Our friend, Travis Allen, recaps that moment:
When John MacArthur said “Amen” at the end of his prayer last Sunday night, he had just finished his exposition of Mark’s Gospel. The evening was the final punctuation on a monumental body of work—the verse-by-verse exposition of the entire New Testament. After praying, John looked up at his congregation, and with a meek grin said, “There we are.” The church erupted in applause and a standing ovation, which he quieted in short order so he could thank everyone for allowing him to minister to them for more than four decades.We gain a better perspective on this achievement in the most recent edition of The Master's Seminary Journal, Spring 2011 (22/1). Presented as a festschrift for Pastor John with articles from a variety of contributors, from Steve Lawson to Al Mohler, one of the most interesting tidbits was offered by Dr. Mayhue's introductory editorial. He outlines a short list of men who have actually preached through the entire New Testament and put their preaching into print:
- 16th - John Calvin
- 17th - Matthew Henry
- 18th - John Gill
- 19th - Alexander MacLaren, Joseph Parker, B.H. Carroll
- 20th-21st - J. Vernon McGee, Warren Wiersbe
In his post, Travis also marked the release of John MacArthur: Servant of the Word and Flock by Iain Murray,
In the book, Murray accurately portrays John MacArthur’s passion for theology, and his courage in proclaiming it publicly. Armed with an insatiable curiosity and a zeal for the glory of Christ, John has read extensively and deeply. What he’s learned has enabled him to lead the charge in some of the most important theological battles of our time. Murray pulls back the curtain on his thinking about doctrinal controversy and personal confrontation, and actually chronicles some of the better-known episodes.If Murray's work is anything like the sketch he provided in the introduction to Truth Endures, this newest biography should prove to be an exceedingly helpful work. We eye the mailbox daily in anticipation of our copy.
In view of this grace-empowered achievement, we hasten to add that Pastor John is far from done. Lord willing, with many more years of preaching ahead, with the continued spreading of his influence globally through alumni of The Master's Seminary (a band of brothers over 1,000 strong!), and with more writing - the completion of MacArthur New Testament Commentary is slated for 2014 and a systematic theology (Christian Doctrine: The Persons, Purposes, and Plans of God) is scheduled for 2013 - there is much yet for him to do.
So, in prayerful anticipation of all that the Lord may yet plan for Pastor John, we give thanks that like the days of Josaiah, "he read in their hearing all the words of the book of the covenant which was found in the house of the Lord" (2 Kgs 23:2).