Spirit upon hearing the Gospel. The Spirit indwelt me and changed my desire to serve and know God deeply. That has steadily grown and increased these last 45 years and my ultimate desire is to do His will each day and to know Him in a deep knowledge of Hid glory and grace. He who has no desire to grow in holiness and not seek to do God’s will is not saved.

  367. Max wrote:Yes Max. What good news indeed. And, whosoever will may come. Interesting though. Whosoever is a transliterated word not in the original text.

    John wrote:
    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell. God chose some as His elect to receive His mercy. Hw will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God was not under obligation to love or save anyone. He is holy and separate from creation. We marvel that God chose to save whom He did.
    But in the fullness of time, Jesus came! “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.” (John 3:16-18)
    Whosoever will may come!

  368. John wrote:

    Ken F wrote:

    John wrote:
    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine
    How do you know that you were chosen?

    Thanks for the question. I know I am saved because of the same experience as anyone who is saved. I was regenerated by the Holy Spirit upon hearing the Gospel. The Spirit indwelt me and changed my desire to serve and know God deeply. That has steadily grown and increased these last 45 years and my ultimate desire is to do His will each day and to know Him in a deep knowledge of Hid glory and grace. He who has no desire to grow in holiness and not seek to do God’s will is not saved.

    John are you one of the Elect?

  369. dee wrote:

    How long did you live in Rochester? We were there two years.

    Five years of college and three years after graduating. I spent my first ten years in Buffalo, so a total of 18 years of snow. Still only rain here in south Charlotte where I live. Where is the snow?

  370. @ John:
    That is not the question I asked. I asked how do you know you have been chosen. How do you know for certain that you are not a goat who thinks he knows the Lord.

  371. I can’t wait for the next post! My hands – and my heart – are aflutter!

    dee wrote:

    @ Mara:
    Hang on, Mara. Wait until you read my post tonight. It will take me a bit to get it up. I spent the day standing in grocery store lines, helping my mother have a procedure done at the pain clinic and then treating my driveway. But, this post is going to be a blast. It caused a flurry on twitter and it is thanks to our dear reader, Dave AA!

  372. mot wrote:First of all Dee my ;point was not insulting. I was pointing out that there is much confusion about the certain emphasis that God did not predestine people to hell. That is all. You asked me is I thought you were saved? I do not know you and have never had the pleasure of meeting you. If I were to sit down with you and talk for a while, I have no doubt I would hear you talk about Christ and God’s glory and the joy of your salvation which would confirm to me you know the Lord. For the many years I have read the Wartburg Watch I can say that absolutely you are saved, exhibit the fruit of the Spirit and have a passion for God and people that results in your ministry. I certainly count you as among the elect.

    dee wrote:
    John wrote:
    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine.
    No, we are not confused whatsoever. That is insulting to people who have thought long and hard about Calvinism. In fact, our view is a logical counterpoint to your POV and many theologians thoughout history have agreed with this counterpoint. You may disagree with us but we are no more confused than you are.
    If I see a group of children about to walk over a cliff and I have the capacity to save them all without breaking a sweat, and I choose to only save a few, then I have deliberately chosen to allow some to walk over the cliff.
    God did not choose anyone according to any merit. So, is it eenie meenie minie moe? One guy is as good (or as bad) as the next. God doesn’t have to save anyone but he chooses to do so.
    It is just as possible that God created all of us with the capacity to make a choice for God. That doesn’t mean we save ourselves. It means we want to be saved and God graciously deigns to do so.
    I have to admit that I am getting weary by Calvinists telling us that we are confused, uneducated, etc. while obviously implying that they are not. If it was so gosh darn logical, there wouldn’t be dedicated Christians and theologians who have disagreed with it through the years.
    In case you think I obviously am misinformed, ask my co editor Deb about my several years journey to figure this out once and for all. Also, go ahead and question me on Calvin, Spurgeon, Piper, et al.
    And, as an amusing aside, I have found out that my husband is a direct descendant of Jonathan Edwards.
    Since I am not a follower of Calvin, would you John say that I am not saved?

  373. Ken F wrote:

    @ John:
    That is not the question I asked. I asked how do you know you have been chosen. How do you know for certain that you are not a goat who thinks he knows the Lord.

    I thought I answered the question. How do I know I am saved and not deceived. The devil cannot mimic God’s love and that love has captured me, sustained me. answered prayers , open Scripture to me, changed my life and is sanctifying me. Each day I desire to do God’s will, seek holiness and magnify His glory. His sanctification I have described is not a part of a deceived person.

  374. If the preacher guy who wrote the KJV bible shared a few of his problems……would “thewartburgwarch” have him and all fans of his on a “hit” list. Sometimes the “complainitarians” have nothing to do with their life, so they mingle with the gossips, instead of actually “doing something.”

