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Grace Unlmown: The Heart dignity is not inherent. It does explains their meaning.

The
of Reformed Theology by R. C. not exist in and of itself. Ours is book is accompanied with a
Sproul. Baker Books, P.O. Box a derived, dependent, and variety of charts and diagrams
6287, Grand Rapids, Ml received dignity. In and of that aid the reader in his
49516-6287; 232 pp. hbk. ourselves we are of the dust. understallding of the author's
1996, $16.99. But God has assigned a
thesis.
What is reformed theology?
remarkable value and worth to
The reader should note the
The author answers this
us as his creatures made in his
book's subtitle. Sproul
question by pcinting the reader
image. He is the source of our
concentrates on refonned
to God. Only by understanding
life and our very being" (p. 25).
theology as it relates to
God can one begin to have an This is seen in God's plan of
salvation. His purpose does not
understanding of reformed salvation. Although man is not
include the outworking of that
theology. as bad as he could be, he is
theology into cultural issues.
In successive chapters,
sinful throughout his being -
This volume provides. a wealth
Sproul, using the inspired
of basic theology
Scripture as his basis, lays
communicated in a
before the reader in clear, readable style. It isl,lse/i,J1
succinct terms, the for those who desire to be
character of God, the refreshed in a knowledge
depravity of man, and the of God's work on behalf of
unsurpassed grace of God sinners. It is also a useful
that is operative in the
"dead in sin" (Ephesians 2:1).
tool to give to those who
elect. His discussion at each are struggling with the.
point is couched in context of
Yet God, out oflove, chose a
doctrines of grace. Q
history. This allows the reader
great multitude of sinners
to see how threats to biblical
(Revelation 7 :9) to be saved.
For God and the King by
truth have been handled in past
For these Christ died. The
Marjorie Bowen. Inheritance
I'
generations and that God has
Spirit's work in their life is
Publications, Box 154
preserved His truth in the face
irresistible. Having brought His
Neerlandia, Alberta, Canada
,
elect savingly to Himself, He
TOGIRO, telephone and fax:
I
of these attacks.
I
One might think, with its
keeps them by His power. In
(403) 674-3949, 1995, 350pp.,
teaching of man being
Him they persevere even
pb.
I
conceived in sin, that reformed
through death.
In this the final volume in
theology has a low view of man.
The basic teaching of
her enlightening, informative
Sproul rightly points out that
salvation warms the heart of the
and entertaining trilogy on
just the opposite is the case.
Christian. The reader has the
William and Mary, the al,ltll0r
Reformed theology maintains a
opportunity torefiect on God's
acquaints the reader. with the
high view of the wortll and
great grace as he contemplates
great debt the West owes this
dignity of human beings. It
Sproul's writing. Those not
Calvinist for his faithful stand
differs radically at this point
reformed can expect a clear
for Protestantism.
from all forms of humanism in exposition of biblical salvation Bowen begins this volume
that humanism assigns an
communicated in an interesting with Catholic James II's fear
intrinsic dignity to man, while style that is particularly that his nephew (and also his
Reformed theology sees the beneficial to laity. Sproul does son-in-law) William is planning
dignity of man as being not assume his readers know an attack on England.
extrinsic. That is to say, man's theological terms. Thus, he Persecuted Protestants are
October/November, 1997 THE COUNSEL of Chalcedon 31
fleeing England for the safe
haven Holland offers. William
has spent his adult life fighting
for and maintaining Holland's
freedom from Catholic rule so
desired by France. It is a great
disappointment to him to see
England's continued anti-
Protestant disposition. Letters
written by leading English lords
are secretly delivered to the
King. They promise their
support if he will invade
England and overthrow James
II.
In light of tins, numerous
questions confront the reader.
Where will Mary place her
support if her husband invades
her father's territory? Once
France learns of the invasion,
what will prevent them from
invading defenseless Holland?
How will the English receive
the enthronement of a foreigner
to the throne? In the midst of
the King's long absences
necessitated by attending to
military affairs in Ireland, will
Mary be sufficiently strong-
willed to face the internal
political pressures and external
military crises that await her as
Queen of England? These
questions are readily answered
in this poignant historical
account. Readers will learn
much of political jealousies and
shallowness that ruled that era.
This is contrasted with
William's and Mary's deep love
for one another and their focus
as Protestants in doing what
they believe is God's will. Such
labor is not easy. It costs them
long absences from each other,
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the draining of their personal
wealth and much personal
heartache. Their resoluteness is
all the more interesting when
one realizes God has not given
them a child to be heir to the .
throne. Thus they labored not
for themselves but for God.
Bowen describes Mary's
death in a gripping but not a
gruesome manner. Her
approaching death fills William
with great despair. His
wrestling with God's wisdom in
this matter and later, in his
loneliness, his fondness for too
much drink are not glossed
oveF by the author.
This trilogy (I will Maintain
and Defender of the Faith being
the first two volumes) are well
written and provide the reader
with a better understanding of
English and Dutch political and
religious affairs in the late
seventeenth century. Such an
understanding should make us
more appreciative of our
Protestant heritage from which
we continue to benefit.
This being an historical
novel, the author does not
comment on the ethics of
William invading a foreign
country. This is left for the
reader to meditate upon. This
volume should be desired by
those who have read the first
two or by those with a
particular interest in English
history. It would be a good
purchase for church libraries
and for readers desir01JS of
accurate historical fiction.
Numerous pictures ofleading
characters enhance the
narrative. Q
31 THE COUNSEL of Chalcedon OctoberlNovember, 1997