This theological classic, first published in 1919, was notorious for its independent take on the Bible. In it, Arthur Pink fiercely defends the sovereignty of God against the apparent threat of the Devil. His doctrinal belief is that that God both elects and reprobates, as Romans 9:21-23 clearly teaches. "Fear not!" he admonishes. "All things are moving in accord with His eternal purpose, and therefore, all things are working together for the good of them that love God." With admirable facility and clear, simple language, Pink uses the Scriptures to answer a host of questions that may have remained unresolved in the minds of many Christians. The result is an important guide post for the recently converted as well as a strong defense against the free will of man.
The theology is advanced and wonderfully presented, but it is far from dry, mainly because of Pink's enthusiasm. This may not be good for new Christians who are still on the milk of the Word, but it is something to strive for as we move forward in our understanding in the God's glory of awesome power.
Pink (1886-1952) was a Christian evangelist and Biblical scholar known for his staunchly Calvinist and Puritan-like teachings. Most of Pink's writings made available to the public at Pink's Archive site. When he wrote this book, Pink was clearly concerned about the elevation of man and his abilities at the expense of the sovereignty of God throughout Christendom. He understood that presenting a high Calvinist view of God's sovereignty would not win any popularity contests, and he was certainly right about this.
I found this book to be the best systematic treatment of establishing the sovereignty of god in all things that I have yet read. One of the joyous facts of all of Pink’s works is his use of scripture to explain, prove and sustain his statements. He relies more on Scripture even though he quotes throughout the book the giants of the Christian faith in the words of Calvin, Luther, Edwards, Spurgeon and Augustine.
I also felt that Pink's discourse on human responsibility and accountability for his actions was utterly outstanding. The reconciliation of human responsibility or 'free-will' in light of God's sovereignty has been a central issue in Christianity throughout its history. I felt that Pink's attempt at reconciling the difficulty is a very significant achievement that moves the discussion in a very positive direction. Throughout his discourse, Pink's Biblical exegesis is thorough and often compelling.
Realizing the sovereignty of our God will accomplish peace in the hearts of His people like nothing else can bring. Knowing that God is sovereign will allow the Christian to truly walk by faith - Biblical faith in a God who loves him and sovereignly works all things according to His good pleasure
Pink has this to say about the importance of this Biblical truth on p.19 "It is... the key to history, the interpreter of providence...and the foundation of Christian theology, p.215...it is designed as the sheet anchor for our souls amid the storms of life.
Though there are many good things in this book, it is not the complete picture of God. This focus on God’ Sovereignty, though wonderful and necessary a subject for meditation, can also lead into many dangerous and off balanced positions. Read discerningly and search the scriptures.
I was originally warned that reading this could possibly lead to being a "cage-stage Calvinist". While I didn't experience that, I could see that type of response come from others who had not been taught such things before.
Pink is an amazing author and builds his arguments well and uses a good number of Scripture to back up his statements (another rarity from today's Christian literature). I thought maybe Pink might cover a topic too much or not enough but he maintains a balance of covering topic well enough but doesn't stay on them to beat the topic to death. He deals with God's sovereignty in a number of areas after he defines what sovereignty is. God is sovereign in creation, administration, salvation, reprobation, and operation. He covers the place for the human will and human responsibility (and prayer) in relation to God's sovereignty. He covers how we should look at the doctrine and the value in it. He even covers some objections, difficulties, and seemingly opposed Scripture. While there were a few verses I would have liked him to go over, I'm sure he didn't mean to write exhaustively on all the opposition verses.
Pink hits you right out of the gate by defending the argument that there is a place for Satan in God's sovereignty and that the devil is God's devil. His coverage of reprobation including double predestination was very surprising and very well thought out. The biggest take away and the biggest piece of advice when starting to read this would be that the thinking should be the biblical truth that God is the Creator and man in the creature. Pink will continue to slap down any attempt to let the argument begin with "ya, but man can...". He does so on purpose as this is his main argument. God is sovereign and free; man is confined and limited.
This book cannot be a read once and done type. This will be a reference and a future read again. I hope young adults will even be given this book as it will help put a lot of things into perspective that many churches and many Christians do not teach or learn. If you have had questions about the scope of God's sovereignty or man's supposed free will, and you take the time to actually look into the subject more than just a Wikipedia article - this book is going to cover pretty much any of your questions. Take your time with it and you'll be blessed with Pink's amazing writing and organization and collection of biblical truth. Final Grade - A