Saturday, October 20, 2012

Twelve Unlikely Heroes

One element of John MacArthur's work that I really appreciate is the conversational writing style. When he's telling stories of Biblical individuals, the tone, as well as the content, helps remind us that these "heroes of the faith" were people who struggled as well as triumphed.
And the book  Twelve Unlikely Heroes further emphasises that point by referring to Bible characters such as Samson, Mark, and Miriam.

Some of these heroes are only briefly mentioned in Scripture- Onesimus and Enoch. Others, like Joseph and Esther, are familiar from Sunday School classes and Bible studies. But MacArthur doesn't focus only on their success, but also illuminates their flaws. He doesn't do this to degrade their accomplishments, but to show that God is greater than our flaws. For example, Mark deserted Paul and Barnabas on their first missions trip. Some people--including Paul--would have written him off there. Instead, Barnabas gave Mark a second chance, and Mark not only grew in faith, but ended up writing a gospel.
Another aspect worth mentioning is MacArthur's use of extra-Biblical sources. He refers to Josephus and church tradition at various points; While not putting them on level with Scripture, some people might be uncomfortable with those sources.

Four Stars:
I received a free copy of this book from Thomas Nelson's Booksneeze program but was not obligated to write a positive review.

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