Monday, December 22, 2008

Piper3:Trinitarian Hedonism

Paul Huxley walks in the footsteps of Glen Scrivener and Dan Hames to think about John Piper's theology and the Trinity...

Piper himself notes: "Why did God create the world? Surely not, as some popular theology has it, because he was lonely and frustrated and needed man to make him happy. Before creation, God was, in a profound sense, content in the fellowship of the Trinity. What moved him, then, to create the world? The closest I can come to an answer is this: God was profoundly happy and joyful. But there is in joy an inevitable compulsion or pressure to expand, to extend itself by involving others in it. And this is no deficiency in God, for, as Jonathan Edwards says, "It is no argument of the emptiness or deficiency of a fountain that is inclined to overflow."1 This tendency of joy to expand itself moved God to create beings to share in his joy. Thus creation was a supreme act of love because it aimed at the joy of the creature. But God was not indifferent to his act of creation as if it meant nothing to him. It was his joy in his own perfections that overflowed in the creation of beings to share that joy."

And  onwards (ht: Huxley) Douglas Jones offers Trinitarian catechism... some of which is:

Why do they love the dark and not the party?
The dark helps them pretend they are alone,
where they can play the king of all,
where no one pushes back against their face.

C. And why does God offer a feast?
God is a feast: come taste and see; sweeter
than honey. He is a party, a dance
named Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

D. But what sort of dance is the Lord?
The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit dance
like heroes after triumph, King David,
and those women whirling at God's wedding.

E. Wait, why does God have a wedding?
His joy bursts out, spilling; He wants to share
the pleasure of this dance. The Spirit woos;
the Father calls; the Son seeks out His bride.


  1. Yes - that's much better from Piper than the stuff in his seven theses here:


    "Q2: Who is the most God-centered person in the universe?
    A: God."

  2. Yeh! One of the things from Piper that really struck me post-9/11 was the way he was so clear on the need to be specific - saying we can't just say 'God' cos we have to mean God the Trinity.