John Piper on Joshua Harris: 'I could commit apostasy this afternoon and go to ****' if not for God

www.christianpost.com | 8/25/2019 | Staff
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My heart is full of gratitude. I wish you could see all the messages people sent me after the announcement of my divorce. They are expressions of love though they are saddened or even strongly disapprove of the decision.⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ I am learning that no group has the market cornered on grace. This week I’ve received grace from Christians, atheists, evangelicals, exvangelicals, straight people, LGBTQ people, and everyone in-between. Of course there have also been strong words of rebuke from religious people. While not always pleasant, I know they are seeking to love me. (There have also been spiteful, hateful comments that angered and hurt me.)⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ The information that was left out of our announcement is that I have undergone a massive shift in regard to my faith in Jesus. The popular phrase for this is “deconstruction,” the biblical phrase is “falling away.” By all the measurements that I have for defining a Christian, I am not a Christian. Many people tell me that there is a different way to practice faith and I want to remain open to this, but I’m not there now.⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ Martin Luther said that the entire life of believers should be repentance. There’s beauty in that sentiment regardless of your view of God. I have lived in repentance for the past several years—repenting of my self-righteousness, my fear-based approach to life, the teaching of my books, my views of women in the church, and my approach to parenting to name a few. But I specifically want to add to this list now: to the LGBTQ+ community, I want to say that I am sorry for the views that I taught in my books and as a pastor regarding sexuality. I regret standing against marriage equality, for not affirming you and your place in the church, and for any ways that my writing and speaking contributed to a culture of exclusion and bigotry. I hope you can forgive me.⁣⁣ ⁣⁣ To my Christians friends, I am grateful for your prayers. Don’t take it personally if I don’t immediately return calls. I can’t join in your mourning. I don’t view this moment negatively. I feel very much alive, and awake, and surprisingly hopeful. I believe with my sister Julian that, “All shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.”

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NASHVILLE — In the wake of several prominent Christian leaders publicly abandoning their faith, theologian John Piper has urged believers to retain a proper fear that they, too, could “commit apostasy this afternoon and go to ****” if it weren’t for the grace of God.

Piper - Founder - DesiringGod - Org - Chancellor

Piper, founder of desiringGod.org and chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary in Minneapolis, Minnesota, participated in an “Ask Pastor John” breakout session held at the Sing! Conference in Nashville, Tennessee.

Without specifically mentioning former pastor Joshua Harris, who recently declared he is no longer a Christian, the interviewer asked: “What would you say to those of us who have a healthy distrust of our own hearts; who look at this man who has now walked away from the Gospel and we say, ‘Could this happen to me too? Could I one day walk away from the Gospel, walk away from my spouse, walk away from Christ?”

Answer - Thing - Answer - Lot - People

“The short answer is yes, and the interesting thing about that answer is that for a lot of people, it seems to call into question the doctrine of eternal security, which I believe,” Piper began. “It shouldn’t call into question the doctrine of eternal security to say, ‘yes, I could commit apostasy this afternoon and go to ****.' I wonder if that’s a jarring juxtaposition for you.

“Nothing you do originates the decisive act or impulse that saves you,” he continued. “Nothing you feel, nothing you think, nothing you will, nothing you do, originates the act of the soul or the act of the body that causes God to elect you, predestine you, call you, keep you, or glorify you. All of it is a free gift. So, nobody should have the mindset, ‘I can keep this from happening.’ I can’t. No, you can’t, God...
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