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Today's Expositor's Quote is from John Piper. He and his family are watching fireworks on the 4th of July:

For fifteen minutes we were impressed and delighted by the bigness, beauty, and power of man-made light. . . . It gave us a sense of wonder. About ten minutes into the display, . . . I suddenly noticed a white light behind the trees to the southwest. What's that? I thought. A second later I could tell it was the moon. It was very large and looked full. It was politely waiting its turn.

The moon was in no hurry to be noticed. It had been there before (Adam, Abraham, and Jesus looked on this same moon); and it would be there again when all the glitz was gone. It was quietly rising at its own pace, irresistibly and without human help. Yet hardly anyone was noticing.

So it is with the glory of God and the glitz of sin. We are more amazed at sin, and we ignore the glory of God. This is truly amazing.

The moon rises about 240,000 miles above the earth, which means it soars about 500,000 times higher than the highest fireworks. . . . The moon is 2160 miles in diameter (from San Francisco to Cleveland). . . . It has mountain ranges with peaks as high as Mount Everest. . . .

The power of the moon is unimaginable. Nothing on earth that man has ever made can compare. Every day the moon takes the oceans of the earth and lifts them quietly - millions upon millions upon millions of tons of water quietly and irresistibly lifted into the air. . . .

But who sees the moon? Who stands in awe of the moon? Who looks at the moon on Independence Night when there are man-made fireworks to watch? Who notices the really great things in life? No wonder we are oblivious to the glory of God when there are such clear parables of our blindness built into everyday experience. . . .

Read your emotional barometer. Do the amazements and delights of your life correspond to God's reality? Or do they rise and fall on the passing waves of human glitz?

John Piper, A Godward Life: Savoring the Supremacy of God in All of Life, Multnomah, 1997, p. 235-36.

[In your preaching, are you focusing on creating man-made fireworks, or are you reflecting the glory of God? Are you helping your people to see and perceive the delights of God Himself, or are you pandering to their natural craving for glitz? As you watch fireworks tonight, ponder the deep need of your people for knowledge of the true light - Coty]


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