*Truths We Confess by R. C. Sproul

Truths We Confess is a concise, accessible, and systematic exposition of the Westminster Confession of Faith, perfect for seniors, new graduates, and Sunday school groups.

*Truths We Confess: A Systematic Exposition of the Westminster Confession of Faith (Revised Edition) by R. C. Sproul. Reformation Trust Publishing, 2019. 751 pages.

Reading Level: Teen/Adult, ages 16 and up

Recommended For: Ages 16+, especially in a Bible class setting or for a new graduate

cover of truths we confess

Theology isn’t generally viewed as “light reading.” There’s good reason for that: theology is the study of God, who is “a spirit, infinite, eternal, and unchangeable, in his being, wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness and truth” (Westminster Shorter Catechism question 4, emphasis added). Some people spend their entire lives studying theology. Yet, despite the magnitude of our God, the Bible is remarkably understandable—at least at some level—by most readers, even without seminary training. Theology helps us put words to the big questions in life and connect the dots in Scripture: Who is God? Is there a God? What happens when we die? How did Earth get here? How do we know what is right and wrong?

R. C. Sproul’s exposition of the Westminster Confession of Faith is an excellent resource for those wishing to learn a bit more theology, a bit more about what the Bible teaches. The Westminster standards (including the Confession as well as the Shorter and Larger Catechisms) are decidedly Reformed, but they were also written in a time period in which there were few Protestant denominations. The writers weren’t seeking to defend a Presbyterian church, or a “Reformed” church the way we might think of contemporary denominational differences. Rather, they were seeking to reform the entire, universal church itself even as they sought to understand the Bible more fully.

Truths We Confess is a magnificent resource for contemporary Christians who consider themselves Reformed (in denominational senses), but it is also a good resource for any Christian seeking to understand a key historical document of the church or seeking to learn theology. Sproul is a very accessible theologian; his writing is readily understandable, even to those who don’t have a strong background in theology. As he says in his analysis of Chapter 2 of the Westminster Confession:

The God professed here is neither an abstract, impersonal force nor a philosophical concept, but a personal, living being. He is not imagined or invented but is real, alive, and the source of life itself.

R. C. Sproul, p. 33

This revised volume of Truths We Confess combines two previous volumes into one. It’s a hefty book, but the size is still quite manageable. (It’s thick, but not overly tall/wide.) The 33 chapters work perfectly for the weeks of the school year; it would make a fantastic resource for a Senior/12th grade level Bible class (at home, at a Christian school, or in Sunday school). One chapter a week would enable students to read the volume systematically and discuss it along the way, finishing by the end of the school year. Likewise, Truths We Confess is a terrific option for a graduating senior, particularly one headed to a secular college or university (or out into the workforce) who could benefit from such a meaty resource at his or her disposal.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5

  • Worldview/Moral Rating: 5 out of 5
  • Literary/Artistic Rating: 5 out of 5

Read more about our ratings here.

*This initial review contained a giveaway, and we asked commenters to share another graduation gift (book) idea AND/OR their favorite book by Dr. R. C. Sproul. Feel free to join the conversation below!

We are participants in the Amazon LLC affiliate program; purchases you make through affiliate links like the one below may earn us a commission. Read more here. Please note that Ligonier (home of Reformation Trust publishing) often discounts their materials from the MSRP on amazon; consider shopping directly from them and supporting a Christian publisher!

Buy Truths We Confess directly from Ligonier/Reformation Trust Publishing!

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Betsy Farquhar

Betsy is the Managing Editor at Redeemed Reader. When she reads ahead for you, she uses sticky notes instead of book darts and willfully dog ears pages even in library books. Betsy is a fan of George MacDonald, robust book discussions, and the Oxford comma. She lives with her husband and their three children in the beautiful Southeast.

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  1. Rachel on May 3, 2021 at 10:30 am

    I have just discovered the “Crucial Questions” series by R.C. Sproul. I love how each book/booklet focuses on one question and presents the answers to that single question. Great for those who are searching and trying to learn and understand. I’m ordering a set for the library at our Christian, Classical school to use as a reference material for 10th and 11th graders who are learning and writing about parts of the Christian faith.

  2. Dave Mitchell on May 3, 2021 at 10:42 am

    My favorite book by Dr. Sproul is actually “What is Reformed Theology?” He articulates the 5 points of the Doctrines of Grace in a way that is winsome, clear, and pastoral. It’s a fantastic resource for anyone wanting an approachable introduction to Reformed doctrine.

  3. Joey M Espinosa on May 3, 2021 at 10:43 am

    I remember getting “The Book of Virtues” from my orthodontist when I graduated high school (over 25 years ago). It was a great gift.

    I’ve given copies of “Heading Out on Your Own” (from Art of Manliness blog).

