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Christ Died to Make Us Holy: And Why Some Preachers Avoid It - John Piper

Updated: Jun 24, 2023


Video from Desiring God


Christ Died to Make Us Holy

"I’ll begin by stating the aim of this message six different ways:

  1. My aim is that those of you who preach or teach the word of God would make clear the effective connection between the sin-bearing work of Christ and the sin-killing work of the Christian. And I mean the killing of our own sin, not the sins of others.

  2. . . . that you would make clear the effective connection between canceled sin and conquered sin.

  3. . . . that you would make clear the effective connection between the horrors of Christ’s suffering and the holiness of Christ’s people.

  4. . . . that you would make clear that in releasing his people from guilt, Christ effectively secured their lives of righteousness in this world.

  5. . . . that you would make clear the effective connection between justification by Christ’s blood and progressive sanctification by that same blood.

  6. . . . that you would make clear the effective connection between the tearing of Christ’s flesh in crucifixion and the tearing out of your eye in the battle against lust.

I chose to pursue this aim with you because it seems to me that in the last forty years or so of the gospel-centered emphasis in America, there has not been a biblically proportionate emphasis on preaching holiness of life and godliness and righteousness and radical, countercultural Christlikeness. Instead, it seems to me that to be gospel-centered has often filtered down to the pew as something like this: “Preach the gospel to yourself every day,” which is heard to mean, Rehearse the good news that you are loved, accepted, and forgiven. No condemnation. No judgment. No hell. Acquitted. Vindicated. Clothed in the righteousness of Christ.

Saved for More and Greater

Here’s the problem with that emphasis. Suppose you are condemned to be hanged by the neck until dead tomorrow morning. But when they come to open your cell at dawn, instead of taking you to the gallows, they set you free because someone has volunteered to take your place. This would be the happiest experience of your life, at least up till that moment. Your heart would overflow with joy being free from condemnation and execution. And you would be full of tearful thankfulness for the substitute. This would be an absolutely overwhelming, all-embracing experience of joy.." Transcript


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