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Customer Reviews for Thomas Nelson The Truth About Forgiveness

Thomas Nelson The Truth About Forgiveness

Does anyone really want to forgive? Or admit that we need forgiveness? Whether we're giving or receiving, forgiveness is hard. It seems unfair. It feels unnatural. And as best-selling author and pastor John MacArthur demonstrates, forgiveness apart from Christ is unnatural. It is only as we understand our need, Christ's power and example, and what it reallly means to love that we can embrace two of the most liberating acts of love: forgiving and being forgiven.
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Customer Reviews for The Truth About Forgiveness
Review 1 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:January 11, 2014
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nomer15
Gender:female
"The Truth About Forgiveness" by John MacArthur is another book in "The Truth About" trilogy. In this book, the focus is forgiveness, both our need to receive it and to give it. He opens the book with a look at our utter sinfulness and need for a Savior. By starting with a portrait of humanity's total depravity, he sets the stage for the rest of the book: "It is the good news that man's sin can be forgiven, guilt can be removed, life can have meaning, and a hopeful future can be a reality" (p. 16). MacArthur then goes on to show that forgiveness comes from God alone through Jesus Christ and the extent to which we are forgiven. It is a beautiful picture of the love of God toward His people. He brilliantly weaves together our sinfulness, our need for forgiveness, and the grace and love of God poured out on humanity through Jesus Christ.
My two favorite portions of the book were in-depth looks at the story of the paralyzed man (Luke 5) and the story of the prodigal son. He helps the reader to better understand the culture of the day in order to fully grasp the depth and beauty of the story. I now have a much greater appreciation for those stories as a result of the teachings from this book.
It is a quick read, but so rich in its concepts and deep in its teachings. It is a fabulous book for individual study or for a small group study. Either way, it should be a must-read for all serious people of faith!
(I’ve received this complimentary book from Thomas Nelson Publishing House through the Book Sneeze program in exchange for a review. A positive review was not required and the views expressed in my review are strictly my own.)
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Review 2 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

on Handling the Truth

Date:February 28, 2013
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theTRu
Location:Northern, VA
Age:35-44
Gender:male
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4 out of 5
4 out of 5
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3 out of 5
3 out of 5
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4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Part of why I like John MacArthur is because he doesn't pull punches. He stays pretty close to the Bible whenever he expounds topically and always provides practical insights and wisdom. I'm currently enjoying a daily dose of his thoughts with Moments of Truth: Unleashing God's Word One Day at a Time and I always have at least one of his books in my "to-read" stack. This series (The Truth about...), offers a few thematic quick reads (about 100 pages) that cut to the chase on some popular topics.
First on the docket is forgiveness. MacArthur wastes no time before stepping on some toes, implicating modern society for their efforts to remove the need for forgiveness. We already have a built-in defense mechanism, and it's as old as mankind: passing the blame. Just as Adam passed the blame on to Eve and she passed it on to the serpent, today we blame illness. It's not "the Devil made me do it" anymore, it's "the disease made me do it."
MacArthur cuts through all the excuses to get to the heart of the issue. We all sin and we all need forgiveness. And that's the essence of our lives. The hope that we have is in knowing that God wants to and has forgiven us. As we become molded more in His likeness, it is our duty (and should be our desire) to forgive others, as well.
-from TRudATmusic[dot]com[slash]raw
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Review 3 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Worthwhile Read

