The Rock of Certainty: A Better Place to Stand

The Rock of Certainty: A Better Place to Stand

John PiperBy John Piper2 Minutes

Excerpt taken from Christ and Cornovirus by John Piper.

Playing the odds is a fragile place to put your hope. Odds like 3% versus 10%, youth versus old age, self-isolated versus home meeting with friends. Playing the odds is not a firm place to stand. There is a better way … a better place to stand: a Rock of certainty rather than the sand of probabilities.

I recall being told in 2005 that I had prostate cancer. For several weeks, all the talk was about  odds. Odds with waiting to see. Odds with medications. Odds with homeopathic procedures. Odds with radical surgery. My wife, Noël, and I took these numbers seriously.

But in the evening, we would smile at each other and think, our hope is not in the odds. Our hope is in God. We did not mean, “It is 100% certain God will heal me …” The Rock we are talking about is better than healing.

Even before the phone call telling me I had cancer, God had already reminded me in a remarkable way about the Rock under my feet. The Bible, rightly understood, is the voice of God.

Here my paraphrase of what he said to me: “John Piper, this is not wrath. Live or die, you will be with me” (1 Thessalonians 5:9–10).

It’s all because of Jesus. Because of his death, there will be no wrath toward me. Not because of my perfection. My sins, my guilt, and my punishment fell on my Savior, Jesus Christ.

That is very different from playing the odds with cancer — or with the coronavirus. This is a firm Rock under my feet. It is not fragile. It is not sand. I would like it to be a Rock under your feet.

Excerpt from Christ and Coronavirus by John Piper, ©2020. Used by permission of Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187,