In The Gospel According to Paul, John MacArthur aims to lay out the gospel message that the apostle Paul preached and embodied as Christ’s apostle to the Gentiles. MacArthur’s motivation to write the book is due to his concern that the gospel message is being increasingly eroded in our times especially in respect to the penal substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus. Thus, the book is a careful exposition of the good news of Christ as preached through Paul who was inspired by the Spirit to write the bulk of the New Testament. MacArthur focuses on the book of Romans but draws widely from the apostle’s other epistles while also comparing what Paul preaches to what Jesus taught in the Gospels. The chapters are systematically arranged to present the gospel using the five points of Calvinism as the underlying framework with a special emphasis on the atonement as the satisfaction of God’s wrath and justice. The author argues that as God is a righteous God who cannot overlook sin, it was necessary for a suitable sacrifice to be offered to propitiate the wrath of God. To entirely pay for the sum of the human race’s unrighteousness, only the Son of God who is the perfect God-man to atone for our sins fully. Christ’s death was necessary and sufficient in allowing us to be declared righteous in the sight of God. At the end of the book, there are four appendixes that further complement the author’s message and defense of the penal sacrifice of Christ.
I would recommend this book to believers and non-believers alike who want a biblical and succinct summary of the gospel. Many people today are looking for a revamped version of the gospel that tweaks its message to fit their ideologies and tastes. In this book, MacArthur masterfully defends the key aspects of the orthodox Christian faith by showing what is written clearly in Scripture by the apostle Paul. Furthermore, the author defends against contemporary attacks on the gospel such as the Emergent movement and the New Perspective on Paul. Christians need to hold firmly to what is taught in Scripture and remain vigilant against any false gospel that attempts to corrupt the good news of Jesus Christ.
In compliance with Federal Trade Commission guidelines, I was provided a review copy of this book from BookLook Bloggers