Date:August 23, 2012
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Nichols
Location:Los Angeles, CA
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Does anyone really want to forgive? Or admit that we need forgiveness? Whether we’re giving or receiving, forgiveness is hard. It seems unfair. It feels unnatural. And as best-selling author and pastor John MacArthur demonstrates, forgiveness apart from Christ is unnatural. It is only as we understand our need, Christ’s power and example, and what it really means to love that we can embrace two of the most liberating acts of love: forgiving and being forgiven.
I have always enjoying listening to John MacArthur's sermons and reading his books because he always tackles the issues at hand head-on. He doesn't mince words. Every sentence he writes seems very well thought out and is filled with Biblical truth. His take on the prodigal son story is a very touching and could be life-changing for many people. I'm sure many of us have heard a lot of sermons about the prodigal son. John MacArthur delves into the details of the story and brings to the surface a portion that I had always skipped over without realizing it. The prodigal son's father had been keeping an eye out for him ever since he had left. And when he spotted him coming home, he ran to him to embrace him and forgive him before his son had the chance to even say a word. MacArthur explains that the very act of running was something that would be very out of place in the Middle Eastern culture of that time. It actually would have been shocking to the Pharisees who were chomping at the bit to hear about how the prodigal son had been punished. MacArthur draws a wonderful parallel to the forgiveness offered to us in the gospel and challenges us to remember that it's not because of anything we have done that we are forgiven. He writes "God does not love us for what we are. He loves us in spite of what we are. He does not love us because we are special. Rather, it is only His love and grace that give our lives any significance at all ... God loves us because He is love; love is essential to who He is. Rather than viewing His love as proof of something worthy in us, we ought to be humbled by it."
I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking to learn more about God's forgiveness and what a truly amazing gift it is to us.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 4 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent!

Date:July 6, 2012
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LisaC
Location:Post Falls, ID
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Well, I did it. I read all three of John MacArthur's new trilogy of books - "The Truth About...." The last one in my reading list was "The Truth About Forgiveness". And let me just start by saying, although it was the last one I read, it was not the least. This book packs a lot of theology, wisdom, and Truth. And, just like the two before I read, it is easy to read and understand.
I started this book with the preconceived notion that it was about how we should have forgiveness for one another. But this isn't as much about our forgiveness of others as it is about the deep, costly, selfless forgiveness of our sins by our Lord Jesus Christ.
This book will have you examining your faith, your forgiveness... your repentance. John MacArthur dives in and defines sin, repentance, forgiveness. I was prepared for this to be a book that covered everything I had already heard, read or knew. I wasn't prepared to walk away in a state of worship at the foot of the Cross, so incredibly thankful for my undeserved gift of salvation and constant mercy.
My favorite part is when Pastor MacArthur goes through the Prodigal Son parable in Luke. He expands on the culture and the meaning behind the meaning. I have heard that parable used so much, but I will never look at it the same way again after that.
This is a great book and I highly recommend reading all three in this series. You will want to read them again and again.
God bless ya'all!
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not asked or required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are completely my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 5 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

The Truth About Forgiveness by John MacArthur

Date:June 16, 2012
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Arkatox
Location:Illinois
Age:Under 18
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
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Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This is a book in a series of three books by John MacArthur. I had to choose one out of The Truth About Grace, The Truth About Forgiveness, or The Truth About the Lordship of Christ to read and review. I chose the one that I would be the most interested in, as forgiveness is something I have always struggled with.
I didn't expect much from the book; nonfiction generally bores me by explaining things I already knew in five times the amount of words necessary. I do admit sometimes I thought it was a little wordy—even for a book only a little over a hundred pages—but that is to be expected, and it didn't happen nearly as much as I thought it would.
I started the book genuinely surprised; MacArthur started at a point I wouldn't expect, and continued explaining what I had never thought of before. That, in itself, is something wonderful. I began expecting little, and what I found was more than I could have hoped for.
The first chapter made me think a lot. Sometimes I thought, "He can't say that, because it's very apparent that he's never experienced that himself," but every time as I kept reading I realized that this man truly knows what he's talking about, whether he's experienced "certain things" or not.
The Truth About Forgiveness is not a typical Christian nonfiction book, basically putting a boring sermon I've heard before into text format. It's something entirely unique, and for the first time something actually worth putting into book format. It focuses much on what Jesus said about forgiveness, through parables and stories, along with actual happenings, but it does it in a way that grabs your attention and keeps you interested. What's more, it actually uses good points that you might not have thought of.
It's extremely rare that a nonfiction book, especially about Christianity, does not disappoint me, but this one not only didn't disappoint me, it actually impressed me. When I saw the dozens of five-star ratings for the book, I inwardly chuckled and knew it would have a lot to prove if it were going to get anywhere near that rating from me. Because face it, everyone: sermons and books about forgiveness are generally just plain boring. We never truly hear what we need to hear. John MacArthur's book, however, is different.
I have never recommended a nonfiction book as highly as I recommend this one. Five stars.
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Review 6 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Bold and Honest Truth

