A Peculiar Glory: How the Christian Scriptures Reveal Their Complete Truthfulness

A Peculiar Glory: How the Christian Scriptures Reveal Their Complete Truthfulness

by John Piper


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Best-selling author John Piper examines the Bible’s “self-authenticating” nature and unique ability to showcase God’s unmatched glory that enlightens the eyes of our hearts to know that the Bible is the Word of God.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781433552632
Publisher: Crossway
Publication date: 03/31/2016
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 544,323
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

John Piper (DTheol, University of Munich) is the founder and teacher of desiringGod.organd the chancellor of Bethlehem College & Seminary. He served for thirty-three years as the senior pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and is the author of more than fifty books, including Desiring God;Don’t Waste Your Life;This Momentary Marriage;A Peculiar Glory;andReading the Bible Supernaturally.

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From the Publisher

A Peculiar Glory is not just another book defending the reliability of the Scriptures, although it does do that. It is a reminder that without the internal witness of the Spirit, no amount of evidences will ever lead to faith. And that witness works most directly as we read and understand Scripture itself—as it attests itself to us—particularly as we focus on Jesus and the gospel message. Part apologetics, part church history, part almost lyrical poetry, Piper’s book should inspire every reader back to the Bible, to its core and to the Jesus whom it reveals, who loves us beyond measure despite all that we are and do—more than enough reason for being his disciples.”
Craig L. Blomberg, Distinguished Professor of New Testament, Denver Seminary

“Never has the church been in greater need of recognizing that Scripture is self-attesting. In this important and timely book, Piper shows what it means not only to conform our thinking but also to submit our worship and our lives as a whole to the self-establishing, self-validating truth and authority of the Bible and, in doing that, to the Christ of the Bible.”
Richard B. Gaffin Jr., Professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology, Emeritus, Westminster Theological Seminary

A Peculiar Glory is a solid theological and exegetical treatment of biblical authority, but much more. Besides the standard arguments, Piper has developed (with the help of Jonathan Edwards) a profoundly original yet biblical approach to the question. It raises the traditional arguments to an exponential level of cogency. Piper says that our most definitive persuasion comes from actually seeing the glory of God in his Word. Theologians have traditionally called this the ‘internal testimony of the Holy Spirit,’ but that theological label does little justice to the experience, the awareness of the glory of God as we meet Jesus in Scripture. That really happens. It is astonishing and powerful. And it explains the difference between an observer’s merely theoretical faith and a true disciple’s delighted embrace of Christ. This doctrine of Scripture is worthy of the overall emphasis of Piper’s writings, the ‘desire’ for God, ‘Christian hedonism,’ and the ‘dangerous duty of delight.’ Perhaps only Piper could have written this book, and I’m delighted that he has done so.”
John M. Frame, J. D. Trimble Chair of Systematic Theology and Philosophy, Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando

“Piper points us to Scripture—its authority, its historical accuracy, its total truthfulness, and especially its beauty and power. The Scriptures are beautiful and powerful because they disclose to us, as the Spirit opens our hearts, the loveliness and glory of Jesus Christ. Here we find compelling arguments for the truthfulness of the Scriptures and profound meditations on the stunning glory of God. The book captures and expresses the truth of Peter’s words in John 6:68, ‘Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.’”
Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation and Associate Dean of the School of Theology, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

“The classic doctrine of Scripture’s self-attestation suffers when it is used as a short-cut method of scoring evidential points or winning an argument without doing any work. But it unfolds its wings and soars to the heavens when handled by somebody who shows that when we read the Bible, we are dealing with God himself in his own holy words. In this book, John Piper throws everything he’s got at the message of how God illuminates the mind and gives firm conviction to the heart through the Bible.”
Fred Sanders, Professor of Theology, Torrey Honors Institute, Biola University

“It’s easy to take the Bible for granted. We know that it’s the Word of God, but do we really? We know which books belong to it and what distinguishes these texts from ordinary religious literature, right? Of course, we know why we trust Scripture and how to communicate that confidence to others, or do we? Rather than take for granted a high view of Scripture, A Peculiar Glory exposes another generation to the source, authority, reliability, and truthfulness of God’s written word. Dr. Piper has written another important, accessible, and wise account of the things that matter most.”
Michael Horton, J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics, Westminster Seminary California; author, Core Christianity: Finding Yourself in God's Story

“There are few questions more important than ‘How do I know the Bible is God’s Word?’ And there are few people who could address it as well as John Piper. Drawing from the deep theological well of Jonathan Edwards and with a practical eye for the average believer in the pew, Piper helps us recover the foundational importance of a self-authenticating Bible. This book will revolutionize the way you think about God’s Word.”
Michael J. Kruger, President and Professor of New Testament, Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte; author, Canon Revisited

