Sunday, October 11, 2009

John Piper on Mark 9:33-37

John Piper is pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church. Like Don Fortner, John Piper is a Calvinistic Baptist but his style is quite a bit different. The title of the sermon is Receiving Children in Jesus' Name.

1. Does the pastor explain the text correctly? Like Chuck Smith, John Piper does not believe that the pursuit of greatness is wrong in itself but that the disciples need redirection. Piper believes that Jesus is calling the disciples to pursue God which really doesn't appear in the text at all. A lot of what Piper says is true but he misses the point by making the focal point of the sermon the love of children in the name of Jesus. Jesus brought the child forth as an example, not as the main point. If somebody asks me how big something is and I bring an elephant out as an example, the elephant is not the main thing. (-1)

2. Is the law preached lawfully? No. The majority of the people at the church could have walked out without being convicted by the law. They may have felt anger at other people for the way others have broken the law but would not have been beaten down by the law themselves. (-1)

3. Is Jesus mentioned? Yes, Jesus is mentioned and nothing false is said about Him. (+1)

4. Is the sermon about what Jesus has done for us? No. It is all about what we need to do. (-1)

5. Does the creation of a Wordle show a Christian focus in the sermon? This sermon is focused on "children." Jesus comes in second. (+0.5)

I really expected Piper's sermon to have been better. His total is -1.5 or 35%.

The current standings are:

Don Fortner (Calvinistic Baptist) 57.5% F
John Piper (Calvinistic Baptist) 35% F

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