This is an inspiring little book about preaching, about the sovereignty and glory of God, and about the American preacher and theologian Jonathan Edwards, who was so instrumental in the 18th century 'Great Awakening'.
It renewed my vision of what God wants to accomplish through preaching, and (to quote one chapter title) the 'gladness and gravity' of the task.
There's barely a wasted word as Piper sets out the goal of preaching (the glory of God); the ground of preaching (the Cross of Christ); and the gift of preaching (the power of the Holy Spirit).
Part Two is a potted account of the life and ministry of Jonathan Edwards, and the climax of the book is the final chapter, where Piper distils from Edwards' preaching ten characteristics which are still so needed today.
To do all this in 100 pages is remarkable!
It's a wonderful book, and not just for preachers. Any Christian would benefit hugely from thinking through what preaching should be all about, and would be inspired by Jonathan Edwards' vision of life and the glory of God.
Most of the time contemporary preaching appears to be about the transfer of information from one person to another. John Piper lifts our horizons to see it as a beautiful task in faith building to glorify God, rooted deeply in the truth of the Bible but displaying Christ wonderfully before people to capture their affection in worship of Him for his ultimate glory.