Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Twelve Unlikely Heroes by John MacArthur

Twelve Unlikely Heroes by John MacArthur is a book which gives a brief bio/overview of the life of several Bible characters which the author has labelled as heroes. This list contains many of the "obvious" ones (if you've been brought up reading/hearing the Bible) -- such as Joseph and Esther and some others who you perhaps wouldn't think of in view of this title -- people such as Enoch and Onesimus.

In the introduction of the book the author defines his meaning of the word "HERO" -- not as it's used often today, sports heroes, superheroes, movie stars, etc. but rather as "Men and women whom God used in unique and powerful ways to accomplish His purposes. Their exploits vary greatly, yet the common thread that runs through all of their testimonies is faith." He also acknowledges that, "They had quirks, flaws, and shortcomings. But through the power of God, they were used in mighty ways to accomplish His purposes and bring Him glory." He goes on to introduce 12 Bible characters and show how they fit this definition of hero.

I will tell you that my favorite parts of this book were the introduction and the epilogue. Sections which some people skip right over. But -- in my mind, the most powerful parts of this book. I had some trouble with some of the chapters -- the beginning chapter -- Enoch -- had a lot of info from sources other than the Bible and got all twisted up with stories of other individuals, just picking here and there some segments of Enoch. In my mind this was not a good start to the book. One of the "heroes" was Miriam, and I don't really think I would have included her in with this definition of a hero.

I will say that the book is easily-readable -- written in a way to be able to read it clearly and easily. There are a lot of historical (not from the Bible) details given, and for some of them, this part is how the author calls them heroes (James especially).

Did I like the book? Well, I liked the intro and epilogue. The rest was fine. It was a good overview/review of several Bible characters. Having been brought up in a Christian home and church, much of what I read in this book was familiar. To someone with a different background it may be more "wow". As for me, I probably won't read it again.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review. I was not required to write a positive review.

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