God’s Gifts Can Become Deadly

4 Mar

Apple Pie

“The greatest enemy of hunger for God is not poison but apple pie. It is not the banquet of the wicked that dulls are appetite for heaven, but endless nibbling at the table of the world. It is not the X-rated video, but the prime-time dribble of triviality we drink in every night. For all the ill that Satan can do, when God describes what keeps us from the banquet table of his live, it is a piece of land, a yoke of oxen, and a wife (Luke 14:18-20). The greatest adversary of love to God is not his enemies but his gifts. And the most deadly appetites are not for the poison of evil, but for the simple pleasures of earth. For when these replace an appetite for God himself, the idolatry is scarcely recognizable, and almost incurable.

Jesus said some people hear the word of God, and a desire for God is awakened in their hearts. But then, “as they go on in their way they are choked with worries and riches and pleasures of this life” (Luke 8:14). In another place he said, “The desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful” (Mark 4:19). “The pleasures of this life” and the “desires for other things” – these are not evil in themselves. They are not vices. They are gifts of God. They are your basic meat and potatoes and coffee and gardening and reading and decorating and travelling and investing and TV-watching and Internet surfing and shopping and exercising and collecting and talking. And all of them can become deadly substitutes for God.”

John Piper, A Hunger for God

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One Response to “God’s Gifts Can Become Deadly”

  1. Brendan March 6, 2010 at 11:05 am #

    Wow, all too true. Piper is awesome.

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