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    John Piper:  “Several Species of Pride” Reason for Public Leave

    John Piper:  “Several Species of Pride” Reason for Public Leave

    In a statement that many people will try to read between the lines on, John Piper has announced that he will be taking 6 monts away from nearly all public life as a result of what he calls "several species of pride" in his soul...

    According to a post on his DesiringGod blog:

    I asked the elders to consider this leave because of a growing sense that my soul, my marriage, my family, and my ministry-pattern need a reality check from the Holy Spirit. On the one hand, I love my Lord, my wife, my five children and their families first and foremost; and I love my work of preaching and writing and leading Bethlehem. I hope the Lord gives me at least five more years as the pastor for preaching and vision at Bethlehem.

    But on the other hand, I see several species of pride in my soul that, while they may not rise to the level of disqualifying me for ministry, grieve me, and have taken a toll on my relationship with Noël and others who are dear to me. How do I apologize to you, not for a specific deed, but for ongoing character flaws, and their effects on everybody? I’ll say it now, and no doubt will say it again, I’m sorry. Since I don’t have just one deed to point to, I simply ask for a spirit of forgiveness; and I give you as much assurance as I can that I am not making peace, but war, with my own sins.

    Noël and I are rock solid in our commitment to each other, and there is no whiff of unfaithfulness on either side. But, as I told the elders, “rock solid” is not always an emotionally satisfying metaphor, especially to a woman. A rock is not the best image of a woman’s tender companion. In other words, the precious garden of my home needs tending. I want to say to Noël that she is precious to me in a way that, at this point in our 41-year pilgrimage, can be said best by stepping back for a season from virtually all public commitments.

    Many will try to jump to any number of conclusions from Piper's statement.  And, to be honest, his statement leaves a lot hanging out there will not much of a detailed explanation.

    But jumping to conclusions doesn't do anyone any good.

    People like John Piper are under a immense amount of pressure.  Pressure to perform.  Pressure to accept speaking engagements.  Pressure to raise money.  Pressure to grow the ministry.  Pressure to answer their critics.  I get the chance to work with many prominent church leaders, and the amount of weight on their shoulders is incredible.  That's why when they do fall... they fall hard.

    At this point, I want to give Piper encouragement for taking this leave now and trying to get things in order.  That's a much better solution (even when put under the microscope) than ignoring any problem and having the whole thing blow up.

    That's my 2 cents worth.  John... My prayers are with you and Noel.

    Todd

    Comments

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    1. Dee Lauderdale on Wed, March 31, 2010

      Todd, I’m of the opinion that since I’m not a member of his church, John Piper doesn’t owe me any explanation.

    2. Bill on Wed, March 31, 2010

      A lot of pastors need to follow Piper’s lead.  (I’m talking to myself, mostly)

    3. david on Wed, March 31, 2010

      what a wonderful example Piper is for all of us.

      it is ironic to me that in the reformed camp (my camp), he is the one PROMINENT leader i would least consider to be beset with pride.  i hope that many in our camp take notice!

    4. CS on Wed, March 31, 2010

      Piper has excellent wisdom.  A fool can watch his popularity climb and become prideful, losing everything along the way.  A wise man hits the brakes when he gets the first inkling that something is wrong and sin may be starting to encroach in his life.


      CS

    5. Randy Willis on Wed, March 31, 2010

      Piper doesn’t owe me an explanation, either. Glad he’s being a good role model for the rest of us in the battle!

    6. toddh on Wed, March 31, 2010

      Apologize for ongoing character flaws? Sounds like a man in need of grace. I hope he finds it in his time away.

    7. Lynn on Wed, March 31, 2010

      John Piper…such a man of wisdom. Explanations…I agree, he owes no one -  but there is power with knowledge and I sense this is part of the healing process as well as a call out to his brothers/sisters in Christ to pray. We all are sitting in his boat….and would benefit from examining our hearts as well. I am convicted….I will ask the Lord to seek my heart and reveal anything that is hindering my walk. Thank you John Piper, for being vulnerable.

    8. Ken Eastburn on Wed, March 31, 2010

      If he has a pride issue, of course it is important for him to deal with it, but I don’t understand how he, as a pastor, is able to relate to and pastor others in his congregation who can’t just drop everything for 6 months.

      What are the rest of us struggling with pride supposed to learn from Piper?

    9. MRWBBIII on Wed, March 31, 2010

      PIED PIPER JOHN INVITES RICK WARREN HERETIC TO DG 2010

      FIRST THE CLOSE WORK WITH EMERGENT CHURCH MARK DRISCOLL FOLLOWED BY A 8 MONTH LEAVE FROM MINISTRY DUE TO ” UNNAMED PRIDE ..? ” NOW HIS DESIRING GOD CONFERENCE HAS NOTED HERETIC PROSPERITY GOSPEL MONEY HUNGRY MEGACHURCH AUTHOR RICK WARREN AS A SPEAKER. WHAT’S SAD IS SO MANY YOUTH OF TODAY PASTORS OF TOMORROW FOLLOW PIPER’S HEDONIST DOCTRINE OF PREACHING TEACHING & WRITINGS ! ENOUGH IS ENOUGH JOHN, COME BACK TO YOUR FIRST LOVE !!

      MRWBBIII
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hJmkk1XjrGw

    10. jimmy on Thu, April 01, 2010

      Hey MRWBBIII, could you turn it down a notch?

      thx.

    11. Pastor Matt on Thu, April 01, 2010

      Seen it before.  Thin end of the wedge.  Wait and see.

    12. Paul Kuzma on Mon, April 05, 2010

      I have no idea if John has ever taken a sabbatical before, but in my opinion, if he hasn’t, there really isn’t any reason he needs to give to take one. It’s biblical, it’s logical, it’s needed. Nuff said. Blessings on he and his family!

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