Monday, November 17, 2008


When I Don’t Desire Christ: How To Fight For Joy! John Piper
(Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2004),
Reviewed by Casey Kirkman

The topic, How to Fight For Joy, is, or should be, one of the most pursued blessings in the Christian life. This book is a book about fighting, or more precisely, fighting in a Christian way. This book is not for the fainthearted per say but, in the end, it is the fainthearted whom Piper is trying to encourage. How to Fight For Joy is hard hitting, because at the end of the day this will prove to be the hardest work in our Christian experience - the work of sustaining and pursuing real biblical joy in Christ. Piper tries to engage the readers to ask the question, what is my greatest treasure? John Piper’s book is a marvelous stimulant to all who seek to make Jesus Christ preeminent. We could say it is the same as having Jesus Christ the most breathtakingly precious object of our hope!

The book consists of twelve chapters. Each chapter is designed to promote heartfelt adoration for Christ. This would facilitate a real cordial response to God and generate genuine gospel joy, or in Piper’s words “superior pleasure in God”. John Piper relies heavily upon the verse found in 2 Corinthians 4.
“And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled only to those who are perishing. 4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” (vv. 3-4)

The reader’s attention will be drawn throughout the book to this wonderful phrase which is the essence of the gospel message - “The light of the gospel of the glory of Christ”. Piper’s burden is that we may truly begin to recognize, more than we ever have before, what is the light of the gospel, that glorious hope, which is to be seen in the glory of Christ who is the image of God. This is unbelievably important for Piper. He notes that evangelicalism at large is dumfounded when it comes to what it truly means to born again, to have real joy in the Living God of the scriptures.

Piper notes,
“The last two hundred years has seen an almost incredible devaluation of the fight for joy. We have moved a hundred miles from Pilgrim’s Progress where Christian labors and struggles and fights all his life “for the joy that was set before him” (Heb. 12:2) in the Celestial City. Oh, how different is the biblical view of the Christian life than the one prevalent in the Western church. It is an earnest warfare from beginning to end, and the war is to defend and strengthen the fruit-bearing fields of joy in God.” (How to Fight For Joy: p.37)

Overall this book is well written and convicting. The subject matter is not a John Piper anomaly. Throughout the book there is a conspicuous amount of quotes from our forefathers concerning gospel joy and how to fight for joy. Piper quotes’ the well known John Calvin.
“If human happiness, whose perfection it is to be united with God, were hidden from man, he would in fact be bereft of the principal use of his understanding. Thus, also the chief activity of the soul is to aspire thither. Hence the more anyone endeavors to approach to God, the more he proves himself endowed with reason.” (How to Fight For Joy: p.16)

John Piper unashamedly promotes God’s Word. He devotes two chapters on the Word. One is entitled, “The Worth of God’s Word in the Fight For Joy” and another chapter is titled, “How to Yield the Word in the Fight For Joy.” This book is saturated with scripture. All the way through the book Piper wields the word of God from Genesis to Revelation to encourage God’s children to fight for joy. Piper remarks on this solid foundation,

“The fundamental reason that the Word of God is essential to joy in God is that God reveals himself mainly by his Word. And seeing this revelation of God is the foundation of our joy.” (How to Fight For Joy: p. 95)

Dr. Piper has brought before us a great book that will be used by many Christians in their fight for joy until the true joy of all our hearts descends from God’s right hand. At a time when so-called Christian joy is based upon our material wealth and a plethora of worldly ambitions and gratifications, Piper brings us back to face the truth of God’s Word concerning biblical Joy! Piper lays out this definition:
“To be a Christian means: I aim to pursue joy in God so that the infinitely valuable objective reality of the universe, God, will get all the glory possible from my life. “I want to be happy” may be Christian shorthand for “I want to know the One, and the only One, who is in himself all I have ever longed for in all my desires to be happy”. (How to Fight For Joy: p. 29)

I delightfully recommend this book to not only pastors but to every one who has pledged allegiance to the Lord of Glory. The exegetical arguments are waterlogged with a tremendous amount of practical application to apply in every aspect of our joyous walk with the King of Glory.