Date:June 16, 2012
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tristinedenise
Location:Kenosha, WI
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Quite honestly, I’m not even sure where to begin in reviewing this book because it was so good I basically underlined, highlighted, starred and arrowed every other sentence!
When I began reading it last week, I couldn’t put it down. I finished the book within 3 short evenings. Again, highlighting nearly the entire book!
Upon first glance at the title, you may think this is a book about how to forgive others. It is, but it isn’t. So if you’re looking for a book like that, this isn’t it. However, if you’re looking for an in-your-face, tell-it-like-it-is, no holds bar approach to who Jesus was and is, and the Godly benefits of owning up to your sins, then this IS the book to read!
Years ago I found myself interested in the field of social work, mainly because I have a great desire to help others. One of the courses I had to take was Drug & Alcohol Counseling. After a few classes I dropped out and eventually decided social work was NOT for me, especially if we are going to be coddling people into believing that their addictions are merely diseases they can’t control.
“Perhaps the most prevalent means of escaping blame is by classifying every human failing as some kind of disease… These days everything wrong with humanity is likely to be explained as an illness… All kinds of immorality and evil conduct are now identified as symptoms… Disease-model therapy therefore feeds the very problem it is supposed to treat.” (pgs. 3, 4, 8)
“In place of evil, therapeutic society has substituted ‘illness’; in place of consequence, it urges therapy and understanding; in place of responsibility, it argues for a personality driven by impulses.” (pg. 9)
MacArthur then proceeds throughout the book to explain how bold Christ was in His ministry on the topic of forgiveness. We hear so much about healings, but we often tend to only think of forgiveness at the cross. If we do that, we miss an awful lot of Christ’s story and purpose. I recently wrote a blog (The Lion and the Lamb) about this very topic.
“[The Pharisees] could not stand the compassion that would forgive a sinner on the spot… They had their own idea of what God should be like, and Jesus simply didn’t fit the profile.” (pgs. 44, 45)
This book gives us deep insight into the contrast between Christ and the Pharisees during His ministry. It is a bold and straight forward account of scriptures, background, history and culture of that time. We’ve all heard the story told at the pulpit of Christ forgiving the sin of the paralyzed man, and the parable of the Prodigal Son, but you won’t hear them explained in such a fresh concept like MacArthur has.
“Jesus had deliberately put Himself at the center of a scenario that would force every observer to render a verdict about Him… He purposely erased every possible middle-way alternative.” (pgs. 32, 33)
“The fact that they were not ‘open’ to [the truth] did not alter Jesus’ commitment to speaking the truth—without toning it down, without bending it to fit His audience’s tastes and preferences, without setting the facts of the gospel aside to speak to their ‘felt needs’ instead.” (pg. 107)
Jesus’ ministry spoke often of being set free through the forgiveness of sins. In today’s world, most of us don’t care to admit we are sinners at all. We like the idea of having our misconduct being nurtured, justified and excused, therefore making the cross null and void for anyone seeking true healing.
“Those who seek a do-it-yourself solution to the problem of sin only shackle themselves all the more securely to their guilt.” (pg. 113)
We are a generation of medicated children and excusable sins. The church has gone soft on sin, and as Christians, we’re buying into the lie that God has evolved. We need to get real about our sin, because only when we do can we experience the true healing God intended us to have. It’s what Christ lived…and died for.
This is a great, short book to share with loved ones who are in trouble in their sins—YES, sins! I recommend sharing this book with lost friends and family members weighed down and “shackled” in guilt. And I also strongly encourage anyone who has been told that their sin is merely a disease that will never be cured to grab hold of Christ’s redeeming power, because this book could quite literally save you from yourself.
I received this book for free from the publisher through the BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 7 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

