Becky Pliego's Reviews > Think: The Life of the Mind and the Love of God

Think by John Piper
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's review
Apr 24, 12

bookshelves: favorites, philosophy, read-in-2012
Read from April 13 to 23, 2012

This is a book every Child of God should read. Because we have been called to love our God "with all our mind," we must understand what the implications are, what does it mean to love Him like that, and how it looks in real life. The aim of this book in Piper's words is: "to encourage serious, faithful, humble thinking that leads to the true knowledge of God, which leads to living him, which overflows in loving others."

A few of my favorite quotes:

"overintellectualism is a plague just like anti-intellectualism."

"I would like to encourage you to think but not to be impressed with yourself when you do."

"Thinking, without prayer, without the Holy Spirit, without obedience, without love, will puff up and destroy (1 Cor. 8:1). But thinking under the mighty hand of God, thinking soaked in prayer, thinking carried by the Holy Spirit, thinking tethered to the Bible, thinking in pursuit of more reasons to praise and proclaim the glories of God, thinking in the service of love—such thinking is indispensable in a life of fullest praise to God."

"The mind is mainly the servant of the heart. That is, the mind serves to know the truth that fuels the fires of the heart. The apex of glorifying God is enjoying him with the heart. But this is an empty emotionalism where that joy is not awakened and sustained by true views of God for who he really is. That is mainly what the mind is for."

"If you cannot embrace the pain of learning but must have instant gratification, you forfeit the greatest rewards of life."

"There is no way to awaken faith or strengthen faith that evades thinking."

"Thinking feeds the fire, and the fire fuels more thinking and doing. I love God because I know him. And I want to know him more because I love him."

"God is not honored by our groundless love. In fact, there is no such thing. If we don't know anything about God, there is nothing in our mind to awaken love. If love doesn't come from knowing God, there is no point calling it love for God."

"People don’t embrace relativism because it is philosophically satisfying. They embrace it because it is physically and emotionally gratifying. It provides the cover they need at key moments in their lives to do what they want without intrusion from absolutes."

"Relativists don't pursue truth, They make the denial of truth serve them."

"Reading is the way we are able to think the thoughts of Paul and thus know the mystery of God."

"So the issue in Corinth is that knowledge was producing pride, and pride was destroying love. So he says, 'This knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.' Knowledge is susceptible to pride because it is the result of getting, not giving. Knowledge is a possession. It is something we have attained. So we are prone to boast about it. Love, on the hand, is an act of giving, not getting. Love is not an attainment or an acquisition. It moves outward. It shares. It takes thought for the interest of others. It builds up the faith of others rather than the ego of the lover."

"True knowing and true thinking produce not pride but love for God and love for people."

"Thinking that does not aim to display Christ and build up people is not worthy of God’s approval. It may produce wonders—antibiotics, buildings, bridges, books, big-screen TVs—but the final stamp on the box will be: Disapproved. For “whatever does not proceed from faith is sin. . . . Without faith it is impossible to please [God]” (Rom. 14:23; Heb. 11:6)."

"God did not give us minds as ends in themselves. The mind provides the kindling for the fires of the heart. Theology serves doxology. reflection serves affection. Contemplation serves exultation. Together they glorify Christ to the full."


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