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The Invisible Hand: Do All Things Really Work for Good? (R. C. Sproul Library) Paperback – September 22, 2003

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Not since I read one of Sproul's earlier books, The Holiness of God, has a book simultaneously shaken my soul and comforted it with the presence of God. . . . This is theology at its finest. It is truth for living." --Rob Taylor, Emmaus Journal

"Sproul does his usual workmanlike job of clarifying difficult topics and rendering them comprehensible to the lay reader. . . . The Invisible Hand throws welcome light on a neglected facet of God's action and human experience." --Christian Library Journal

About the Author

R. C. Sproul (Drs, Free University of Amsterdam) is founder and chairman of Ligonier Ministries. He has written more than sixty books, including The Holiness of God, Faith Alone, Scripture Alone, Chosen by God, What Is Reformed Theology?, The Glory of Christ, The Mystery of the Holy Spirit, and Getting the Gospel Right. He is also general editor of The Reformation Study Bible, which has been published with the New King James Version and the English Standard Version. Dr. Sproul was professor of systematic theology and apologetics at Knox Theological Seminary in Fort Lauderdale until 2004 and, before that, taught at Reformed Theological Seminary. He serves as senior minister of preaching and teaching at Saint Andrew's Chapel, Sanford, Florida, and teaches on the national daily radio program Renewing Your Mind.
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Product Details

  • Series: R. C. Sproul Library
  • Paperback: 232 pages
  • Publisher: P & R Publishing; First edition (September 22, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0875527094
  • ISBN-13: 978-0875527093
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #107,677 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dr. R.C. Sproul is founder and chairman of Ligonier Ministries, an international Christian education ministry located near Orlando, Fla. He is also co-pastor of Saint Andrew's Chapel in Sanford, Fla., chancellor of Reformation Bible College, and executive editor of Tabletalk magazine. He can be heard on the radio program Renewing Your Mind, which is broadcast on hundreds of radio outlets in the United States and around the world, and on RefNet 24-hour Christian internet radio. Dr. Sproul has contributed dozens of articles to national evangelical publications, has spoken at conferences, churches, and schools around the world, and has written more than ninety books, including The Holiness of God, Faith Alone, and Everyone's a Theologian. He also serves as general editor of The Reformation Study Bible.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Rob Taylor on March 4, 2001
Format: Hardcover
I've been wanting to review this book for some time now, but my review won't do it justice. Not since I read one of Sproul's earlier books, The Holiness of God, has a book simultaneously shaken my soul and comforted it with the presence of God in this way. This one follows the tradition. Renown for his thought-provoking teachings, Sproul takes the doctrines of God's immanence and providence down from the ivory tower and underscores them in the lives of the biblical characters as well as his own. This is theology at it's finest...truth for living.
Sproul's purpose in writing this book is "to look at the question of providence, not only from a doctrinal viewpoint, but chiefly from an examination of concrete experiences of the flesh-and-blood people whose lives and struggles are recorded for us in sacred Scripture" (2). And this he does par excellence. You can almost feel Abraham's stomach churn as he ponders the immanent sacrifice of his beloved son Isaac, while splitting firewood for the altar early in the morning. You can almost hear the waves of the Nile lapping against the basket of bulrushes which contained the future leader of God's chosen people from slavery to the promised land. You can almost see Joseph's bloodied, mangled, technicolor coat as he wept in the presence of his brothers, compassionately telling them, "you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive" (Gen. 50:20). Our God is not "out there". . . He is right here.
Some of the areas of God's providence that this book touches on deal with God's involvement with His creation through miracles, the display of His glory, evil in the world, prayer, the flow of history and the history of redemption.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 18, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I heard about this book in a sermon when I was visiting my sister's place of fellowship in Houston, Tx. The pastor's sermon was centered around the title of this book. It ministered so deeply to me my in time of hurt and seriously doubting God, that I knew I had to have it. I just finished reading it tonight. Through reading this book, my trust in God has been restored, and my soul has been somehow quieted, knowing that God is at work behind the scene. This book is a must read. Yet, I must caution, it is only for the serious readers. It reveals an aspect of God's character that is only appreciated through active, close fellowship. This book will challange you to move beyond a casual distant relationship with God, and literally woo you into deep personal intimacy with Him. As you seriously consume what is conveyed in this book, it will bring a calmness, a quietness, and a confidence in your soul. For the essence of the message of this book is that "all things work together for the good of those who love God". Therefore, even the bad things are good "ultimately", if not "proximately". This book is not an "easy" read. In some places it is a little belabored theologically, but I believe the author used it to make every effort to get his point across. If your faith is in shambles, and you are doubting God, this book may prove to be a life-line to you. It was to me. Take the time to read it. It's well worth the investment.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 9, 1999
Format: Paperback
It has been said that America has lost her soul. Well this book will help her get it back. RC Sproul does it again as he knows how to take the "cookies" and put them down on the lower shelf within easy grasp. Taking on a difficult, yet vitally important doctrine, the author weaves a tapestry concerning divine providence which is woven together by sound biblical teaching and tender personal insight.The reader will come to understand that nothing happens by chance or coincidence since God is in control of every person and particle in the universe. When questions arise concerning events such as the chaos in Kosovo or the crisis in Columbine, this book which addresses a basic principle concerning the nature of God and His goveranace over humanity will be tremendously helpful. God does indeed control the universe and promises that all things will work together for the good of His people.The basic theistic belief that God foreordains and foreknows whatsoever comes to pass will prove to be challenging, while at the same time, extremely comforting.This tome will prove to be intense enough for the most profound philosopher while simple enough for the average lay person. Whoever chooses to read this book will find that their time has been well spent.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Seeking Disciple VINE VOICE on July 30, 2005
Format: Paperback
Dr. Sproul has written a wonderful book about the absoult sovereignty of God. Like a breath of fresh air, Sproul shows us from Scripture the awesome power of God to accomplish His purposes in the earth. Sproul uses various texts from both the Old and New Testament to reveal the biblical picture of a God who is in control of all things even when it doesn't seem that He is.

I greatly enjoyed how Sproul stayed true to the Bible as his authority. While he does quote from other authors and from the Westminister Confession of Faith, Sproul does not get bogged down in the heated debate between the Calvinist and Arminian over God's sovereignty. He simply shows from Scripture that God is in control. No-one can argue with that.

In the end, I greatly enjoyed this book. While it read like a devotional, the book lifted my faith in the absolute power of God. Romans 8:28 hasn't been more precious since I finished this book. You too will enjoy this book as you study the Scriptures concerning the hand of God's providence in all things. You will pray to your Father knowing that He is sovereign (Matthew 6:8).
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