“In this spirited and tightly argued book, pastor-theologian John Piper seeks to ground our confidence in the Bible’s status as the Word of God by directing our attention to the ‘peculiar glory’ that is manifest through its message and across its pages: the glory of the ‘Lion-like majesty’ and the ‘Lamb-like meekness’ that radiates in the face of Jesus Christ. Here is a book on the authority and trustworthiness of Scripture that promises to strengthen our faith in the word of God and to expand our capacity for wonder before the glory of God.”
Scott R. Swain, Associate Professor of Systematic Theology and Academic Dean, Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando, Florida

“With passion, clarity, a believing respect for Scripture, and a burning desire for God’s glory, John Piper has written a robust defense of the complete trustworthiness of Scripture, with debts to Jonathan Edwards and the Westminster Larger Catechism. The language of the book is simple and accessible, but the ideas are deep and its coverage extensive. Scholarship is worn lightly, and the pastoral concern informing the work is pervasively evident. Whether the reader is educationally sophisticated or unsophisticated, the argument is that the peculiar glory of God is on view for all to see, if God gives the grace to do so. I hope this work finds a wide readership.”
Graham A. Cole, Dean and Vice President of Education and Professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

“John Piper has written a robust and pastoral defense of an orthodox doctrine of Scripture. Resisting any who would render well-grounded assurance of Scripture’s truthfulness the preserve of experts and academics, his emphasis upon the self-authenticating and life-transforming glory of God they bear is salutary and faith-affirming. We cannot properly regard Scripture without beholding its author. The greatest strength of Piper’s treatment lies precisely in the fact that his account of Scripture is so absorbed in the beauty of the one who inspired it.”
Alastair Roberts, blogger; participant, Mere Fidelity podcast

A Peculiar Glory should be quickly established as a modern classic on the Bible. Clearly and methodically laying out the case for why we can have absolute confidence in the Bible as God’s own word, it gives to faith both muscle and joy. The day John Owen persuaded me that the Christian Scriptures are self-authenticating was a glorious moment of liberation. I hope and expect that John Piper will bring that same liberation to many with this book.”
Michael Reeves, President and Professor of Theology, Union School of Theology, Oxford, England; author, Delighting in the Trinity, The Unquenchable Flame, and Rejoicing in Christ

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A Peculiar Glory: How the Christian Scriptures Reveal Their Complete Truthfulness 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
michelemorin More than 1 year ago
The fallacy of circularity — the accusation that all arguments for the trustworthiness of Scripture come round to the Bible’s own truth claims — has been leveled against Christians, and sometimes it’s well-founded. How, then, is a serious student of the Word to explain and validate her certainty that when she opens the pages of Scripture, she is hearing the voice of the God who speaks? With characteristic thoroughness of argument and step-by-step logic, A Peculiar Glory sets forth John Piper’s argument that “the glory of God in and through the Scriptures is a real, objective, and self-authenticating reality.” That being so, with the soul of a poet, he describes his own experience of having been held in truth by the beauty of all that he beholds of God through the window of revealed and written Truth — and then invites his readers to join him there at the window with a three-pronged approach to the question of the truth of Scripture: From the answer to question four of the Westminster Larger Catechism: “The Scriptures manifest themselves to be the Word of God by . . . the scope of the whole, which is to give all glory to God.” On his way to defending this point, John Piper provides a panoramic view of the history of the canon. How do we know that the sixty-six books between our leather covers are rightfully there? How do they relate to the Hebrew Scriptures — or to the Septuagint? What Bible did Jesus read? Ironically, as we ask these questions today, we are framing the very words that the early church faced in the establishment of the canon. Piper asks his readers, “How much of a painting must you see to recognize it as Rembrandt’s?” Certainly more than a pinhole view, and it is also true that the glory of God in Scripture will not be demonstrated in the letters, mere marks on the page, but through “a sufficient verbal account of that historical reality and that divine meaning.” How much is sufficient? This depends on the passage studied and on the skill of the student. And, as the marks of Christ’s divinity were in His person and demonstrated through His acting, speaking, thinking, etc., so it is with Scripture: “The marks of divinity are in the meaning of the writing.” From Jonathan Edwards’ analysis of 2 Corinthians 4:4-6: “The mind ascends to the truth of the gospel but by one step, and that is its divine glory.” According to Edwards, the object of our faith is “the holy beauty and [loveliness] that is in divine things.” The truth is that most people in the world do not have the time or the resources to devote to detailed arguments in support of their faith. Paul asserts that the glory is in “the face of” Christ and in the gospel, and Piper argues that all people (the scholars and the simple) “come to a well-grounded , saving knowledge of the truth by a combination of human communication and divine illumination of God’s glory.” In addition, the pathway to spiritual sight includes the purification of the heart. Two people can look at the exact same book (the Bible) and one will see Truth while the other dismisses the contents as “story,” just as Peter was given grace to see Christ as “the Son of the Living God,” while Judas saw Him as a misguided disappointment. From Paul’s assertion about Abraham’s faith in Romans 4:20-21 we learn that trusting God’s Word glorifies God. Abraham’s faith was not a shot in the dark, but instead, warranted trust of a worthy Object. Likewise, we embrace Christ and His Scripture bas