Really? John Piper actually said this in front of Steven Lawson and all those ardent Calvinists – and no one corrected Piper that per Calvinist doctrines God does the choosing unto salvation ‘unconditionally’ – meaning that actions and behaviors have nothing to do with it?
John Piper at the Ligonier National Conference in 200 said, “No Christian can be sure he is a true believer. Hence, there’s an ongoing need to be dedicated to the Lord and deny ourselves so that we might make it.”
What a horrible aspect of Piper’s Calvinism – being unsure of one’s salvation, sensing God is dangling the “carrot” of salvation only to pull the rug out from under you just before you depart to eternal destruction because you failed to deny yourself sufficiently that you “might make it”! Please! Is this Piper’s actual belief? Is Piper expressing concern as to the assurance of his own salvation?
The statement that “no Christian can be sure he is a believer flies directly in the face of several Biblical passages and robs people of assurance. If this is the kind of thing that people hear in church week after week, then no wonder so many Christians are leaving the faith. They know they can’t measure up. Who can?
Faith is the means by which we receive God. The qualification is our humility by way of acknowledging our sinfulness and receiving God’s righteousness through faith … not our “doing things”. God gives grace to the humble – not the prideful.
Nevertheless, Piper is correct in saying we should live continually denying ourselves and living a life walking close with Jesus. But salvation is not the reason. Experiencing an abundant life is the reason.
I’m surprised that I hadn’t previously come across this quote before and truly wonder whether Piper is worried that a) he isn’t assured of his own salvation and b) if there just might be some holes within Calvinist doctrines. Well, about all I can say to that is Johnny B Goode. (Yeah, yeah – I know, terrible pun!)