The Truth about Forgiveness

Date:June 16, 2012
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MichelleatTexasHomemaking
Location:Texas
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
For-give-ness as defined by Meriam-Webster means the action of forgiving. But what does it truly mean to offer forgiveness or to be forgiven? In The Truth about Forgiveness, John MacArthur broaches the subject of the Christian idea of forgiveness.
Written more for a biblical scholar, this book is a challenging read. I found myself constantly seeking out verses when they were simply referenced in parenthesis to put the paragraphical text into biblical context.
The first chapter, We Need to be Forgiven, discusses MacArthur's disease-theory model for understanding sin: the idea of escaping bad news by denying it or trying to explain it away; by classifying every human failing as some kind of disease. While I understood MacArthur's disease-theory argument when applied to a drunkard being classified as having a "chemical dependency," and how this sin is being disguised as a "sickness;" I disagreed when he used the same theory to discuss children with OCD or other mental disorders. I could not correlate pediatric mental illnesses with sin; of which, the author fails to satisfactorily make this point.
Except:
"But assume for the moment that the problem is sin rather than sickness. The only true remedy involves humble repentance and confession - then restitution and growth through the spiritual disciplines of prayer, Bible study, communion with God, fellowship with other believers, and dependence on Christ. In other words, if the problem is in fact spiritual, labeling it a clinical issue will only exacerbate the problem and will offer no real deliverance of sin. That is precisely what we see happening everywhere."
The rest of the chapters in The Truth about Forgiveness addresses the steps that were taken by Christ to ensure God's forgiveness of man today. The stories of Luke and John are heavily referenced though the body of work.
MacArthur reiterates his message that as individuals seeking forgiveness, there is a necessity of a humble, repentant faith and the need to accept the responsibility for our sins.
The Truth about Forgiveness is in interesting read. It begins quite advanced with MacArthur's disease-model theory, yet his approach on forgiveness is quite simple.
John MacArthur is a popular author and conference speaker, as well as a pastor. His bestselling titles include The Gospel According to Jesus, The Truth War, The Murder of Jesus, and The MacArthur Study Bible.
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Review 8 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

short but powerful

Date:July 24, 2012
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Reid
Location:California
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Surprisingly, the Truth about Forgiveness by John MacArthur is a small book; a little over a hundred pages, but it is packed with information and truth! First, I had a lot of questions about forgiveness and this book answered most of them, though at times it seemed a bit harsh. Yet still really good and filled with Scripture to back things up.
If you have questions about forgiveness, I can't think of a better book to read, in spite of (or especially) because it is a short, small book.
I received this book from Booksneeze and I was not required to write a positive review.
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Review 9 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Wonderful honest look at God's grace

Date:June 4, 2012
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FDGrubbs
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
The Truth about Forgiveness by John MacArthur
Don't let the small size deceive you; at only 114 pages, this book is a huge gem. For instance, take this little quote from page 14, "Guilt is a spiritual pain in the soul that tells us something is evil and needs to be confronted and cleansed." WOW! this book is honest. While I was expecting a text to tell me more about how I should forgive others, I found an eye-opening look at how God alone can forgive sins. I appreciate that MacArthur is brief but honest in his approach.
Not only is the book full of scripture, but it talks about how those scripture verses affect us today. He looks at how Paul (nearly 2000 years ago) outlines the social problems that still plague us today. But he doesn't leave it there. MacArthur delves into the beauty of confession and at relying on God to lift you up. A priest once told me that sin is like a black ball in your soul. The longer you hold on to it, the larger it will grow. It's only through confessing your sin that you can turn it over to God and allow his to fill that void with his love and Grace. MacArthur affirms that time and again. I will end the same way the book does, with this quote from 1 John 1:9, "We confess our sin so that the Lord can cleanse our conscience and give us joy."
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 10 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Very enjoyable.

Date:May 26, 2012
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MaryRuth
Location:Midwest
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
I requested this book after reviewing (and loving) it prequel, The Truth About Grace.
I don't know if I would say I enjoyed this book as completely as I enjoyed Grace, but it was still a very enjoyable study of core truths about something that we Christians tend to throw around as a byword very casually.
The parable of the prodigal son is one of the book's main focuses, and the author goes into explicit detail about what is both said overtly and implied in each tiny aspect of the story. Honestly, I'm still on the fence about whether I actually liked that or not. True, I'm not an expert on ancient middle-eastern cultures, so the detailed explanations of what even the smallest detail implied to the Pharisees Jesus was addressing provided some interesting insight. However, I still get very nervous when people (no matter how much of an expert they may be) begin expounding in great detail on what is implied by, but not actually said in, a passage of Scripture. The fact that the author was simply trying to get to the bones of the story rather than trying to promote some radical new idea made me feel better, though.
Over all, this book is focused on God's forgiveness of humans and spends very little time discussing the forgiveness of one person to another. But that shouldn't be a problem, since the forgiveness God has extended to us is the pattern we use to forgive each other.
As I said of the prequel, The Truth About Forgiveness was a lovely, refreshing read that took me back to the basics while still challenging me to think in new ways about the incredible nature of God, and I would highly recommend it.
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Review 11 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Raises More Questions than It Answers

