When God Demands the Impossible

"Repent and turn from all your transgressions, lest iniquity be your ruin. Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed, and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord God; so turn, and live.” Ezekial 19:30-32In the above verse we see a classic example of God commanding us to do something we simply cannot. When I read this recently everything inside me yelled out "but I C … [Read more...]

PIPER FRIDAY – Why Must We Be Born Again?

It has become something of a habit for me to watch a Piper sermon as part of the preparation of my heart to preach. I don't mean the preparation of my sermon material; rather I mean the preparation of my heart. Getting my heart into the right place to preach is a bigger challenge for me than writing a good set of notes. Piper stirs my heart in ways no one else I listen to does—in order that I should be grateful to God and sensitive to other people. He cares for his listeners and is passionate a … [Read more...]

ESV Study Bible – News, Samples, Interviews, and More

The ESV Study Bible (ESVSB) launch date of October 15th is approaching fast. The Study Bible team has been busy sharing samples and features online to entice us. Their goal is to help people know what's inside the Study Bible and how it might best serve them.From an e-mail sent out by the Study Bible team, here is a summary of what is available at this time:Free Book Introductions and Sample Chapters OnlineIn addition to the previous posts from Jonah, the Psalms, and Revelation, the … [Read more...]

Piper on the New Birth

Even my regular readers may not remember that some time ago I decided I wanted to work my way through John Piper's sermons on the new birth. I know it has been awhile since I mentioned this, but I don't want to rush this process, and let's just say I'vebeen busy with other things. So far I have shared my quotes and thoughts from the first and second sermons.Watching this third video, it was very refreshing to see Piper emphasize that the new birth really does change us. It was a very helpful … [Read more...]

INTERVIEW – Don Carson at New Word Alive, Part 1

I had the great privilege of talking to Don Carson in April at the New Word Alive Conference, when this interview was recorded. I have already shared the video of the interview here.*************************AdrianHi! I’m Adrian Warnock. I blog at http://adrianwarnock.com/. and I’m also privileged to serve as part of the leadership team of Jubilee Church in London. I’m here at New Word Alive, together with Don Carson, who has kindly agreed to answer a few of my questions. Thank you for joining us, … [Read more...]

Should We be Optimistic or Pessimistic About the Future?

Mark Dever over at Together for the Gospel has written about how we should expect persecution. He may well be right. As I read his post, however, and also a few of his buddy, Al Mohler's, cultural observations, I wonder if I detect a more general note of pessimism about the future of the church.I may very well be wrong about that in the case of the individual people I mention, but I'm sure there are many Christians who are, indeed, very negative about the future. It certainly seems that … [Read more...]

PIPER FRIDAY – Charles Simeon and John Wesley

Today I want to bring you quotes from a talk given by John Piper about Charles Simeon. We begin with a description of Simeon's recollection of a conversation he had with the Arminian, John Wesley, when he was a young man. The conversation is instructive about how we should deal with people we disagree with and about how sometimes moderates from both sides of a theological debate are closer than we realise. "Sir, I understand that you are called an Arminian; and I have been sometimes called a … [Read more...]

Prayer works when life is tough

My sermon on sunday was on prayer (which will be no surprise to my regular readers!) I focussed in on how prayer changes us and the vital importance of believing in and experiencing a present God. The audio is available at http://jubilee-church.org/sermons/2006/01/prayer-works-when-life-is-tough.htmHere are the notes I preached fromFour groups of people here this morning, and I have something to say to each of you Those who are not yet Christians You will have an opportunity to become a … [Read more...]

The Sovereignty of God and Prayer

John Piper: "What I am saying is that it is not the doctrine of God's sovereignty which thwarts prayer for the conversion of sinners. On the contrary, it is the unbiblical notion of self-determination which would consistently put an end to all prayers for the lost. Prayer is a request that God do something. But the only thing God can do to save a lost sinner is to overcome his resistance to God. If you insist that he retain his self-determination, then you are insisting that he remain without … [Read more...]

Around the Blogosphere

This post has been entered by Matthew Self of The Gad(d)about. Adrian has accepted my offer to post interesting and unique links to news and other blog entries while he's on break. Like Superman, I promise to use this new power for good, not evil.A brief glance around the Web:Dr. Mike at Eternal Perspectives has rediscovered a healthy "reverential" fear of God by working through Ezekiel. This new/old revelation has given him new insight into how much our sin hurts God, even our "little sins." As … [Read more...]