Sovereign Grace Blog

The Legacy of R.C. Sproul and John Piper

Justin Taylor writes,

At one level, all Christians are the same. We are made in the image of God, saved by the grace of God, and live for the glory of God. We are blood-bought brothers and sisters, members of the same family, children of our heavenly Father.

 On another level, we are each unique. The apostle Paul said that the body of Christ is like, well, a body: many parts, each with different shapes and sizes, each indispensable in characteristic and function.

 The differences between R. C. Sproul and John Piper are easily discerned, even for the casual observer. I’m tempted to enumerate some of them, but it will be more fruitful to focus on the common threads that tie together their remarkable ministries.

 Both men became Calvinists during seminary, as their resistance was overcome by God using a professor who insisted on taking God at his word.

 Both men discovered and were deeply impacted by Jonathan Edwards during their seminary days.

 Both men pursued doctorates in Europe before returning to the United States to teach at the college level.

 Both men started ministries—Ligonier and Desiring God—designed to serve and strengthen the church of Jesus Christ.

 The landmark books for both men—The Holiness of God (1985) and Desiring God (1986)—are about trembling before and delighting in the one true God.

 And both men found their ultimate calling not in the classroom but behind the pulpit (though it happened for Dr. Piper at the age of 34 and for Dr. Sproul at the age of 58.).

 Theology is not something they merely study and teach. It is something they breathe.

 The Bible is not something they only read and preach. It is the food upon which they feed. R. C. Sproul and John Piper love Jesus Christ.

 They love to glory and revel in their Redeemer.

 Yes, they are extraordinarily gifted preachers, prodigious authors, talented theologians. But they have never gotten over the stunning fact that they were treasonous rebels who were graciously summoned to the King’s banqueting table and clothed with the righteous robes of the King’s Son.

Read the whole thing here.

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