  4. Jennifer Graves on May 3, 2021 at 11:43 am

    I loved Sproul’s picture books for kids and then when they were older, we all read The Holiness of God which is fantastic and foundational. I would love this book for my middle son’s graduation!

  5. Joanna Linberg on May 3, 2021 at 2:40 pm

    I got a few novels when I graduated eons ago, and they’re still on my shelf and I still pull them out to reread them (The Complete Works of Jane Austen most frequently). For that reason, I love the idea of giving a graduate a classic they could grow into. Some of my favorites: East of Eden, A Tale of Two Cities, War & Peace, and anything by Austen, obviously.

  6. Julie on May 3, 2021 at 4:01 pm

    On a fun note, I always love to give Oh the Places You Go by Dr. Seuss. This look a little more helpful & foundational. ?

  7. Kassy on May 3, 2021 at 5:03 pm

    This book looks perfect for my upcoming senior! I think another good one for a graduate is John Piper’s Don’t Waste Your Life.

  8. Megan on May 4, 2021 at 5:12 am

    I like to give pocket books like “A Way to Pray” by Matthew Henry or “Prayers on the Psalms” from the Scottish Psalter of 1595. They are handy little books to carry around!

  9. Gerilyn on May 4, 2021 at 8:50 am

    My favorite is actually one of his children’s books, The Priest with Dirty Clothes, a beautiful illustration in story-form of Christ taking on our sin as we are able to take on his righteousness. Even though they’re older now, my children and I still refer back to this story in our conversations about salvation.

    I’m loving all of the graduation gift ideas! 🙂

  10. Jenni Winstead on May 4, 2021 at 1:23 pm

    I, too, enjoy RC Sproul’s illustrated books. We got them with our last daughter, but she and I have really enjoyed sharing those stories. This new book would be great for my last two kids as they finish their homeschooling years.

    I always appreciate your book gift lists!

  11. Bret on May 4, 2021 at 1:24 pm

    My parents gave me a nice study bible for graduation, and it was very meaningful to me. For a book to give away at graduation, it totally depends on the person, but I might consider a devotional – something like Keller’s “God’s Wisdom for Navigating Life: A Year of Daily Devotions in the Book of Proverbs,” or perhaps D.A. Carson’s “For the Love of God” if something meatier seems in order.

  12. Hailey on May 4, 2021 at 4:10 pm

    The Holiness of God is my favorite R. C. Sproul book!

  13. Jackie Park-Cross on May 6, 2021 at 10:46 am

    One of the first books by Sproul that I ever read was the Essentials of the Christian Faith. I think that it’s a great book and one that everyone should have.

  14. Lisa on May 6, 2021 at 12:47 pm

    One book I plan to buy for a graduating senior is “Wherever You Go I Want You to Know” by Melissa Kruger. A Christian spin on the popular Dr. Seuss book.

  15. Eliza LeBlanc on May 6, 2021 at 1:55 pm

    My favorite book of his is Knowing Scripture!

  16. Sunny on May 6, 2021 at 3:09 pm

    Thanks for the review. His Crucial Questions series is very good!

  17. Andrea D on May 6, 2021 at 3:52 pm

    A book I have seen given (& received) for graduations was Dr. Seuss’s “Oh, The Places You’ll Go,” but one of our favorite gifts is the Platinum Collection from Wild at Heart (formerly known as Ransomed Heart, the ministry of John & Stasi Eldredge). Unfortunately, the collection is no longer available!

  18. Tanya on May 6, 2021 at 6:23 pm

    As a graduation gift, we like to give Just Do Something by Kevin DeYoung.

  19. Ashton on May 6, 2021 at 6:55 pm

    “Keep a Quiet Heart” by Elizabeth Elliot was one of my favorite graduation gifts. It’s full of simple but deep truth and good day to day reminders as you start a new chapter of life.

  20. Virginia Lee Rogers on May 6, 2021 at 7:56 pm

    To be honest I think most graduates like getting money for their graduation gift. ? But if I was to give a book it would probably be Calvin’s Golden Booklet of the True Christian Life. Small and portable, filled with doctrinal truths and encouragement. I may also give Sayer’s Harriet Vane and Lord Peter books. Comfort reads and so fun.

    • Betsy Farquhar on May 6, 2021 at 8:17 pm

      So true! No one turns down money. I do love that Golden Booklet of the True Christian Life. I think we’ve put that on our lists before–if not, it should be on there!

  21. Sandy Pryor on May 6, 2021 at 8:05 pm

    I just finished reading The Holiness of God for the first time with the ladies from our church. Very accessible, like you said, yet full of depth and good things to think through at the end of each chapter. It’s my current favorite of his.

  22. Ruth Oates on May 7, 2021 at 7:17 am

    My favorite R. C. Sproul book is The Holiness of God. I read it a long time ago so maybe it’s time for a reread.

    Like many, I appreciate all the great suggestions for books as graduation gifts. Thank you!

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