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Life Theology

John Wesley: What is a Methodist?

John Wesley

Things have been quiet on the blog since our move to New York. After our third weekend, we are in a slightly better rhythm, but adjustment takes time. It’s going to be a while before we are fully settled in.

Hopefully later this month I’ll start posting more regularly. Today, however, I wanted to share a paragraph from a new book just published by Crossway which I will review later this week. The book is called Wesley on the Christian Life: THe Heart Renewed in Love by Fred Sanders. Three chapters in, the book is fantastic–I have already been challenged and inspired by Wesley (though I am not a Wesleyan or Methodist).

So here’s the quote. In it, Wesley himself describes the character of a Methodist.

A Methodist is one who has “the love of God shed abroad in his heart by the Holy Ghost given unto him”; one who “loves the Lord his God with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his mind, and with all his strength.” God is the joy of his heart, and the desire of his soul; which is constantly crying out, “Whom have I in heaven but thee? and there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee! My God and my all! Thou art the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever!” (86)

If that’s Methodism, count me in! In fact, it sounds a lot like Christian Hedonism, if you ask me. Let’s pray for this to characterize Methodist and Wesleyan churches today. And for those of us who have perhaps been turned off by Wesley in the past (I’ll be the first to raise my hand), let’s repent and ask God to teach us something through him.

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Theology

God’s Glory Is the Goal of Creation

This is adapted from a post that was originally published on September 9, 2011

In case you need to be reminded (as I often do):

  • We were created for God’s glory (Isa. 43:7).
  • We were made in the image of God, to reflect his glory (Gen. 2:27).
  • Everything we do should be for God’s glory (1 Cor. 10:31). But, we fall short of God’s glory (Rom. 3:23).
  • Paul says that the human race has “exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles” (Rom. 1:23).
  • Jesus came to earth to reveal God’s glory, “glory as of the only Son from the Father” (John 1:14).
  • Jesus prayed that God’s people would be with him where he is to see his glory (John 17:24).
  • God has provided a solution to our falling short of his glory. Through Jesus, he has saved us so that we would “be to the praise of his glory” (Eph. 1:12). Jesus has granted us the same glory he and the Father share that we might be one with them (John 17:22).
  • In this salvation, God predestines his own people to be “conformed to the image of his Son” (Rom. 8:29) who is the “radiance of the glory of God” (Heb. 1:3).
  • One day, God will redeem all of creation by setting “it free from its bondage to decay and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Rom. 8:21).
  • Forever and ever after, God will receive glory because of Christ’s redemption (Rev. 1:6).
The Bible (and life) is not about us. It’s about God and his glory.
Categories
Theology

The Goal of Creation is God’s Glory

In case you (like myself) need to be reminded:

  • We were created for God’s glory (Isa. 43:7).
  • Everything we do should be done for God’s glory (1 Cor. 10:31).
  • We were made in the image of God, to reflect his glory, but we have fallen short of it (Gen. 2:27; Rom. 3:23).
  • Paul says that the human race has “exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles” (Rom. 1:23).
  • Jesus came to earth to reveal his glory, “glory as of the only Son from the Father” (John 1:14).
  • Jesus prayed that God’s people would be with him where he is to see his glory (John 17:24).
  • God has provided a solution to our falling short of his glory. Through Jesus, he has saved us so that we would “be to the praise of his glory” (Eph. 1:12).
  • In this salvation, God predestines his own people to be “conformed to the image of his Son” (Rom. 8:29) who is the “radiance of the glory of God” (Heb. 1:3).
  • One day, God will redeem all of creation by setting “it free from its bondage to decay and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God” (Rom. 8:21).
  • The Bible (and life) is not about us. It’s about God and his glory.
Categories
Theology

What is the foundation of your joy?

God’s love for you that makes much of his glory is greater love for you than if he made you your greatest treasure You will never, ever be beautiful enough, strong enough, wise enough, admirable enough, to be the bottom and to bear the weight of all the joy you want for all eternity. It will not bear that weight. It will give way and you will fall into the pit. Only one thing can bear the weight of all the joy you want to have and that is God.

– John Piper, at Passion 2011

(HT: Gregg Metcalf)

Categories
Life

A Prayer from Tozer

This is the prayer at the end of chapter one of A.W. Tozer’s book, “The Pursuit of God.”  If I read nothing else from this book, this prayer would have been enough:

O God, I have tasted Thy goodness, and it has both satisfied me and made me thirsty for more.  I am painfully conscious of my need of further grace. I am ashamed of my lack of desire. O God, the Triune God, I want to want Thee; I long to be filled with longing; I thirst to be made more thirsty still. Show me Thy glory, I pray Thee, that so I may know Thee indeed. Begin in mercy a new work of love within me. Say to my soul, “Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.” Then give me more grace to rise and follow Thee up from this misty lowland where I have wandered so long. In Jesus’ name.  Amen.