June 04, 2012

Book review

John MacArthur: Servant of the Word and Flock by Iain H. Murray

This was a good attempt at summarizing John MacArthur's life. It touched on the major events, episodes, successes, and controversies during his life and ministry. However, it wasn't enough for me. Each topic, each chapter left me wanting more details about the events. Murray even writes in the forward that his book is "little more than a 'sketch'" of MacArthur's life.

The most reoccurring theme throughout the book is the fact that MacArthur tries to live what he preaches and teaches.

I believe this to be true and have enjoyed reading and listening to MacArthur for many years and I have definitely benefited from his ministry. However, it would have been nice to see a picture of his home, or car, or how much he really makes. To me, this shows what a person is really like.

I have heard MacArthur state that he makes no money from Grace to You (GTY), yet on GTY's IRS form 990, he is listed as making over $200,000 for the fiscal year 2011. GTY also pays for his first class or business class airfare. Digging further into the form 990 you find that MacArthur's son in law has a sizable contract with GTY. And, of course, MacArthur's sons are members of the GTY board.

I am not saying that MacArthur doesn't deserve these things or is even abusing his position,  I am just curious about the reconciliation of the Gospel preaching and teaching to the Gospel living on a daily basis.

Overall, a good read for anyone interested in the life and teaching of John MacArthur.