    There are many people who have had “marriage problems” including those who have had to deal with stinky rotten infidelity problems and sex-addiction problems, and their marriage is improved to strengthened (THAT has ONLY to do with BIBLICAL advice…not with pastor or counselor advice). And for truths sake, make sense of reality, infidelity happens in GOOD marriages. Polygyny is growing in some christian circles or is not backing down. Why is Wartburgwatch not reporting on issues like that?

    Divorces happen. Sometimes the people get remarried to their first spouse again aftercalling it quites. Wartburgwatch doesn’t admit those issues and “concerns.”

  375. Dee,

    By the way, I agree with our friend Wade Burleson. Do not call me a Calvinist. I hate labels, Calvin was not the author of what is called Calvinism, (He was dead already 60 years) and I do not follow John Calvin either.

  376. John wrote:

    I have been broken Dee. Brokenness is a work in which God destroys the constant dependence upon one’s self and resources.

    Then how do you avoid dropping into Worm Theology?
    And “More Broken and Utterly Depraved Sinner Than Thou” one-upmanship?

  377. @ John:
    In the parable of the sheep and goats Jesus made it clear that there were surprised goats and sheep. How can you be certain you are not one of them?

    Does one have to belive the “doctrines of grace” to be saved? Can one be ardently anti-Calvinist and be saved?

  378. The next article by “thewartburgwatch”……”Forgiveness-ainitarians” are attaining stronger marriages than ever before. Beware of their lure towards actually doing something for the LORD.

    Are not there more profitable and notable things to “notice” in Christian problem world. Like fake pastors using their lure of wearing colorful Joseph’s coat kind of pastor looking clothes and performing special “pedophile” marriages for sodomite couples or something.

  379. John wrote:

    I know I am saved because of the same experience as anyone who is saved. I was regenerated by the Holy Spirit upon hearing the Gospel. The Spirit indwelt me and changed my desire to serve and know God deeply. That has steadily grown and increased these last 45 years and my ultimate desire is to do His will each day and to know Him in a deep knowledge of Hid glory and grace. He who has no desire to grow in holiness and not seek to do God’s will is not saved.

    You do not know how many times I heard that almost word-for-word during my time in-country. Used to count coup or beat down in a game of Holy One-Upmanship.

    Q: What is the Proof of Salvation?
    A: Whatever I Do That YOU Don’t!
    Q: What is The Unpardonable Sin?
    A: Whatever YOU Do That I Don’t!

  380. stinks wrote:

    The next article by “thewartburgwatch”……”Forgiveness-ainitarians” are attaining stronger marriages than ever before. Beware of their lure towards actually doing something for the LORD.

    Are not there more profitable and notable things to “notice” in Christian problem world. Like fake pastors using their lure of wearing colorful Joseph’s coat kind of pastor looking clothes and performing special “pedophile” marriages for sodomite couples or something.

    Still have no idea where this guy is coming from, but I DID notice an unspoken “Unlike MEEEEEEEE” in the first paragraph and the invocation of Teh (*** ed.) Card in the second.

  381. stinks wrote:

    Why is Wartburgwatch not reporting on issues like that?

    Because that is not the primary burden that the Holy Spirit has put in the DEEBS hearts.

  382. Dr. Fundystan, Proctologist wrote:

    @ Daisy:
    John’s comment is not congruous with Calvin’s writings nor with the history of Calvinist thought. Those who are “sinners on their way to hell” are such precisely because God created them that way, at least in Calvin’s writings and in the official theology of the PCA. This is an end-around designed to ignore the rational implications of Calvinism.

    “In’shal’lah…”

  383. Max wrote:

    Velour wrote:

    NeoCalvinism is such a sick, hateful doctrine.

    And America’s youth are flocking to it! It challenges them in their intellect, but not their spirit.

    Don’t discount The Lure of The Inner Ring (of God’s Predestined Speshul Pets, of the Illuminati with the Occult Gnosis).

  384. Max wrote:

    The hyper-Calvinists I have known put more faith in doctrinal propositions about grace rather than a direct experience of Grace.

    The Calvinjugend my writing partner has had run-ins with have also dethroned God into Socratic Atheism. Because if God can only Will what He Hath Been Predestined to Will, God is not God; Predestination is and God is just another Predestined Puppet.

  385. Max wrote:

    The hyper-Calvinists I have known put more faith in doctrinal propositions about grace rather than a direct experience of Grace.

    The Calvinjugend my writing partner has had run-ins with have also dethroned God into Socratic Atheism. Because if God can only Will what He Hath Been Predestined to Will, God is not God; Predestination is and God is just another Predestined Puppet.Max wrote:

    Velour wrote:

    NeoCalvinism is such a sick, hateful doctrine.