Monday, October 27, 2008

A Response to vote for a Pro-Choice candidate for president!

Dear Pro-Choice voter,
Just wanted to respond to your e-mail to vote, specifically for Barrack Obama. I do not like to argue politics and therefore I will not engage in any policy that any candidate endorses or doesn't endorse (except-right to life). What america needs most of all is the gospel of the lord Jesus Christ. Man by nature seeks to find peace and happiness in what this perishing world has to offer. But there is only one thing that can satisfy and truly fill the heart of unconverted man and that is the life saving gospel of Him (Jesus) who shed His precious blood to reconciled us to God even when where yet still his ardent enemies!!
Moreover, there is one thing that I cannot support (abortion). Anyone who professes to be a real genuine follower of Jesus Christ cannot support, if he or she believes the scriptures to be the inerrant, infallible word of the one True and living God!
John 14:21 Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him."

Abortion is the greatest and most horrific thing that takes place upon this earth. And I will not vote for any one who would allow and even promote abortion, that is (image bearers- babies!) to be ripped from there mothers womb and murdered in cold blood! We live in a day when this is called good and sadly because of the darkness and depravity of mans heart this is not even and issue. Hear the word of God upon this reality,
Isaiah 5:20 20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!
One predominate characteristic of a christian is the reality that a christian is one who lives and breaths the word of God, for it is the only book that is able to make one to understand what the whole of life is about!

2 Timothy 3:15 and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

God's word is inherently sufficient to meet our every need and specifically any matter of judgment. God's word speaks very cleary upon what God thinks of abortion (murder). Here are a few verses.

Proverbs 24:11-12 11 Rescue those who are being taken away to death; hold back those who are stumbling to the slaughter. 12 If you say, "Behold, we did not know this," does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who keeps watch over your soul know it, and will he not repay man according to his work?

Proverbs 6:16-17 16 These six things the LORD hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: 17 A proud look, A lying tongue, Hands that shed innocent blood,

This verse alone is enough to break our hearts when we consider the heinous murder of abortion!
Psalm 139:13-17 13 For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb. 14 I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. 15 My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. 16 Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them. 17 How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them!
May Him who is the author of all life be merciful to a generation who calls good evil and evil good. May God be pleased to work in the heart this nation, for we do not deserve His mercy, we whole heartedly deserve His wrath, May God send forth His gospel to save the depraved hearts of these United States and any who would call upon His precious son for the good of there never dying soul.
It will be my earnest prayer that God through the power of the gospel will open your eyes to see what is the real issues this nation faces and it isn't political it's Spiritual!!! For the glory of His Holy name!!!!!

NKJ Psalm 107:8 Oh, that men would give thanks to the LORD for His goodness, And for His wonderful works to the children of men!

