About the Author
JOHN PIPER is pastor for preaching and vision at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis. He has authored numerous books, including Desiring God, Don’t Waste Your Life, This Momentary Marriage, and A Sweet and Bitter Providence.
John Piper’s newest book will help Christians think about thinking. Focusing on the life of the mind helps us to know God better, love him more, and care for the world. Along with an emphasis on emotions and the experience of God, we also need to practice careful thinking about God. Piper contends that “thinking is indispensable on the path to passion for God.” So how are we to maintain a healthy balance of mind and heart, thinking and feeling? Piper urges us to think for the glory of God. He demonstrates from Scripture that glorifying God with our minds and hearts is not either-or, but both-and. Thinking carefully about God fuels passion and affections for God. Likewise, Christ-exalting emotion leads to disciplined thinking. Readers will be reminded that “the mind serves to know the truth that fuels the fires of the heart.”
The latest from John Piper challenges readers to engage their minds in pursuing, knowing and loving God. He says loving God with all our mind means.."our thinking is wholly engaged to do it all it can to awaken and express the heartfelt fullness of treasuring God above all things." (pg.85)
Readers will, in fact, have to fully engage their minds while reading THINK. Some chapters are easier than others to understand, but a few will take a 2nd or 3rd reading to fully grasp their meaning. Chapter 10 is easily the most cerebral, and readers will literally have to think hard about its meaning and application..but it's well worth the effort.
Chapters 6 and 7 are both brilliant. But for me, the best chapter in the entire book is Chapter 4, where Piper explains Jesus' encounter with the Pharisees and Sadducees in Matthew 16.. the study is nothing short of brilliant.
After finishing the book, I realized one of the reasons why I appreciate the author's latest..THINK is essentially one big Bible study. There are scripture verses on almost every page. And that of course is Piper's passion, to explain Scripture and help Christ followers to know God and treasure Him more passionately through His Word.
And I always appreciate Piper's bold and challenging statements.. "Desiring to be rich is suicidal." (pg.202) He knows it's not a sin to be rich, but he also knows the Bible's warnings against wanting to be wealthy. Great balance.
One small section I found unecessarily confusing. In Chapter 12, commenting on Romans 10:1, Piper writes that the apostle Paul's Jewish countrymen weren't saved because "they have a zeal for God.." (pg.162) To his credit, Piper clarifies just two short paragraphs later when he writes that their zeal wasn't based on knowledge. But I think the way it's worded first brings unecessary confusion to the reader.
Anyone at all familiar with Piper's writings knows how he's been tremendously influenced by Jonathan Edwards, who many call one of the greatest evangelical thinkers of all time. Chapter 2 talks about that influence.
After reading a good majority of Piper's books, and now his latest, I'm convinced he's one of the greatest thinkers of our time.
And for that, we should all be thankful.