The Sovereignty of God as per John Piper

imagesGFT5PDIRRecently, I have been very troubled by the way most of the visible church is presenting God. He is presented as a God who is totally dependent on man to perform any of His plans. I find Christianity is making MAN sovereign and God subservient.
It would take a book to present the scriptures that actually presents God as supremely Sovereign with no need of man at all. While searching this out on line I came across this posting by John Piper at DesiringGod.org. Mr. Piper presents God as the scriptures present Him and what a comfort this has been. Here’s what Mr. Piper had to say:

Thesis 1

My all-shaping conviction is that God created the universe in order that he might be worshipped with white-hot intensity by created beings who see his glory manifested in creation and history and supremely in the saving work of Christ.

Thesis 2

I am also persuaded that people need to be confronted with how self-exalting God is in this purpose. To confront them with this, I give a quiz:

Q 1: What is the chief end of God? A: The chief end of God is to glorify God and enjoy displaying and magnifying his glory forever.

Q 2: Who is the most God-centered person in the universe? A: God.

Q 3: Who is uppermost in God’s affections? A: God.

Q 4: Is God an idolater? A: No. He has no other gods before him.

Q 5: What is God’s chief jealousy? A: God’s chief jealousy is to be known, admired, trusted, enjoyed, and obeyed above all others.

Q 6: Do you feel most loved by God because he makes much of you, or because he frees you to enjoy making much of him forever?

Thesis 3

I press on this because I believe that if we are God-centered simply because we consciously or unconsciously believe God is man-centered, then our God-centeredness is in reality man-centeredness. Teaching God’s God-centeredness forces this issue of whether we treasure God because of his excellence or mainly because he endorses ours.

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Christ a Refuge from the Tempest

Edward D_ GriffinThis Article is part of a PDF posting by Edward Griffin ( 1770-1830)  If you would be interested in the life of this man I found this article: http://www.thisday.pcahistory.org/tag/edward-dorr-griffin-1770-1837/
He was a very godly man and had praying godly parents.
The first part of the message was for the unsaved. In order to shorten the reading I have chosen to post the part that brings comfort to the believer. You can find the whole article here: http://www.puritansermons.com/reformed/griffin10.htm
                                 Christ a Refuge from the Tempest
“And a Man shall be as a hiding place from the wind and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.” Isaiah 32:2
“This prediction, which was uttered in the days of Ahaz, is thought to have had primary reference to Hezekiah, and to the relief from wicked magistrates which would be experienced in his reign. But in the opinion of the best commentators it had ultimate reference to the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Such a retreat does our dear Redeemer afford to those who are fainting under the labors and discouragements of this wearisome life. This valley of tears may well be called a weary land. There are many in it who are ready to faint under the load of affliction, and can say with Job, “My soul is weary of my life.” Many are weary of sin—wearied out with a long course of painful struggles with the world, the flesh, and the devil—are often discouraged with the greatness of the contest, and sink under the apprehension that they shall never get through with safety. These evils press them so hard that they often sigh for the grave where the weary are at rest. But a nearer and more delightful retreat is to be found in him who says, “The Lord has given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him that is weary.” “I have satiated the weary soul, and I have replenished every sorrowful soul.”
When his Church wandered forty years in the Arabian wilderness, among burning sands, without a shelter or a shade, God covered them by day with a pillar of cloud. What this was intended to signify, appears from the application made of it by the prophet, “Then the Lord will create over all of Mount Zion and over those who assemble there—a cloud of smoke by day and a glow of flaming fire by night; over all the glory will be a canopy. It will be a shelter and shade from the heat of the day, and a refuge and hiding place from the storm and rain.”
At what time a poor fainting soul, weary of affliction, weary of sin, weary of temptation, casts itself under the shadow of this rock, he feels a sensation of relief which nothing else can bring and which none can fully describe.
My brethren, what everlasting thanks do we owe to God for providing such a refuge from the beating tempest—such rivers of refreshment in a dry and thirsty land. What could the weather-beaten pilgrim, what could the faint and weary traveler do without them in such a world as this? How greatly does this view tend to endear the Savior to us. What new motives rush upon the mind to abide in him, that we may every hour enjoy a “hiding place from the wind and a covert from the tempest,”—that we may constantly lie at the fountain of living waters, and feel the permanent shadow of a great rock in a weary land. Why do the people of God find so little relief from the distresses of life and the troubles of conscience—but because they abide no more in their everlasting refuge?
How surprising it is, that in a world where a covert from the tempest is so much needed, it is so much neglected, and that even by those who have often found it a shelter when every other refuge failed. Would it not be strange to see a person ready to die with heat and thirst by the very side of a cooling fountain, and by the shade of an overhanging rock? Yet a still greater wonder is witnessed here.
May not these sweet and heavenly truths be allowed to “light up a smile in the aspect of woe?” Will not mourners in Zion come to this refuge—and dry up their tears? Were you confined to these stormy regions without a shelter, you might well be downcast. But now, what need? I am speaking to those who know the truth of what I say. You have often found refuge here, and seen the agitations of the tempest composed, and all the fury of the storm appeased. The same shelter is ever at hand and is always offered to you; and at whatever time you are afraid—you may always find in Christ a sure retreat. What occasion have you then for these desponding griefs? What abundant reason have you to “rejoice evermore.” And while we thus enjoy the blessed fruits of a Savior’s dying love, let our souls arise and praise him; let a thousand tender recollections rise up in our hearts; let us renewedly devote ourselves to his service, resolving to live to his glory and to die with an eye fixed upon his cross! Amen

The Cast Down Pilgrim

Tough-Times-AheadOne of the rules I have heard to have a successful blog is not to talk about yourself. That thought is probably correct but I know there are some of God’s Children who have gone through and are still going through some of the things I am experiencing. If the comforts I am experiencing can help them than it is worth breaking the rule of a blog.
Certainly, I will not dwell on my trials because that does not bring glory to God. Instead I will take a few minutes of your time to “Lift our eyes to the mountains, from where shall my help come?  My help comes from the Lord who made heaven and earth. Ps.121:1,2
When we are weak physically and spiritually our great adversary attacks. Those attacks are usually very strong and can cause much pain. After he has caused us to sin than he puts us in deep guilt, he will cause us to lose assurance of our salvation and like a heavy sack over our shoulder we walk burdened down with the weight. Thanks be to God, it is at that time I am always reminded of the verse: “Ye are of God, my little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world.”(1 John 4:4 ASV)
“He that is in you” this is the Holy Spirit of God. Think of that for a moment! “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwelleth in you, he that raised up Christ Jesus from the dead shall give life also to your mortal bodies through his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” (Romans 8:11 ASV) The same Spirit that “raised up Christ Jesus” is the power that gives us eternal life and causes us to persevere. When Satan is attacking we need to gain our strength from that indwelling Spirit of God.
How do we draw on the strength of the Spirit of God within?