Note: This was originally posted on my personal blog in December, 2005.
Dr. John F. MacArthur, Jr. has been the pastor/teacher of Grace Community Church since 1969. He is currently the president of the Master’s College, Newhall, California and also founder and president of the Master’s Seminary, Sun Valley, California. He is the president and featured speaker on the Grace To You, radio program which airs more than 800 times daily, reaching the United States, Canada, Europe, India, New Zealand, the Philippines and South Africa. In the last thirty years, Grace to You has distributed more than 11 million audio cassettes.
John has authored more than seventy books, including The Gospel According to Jesus, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary series, Twelve Ordinary Men, and The MacArthur Study Bible. John and his wife, Patricia, have four grown children, and thirteen grandchildren.
I am currently reading his New Testament Commentary Matthew 1-7. I find it extremely easy to read. He also has published 3 other books on Matthew. In time, I’ll also pick up the others.
Some members of the ‘religious’ community has found fault with Past MacArthur’s teachings over the years. Like politicians, religious leaders often squabble amongst themselves. The one thing I have noticed over the last two months of bible study is how many people spend page after page writing about one small phrase or word of the bible and how ‘others’ just don’t have the ‘true’ meaning and aren’t teaching it properly. Many are quick to call others ‘false teachers’.
Get a life. Man is human and the bible is open to interpretation. I will admit the only drawback to reading commentaries is that it is easy to let others influence your belief and interpretation of the bible.
Unless you are reading the original Hebrew or Greek, aren’t you always getting the translator’s influence in the Word? After all, many different translations of the bible weren’t even translated from the original language. Many were translated from the Latin version of the bible. Some of these translations take a bit of freedom with their translations.
It it difficult to keep the AIM of the bible. (Author’s Intended Meaning). We always have to remember the bible was written to the people of thousands of years ago. Some things just loose a little over the course of time. Don’t get stuck on the small points. Get the big picture.
Thus far I have gathered much information on the book of Matthew from John MacArthur. When finished I will read a few other commentaries and studies of Matthew.