In this short book, John Piper explains how to fight eight of our most common sins by embracing God’s superior promises. Battling Unbelief: Defeating Sin with Superior Pleasure [John Piper] on Amazon. com. *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Pastor John Piper shows how to. Editorial Reviews. About the Author. John Piper, Pastor for Preaching and Vision at Bethlehem.

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Enter your mobile number or email address below and we’ll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer – no Kindle device required. To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number. Would you like to tell us about a lower price? Pastor John Piper shows how to sever the clinging roots of sin that ensnare us, including anxiety, pride, shame, impatience, covetousness, bitterness, despondency, and lust in Battling Unbelief.

When faith flickers, stoke the fire. No one sins out of duty. We sin because it offers some promise of happiness. That promise enslaves us, until we believe that God is more desirable than life itself Psalm Rooted in solid biblical reflection, this book aims to help guide you through the battles to the joys of victory by the power of the gospel and its superior pleasure.

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Reading the Bible Supernaturally: Seeing and Savoring the Glory of God in Scripture. He received his doctorate in theology from the University of Munich and taught biblical studies for six years at Bethel College in St. Paul, Minnesota, before becoming a pastor.

Battling Unbelief: Defeating Sin with Superior Pleasure

I became so nervous that my voice would completely choke up. It was not the common butterflies that most people deal with. It was a horrible and humiliating disability. It brought immense anxiety into my life.

I could not give oral book reports in school. I could only give very short—several word—answers to the questions teachers would ask in class. In algebra class I was ashamed of how my hands shook when doing a problem on the blackboard.

There were many tears. My mother struggled with me through it all, supporting me and encouraging me. I managed to make it to college without any significant public speaking. But the battle with anxiety was intense. I knew that my life would be incredibly limited if there were no battljng.


And I suspected that I would not be able to get through college without public speaking. In fact, Wheaton College required a speech class in those days. It loomed in front of me like a horrible concrete barricade. In all these years, the grace of God had driven me deeper into God in desperation, rather than driving me away from God in anger. I thank God for that, with all my heart. Out of that maturing relationship came the sense that there just had to be a breakthrough.

One crucial opportunity came in Spanish class my freshman year. All of us had to give a short speech in Spanish in front of the rest of the class. There was no way around it. I felt like this was a make-or-break situation. I memorized the speech cold. I also arranged to speak from behind a large tree-stump lectern that I could hold onto so that my shaking might be better controlled. But the main thing I did was cry out to God and lay hold on his promises of future grace.

I only remember that I made it through. Everyone knew I was nervous. And the teacher was kind with his comments. But the overwhelming thing was that I got through it. Later I poured out my thanks to God in the autumn sunshine. Even now I feel deep gratitude for the grace God gave me that day. Perhaps the most decisive event of the breakthrough came over a year later. I was staying at college for summer school. Chaplain Evan Welch invited me to pray in the summer school chapel.

Several hundred students and faculty would be present. My first reaction was immediate rejection of the idea. But before I could turn it down, something stopped me. It should just be from my heart.

Now this I had never even tried—to speak to God in front of hundreds of people. I amazed myself by saying I would do it. This prayer, I believe, proved to be a decisive turning point in my life. For the first time, I made a vow to God. The Lord answered with precious grace again, and to my knowledge, I have kept my vow.

There is more to the story as one future grace has been lavished on another. I do not presume to understand fully all the purposes of God in his timing. I would not want to relive my high-school years.

The anxiety, the humiliation and shame, were so common, as to cast a pall over all those years. Hundreds of prayers went up, and what came down was not what I wanted at the time—the grace to endure. My interpretation now, thirty years later, is that God was keeping me back from excessive vanity and worldliness. He was causing me to ponder weighty things in solitude, while many others were breezily slipping into superficial patterns of life. The Bible my parents gave me when I was fifteen is beside me right now on the table.


The assurance of Matthew 6: Already in those early teen years I was struggling to live by faith in future grace. The victories were modest, it seems. But, oh, how faithful and kind God has been. The Associates of Anxiety In the decades that have followed I have learned much more about the fight against anxiety.

I have learned, for instance, that anxiety is a condition of the heart that gives rise to many other sinful states of mind. Think for a moment how many different sinful actions and attitudes come from anxiety.

Anxiety about battlinf can give rise to coveting and greed ubelief hoarding and stealing. Anxiety about succeeding at some task can make you irritable and abrupt and surly. Anxiety about relationships can make you withdrawn and indifferent and uncaring about other people. Anxiety about how someone will respond to you can make you cover over the truth and lie about things.

So if anxiety could be conquered, a mortal blow would ipper struck to many other sins.

Battling Unbelief: Defeating Sin with Superior Pleasure by John Piper

The Root of Anxiety I have also learned something about the root of anxiety and the ax that can sever it. One of the most important texts has bzttling the one I underlined when I was fifteen—the whole section of Matthew johh Four times in this passage Jesus says that his disciples should not be anxious. It makes the root of anxiety explicit in verse As unbelief gets the upper hand in our hearts, one of the effects is anxiety.

The root cause of anxiety is a failure to trust all that God has promised to be for us in Jesus. I can think of two kinds of disturbed responses to this truth. Let me tell you what they are and then give a biblical response to each of them before we look more closely at the battle against the unbelief of anxiety. Is This Good News? Uunbelief response would go like this: In fact, it is very discouraging to learn that what I thought was a mere struggle with an anxious disposition is rather a far deeper struggle with whether I trust God.

Suppose you had been having pain in your stomach and had been struggling with medicines and diets of all kinds to no avail. And then suppose that your doctor tells you, after a routine visit, that you have cancer in your small intestine.

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