"The Truth about Grace", by John MacArthur
Why would God so love a world that is chock full of sinners?
And why would God so love a world chock full of sinners that He would give anything even remotely good to it?
And why still would God so love a world chock full of sinners that He would give anything good to it, especially His Son, Jesus Christ, to die for their sin?
And why, even more so, would God so love a world chock full of sinners that He would give the One Savior, Jesus Christ, to die in their place for the crimes they've committed, and then give them the chance for eternal life when all they've done is oppose and hate Him? (p.34-35)
Why would He do all of this?
One simple word: Grace.
We don't deserve it. We've done quite well at proving that fact. What we're NOT talking about is simply doing good to one's friends. We're not even talking about doing good to one's neighbors. Instead, the true spirit of Godly grace is doing good to one's enemies (p.4). That is just what God has done for us -- He crushed Jesus Christ EVEN WHILE we were enemies, sinners, rebels. His love and grace is not a love like ours. We find it easy to love our friends, and difficult to love our enemies. But, as MacArthur quotes Dr. Barnhouse, "Love that gives upward is worship; love that goes outward is affection; love that stoops is grace." And that is just what God has done. He has stooped to give us grace (p.18).
"The Truth about Grace" is full of solid biblical teaching on what true grace is. Dr. MacArthur does not water it down, but puts it out there for his readers to accept or reject. The last of the 5 short chapters, "Grace Lived Out", gives his readers one final punch in the nose: "Grace that does not affect one's behavior is not the grace of God." (p.105) No reader will close the book without asking, "Am I sure I am in the true grace of God?", just as the bible writers suggest we constantly evaluate ourselves. But the pages preceding the punch give us clear indication of how we can truly know.
The Truth about Grace" is a good resource for new believers -- it is short, concise, clear, and yet challenging. It is also a good resource for evangelism -- it is blunt, honest, straight-forward, and yet loving. It is only 105 pages long, so I'm not sure why it costs $12.99. Nevertheless, it is a good little work. It is one of three books in MacArthur's "The Truth About..." series. I give this one 5 stars. For my review on "The Truth about the Lordship of Christ", click here.
Disclaimer: I received this book free of charge from Booksneeze/Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for my unbiased review of it. I was not threatened or coerced or promised favors in exchange for a favorable review of it. All opinions are mine.