    And America’s youth are flocking to it! It challenges them in their intellect, but not their spirit.

    The promise of Intellectual Superiority, the same appeal as Communism.

  386. John wrote:

    First of all Dee my ;point was not insulting. I was pointing out that there is much confusion about the certain emphasis that God did not predestine people to hell.

    I am not confused. I happen to disagree with your interpretation of the system of election. I do not think you are confused. But I deeply disagree with you. I have read ad nauseam on this issue with an open heart. I have probably read more than some Calvinists.

    For me, when God who has the capacity to save everyone, picks only some before the beginning of time and not due to any merit or good in them, He has effectively predestined the others to hell. I know you disagree with me but I am not confused whatsoever on this matter.

    Also, I am not concerned what anyone but God thinks about my salvation. Long ago, I gave up trying to decide if anyone was saved or not saved. That is up to the One who is at a much higher pay grade than me.

    Instead, I focus on abuse, authoritarianism, arrogant theology and weirdness in the faith. Unlike John Piper, I am reticent to state *why* God allowed a tornado to hit. He must be one of God’s confessors.

  387. stinks wrote:

    Are not there more profitable and notable things to “notice” in Christian problem world.

    It sure sounds like you should start a blog. God is probably leading you to speak about those things that float your boat. This is our blog and God has led us in this direction. We like to obey him.

  388. en F wrote:

    @ John:
    In the parable of the sheep and goats Jesus made it clear that there were surprised goats and sheep. How can you be certain you are not one of them?
    Does one have to belive the “doctrines of grace” to be saved? Can one be ardently anti-Calvinist and be saved?

    I have tried to answer you sir. There will be no surprised sheep. Only surprised goats who were deceived. Of course one can be anti-Calvin and be saved.

  389. dee wrote:

    God did not choose anyone according to any merit. So, is it eenie meenie minie moe? One guy is as good (or as bad) as the next. God doesn’t have to save anyone but he chooses to do so.

    I think this needs to be drastically rethought. Probably over on the OD thread.

  390. dee wrote:

    If it was so gosh darn logical, there wouldn’t be dedicated Christians and theologians who have disagreed with it through the years.

    If it was so “gosh darn logical” why did it take 1,500 years? Them early Christians must have been a pretty slow bunch.

  391. Bob wrote:

    I’m a regular reader of this blog and usually a fan, but I find this post to be slanderous.

    The misuse and abuse of the accusation of slander as a silencing technique is often discussed here, so I find it interesting that “a regular reader” and “a fan” would resort to the use of the “slander” denunciation.

  392. Bill M wrote:

    dee wrote:

    If it was so gosh darn logical, there wouldn’t be dedicated Christians and theologians who have disagreed with it through the years.

    If it was so “gosh darn logical” why did it take 1,500 years?

    Because all creation had to await the birth of CALVIN.

  393. Ken F wrote:

    @ John:
    That is not the question I asked. I asked how do you know you have been chosen. How do you know for certain that you are not a goat who thinks he knows the Lord.

    Especially when the Word of Calvin says that there IS no way to know, that God can send false assurance of Election to the Reprobate.

    And outside of Calvin, this is also a rather underhanded way of Soul-Winning(TM) where the first step is to completely shatter any assurance or confidence of salvation the mark may have. This was done by an infinite regression infinite loop where any answer the mark may give is thrown back in his face with “BUT HOW DO YOU KNOW YOU’RE (repeat the mark’s answer here)?????????”.
    ARE YOU SURE?
    ARE YOU CERTAIN YOU’RE SURE?
    ARE YOU SURE YOU’RE CERTAIN YOU’RE SURE?
    ARE YOU CERTAIN YOU’RE SURE YOU’RE CERTAIN YOU’RE SURE?
    Ad Infinitum until the mark is finally beaten down. Then unholster your Bible and start with the Romans Road/Four Spiritual Laws/Altar Call.
    After which, cut another notch on your Bible for brownie points at the Bema.

    I know this because during my time in-country, I became a notch on half a dozen Bibles that way.

  394. @ Lea:

    Haven’t read all of the replies, but what a WEIRD video. His body language seems be at odds with the words coming out of his mouth. He also over emphasizes his “rock solid marriage”and “no unfaithfulness” not even a hint. I have no idea what he or his wife have or haven’t done. But what a weird video and over the top diatribe. If anything, this all worked to make me feel he is hiding something. He may not be, but his actions and speech here has caused red flags to go off for me.

    On a side note, oh please can all of my church going friends on social media under the age of 50 STOP quoting this man ten times more than they quote the Bible. If I see one more “Piper says….”

  395. stinks wrote:

    The next article by “thewartburgwatch”……”Forgiveness-ainitarians” are attaining stronger marriages than ever before. Beware of their lure towards actually doing something for the LORD.