Date:May 24, 2012
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Heather King
Location:Gloucester, VA
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
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By the time I had both a four-year-old and a three-year-old daughter at the same time, I lived in a world of questions. "Mommy, why?" and "Mommy, what about . . . " made up the bulk of my everyday conversation.
When you read a book like MacArthur's The Truth About Forgiveness, you would expect it to answer questions rather than raise them as often as a curious toddler might. His other two books in the series (The Truth About the Lordship of Christ and The Truth About Grace) served handily as answer guides and doctrine-teaching foundational works. This last book of the series, though, left me leafing through most of the pages asking, "What about . . . ?"
Mostly, my questions arose when MacArthur belabored points in a preachy way. For instance, he seems to throw out all modern psychology and any benefit to be had from counseling. When an author spends 12 pages of a brief book essentially arguing that mental health issues are really rooted in sin and can be solved by forgiveness, I can't help wondering if he thinks that is always true. I agree that there are abuses and over-medication and over-diagnosing occurring in the psychological community. Yet, what about the poor person with clinical depression who tries to read this book on forgiveness? Instead of reading right away that Christ forgives her, she has to wade through a 12-page tirade about how she isn't really sick and the counseling is a waste and her diagnosis a sham.
In a similar way, MacArthur consistently mocks modern day healing and miracle preachers as tricksters out for personal glory, which is probably true most of the time. But I found myself wondering whether he really believes that God no longer does miracles at all, that somehow His power ended with the conclusion of the New Testament era. If that's what MacArthur really believes, then he can't have much opinion of God's power or compassion.
When he writes about how God doesn't love us at all because we deserve it, he also seems to fall short of a full explanation. Yes, he's right that we don't earn God's affection or deserve Christ's sacrifice for us. But he didn't bother distinguishing between earning God's love and receiving God's favor and affection, which is clearly Biblical truth.
It seemed like MacArthur really just loved waxing eloquent about his own pet peeves, which was off-putting and distracting from the message of the book. By the time you get to the two Scripture passages where he spends most of his time (the healing of the paralytic and the prodigal son), you may be too offended to really care to hear what he has to say---if you are still reading at all.
That's a shame because the explanations about both the primary Scripture passages and the reminder that we also need to forgive others are powerful sections in this book and worth reading. In this case, an editor with some consideration, thoughtfulness and tact could have truly helped cut out the unnecessary diatribes from MacArthur's book and make this a more helpful discussion of forgiveness. It seems that MacArthur needed the help to do just that.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not asked or required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are completely my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 12 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:May 22, 2012
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David Shaw
Location:Tecumseh, OK
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
The Truth About Forgiveness by John MacArthur is one of three books in a trilogy on the topics of grace, the lordship of Christ and forgiveness (See here for my review of The Truth About Grace). Like the book on grace this book on forgiveness is taken from sermons MacArthur has preached over the years and collected in the small book that a person can read quickly while gaining a better understanding of the topic at hand.
The book begins by debunking the popular idea that the reasons we do wrong is because of some medical or physiological problem inside of us and that guilt is an emotion we need to overcome because it isn’t helpful to us. MacArthur explains those ideas this way:
"Guilt functions in the spiritual realm like pain in the material realm. Pain tells us there is a physical problem that must be dealt with or the body will suffer harm. Guilt is a spiritual pain in the soul that tells us something is evil and needs to be confronted and cleansed. To deny personal guilt is to sacrifice the soul for the sake of the go.
Where there is no recognition of sin and guilt, when the conscience has been abused into silence, there can be no salvation, no sanctification, and therefore no real emancipation from sin’s ruthless power."
MacArthur begins the book with those truths because if we don’t understand that we are sinners that need to be saved then there is no salvation for us to be had. And when we realize that we need to be forgiven we have to understand that it is God that we need to seek forgiveness from.
He spends the rest of the book on two main stories found in Scripture - the story of the paralytic in Luke 5 and the prodigal son in Luke 15. I think his commentary on the paralytic, while a great teaching on forgiveness, he belabors the point. He seems to rehash some of the same material he had wrote just a few pages earlier. This is my one and only complaint in the book.
His treatment of the prodigal son is amazing. He wrote an amazing book on that parable titled A Tale of Two Sons. If you haven’t read that book you need to very soon. It will give you a better understanding of your role in forgiveness and God’s. You will be changed. If you can’t read that book the few chapters in this book will whet your appetite for it.
If you are one who struggles with forgiveness or you just want a better understanding of that amazing truth then pick up this book and you will be bless, encouraged, convicted and transformed.
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Review 13 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Date:May 17, 2012
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Dr JSK
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
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2 out of 5
2 out of 5
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1 out of 5
1 out of 5
The Truth About Forgiveness, written by John MacArthur, is a book that desires to demonstrate to its readers the importance of offering and receiving forgiveness.
John’s books are usually very well presented in regard to the topic and Biblical relevancy, but this book, in my opinion, did not follow along this line. While the information in regard to forgiveness was seemingly correct, the understanding of where he derived this information is sketchy, as some of the things mentioned are not found within the Bible.
John also spent several pages reinforcing his opinion as to why the father in the story of the prodigal son ran into his son’s presence. His lengthy explanation revolved around the father not wanting his son to endure the hardship and ridicule of walking through the village without having first received forgiveness. While this might seem pliable to some, I do not see how this can be correlated to the actual Biblical account or the Biblical customs of the time.
Notwithstanding all of the aforementioned issues, what seemed to really throw me into a negative impression is the fact that several of the scripture references used lead the reader to the wrong passages within the Bible. I cannot comment on the manner in which others read books, for we all do this differently, but I have my Bible present while reading any book. This is done so I can read the intended passages(s) and the passage(s) before and after, thus getting a clearer understanding of the intention of the author in comparison to scripture.
All in all, I was personally disappointed with this book, but this is only my opinion. My recommendation is, if you have an interest in this book, purchase it and formulate your own opinion.
Dr. Jeff Krupinski
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Review 14 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5

