VIDEO INTERVIEW – John Piper on Passionate Preaching

UPDATE
The written transcript of this segment of my interview with John Piper is now available. You can read it here.

Yesterday I began speaking with John Piper about New Word Alive and why he comes to the UK. In this segment, I began by putting before John the notion that he has an unusual degree of passion and anointing when preaching. I even quoted Lig Duncan, who said that he wondered if he had ever really preached after hearing Piper’s talk at the first Together for the Gospel conference. I asked him whether he was conscious of this, and if he had any explanation for it.

Piper began his answer by honestly stating, “I don’t usually feel that way when I am done preaching.” He spoke about how the sermons he is most unhappy with are sometimes the ones people feel most helped by. He spoke about the need for a ”self-forgetfulness in a full engagement with what is there in the text . . . and the reality of God in the text.”

He did say that there are ways to cultivate this. “It is cultivating God-centeredness, prayer, a serious engagement with the Word, and asking certain kinds of God-centered, Christ-exalting questions. There’s a focus and a preoccupation. And then my root Christian hedonism, my root philosophy—whether you are satisfied in God really makes a difference about whether you can glorify God . . . If you are not passionate about God you won’t glorify him as much. If you are more passionate about football than God, you will glorify football.”

This whole segment is tantalizing, as is much of Piper’s unusual ministry. It made me want to spend about three hours with Piper probing him further about all this. Sadly we did not have three hours, but we did have longer, and I continued my conversation in a video I will share tomorrow.

 

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