    Are not there more profitable and notable things to “notice” in Christian problem world. Like fake pastors using their lure of wearing colorful Joseph’s coat kind of pastor looking clothes and performing special “pedophile” marriages for sodomite couples or something.

    I don’t understand this comment at all. Is this supposed to be a reference to Eddie Long?

  396. @ waking up:

    “On a side note, oh please can all of my church going friends on social media under the age of 50 STOP quoting this man ten times more than they quote the Bible. If I see one more “Piper says….””
    ++++++++++++++

    I think you should tell them all directly in no uncertain terms. Let them know what exactly you’ll do if you ‘see one more “Piper says….”‘. sounds like it’s high time for a reality and sanity check for your social media friends.

  397. @ John:

    “I have been broken Dee. Brokenness is a work in which God destroys the constant dependence upon one’s self and resources”
    +++++++++++++++

    huh…. so, when you drive a car do your hands sort of hover over the steering wheel and you wait for God to move them for you? when you’re at a restaurant how does God illuminate the right menu choice? in the morning how long does it take for God to point out which socks go with which pants and which shirt?

    and how does this all work for you on the job (whatever your job might be)? do you just sit or stand there and God makes it all happen? has God ever made it all happen not on time or with errors? how do you explain this to your boss or clients and how do they respond?

  398. Christiane wrote:

    Ken F wrote:
    Piper teaches that God’s damnation of the reprobate magnifies his glory for the elect.
    this is horrid! what a terrible view of God’s character

    This is one of the many reasons I left my previous church and denomination. It is a revolting doctrine and it underlies many of the problems with abuse in churches. Once they get past this nonsense that God predestines billions to eternal punishment “for his own glory and pleasure” they can tolerate temporary abuse upon a smaller section of humanity. This is why they can be comfortable with racial hatred, sexism, child abuse etc.

  399. NJ wrote:

    I suspect pastors will eagerly point out nobody’s having an affair because sexual sins are treated as more scandalous than most.

    That is sadly so true. The church is obsessed with sex but lacks love. There is something seriously wrong with a doctrine that enables domestic violence but puts innocent, committed couples under “church discipline” for having pre-marital sex (which does not harm anyone). On another point, there is a clear link between the “purity culture” that Piper, Mahaney and others promote and the many instances of abuse that have occurred.

  400. @ John:

    “I have been broken Dee. Brokenness is a work in which God destroys the constant dependence upon one’s self and resources.”
    ++++++++++++

    this being broken, brokenness… i mean i’ve had oodles of disappointments in life but i feel whole. in fact, so whole that i have great confidence in my talents, my skills and abilities, my acquired knowledge and understanding about a whole host of things.

    i don’t know if you saw Chariots of Fire, but there’s this line where the runner Eric Liddell says, “God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.”

    when i do my thing, use my skills and talents, make decisions with due diligence based on my knowledge & understanding, when i make good use of all my resources i was born with and which i’ve developed through hard work and discipline, i have no doubt of God’s pleasure.

    don’t you think it’s the same with you?

    i don’t see this prerequisite of God having to crush and break and destroy parts of us before we can be productive and use them. i don’t see that trusting in our abilities, skills, & knowledge is bad & second-guessing ourselves is good. i think as we are busy digging into our abilities/talents/skills/knowledge/understanding God works with us and takes us further — makes us super-able.

    kind of like the idea that God (or anyone) can’t really direct an object that is standing still. once it starts moving and doing its thing, then it can be directed.

    and furthermore, if there are choices A, B, C, and D, and in the absence of a lightning bolt pointing to any particular one i choose B, I think God can work with B. and together we make it a productive, meaningful, beautiful thing. i mean, it’s not like i’m outta luck and it’s curtains if i choose B but only C is the supposed bullseye of God’s supposed perfect will.

  401. @ ZechZav:

    and did you know christians believe in magic? they take great stock in the magical incantations that happen at the wedding as the preacher man in a dark suit rattles off his spells, and the bride and groom rattle off theirs.

    love and commitment are filthy & scandalous without the magic rituals of the ceremony called wedding.

  402. John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell. God chose some as His elect to receive His mercy. Hw will have mercy on whom He will have mercy. God was not under obligation to love or save anyone. He is holy and separate from creation. We marvel that God chose to save whom He did.

    There can hardly be any confusion about it. Calvinists have been making their views known for centuries through many volumes of writing. Some Calvinists, like A.W. Pink, were quite honest and clear. Others, like Piper, create confusion because they teach that God predestines people to hell but want to escape the implications. So he writes incomprehensible babble in 300 pages of mealy-mouthed apologetics and self-contradictions.

