Monday, April 24, 2006

AN OPEN LETTER TO JOHN PIPER

April 23, 2006

Our Dear Brother:

Over the years we have come to know you and love you even though we don't see you. Your prolific writings are an undisputable witness to your personal and theological identity and to your overall goal in life-- to be satisfied in God alone to the Glory of God alone. Indeed, your profound statement that God is most glorified when we are most satisfied in Him alone has received axiomatic status. Like your mentor, Jonathan Edwards, perhaps the greatest American theological mind, you have correctly sought to promote the honor, beauty and excellency of God in all you say and do.

We rejoice in these tireless efforts and in your advocacy of the simplicity of the gospel of which Jesus Christ is the Sum, the Substance and the Subject. Your vast teachings on suffering as God’s primary instrument in our sanctification and as our sovereignly ordained window to display His glory, resonate with a counter-cultural timbre and are a sound and effective polemic against the inane, heretical Word Faith teaching that is spreading wildly across our land and throughout the world.

In particular, we cite the following areas:

YOUR LOVE FOR YOUR WIFE, NOËL.
We admire and are encouraged by your tenderness, warmth and love for her. We read several years ago in an unrecalled source that you pray with and for her every night before you retire. This is an awesome display of your covenant responsibilities as her head and priest and is a partial fulfillment of your eldership responsibilities of being the husband of one wife and of managing your home well.

YOUR BOUT WITH CANCER
Our congregation was very saddened by your illness and we took it upon ourselves to pray for you assiduously. Your name was added to our church’s bulletin as one of those for whom individual corporate intercession was to be made, and we were careful to ensure that our petitions were in accordance with your stated priorities, at the top of which was that God be glorified in your illness. This in itself was a humbling lesson in theocentric prayer and our prayer life was immensely improved thereby.

We have read your instructions, insights and exhortations surrounding your illness. With your public permission, we made copies of your articles and shared them with members of other congregations, family members, friends and co-workers, most of whom are affiliated with ministries of lame and questionable theological stature. They were impressed and encouraged; they had never been the privileged recipients of such selfless, sound, consistent, theocentric thinking. A co-worker (whose mother is also suffering from cancer) of one of our members read your article, "Don't Waste Your Cancer," and was initially offended, denouncing it as insensitive, unbiblical and blasphemous. Upon subsequent, sober reflection, she apologized to her benefactor, sought her forgiveness and admitted that your article was helpful, encouraging and in perfect comportment with Holy Scripture. She even shared it with her mom.

We continue to pray for your continued and complete recovery. Your insatiable drive to glorify our Triune God in all you do leads us to await anxiously your next publication(s) on the lessons you learned during these times in the "valley of vision." We speak proleptically. We are confident you will not disappoint us.



Unto Him Whose Glory Will Not Be Shared With Idols,

All Saints Redeemer Church
Decatur, Ga

1 Comments:

At 5:44 AM, Blogger John Piper said...

Dear friends,

I have just read your letter on 5-1-06 and been deeply moved here in Cambridge, England where I am on sabbatical. Thank you so much for this encouragement. Just this morning I read, "The Lord is a great God, a great King above all gods." But then I also read that Eli's sons, Hophni and Phineas, who served in the temple, "Did not know the Lord." Imagine! Serving in the temple and they don't even know him. How many today are in this contradiction? O may we KNOW him! KNOW him with our whole soul.

I am deeply thankful for your kindness in this open letter.

John Piper

 

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