Adds to the Bible

Date:May 15, 2012
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Debbie from ChristFocus
Location:Harrison, AR
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Value: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
"The Truth about Forgiveness" is a Christian book primarily about God's grace and forgiveness toward us (though he also made the point that we should pass this forgiveness on to others).
The author started off with 12 pages (out of 112 pages) ranting about modern psychology. His points in relation to forgiveness could have been handled in 2 pages. I was hoping to be able to hand this book to unbelievers, but the rant came across to me as off-putting unless you already agreed with him (and I did), so I doubt that the people who need to know about forgiveness the most would even get past those pages.
I was surprised at how often the author made comments--and even built his case for forgiveness--on things not actually mentioned in the Bible. And he could have easily stuck with the plentiful Scriptures that talk specifically about forgiveness.
For example, the author stated with certainty that the Pharisees had come in Luke 5:17-26 to condemn Jesus and thwart his popularity (page 23). This was early in Jesus' ministry, and nowhere in the 3 gospel accounts of this event does it state that this was their intention. And the Bible doesn't hesitate to say when it was someone's intent.
The author also portrayed the Pharisees as the main Bad Guys of the gospel, which books like "Sitting at the Feet of Rabbi Jesus" clearly demonstrate isn't true. Even in the Luke 5:17-26 event, two of the three gospel writers that talked about this event only mention the Scribes showing unbelief. Yet MacArthur focused on the Pharisees instead.
While I recognize that this wasn't meant to be a scholarly work, it would have been nice to know where he got his information about what Pharisee's believed (like his comments on page 61), the cultural information behind the parable of the prodigal son, and so on. He seemed to be making a lot of assumptions and even added to the Bible in an attempt to increase the impact of what was actually given in the Bible. For example, the Bible doesn't even mention a village in Luke 15:11-31, but the author spent several pages making a major point out of how the father saved his prodigal son from the shame of having to walk through the village (pages 72-80).
He also commented several times (for example, pages 18, 86) on how the Pharisees had made all these rules so that they could earn their way into rightness with God. Yet, as I understood it (and, unfortunately, I'm not sure which places I read this), the people came to those who knew the Law really well and asked them to make these boundaries so that they wouldn't sin accidentally.
It'd be like a young woman who wants to be modest asking her mother what, exactly, makes up modest clothing. Yes, it could easily turn into being all about necklines and hem lengths, but that doesn't mean the mother originally made those rules to make her daughter earn her righteousness.
Basically, I think there are books out there on the topic of forgiveness that are more focused on what the Bible actually does say on the topic, and I'd recommend them instead. (For example, "Forgiveness: Breaking the Power of the Past" by Kay Arthur).
I received this book as a review copy through the BookSneeze program.
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Review 15 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:May 7, 2012
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DUCKgirl
Age:25-34
Gender:female
When I received “The Truth About Forgiveness” by John MacArthur, I wasn’t expecting the volume of truth that’s bound in this tiny book. Only a little more than 100 pages, this book is a quick read. I read it in one afternoon in the sun on my swing.
It reminded me how Jesus came to forgive sinner. MacArthur writes about God’s forgiveness simply yet exactly.
The chapter I found crucial was the last chapter that addressed the need to forgive others. I know that the Lord will give me the strength I need to forgive and to be forgiven by Him.
His way of writing is quick and easy to read and understandable. Every one must read this book!
Thank you Booksneeze for the opportunity to read this book.
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Review 16 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Forgiveness is one of the keys of Christianity

