“Christians are not defined by skin colour, by gender, by geographical location, or even, shockingly, by their good behaviour. Nor are they defined by the particular type of religious feelings they may have. They are defined in terms of the God they worship.
That’s why we say the Creed at the heart of our regular liturgies: we are defined as the people who believe in this God. All other definitions of the church are open to distortion.
We need theology, we need doctrine, because if we don’t have it something else will come in to take its place. And any other defining marks of the church will move us in the direction of idolatry.”
–N. T. Wright, For All God’s Worth: True Worship and the Calling of the Church (Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1997), 28.
“Tell someone to do something, and you change their life–for a day; tell someone a story and you change their life.”
–N.T. Wright, The New Testament and the People of God (Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press, 1992), 40.
“It’s a big book, full of big stories with big characters. They have big ideas (not least about themselves) and make big mistakes. It’s about God and greed and grace; about life, lust, laughter, and loneliness. It’s about birth, beginnings, and betrayal; about siblings, squabbles, and sex; about power and prayer and prison and passion. And that’s only Genesis.”
–N.T. Wright, Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense (San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 2006), 173.
“Romans is suffused with resurrection. Squeeze this letter at any point, and resurrection spills out; hold it up to the light, and you can see Easter sparkling all the way through.”
–N.T. Wright, The Resurrection of the Son of God (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2003), 241.
“God’s purpose in the universe is not only to be infinitely worthy, but to be displayed as infinitely worthy. Our works of love, flowing from faith, are the way Christ-embracing faith shows the value of what it has embraced. The sacrifices of love for the good of others show the all-satisfying worth of Christ as the one whose blood and righteousness establish the fact that God is for us forever.
All the benefits of Christ—all the blessings that flow from God being for us and not against us—rest on the redeeming work of Christ as our Substitute. If God is for us, who can be against us? With this confidence—that God is our omnipotent Father and is committed to working all things together for our everlasting joy in Him—we will love others.
God has so designed and ordered things that invisible faith, which embraces Christ as infinitely worthy, gives rise to acts of love that make the worth of Christ visible. Thus our sacrifices of love do not have any hand in establishing the fact that God is completely for us, now and forever. It’s the reverse: the fact that God is for us establishes our sacrifices of love. If He were not totally for us, we would not persevere in faith and would not therefore be able to make sacrifices of love.”
–John Piper, The Future of Justification: A Response to N.T. Wright (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2007), 185.
“Without the resurrection there is one way of telling the story; with the resurrection there is a whole other way. Without the resurrection , the story is an unfinished and potentially tragic drama in which Israel can hold on to hope but with an increasing sense that the narrative is spinning out of control.
Without the resurrection, even the story of Jesus is a tragedy, certainly in first-century Jewish terms, as the two on the road to Emmaus knew very well. But with the resurrection there is a new way of telling the entire story. The resurrection isn’t just a surprise happy ending for one person; it is instead the turning point for everything else.
It is the point at which all the old promises can come true at last: the promises of David’s unshakable kingdom; the promises of Israel’s return from the greatest exile of them all; and behind that again, quite explicit in Matthew, Luke, and John, the promise that all the nations will now be blessed through the seed of Abraham.”
–N.T. Wright, Surprised by Hope (New York: Harper One, 2008), 236.