The bottom line: Strong Biblical advice on how to reach authentic spiritual maturity.
Sanctification refers to being made or becoming holy. God is perfect and holy, and experience tells us that people are imperfect and far from holy. Sanctification, then, is the process by which flawed believers can please a flawless God by seeking uprightness and growing in their relationship with Him.
This book explains what sanctification is, how it works, and how sanctification plays out in everyday life. Above anything else, what Pleasing God reveals is that sanctification is a process and not an event, and thus characterized by steady, incremental progress and not abrupt, miraculous changes.
Generally speaking, Pleasing God devotes a bulk of its pages on those negative influences that discourage the believer in the sanctification process. The book begins (“Tender Grace”) by explaining that the start of a Christian’s life begins by an act of grace from God through the regeneration of the Holy Spirit. Regeneration is a one-time, immediate, irreversible event, and the subsequent sanctification is stepwise. Sproul next highlights the goal of Christian living (to seek the kingdom and righteousness) and then details the path one takes to reach that destination. “The Battle with the World,” “The Battle with the Flesh,” and “The Battle with the Devil” all speak about the stumbling blocks that exist to deter and frustrate the Christian. Here, strategies are also described on how to overcome these stumbling blocks. Pleasing God then discusses the detrimental effects of fear and guilt, and how they find ultimate resolution in the forgiveness of God. Chapters 10 through 13 discuss the fallacy of the “carnal Christian” and how the sins of pride, slothfulness and dishonesty can delude believers in living fraudulent, disobedient lives. The book ends (“Never Give Up”) with words of encouragement knowing the battle ahead will be long and challenging.
As with anything else written by Dr. R.C. Sproul, this book offers Biblically sound, clear and precise explanations using plain language and relatable terms.
If you would like to read a blueprint of God’s plan for spiritual maturity for your life, then you will likely find much value in Pleasing God.
This practical book illuminates how lasting, authentic, Christ-centered change is accessible to everyone.