Date:April 21, 2012
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tg35
Location:Florida
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
John MacArthur has compacted a whole volume of truth into just 114 pages. This small book is a quick read which can give us an overview about God’s forgiveness. In seven chapters, the book covers our need to be forgiven, how only God alone can forgive sin, how God’s forgiveness is undeserved, how God wants and acts to forgive, how God provides a way to forgiveness and finally how God wants us to forgive others. The Bible tells us to pray each day for forgiveness of our own sins as we forgive others so we need to know exactly what we are praying for, why we pray for it and why we need to give it to others. Forgiveness is one of the key elements of Christian growth.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 17 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent Excellent Excellent book.

Date:April 18, 2012
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Hi Im Dan
Location:Louisville, KY
Age:18-24
Gender:male
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I'll admit, I'm somewhat of a bibliophile, and I'm cheap. I love books. Especially free books. So when I saw I could get John MacArthur's new book in exchange for writing a review (this very review you're reading right now) I jumped at it. I've read a lot on forgiveness, both toward God and man, and was planning on taking an hour, skimming the 115 page book, and getting the next book in his series. My plan failed… Let me explain why.
From the first page, I found myself screaming "Yes!" I assumed that this was going to be a basic book, but MacArthur hits the nail on the head when dealing with reasons we don't want forgiveness. He starts by rallying against the sin as sickness mentality in one of the best presentations I've ever read (this is coming from a Biblical Counseling student. I've read about it before.) Granted, it is a few years dated (cites the DSM III-R, DSM IV-R is current [p. 5]), but it is true none the less. He describes the ways man tries to obtain forgiveness, through the law or through Christ. He cites studies and scripture, and is poignant and eloquent in doing it. I'm in love with this book… and I haven't even started chapter two.
Now chapter two: MacArthur speaks of the fact that only God can forgive sins. And Jesus forgave sins, which means that Jesus is God and forgives sins. He uses the case study of the quadriplegic lowered through the ceiling's healing to show this. He presents the story and it's meaning and implications well - he is helpful in showing the connections between healing and forgiveness, and offers a fresh (read: biblical) take on the story (not "what will you do to bring your friends to Jesus.")
Chapter three then deals with God's forgiveness in spite of who we are, not because of who we are. MacArthur speaks clearly about confession and repentance as necessary. He continues in chapter 4 to show from the Prodigal Son and story of Joseph how God actually wants to forgive. MacArthur is faithful to present the full truth of the scriptures on the issue of forgiveness. I'm glad I didn't skim like I wanted too! Chapter five finishes up the story of the Prodigal Son focusing on the father's desire to forgive.
Chapter six speaks of the narrow and wide paths, and speaks against Finny-esque easy believism. He does not (unfortunately) outline a doctrine of substitutionary atonement, but rather focuses on man's role in forgiveness with God. Which is the point of the book - and it is brief - which is why I'm keeping my "unfortunately" comment in parenthesis. Chapter seven concludes with our response: Seek forgiveness from God and forgive others.
Final Thoughts: throughout my summary, you get some of my opinions. Here are the rest. I really do like this book. Run, don't walk, to the internet and consider buying it. It's a really good book. It's very practical and not theology heavy. You can read the book quickly, I did it in one day. This is somewhat peripheral, but the binding is a little bit cheap. I'll probably have some loose pages in it because I'm bound to be lending this book out and reading it over again.
*Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review (but I did anyway). The opinions I have expressed are my own - but if you disagree you are still wrong. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255; mostly because having all this legal mumbo-jumbo at the bottom of my review makes it look official and I feel important when it looks official.
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Review 18 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Very good book

