Paul's Passing Thoughts

Titles of MacArthur’s New Books Hint at Continued Downgrade

Posted in Uncategorized by Paul M. Dohse Sr. on January 31, 2012

As I mentioned in a previous post, MacArthur’s willingness to associate with CJ Mahaney and even teach with him at the upcoming Resolved Conference is a clear indication that he is completely off the orthodox reservation. Let’s just face it, our beloved Mac is now willing to be a party to such madness as “The Scream of the Damned” that occurred at the 2009 Resolved conference. Game over. Such foolishness would have invoked horror in the Mac of old. And appearing with Mahaney speaks volumes, as attested to the fact that unnamed New Calvinists called for James MacDonald to cancel an appearance by TD Jakes at his church. Hanging out with people, like words, mean things.

I will pause here to give you a hint: all that matters is adherence to COGOUS. Past that, anything goes. If one “has the gospel right,” all other bets are off.

I really enjoy many of Susan’s idiosyncrasies. As she walked past my computer this morning, and saw what I was viewing, she quipped, “That’s not true.” I was viewing a promo that I received by email concerning John MacArthur’s two latest books. Large pictures of both covers were on the PC screen. I couldn’t help but smile and ask, “What isn’t true dear?” She replied, “Worship isn’t our ultimate priority, obedience is.”

Is this not true? I have a wife who takes the meaning of words seriously, and that’s huge.  What does the word “ultimate” mean? And is worship the “ultimate” priority for Christians? Well, it’s not the primary reason Christ said that he was going to send us a “Helper.” Read John 14. The dominate theme of that chapter is the fact that Christ was going to leave them and send the Holy Spirit. And for what reason primarily? To worship? No, to help them obey. Christ reiterates that fact several times in that same chapter. And of course, who is not aware of the prophet’s words to King Saul, “Obedience is better than sacrifice”?

On several occasions, MacArthur has made it clear that he has fully bought into the gospel contemplationism > gratitude > obedience sanctification paradigm that he got from hanging out with John Piper and Michael Horton. And of course, this means that he is now a great danger to the well-being of Christians. Osteen isn’t a great threat, he’s obvious and even admits he’s “not a theologian.” On the contrary, MacArthur is a respected theologian who now propagates Quietist error. The cover of this book hints at the aforementioned paradigm that he now advocates.

The second book title hints towards his new hermeneutic. From the hardcore grammatical-historical motto “Unleashing God’s Word One Verse at a Time” to “ “Unleashing God’s Word One Day at a Time.” New Calvinists everywhere are probably just giddy over this. Bully for you Mac, you have your reward, from men who peddle God’s word via adolescent dramas such as “The Scream of the Damned.” I have been told by New Calvinists face to face how that hermeneutic works: keep reading till you see Jesus or something about Jesus and His works—not anything you would do. The Word is not a cognitive concept we apply to life, it’s a person. Whatever.

Is this an unbalanced criticism of Mac? Has he fully articulated his new method which doesn’t take this extreme approach to Scripture? Is his approach different from everyone who he is hanging out with these days?  Where? Sorry, he is well paid to communicate clearly—it’s on him.


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