5 Points – A Review

John Piper. Five Points: Towards a Deeper Experience of God’s Grace. Scotland: Christian Focus , 2013. 96 pp. $8.09.


            What is this thing called Calvinism that is so hotly debated among Christians today? Arguments about God’s sovereignty, predestination, and the extent of the atonement have generated quite a bit of heat among believers, and sadly, caricatures of each side’s doctrinal positions have abounded. Thus, when a leading thinker presents his position in a clear way, without rancor toward others, it is worth the read.


            John Piper has put forth a very readable and brief explanation of the five points of Calvinism in his new book 5 Points. If you are familiar with Desiring God Ministries, you may have already read a shorter version of Piper’s teaching here. This book appears to be an expansion of things that I have read on the DG web site previously. In 5 Points, Piper presents the history behind Calvinism, a discussion of each of the 5 points, and a look at how he believes these points effect his life and ministry.


            The beauty of reading this work is its simplicity and its Godward focus. Piper does not overly complicate the argument with confusing theological jargon. Instead, Piper briefly explains the points with simple, Scriptural defense. He also does not leave this book to be a dusty defense of a position, but shows how each point serves to magnify the person and work of Christ in his own life.


            Of course, those who agree with the 5 points of Calvinism are likely to love this book while those who disagree are likely to find fault. It is not my purpose in this review to argue for or against the points. What I will say is that, if you would like to read a simple presentation of the 5 points from someone who believes them, Piper’s work would not be a bad place to start.


Note: You can find a free electronic copy of this work which you can then read on an iDevice or Kindle at the Desiring God Site.