Recently, the College of Theology had the honor and pleasure to host recognized author John Piper. Piper spoke in the GCU Arena on October 28 and 29 for a special two-part event. His messages were challenging and insightful, yet he spoke from a place of humility, authority and wisdom, and strongly challenged his listeners to respond in relationship with the Lord.
The first night of this event began with students, parents, professors and the community streaming in for a time of worship led by some of GCU’s very own students. This time was followed by a short video clip of a message Piper taught to over 30,000 college students back in 2000. After the video, Piper chuckled a bit, because during that message he had thought to himself, “I am old enough to be your dad.” Now, looking out over the GCU Arena 20 years later, he smiled and said, “I am old enough to be your grandfather.” With that, the power of his message and conviction have not changed at all!
Piper opened with a clear intent, “I would like to persuade you or at least open you to the truth that it is better to lose your life than to waste it.” Working through Acts 20, Piper challenged everyone not to buy the American dream. He demonstrated through the Word that the Christian life is not moving towards an end, but rather an ever brighter noon day sun. “My goal in life is not to stay alive, but rather to stay on course!” Piper explained.
In a similar fashion, the next morning was set into motion as students, professors and the community assembled together in the Arena to share in worship before diving into the Bible again. As Piper opened, he explained that the “chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying Him forever.” With his message on how to naturally read the Bible supernaturally, Piper demonstrated how to understand the glory of God and its foundation as our knowledge of God, or as he puts it, “Glory and certainty that the Bible is the Word of God.”
Following this message, Piper shared a workshop of how to dissect and learn from God’s Word, focusing specifically on 2 Timothy 2:1-7 and Paul’s message to Timothy. He closed with a time called “Ask Pastor John,” where he answered student questions on topics including how to choose a major, what to do with persecution as a speaker in a modern world and how to desire reading the Word faithfully.
Through the weekend, Piper’s teaching was authoritative, resourceful and fluid. He consistently tied together the first night’s message of how not to waste your life with the following morning’s message on knowing the glory of God with certainty.
Watch a short recap of these teachings here:
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Written by Breanna Alverson, a senior earning a business administration degree at GCU.