    True, God is under no obligation to save anyone but it is not about obligation. It is about love, mercy and grace. God is love and it is his nature (1 John 4).
    God does not delight in the death of the wicked (Ezekiel 18). Yes he is holy and separate from his creation but I don’t see what relationship this has to the subject.

  403. elastigirl wrote:

    love and commitment are filthy & scandalous without the magic rituals of the ceremony called wedding.

    That’s very true. I sometimes wonder if the reason why the church is against sex before marriage (in the context of committed couples) was motivated by this greed. It would mean everybody would have to pay the church for a marriage ceremony before they were allowed to experience love, sex and commitment. This is speculation but I could be wrong.

  404. @ ZechZav:

    seems to me that the history of christianity is one of the dominant party co-opting it for their benefit and convenience.

    i wonder when the first incident was (aside from Judas Iscariot). i’m sure it didn’t take long.

    certainly happens nowadays, too.

  405. John wrote:

    Much confusion about the Calvinistic doctrine. God did not choose people to go to hell. When God chose, all were sinners and on their way to hell.

    Sounds like God was late arriving at the party.

  406. John wrote:

    I have tried to answer you sir. There will be no surprised sheep. Only surprised goats who were deceived. Of course one can be anti-Calvin and be saved.

    As to surprised sheep, Matt 25 makes it very clear that both sheep and goats are surprised by how they are judged. Both reply, “Lord, when did we see you…” If the goats can be deceived into believing they are saved, then is it not possible for some Calvinists to be deceived as well? In fact, Calvinism actually teaches that the reprobate can be deceived into believing they are saved. This makes me question how any Calvinist can really know if they are saved.

    I asked if one can be anti-Calvinist and still be saved. You answered that one can be anti-Calvin and still be saved. That is a very big difference. One is being against a system of thought that went beyond what Calvin actually taught. The other is being against the man know as Calvin. I find it interesting that you did not answer what I actually asked.

    If one can be anti-Calvinist and still be saved, then belief in Calvinism is not necessary for salvation. If Calvinism is not necessary for salvation, then what is the whole point of propagating Calvinism? It sounds like an unnecessary add-on that confuses a lot of people. Actually, confusion is too soft of a word. Many lives have been destroyed by Calvinism, and many people have lost their faith because of Calvinism.

  407. ZechZav wrote:

    I sometimes wonder if the reason why the church is against sex before marriage (in the context of committed couples) was motivated by this greed.

    I heard that Baptists are against sex before marriage because it can lead to dancing. (I can say that because I am a member of a SBC church).

  408. stinks wrote:

    If the preacher guy who wrote the KJV bible shared a few of his problems

    This is a really really odd comparison! Especially since there was no ‘preacher guy’ who ‘wrote’ the kjv bible, which is a translation to began with, not a cool new theory or book of recycled sermons or whatever piper writes.

  409. waking up wrote:

    can all of my church going friends on social media under the age of 50 STOP quoting this man ten times more than they quote the Bible

    For some reason I see a lot of Toby Mac quotes. Whoever that is. Musician?

  410. elastigirl wrote:

    this being broken, brokenness… i mean i’ve had oodles of disappointments in life but i feel whole.

    There is an odd emphasis on break you down to build you up, which sounds like the military. or a cult.

    I’ve had some down days. I don’t know about being broken. Broken is head to the hospital time isn’t it? Maybe they are using a different definition.

  411. Lea wrote:

    stinks wrote:

    If the preacher guy who wrote the KJV bible shared a few of his problems

    This is a really really odd comparison! Especially since there was no ‘preacher guy’ who ‘wrote’ the kjv bible, which is a translation to began with, not a cool new theory or book of recycled sermons or whatever piper writes.

    I think stinkie was just trolling IMO.

  412. Ken F wrote:

    I heard that Baptists are against sex before marriage because it can lead to dancing. (I can say that because I am a member of a SBC church).

    LOL! That’s type of logic I see many times in various teachings!

  413. Lea wrote:

    stinks wrote:
    If the preacher guy who wrote the KJV bible shared a few of his problems
    This is a really really odd comparison! Especially since there was no ‘preacher guy’ who ‘wrote’ the kjv bible, which is a translation to began with, not a cool new theory or book of recycled sermons or whatever piper writes.

    And, the KJV translation was ordered to be written by a ruling monarch with a political agenda!

  414. Lea wrote:

    waking up wrote:
    can all of my church going friends on social media under the age of 50 STOP quoting this man ten times more than they quote the Bible
    For some reason I see a lot of Toby Mac quotes. Whoever that is. Musician?

    Yep, rapper formerly of DC Talk. Liberty grad. Does solo stuff now.

