[Book Review: THE JESUS YOU CAN’T IGNORE by John MacArthur]
Even the kindest, gentlest shepherd sometimes needs to throw rocks at the wolves who come in sheep’s clothing.
Jesus is often portrayed as a meek and nice guy, while His confrontations with the religious people are played down. However, there were times when Jesus was not someone who only played nice. In his book, MacArthur discusses the times when Jesus openly opposed the teachers of the Law and Pharisees regarding the hypocrisy of their faith. The book is based roughly on the sermon of Jesus recorded in Matthew 23 and critique of the Evangelical Manifesto.
There is certain truth in the book – we should be aware of what and Who we believe in and be able to defend our beliefs if there is a need for it.
That said, however, I disagree with the premise of the book that we should always be in attack mode. Besides, in Matthew 23 Jesus was not talking to representatives of other religions, He was talking to the true wolves in sheep’s clothing – hypocrites, people who pretend to believe one thing and yet do something completely different. In Pharisees case, they pretended to be godly, but in reality they were extremely selfish. I do believe that the main reason He clashed with the Pharisees and teachers of the Law was because they confused FAITH and RELIGION. Now that is an argument that I agree with.
I would recommend that book to others if they want to learn about the true Jesus. I would probably mention, however, that it is important to remember that while Jesus did oppose false teachings, He did so with wisdom and when necessary. MacArthur does mention that, but it gets sort of lost in the initial thoughts of militarism.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”