Date:April 16, 2012
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Mazzou
Location:St. Louis, MO
Age:18-24
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Do we have the power to ever forgive ourselves? Certainly not! In this small book, the author explains very clearly and concisely that we are all sinners, and that every person needs true forgiveness : the forgiveness and grace of God.
‘’The good news about salvation starts with the bad news about sin.’’
I loved how this book begins with force: explaining how guilty we are as sinful humans, and then through the remaining chapters explaining about God’s amazing forgiveness us-ward, and ending with how we in turn are to show forgiveness towards our fellow men.
God doesn’t love us because of who we are; He loves us in SPITE of who we are!
‘’There can be no salvation for those who AREN’T convinced of the SERIOUSNESS of their sin.’’
I was overjoyed to finally review a book where I had no complaints about the author’s doctrine or beliefs! This was a marvelous little book; easy to finish in just a few hours, but very deep and able to impact the reader, whether he be saved or unsaved. I enjoyed the font, the length of the book as well as the writing style. I appreciated John MacArthur’s in-depth explanation of several new testament accounts. Read this book- you will not be disappointed. Rather, you will be convicted.
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Review 19 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Truth about sin, forgiveness and gospel

Date:April 9, 2012
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kamebear
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
John MacArthur's book The Truth About Forgiveness is a real look at sin. It explains how people are taking less and less responsibility for their sins and instead declaring themself faultless for things like drinking, shopping, stealing, molesting. They call their behaviors "addictions" and turn themselves in the victims, rather than the perpetrators. MacArthur explains the truth of the situation - humans are sinful and just running from facing their sins. He touches on why the self-esteem cult of psychology doesn't help anyone, but all this denial of responsibility just makes us sicker and sicker.
This book is a good wake up call for believers. Once MacArthur addresses the subject of sin, he then explains that this is the reason we need a savior - enter Jesus Christ. MacArthur tells readers about forgiveness, confession of sin and God's amazing grace. This book is mainly about sin, forgiveness, grace and the gospel. All key elements all Christians could benefit from considering. This book is full of truth. I did find this book a shorter read that most of MacArthur's other works and also a bit easier/lighter/not as deep. Still a great book and I would highly recommend it.
Disclaimer: I gave my honest review. I received this book from the publisher but a positive review was not required
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Review 20 for The Truth About Forgiveness
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Profound and Powerful

Date:April 24, 2012
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Cherie Hill
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
"The Truth About Forgiveness" is probably one of the most powerful and faith enriching books I have read in a very long time. Even as a well studied Christian, I now understand forgiveness, Christ's sacrifice, and salvation in more powerful ways than I ever have before. I didn't think I could ever gain more insight into the "Prodigal Son," parable, as told by Jesus, but John MacArthur proved me wrong . . . in a HUGE way. I have never grasped the powerful and profound insights into God's forgiveness, as I did through reading, "The Truth About Forgiveness." Truly, this should be a MUST READ book and one that is automatically given to the individual seeking Christ and making profession of faith for the first time. This book in convicting and transforming, filled with the Holy Spirit. I didn't expect this book to be a page turner for me, MacArthur leaves you only wanting more of Jesus.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com [...] book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 [...] : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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