  415. @ Lea:

    broken, brokenness, “Maybe they are using a different definition.”
    +++++++++++++++++

    perhaps (over)spiritualizing everything that is not going swimmingly.

    traffic, colds & flu, not getting the job promotion, PMS, mid-life crisis, losing one’s car keys….. “whoa, God must be doing’ somethin’…”

    (based on actual conversations with various christians)

  416. Nancy2 wrote:

    And, the KJV translation was ordered to be written by a ruling monarch with a political agenda!

    Truth be told? I don’t care if it was written by Attila the Hun. It’s the translation of choice for me. I love the lilting beauty of the Elizabethan prose.

  417. elastigirl wrote:

    traffic, colds & flu, not getting the job promotion, PMS, mid-life crisis, losing one’s car keys….. “whoa, God must be doing’ somethin’…”

    I hear ya. Almost as unsettling as black cats, ladders, and Friday the 13th.

  418. @ elastigirl:

    Well said elastigirl. It makes me think of this:

    4 What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?

    5 For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour.

    6 Thou madest him to have dominion over the works of thy hands; thou hast put all things under his feet:

  419. sucks wrote:

    If the preacher guy who wrote the KJV bible shared a few of his problems……would “thewartburgwarch” have him and all fans of his on a “hit” list. Sometimes the “complainitarians” have nothing to do with their life, so they mingle with the gossips, instead of actually “doing something.”
    There are many people who have had “marriage problems” including those who have had to deal with stinky rotten infidelity problems and sex-addiction problems, and their marriage is improved to strengthened (THAT has ONLY to do with BIBLICAL advice…not with pastor or counselor advice). And for truths sake, make sense of reality, infidelity happens in GOOD marriages. Polygyny is growing in some christian circles or is not backing down. Why is Wartburgwatch not reporting on issues like that?
    Divorces happen. Sometimes the people get remarried to their first spouse again aftercalling it quites. Wartburgwatch doesn’t admit those issues and “concerns.”

    Hear, hear. Finally, a chatbot arcehole who talks some sense.

    The “complainitarians” of “Wartburgland” should be focusing on all the good marriages that end in divorce if they really wanted to admit their “concerns”. And where’s your gossiping, complaining spirit when the POLYGYNY doesn’t back down and remarry its first spouse?

    You’re all rubbish.

    Up Yours,
    Roger Bombast

  420. @ Muff Potter:

    yes, indeed — those verses inform my thinking quite a bit. and it’s great news. makes being human very interesting and exciting!

  421. Muff Potter wrote:

    . It’s the translation of choice for me. I love the lilting beauty of the Elizabethan prose.

    Me too. I think it’s nice to have a standard translation for memorization as well, I memorized all my Sunday school verses in kjv.

  422. elastigirl wrote:

    @ Lea
    broken, brokenness, “Maybe they are using a different definition.”
    +++++++++++++++++

    perhaps (over)spiritualizing everything that is not going swimmingly.

    traffic, colds & flu, not getting the job promotion, PMS, mid-life crisis, losing one’s car keys….. “whoa, God must be doing’ somethin’…”

    (based on actual conversations with various christians)

    Well by that definition I guess I’ve been there!

  423. Your question is so absurd it does not dignify a response.elastigirl wrote:

    @ John:
    “I have been broken Dee. Brokenness is a work in which God destroys the constant dependence upon one’s self and resources”
    +++++++++++++++
    huh…. so, when you drive a car do your hands sort of hover over the steering wheel and you wait for God to move them for you? when you’re at a restaurant how does God illuminate the right menu choice? in the morning how long does it take for God to point out which socks go with which pants and which shirt?
    and how does this all work for you on the job (whatever your job might be)? do you just sit or stand there and God makes it all happen? has God ever made it all happen not on time or with errors? how do you explain this to your boss or clients and how do they respond?

  424. John wrote:

    Your question is so absurd it does not dignify a response

    Why? Elastigirl has been reading here for many years, We have written extensively on some of the statements by hardliner Calvinistas. She is asking a question that for many of us is not undignified. The bases of the question is “Does Calvinism preach a fatalistic view of life.?”

    Let me show you why her question is actually quite intelligent. RC Sproul said the following.
    “If there is one single molecule in this universe running around loose, totally free of God’s sovereignty, then we have no guarantee that a single promise of God will ever be fulfilled.”
    ― R.C. Sproul, Chosen By God: Know God’s Perfect Plan for His Glory and His Children

    Are you familiar with chaos theory? It is well described via “The Butterfly Effect which is described:

    The Butterfly Effect: This effect grants the power to cause a hurricane in China to a butterfly flapping its wings in New Mexico. It may take a very long time, but the connection is real. If the butterfly had not flapped its wings at just the right point in space/time, the hurricane would not have happened. A more rigorous way to express this is that small changes in the initial conditions lead to drastic changes in the results.
    http://fractalfoundation.org/resources/what-is-chaos-theory/

    Therefore, it is not unreasonable to assume that choosing a white sock versus a black sock could ,over time, have an effect on all sorts of things.I won’t go into an example unless this makes not sense to you.

