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Twelve Unlikely Heroes: How God Commissioned Unexpected People in the Bible and What He Wants to Do with You Hardcover – September 3, 2012

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

John MacArthur is the pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California, president of the Master’s College and Seminary, and featured teacher with the Grace to You media ministry. In more than four decades of ministry, John has written dozens of bestselling books, including The MacArthur Study Bible, The Gospel According to Jesus, and Slave. He lives in Los Angeles.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson; 8.5.2012 edition (September 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400202086
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400202089
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 0.9 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (187 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #625,859 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Widely known for his thorough, candid approach to teaching God's Word, John MacArthur is a popular author and conference speaker and has served as pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California since 1969. John and his wife, Patricia, have four grown children and fourteen grandchildren.
John's pulpit ministry has been extended around the globe through his media ministry, Grace to You, and its satellite offices in seven countries. In addition to producing daily radio programs for nearly 2,000 English and Spanish radio outlets worldwide, Grace to You distributes books, software, audiotapes, and CDs by John MacArthur.
John is president of The Master's College and Seminary and has written hundreds of books and study guides, each one biblical and practical. Best-selling titles include The Gospel According to Jesus, Truth War, The Murder of Jesus, Twelve Ordinary Men, Twelve Extraordinary Women, and The MacArthur Study Bible, a 1998 ECPA Gold Medallion recipient.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By ChristianDroid on September 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
One of the things that intrigues me about the characters in the Bible is the way that God takes ordinary people, just like you and me, and through them accomplish extraordinary things. Since I am a big fan of John MacArthur's "Twelve Ordinary Men" and "Twelve Extraordinary Women", I was excited when the opportunity presented itself to read and review his newest newest book "Twelve Unlikely Heroes, How God Commissioned Unexpected People in the Bible and What He Wants to Do with You."

In this latest book, MacArthur does not disappoint. By examining the lives of these unlikely heroes the author shows how God is in control and that with Him anything is possible. God does not always choose the most likely candidate in order to accomplish His work. In fact, most of the time He chooses the most unlikely candidates. These 12 heroes show how God can change the world through the lives of the unlikely, just as He can change the world through our lives.

John MacArthur starts out by stating that our world today has a twisted sense of what it means to be a hero.

"The word Hero is slowly losing its significance because it has been so broadly redefined in popular culture. ... Nowadays, celebrity status alone is enough to get a person deemed heroic. You'll often hear people refer to their favorite person as "my hero," indicating that all that may be necessary to be a hero is to have one person who thinks you are."

But these are not the heroes of this book. If you are looking for celebrities or pop icons then you should go pick up a copy of People Magazine. MacArthur describes the Biblical heroes in his book.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Keith Heapes VINE VOICE on November 7, 2012
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
It doesn't take the reader long before they realize that Pastor John MacArthur's latest book, "Twelve Unlikely Heroes," was written for a very broad audience and is not one of his oft controversial theological treatises. He is not battling a doctrinal fallacy or a major assault on the church or the Bible in this book. MacArthur made this clear when he describes this book as a survey, "a journey through the chronology of biblical history."

SPOILER ALERT: There may be plot information beyond this point that some readers may not want to know. If so, stop now or continue reading at your own risk.

Some readers may not be aware that this book is the third in a set of similar books. The first and second books in this set are titled "Twelve Ordinary Men" and "Twelve Extraordinary Women", respectively. As the book title implies, MacArthur has chosen twelve characters, eight from the Old Testament and four from the New Testaments, men and women, all from different walks of life, each in a different set of circumstances, and all with a story to tell. He draws his information from Scripture and some extra-biblical sources, like the Jewish historian Josephus, to write about twelve unlikely characters who, according to MacArthur, displayed the marks of a true hero. Many of the characters selected are listed in what Christians call the "Hall of Faith" in Hebrews, chapter 11. MacArthur writes:

"The pages of Scripture are filled with stories of great heroes--men and women whom God used in unique and powerful ways to accomplish His purposes. Their exploits vary greatly, yet the common thread that runs through all of their testimonies is faith.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mikeylynn on October 31, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Twelve Unlikely Heroes by John MacArthur is about twelve people in the Bible and why God chose them to do His will. The twelve people are:

Enoch
Joseph
Miriam
Gideon and Samson
Jonathan
Jonah
Esther
John the Baptist
James
Mark and Onesimus

I liked the history behind Enoch because I really haven't read much about him before. I also started to think about how old people got back then and how this was even possible.
I loved the chapter about Esther, it brought a different side to the story I hadn't thought about before.
James, the brother of Jesus, was a chapter I enjoyed a lot as well, thinking back to when Jesus was a little boy and what that must have been like.

The other chapters in the book are good but are a brief overview of those people and their lives. I would have liked to read more about the history behind the times and the people than was written. Granted the author is fitting twelve people's lives into one book. It makes me want to read a book about just one of the people for a more in depth understanding.

Overall this is a great read and I enjoyed reading it!

"I received this book for free from Thomas Nelson Publishing through their Booksneeze program. This is my honest opinion of the book."
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By ReformedGirls on March 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover
A sovereign grace baptist non-denominational pastor, John MacArthur, spends a lot of time delving into indepth profiles of 12 biblical characters in this book. He expounds on each character, dedicating one full chapter for each biography: Enoch, Joseph, Miriam (sister of Moses), Gideon and Samson, Jonathan (King Saul's son), Jonah, Esther, John the Baptist, James (Jesus' brother), and Mark and Onesimus. This book serves as expanded biographies on each of these characters and concentrates more on making heroes out of men than on focusing our eyes on the Lord. It would have been most beneficial to have more of a God-related and gospel-related focus.

The book is a long, expanded, drawn out look into biblical characters. The biblical material for some of these characters is quite limited, so the author does not always stay on main character as the topic. For example, Enoch is only mentioned in a couple of bible passages. So, how does MacArthur dedicate an entire chapter (about 10% of the book) to Enoch, when very little is written about Enoch? He fills in the paragraphs with extra material having only a light correlation to Enoch. This extra filler material has little relevance to Enoch. The author spends an entire section telling us that Enoch has a nature like ours. But this is a given, because Enoch was also a man. Every single human being shares a similar "human nature". Why do we need 6 lengthy paragraphs on Enoch being a man like us? This is not relevant material and without all this "filler material" this chapter would be a short page or two. Next, MacArthur launches into the fact that Enoch walked with God. Since this is all the Bible says, MacArthur expands about 30 long paragraphs to tell us what walking with God is about.
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