16 Convictions Shaping Piper’s PreachingFebruary 27, 2008
My wife and I were riveted last evening as we watched Piper’s lunchtime (9pm our time) talk on how his pastoral ministry affects his preaching. To begin with, however, Piper highlighted 16 underlying convictions which shape his preaching:
1. God predestined us and created us for the praise of the glory of his grace.
2. No one by nature wants to live for the praise of the glory of God’s grace.
3. Therefore every person is accountable to God and guilty with no excuse and is under his just and holy wrath.
4. The final expression of that wrath is an eternal hell of torment cut off from the presence of God and all that is good.
5. The plight of all men on the way to that punishment is that they are spiritually dead and blind and morally unable to see Christ as true and beautiful.
6. People are rescued from this deadness and this destiny of destruction by the death and resurrection of Christ in their place.
7. This atonement is applied to specific people in the new birth through the preaching of the word of God in the power of the Holy Spirit.
8. Preaching the Word of God continues in the life of the believer and the life of the church as a God-designed means (along with other means) of bringing about the reason for our creation—the praise of the glory God’s grace.
9. Preaching is more than teaching; it is the rising of the preacher’s heart to exult over the exposition of truth. It is both exposition of biblical texts and exultation over the reality in those texts.
10. This form of speech—preaching—is designed by God to correspond to his aim in creation and redemption to be glorified by his creatures, namely, his aim to be known and enjoyed.
11. Therefore preaching is worship, it does not follow worship.
12. Therefore preaching corresponds to the design of God to be worshiped in spirit and truth.
13. Therefore preaching is always more but never less than the exposition of Scripture.
14. People are changed into God-glorifying lovers of Christ by seeing Jesus Christ in the fullness of his biblical beauty through Spirit-anointed expository exultation.
15. The glories of God in Jesus Christ are not meant to be the foundation that we stand on while preaching about other things. They are meant to be the main thing we preach about and to which all other things are leading.
16. In preaching I am jealous to show my people the very words in the Bible in which I see the glories of God and the path of Christ-exalting joy.