    So, it does boil down to this. Does God move each and every molecule in a specific way as Sproul has said? I would say that elastigirl was asking a profound question with which philosophers and theologians have struggled for millennia.

    I think it is important to think what people are asking and assuming that they are doing so because they are intelligent and have thought about these issues for awhile. I sure know I have. In fact, I ditto her questions. Did God just tell a butterfly in Japan to flap her wings?

  425. Nancy2 wrote:

    And, the KJV translation was ordered to be written by a ruling monarch with a political agenda!

    A Divine-Right-of-Kings ruling monarch who was also Flaming Gay.

  426. @ John:

    my point was that one’s self and one’s resources are good and necessary for personal responsibility, and that you yourself successfully rely on those things in being a responsible human being.

  427. Lea wrote:

    There is an odd emphasis on break you down to build you up, which sounds like the military. or a cult.

    I’ve seen this too, long ago when I was a Calvary Chapelite. And yes it’s very cultish. Nonetheless, it’s taught, and many folks swallow it hook-line-and-sinker.

  428. @ dee:

    yeah? i was really just thinking why don’t we relax and stop taking ourselves so seriously.

    thanks for the support!

  429. Pharisee. Narcissist. Confused. False teacher. Defender of sexual scandals and its perpetrators. Defender of a false gospel. Clown. Piper.

  430. elastigirl wrote:

    i was really just thinking why don’t we relax and stop taking ourselves so seriously.

    Best advice I’ve heard all week. Sigh… It’s a very human thing to want others to believe as we believe… Some just can’t handle it rationally when that’s not achievable, and will try and torpedo your position in order to get you to knuckle under and adopt their view.

  431. ishy said:

    “And this is why hyper-Calvinism is not only about subjecting women through complementarianism, but also subjecting men. These pastors and elders don’t want equality with other men, either. They want to rule them.”

    This reminds me of something that I have read regarding patriarchy and also about ‘patricians’ in Roman society.

    Let’s consider Christianity and Roman Patriarchy.

    “Someone defined Patriarchy this way: “Patriarchy is not just the rule of men over women, but as the rule of a few men over every one else, male and female. Patriarchy involves not only the subordination of women and children, but also the subordination of most men.” . . .

    Christianity began as a small Jewish sect within Israel, a once-sovereign nation, that was ruled by Rome–like the rest of the known world in the first century.

    The Roman Empire was itself dominated by a class known as the “patricians.” Patricians were the powerful and wealthy men of the ‘citizen class.’

    This citizen class made up only a tiny percentage of the Roman population; yet in Roman law, everyone else existed only to serve them.

    Ancient Rome had an honor/shame-based culture. It was a highly competitive society. Promoting and preserving one’s personal and family prestige were of the utmost importance.

    This culture required that those who were offended demand revenge for all slights and injuries to them. There were continual social contests to gain honor for oneself at the expense of others. This struggle for power, honor, and respect had very real consequences in Rome, especially for people who did not achieve it.

    It is estimated that one third of the population of cities located around the Mediterranean were enslaved, another third were former slaves, and most of the rest were “free” (never-enslaved) people who lived in dire poverty.:

    (Source: Carrie A. Miles, Ph.D.)

    This definition of patriarchy is descriptive and sums it up nicely for me.

    This phrase also stands out to me: “yet in Roman law, everyone else existed only to serve them.”

  432. waking up wrote:

    On a side note, oh please can all of my church going friends on social media under the age of 50 STOP quoting this man ten times more than they quote the Bible. If I see one more “Piper says….”

    They’re just reciting their REAL Scriptures.

  433. MidwesternEasterner wrote:

    don’t understand this comment at all. Is this supposed to be a reference to Eddie Long?

    Got no clue whatsoever.
    The guy sounds so Spiritual he’s ceased to speak any human tongue.

  434. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    Johan Bekker wrote:

    I have read most books of John Piper……to him the glory of God is ultimate.

    The Glory of God expressed as a Zero-Sum Game?
    Where in order for God to be Glorified, everyone else has to be crushed down?
    For God to have Supreme Importance, nothing/nobody else can be allowed to have any importance?

    Such a great zeal for obeying the first greatest commandment that you are willing to sacrifice the second to accomplish it. I have found this to be generally true at the neo-Cal churches I have attended.

  435. Headless Unicorn Guy wrote:

    @ Headless Unicorn Guy:
    P.S.
    Think on this, he seems to think he will be right up there on the stage/throne with God it really is rather scary.
    Velour?
    Do you think Flutterhands will be “right up there on the stage/throne” astride a White Horse personally given to him by God for Armageddon, just like your former Pastor?

