What to do with John MacArthur books?

Hi all,

Many years ago, as a teenager, I was a regular patron of Christian book stores, and I would buy several titles at a go to brush up on my faith. I did this because the Catholic media movement (selling books and media) is not strong where I come from. Ignorant as I was, I kept reading them and even thought, apart from their few anti-Catholic statements here and there, they were great books.

Of course, that was way before I started sniffing Catholic books. Eventually, I managed to get my hands on Catholic books by import, and discovered the depth and richness that Catholic authors offered in their books. Compared to them, Protestant writers seem really ‘shallow’ - not used to offend, but they’re simply very ‘on the surface’. Now I’m addicted to Catholic reading, and am happy to splash good cash to REALLY brush up my faith.

The problem I have now is that I’m stuck with many Protestant books - by John MacArthur and several other protestant writers. I want to get rid of them, because (1) I don’t really want to have lousy information in my shelves, and (2) I want to make way for more good Catholic reading. What should I do with these books?

I wanted to put them up for a cheap sale on eBay but figured that if I think such info is no good, as a responsible Catholic, I should not be putting it up for others. Of course, if I had sold them, I would have raised a little returns to fund new books. Is my only option to burn them up or throw them in the chutes?! Some of them are new and untouched.

I don’t think there is an official thing for me to do, so please feel free to throw your opinions here. I think many previously Protestant readers might benefit from this too! Many thanks in advance!

Just my personal opinion here as there is nothing you must do. But I would and have thrown them away as I don’t want to pass on this kind of material to anyone that is not the whole truth.

<< The problem I have now is that I’m stuck with many Protestant books - by John MacArthur and several other protestant writers. I want to get rid of them, because (1) I don’t really want to have lousy information in my shelves, and (2) I want to make way for more good Catholic reading. What should I do with these books? >>

Send them to me! I collect anti-Catholic nonsense. :thumbsup:

Actually I already have two MacArthur books: Gospel According to Jesus, and Gospel According to the Apostles, where he comes darn close to Catholic teaching, even while he tries to critique it. I’d also like his book on young-earth creationism (The Battle for the Beginning), but that is a newer one, and I’m not paying $20 for one of his books.

I’ll pay $1 for each MacArthur book you have, plus shipping. :stuck_out_tongue: What other authors you have?

Phil P

I gave all of mine (and I had an extensive collection) to my mother. She is a MacArthur fan. I had a ton of tapes. Some of his stuff is quite good.

I am in a unique position, though, as I credit the man with my conversion to Catholicism, at least in part. In fact, it is because he is so logical and insightful on some things, that his postition on Catholicism and sola scriptura in particular stand out as so flimsy. I have had several conversations with my mom so far about some of the things he says. She too sees the illogic in his sola scriptura arguments.

I see no problem with you selling them to someone like on ebay (or the above poster :slight_smile: ). If one is going to buy those types of books, they might as well buy them from you. Or you can give them to a protestant friend who reads that kind of stuff.

I’m interested in buying them from you too…but I see Phil has first dibs! :blush: I listen to the guy most every morning…he is a psychological spectacle. Often on point…often completely out of the realm of reason. :slight_smile:

What’s the essence of his sola scriptura argument? I think I heard that around Christmas time.

I admired John MacArthur soooo much when I was in college. I went to a nearby Christian university. (He runs a Bible School in L.A. area). Students at my university were very critical of him and his methods. There was a rumor that he fired a secretary of his when she got pregnant because he thought that women belonged home with their kids. I thought that took a lot of guts on his part, but boy, did he take some heat for that.

But, to your question…

I have also struggled with what to do with books, CDs, etc that you grow to find are incorrect or even downright harmful. I tend to just throw them out if I think they are seriously anti-Catholic, but if not, then I might donate them or sell them. It sounds like, from the other posters, that maybe he’s not all that bad.

He ultimately pins the whole thing on the passage in II Timothy and the meaning of the word “complete” or sufficient." He then uses the meaning of this word and applies the same meaning to the earlier part of the verse where it states all (any) scripture is profitable. He states that since the outcome is absolute completion of the Christian, then sufficiency exists in the profitability of scripture.

The error becomes obvious when the same construct is used for any other topic. His transpostition of sufficiency from the end result to the method used is unsupportable. For example, if one wants to make a complete of perfect blockbuster movie, it is profitable to hire a good actor. The goal is a fully finished great film. The means is having proven cast. Yet that is not all that it takes. I submit “Ishtar” as evidence. :smiley: No, it also takes good direction, a great script, etc.

I think I did hear that one! Yeah, I thought the same thing. Even if you accept his definition of “completely sufficient” (which is a little specious…read toward the end of this article), I was like, yeah, ok Scripture is profitable for making us complete. We know that. But where does it say “only” Scripture is profitable? :shrug:

However, on the one sense, we can all agree on Sola Scriptura provided everyone is clear that the Bible points outside itself for Revelation and authority. :smiley:

Sometimes he is bad, sometimes not. Here he sounds somewhat Catholic. Here he is in outerspace.

Essentially, when not conscious of it, he often interprets Scripture as a Catholic would. However, if he is consciously confronted with a Catholic interpretation, he turns into Mr. Hyde.

Offer (sell/donate) them to someone’s apologetics library; you have a few takers. I don’t take advantage of this as I have in the past but it can be good opportunity to learn what other traditions teach AND see if I can refute teachings that are not Catholic. Every once in a while I come upon a title at a local used bookstore (making it affordable) on Protestant teaching. I typically go for the anti-Catholic ones vs. simply non-Catholic.

You could keep them as they were a part of your formation as a Christian, but I could see wanting to make room for the vast number of books on Catholic teaching, spirituality, and practice that interest you.

Yup. I definitely see this as one alternative: to offer them for someone else’s apologetic’s library and study of Protestant teaching.

Yes. At this point, I’m trying to immerse myself in the richness of the faith.

In any case, is there a trade (buy/sell/exchange) sub-forum here? Wouldn’t that be a cool idea? :rolleyes:

I donated some of my protestant books to the local library and to Goodwill.

I am a Protestant. I agree that there is much pop “Protestant” material that could be considered “shallow.” However, John MacArthur is not one of those. What of his do you consider lousy information? Others have mentioned sola scriptura, but what’s your reason?

All answers to your questions in posts 9, 10, & 11. :slight_smile:

while he does refer to 2 Tim 3:16, links to his more popular and thorough argument for Sola Scriptura can be foundhere, in an exposition of Psalm 19. His position on 2 Tim 3:16 is similar to James White, which, from a scholarly standpoint, Catholic Answers’ Patrick Madrid is unable to defend (see here…I will summarize Madrids’ response in my next post). THe Protestant exegesis of 2 Tim 3:16 is more scholarly than the Catholic position, so to the point of this thread, don’t throw away your MacArthur books if you are concerned about “shallowness”, throw away the Catholic ones!

Yes…but I want to hear from the original poster what his/her concerns are

Madrid’s weak, shallow response to White and MacArthur on 2 Tim 3:16 (as promised above)

“He says that I can’t refute the Greek translations. Well of course! I didn’t bring a Greek library with me tonight. I didn’t bring all sorts of linguistic apparatuses to throw at you to try to build my case based on what this scholar or that scholar might say. I brought the Bible. I believe in going by what God’s Word says.” -Patrick Madrid, here shortly after half way

Catholics think Protestants are shallow??? Here is a premier Catholic apologist admitting his lack of scholarship.

Again I suggest: Keep your MacArthur books!

I can’t wait to hear it!

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