In the fall of 1974 John Piper stepped into a classroom at Bethel College to teach New Testament as a one-year sabbatical replacement. Over the next six years he followed the calling to be a professor: teaching Greek and several New Testament classes, publishing his dissertation in the SNTS Monograph Series, and churning out many scholarly journal articles. In his own words, “these were heady days where I stretched my academic wings” (The Pastor as Scholar, 43).
God soon directed Pastor John down a different course. Pursuing the unshakable desire to preach the Word, he became the pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in June of 1980 and has been there ever since.