    I missed your comment to me until now.

    God help us all. These boyz and their claims to be on White Horses with Jesus.
    I somehow think Jesus is far more concerned with how badly the boyz treat other people
    than giving them something as important as a horse to ride. But the boyz can dream. And delude themselves.

  436. Christiane wrote:

    Velour wrote:
    May you be kept in hot coffee by your generator.
    A great blessing for Dee, Velour. I mean this.
    Years ago, hurricane …. lost power for a week. Coffee withdrawal misery big time, long long lines at 7/11 for their hot coffee …. we bought a generator after that fiasco, yes

    Whenever I visit my sister and brother-in-law I have to pack those Starbucks VIA packets in my luggage. I wake up early. They own a $1000+ coffee maker/latte maker/espresso maker from Italy and I have no clue how it it works. I’d probably break it. Nothing like being the first person up in the morning, craving a hot cup of coffee, and being high and dry and having to wait for hours for everyone else to wake up and ask nicely for a cup of coffee.

    So I feel for Dee and the storms. And coffee is a blessing.

  437. Wondering about the connection between a certain kind of man and some corners of Calvinist circles: do “the Doctrines of Grace” feel like grace to someone with a big loud, proud, bull-om-a-china-shop personality? Does it feel like grace when God speaks loudly and sharply in rebuke, in order to help such a person hear God over his own loud sense of importance and certainty? His own bullheadedness?

    I was once friends with someone like that, who confided in me that he marvelled at the way God seemed to speak to me, and mourned that God seemed to need to smack him in the head to get his attention.

    It is so easy for folks to read their own experience as a universal law. I wonder if this is part of why some folks can honestly say that it feels like love when somebody smacks them down. When they preach about God’s wrath with a longing smile. Why the Doctrines of Grace feel like they have anything to do with grace.

    Thoughts?

  438. Mel V wrote:

    Why the Doctrines of Grace feel like they have anything to do with grace.

    I believe these have redefined to grace to mean that God has chosen a few people and the person who adheres to them believes that they are those people.

  439. elastigirl wrote:

    this being broken, brokenness

    Some of these people need to define what they mean by “broken” and “brokenness”.
    I have “broken” horses, ponies, and mules to ride and work (house “broken” and leash “broken” pets, too). But that did not involve killing their spirits or stripping them of their personalities. I used more of a constant, gradual, consistent, training process …… slowly taking them from one level to the next, while earning their trust. That’s sort of like the way I see God’s version of “brokenness”.
    I do know from experience that some animals, just like humans, are too far gone to ever be “broken”.

  440. Velour wrote:

    I missed your comment to me until now.
    God help us all. These boyz and their claims to be on White Horses with Jesus.

    Ego much?
    Thirst for POWER? (“The only goal of Power is POWER”, and you can’t get much more POWER than being Almighty God’s Court Favorite.)
    Or both of the above?

  441. Marriage is not an obligation. The husband GETS to be with his wife to take care of her, and vise versa. It is a privilege.

    Remember how God loved you when you were a dirty evil sinner? Did God viewed it as an obligation? Nope! God certainly viewed it as a privilege, because he LOVED YOU SO MUCH!!! You are NOT his burden. He takes JOY in taking care of a dirty evil sinner like you. Do you get that?

    If you understand a TINY BIT of God’s love for you, then go love your dirty evil sinful annoying and even crippled wife/husband the same way. And THIS right here is true SPIRITUAL MATURITY, not by reading the 100th John Piper book or even reading through the bible the 1000th time.

    Now if your spouse is abusing you or is cheating on you, that is on them and not your fault. In those cases you can divorce. But if you find your spouse boring or hard to deal with, that is ON YOU to love them! If even non-believer couples has a CHANCE to have a thriving marriage, how can you as a CHRISTIAN being LOVE by GOD be “barely surviving” in your marriage? Have you forgotten how much God loves you?

    This is what Christian marriage is all about. An OPPORTUNITY to love someone is a PRIVILEGE. Shame on any so-called Christian leaders who view marriage as an obligation, staying with their spouse just because God said so. God didn’t call couples to “barely survive” their marriage. God called all Christian couples to THRIVE in their marriages.

  442. Sorry for the tardy comment, but since the topic of Piper and his (presumed) lack of financial compensation for his sabbatical was mentioned several times in this thread, I went back and read the Desiring God article where the leave was announced.

    It was, in fact, a salaried sabbatical. Here’s the pertinent quote:

    “I asked the elders not to pay me for this leave. I don’t feel it is owed to me. I know I am causing more work for others, and I apologize to the staff for that. Not only that, others could use similar time away. Most working men and women do not have the freedom to step back like this. The elders did not agree