Made Willing In The Day Of His Power!
Casey Kirkman

Please read this article by John Piper!! Investigating dog life in Minnesota has solidified my decision to vote against those who endorse the right to abortion. So then what is my response to the charge of being a one-issue voter? No endorsement of any single issue qualifies a person to hold public office. Being pro-life does not make a person a good governor, mayor, or president. But there are numerous single issues that disqualify a person from public office. For example, any candidate who endorsed bribery as a form of government efficiency would be disqualified, no matter what his party or platform was. Or a person who endorsed corporate fraud (say under $50 million) would be disqualified no matter what else he endorsed. Or a person who said that no black people could hold office—on that single issue alone he would be unfit for office. Or a person who said that rape is only a misdemeanor—that single issue would end his political career. These examples could go on and on. Everybody knows a single issue that for them would disqualify a candidate for office.
It's the same with marriage. No one quality makes a good wife or husband, but some qualities would make a person unacceptable. For example, back when I was thinking about getting married, not liking cats would not have disqualified a woman as my wife, but not liking people would. Drinking coffee would not, but drinking whiskey would. Kissing dogs wouldn't, but kissing the mailman would. And so on. Being a single-issue fiancé does not mean that only one issue matters. It means that some issues may matter enough to break off the relationship. So it is with politics. You have to decide what those issues are for you. What do you think disqualifies a person from holding public office? I believe that the endorsement of the right to kill unborn children disqualifies a person from any position of public office. It's simply the same as saying that the endorsement of racism, fraud, or bribery would disqualify him—except that child-killing is more serious than those.
When we bought our dog at the Humane Society, I picked up a brochure on the laws of Minnesota concerning animals. Statute 343.2, subdivision 1 says, "No person shall . . . unjustifiably injure, maim, mutilate or kill any animal." Subdivision 7 says, "No person shall willfully instigate or in any way further any act of cruelty to any animal." The penalty: "A person who fails to comply with any provision of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor."
Now this set me to pondering the rights of the unborn. An eight-week-old human fetus has a beating heart, an EKG, brain waves, thumb-sucking, pain sensitivity, finger-grasping, and genetic humanity, but under our present laws is not a human person with rights under the 14th Amendment, which says that "no state shall deprive any person of life . . . without due process of law." Well, I wondered, if the unborn do not qualify as persons, it seems that they could at least qualify as animals, say a dog, or at least a cat. Could we not at least charge abortion clinics with cruelty to animals under Statute 343.2, subdivision 7? Why is it legal to "maim, mutilate and kill" a pain-sensitive unborn human being but not an animal?
These reflections have confirmed my conviction never to vote for a person who endorses such an evil—even if he could balance the budget tomorrow and end all taxation.
* * * This article is from A Godward Life, Book I: Savoring the Supremacy of God in All of Life by John Piper (Sisters, OR: Multnomah Publishers, 1997), pp. 279-280. Used with permission.


© Desiring God

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Teach us to number our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom!!!!!

Psalm 90:10-12, 10 The days of our lives are seventy years; And if by reason of strength they are eighty years, Yet their boast is only labor and sorrow; For it is soon cut off, and we fly away. 11 Who knows the power of Your anger? For as the fear of You, so is Your wrath. 12 So teach us to number our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom.

The man of God (Moses) gives us a daily exercise! September the 16th was placed in my life as one of the scariest moments to date. My son Devin was involved in a Horrible fall at the Wer'e Board skate park! Without giving all the details, I truly though that I had lost my first Born son. I Was unable to do anything (physically) yet, I had the most powerful weapon known to man, PRAYER, And that's what I did! God was merciful, we don't deserve any blessings in this life, yet our Heavenly Fathers mercy extends to the Heavens. Psalm 108:4 4 For Your mercy is great above the heavens, And Your truth reaches to the clouds. This accident was a reminder to me that indeed each second of the DAY we are at the ABSOLUTE MERCY OF GOD!

PAUL WAS ABSOLUTELY RIGHT IN Acts 17:28 "for in Him we live and move and have our being. Each day we live should be in the light of the return of Christ! Moses ask the question in verse 11, "Who knows the power of your anger?" If we die outside of Christ we will embrace the wrath of Him who will consume all sin with a Holy fervor!The apostle Paul felt the weight of this and he pleaded with the people with these words found in 2 Corinthians 5:11 11 Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men.

May Our great Triune God work in our hearts to live each day for Christ's glory and holy anticipation of our coming King!!!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Daddy's Little Girl! "Kaira Jean Kirkman" Psalm 127:3 Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, The fruit of the womb is a reward.

Today at 2:49pm our Heavenly Father blessed us with Kaira jean Kirkman. Here are a few pics!
Daddy's Little Girl!





Thursday, September 11, 2008

Red Butt Baboon's

We went to the zoo on Monday. One of our favorite animals to see are the baboons. The dominant male has the ultimate life of luxury! The females comb and pick off any blemishes that he may have in his fur. This seems to be an all day event. I'm so jealous!! Not because he has a big red butt, but he is the ultimate ladies man. I don't think these guys are ever in the dog house:0. Here are a few pics!