Saturday, June 26, 2010

Weekly Recommendation - "Hard to Believe" by John MacArthur

Hard to Believe: The High Cost and Infinite Value of Following JesusOk, its been a LONG time since I've done a weekly recommendation, but better late than never.  Tomorrow we will be discussing the issue of fasting.  In order to understand the importance of fasting, we must first understand the gospel and its call to self-denial and self-hatred.  This is what Jesus meant when He said "take up your cross and follow me" (Luke 9:23).  The cross in Roman times was an instrument of death and Jesus is calling for us to be willing to die on a daily basis.

Only in this context can we understand what fasting really is.  Fasting won't be that big of a deal if we understand the concept of how radical the self-denial gospel truly is.

So in that spirit, I highly recommend and would love it if everybody in the congregation read John MacArthur's book Hard to Believe: The High Cost and Infinite Value of Following Jesus.  MacArthur's point in the book is to show that the gospel is unpopular and difficult.  It calls for us to deny ourselves, forsake everything and everyone, and be considered a fool.  The cross is foolishness to those who are perishing (1 Corinthians 1:18ff).  We are fools for Christs sake.

I once heard MacArthur preach in Northern Kentucky where he admitted that of all of his books, this one didn't sell very well.  And no wonder.  Nobody in our world today wants to hear a message of self-hate and self-denial especially in a culture of self-esteem.  So if there is one book you read this summer, read this one.  Let is break you and let it convict you of what the gospel truly is.  If we as a church took this message seriously, we could change the world for Christ.  Isn't that what we want?

To read a full review on the book, click here

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