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The History of Providence: As Manifested in Scripture (Carson)

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Alexander Carson lived in an age that was turning away from the revelation of God in Scripture. The dominant philosophy of the times sought to replace the knowledge of the personal, sovereign and provident God of Scripture with a ‘more intelligent belief’ in the impersonal laws of nature (which are, of course, nothing but the physical laws by which God usually conducts his government of the world). If God exists – and that was a big ‘if’ – then he is a God who is far removed from the events of every-day life.

But truth and Scripture teach that all physical laws have their effect from the immediate agency of God’s almighty power. In his works of providence God preserves and governs all his creatures and all their actions.

‘In him we live, and move, and have our being’ (Acts 17:28). Although Christians recognize this doctrine of Providence, they tend to overlook it in practice. In so doing they lose, in a great measure, that advantage which a constant and deep impression of this truth is calculated to give. In this book, Alexander Carson takes the reader through the Scriptures and points to instances of God’s providence that will provide comfort for all true believers.

Table of Contents:

1 Abraham driven by famine into Egypt 1
2 Abraham’s victory over Chedorlaomer 5
3 Providence manifested in the fulfilment of prophecy Every step in the accomplishment of the prediction, with respect to the condition of the Israelites in Egypt, was conducted by the hand of an overruling Providence 6
4 Abraham sitting in the door of his tent 9
5 Providential restraints from evil 11
6 The ram caught by the horns in the thicket 12
7 Expulsion of Hagar from the house of Abraham 14
8 Isaac mocked by Ishmael 16
9 The Providence of God prospering the affairs of Abraham 17
10 Abraham informed about the family of his brother Nahor 18
11 Abraham’s purchase of the cave of Machpelah for a burying-ground 19
12 Success of Abraham’s servant in seeking a wife for his master’s son 21
13 The arrival of Rebekah at the time when Isaac was engaged in communion with God by meditation and prayer 25
14 The fulfilment of the promise of God to Abraham with respect to Ishmael 26
15 Jacob’s purchase of the birthright 27
16 The annoyances of the man of God by the world, under the control of Providence 30
17 Transference of the blessing of Jacob 31
18 Jacob’s immediate meeting with Rachel on his approach to Haran 37
19 Jacob’s prosperity in the service of Laban 39
20 Jacob’s return to Canaan 40
21 Jacob’s meeting his brother Esau on his return from Syria 42
22 Cruelty of the sons of Jacob to the Shechemites 45
23 Jacob’s escape from the vengeance of the Canaanites, on the murder of the Shechemites by his sons 47
24 Reuben’s sin 49
25 The removal of Esau to Mount Seir 50
26 Judah’s secret sin manifested by Providence 51
27 The history of Joseph 52
28 Prosperity of Joseph in bondage 56
29 Joseph’s beauty 59
30 Character of Joseph taken away by false accusation 60
31 Circumstances may be misinterpreted, as well as facts may be forged 61
32 Imprisonment of the chief butler and chief baker 62
33 The chief butler remembered not Joseph 63
34 The same action ascribed to God in one sense, while in another it is the act of man 64
35 The policy of the king of Egypt to retain the children of Israel, the means of his losing them 65
36 Moses raised up by Providence as a deliverer to Israel 67
37 Plagues of Egypt 69
38 Qualification of Bezaleel and Aholiab for making the tabernacle 70
39 Readiness of the people to contribute for the making of the tabernacle 71
40 Request of the Israelites that Moses should receive for them the law from God 73
41 The hiding of the Israelitish spies by Rahab 74
42 The punishment of Adoni-Bezek 77
43 The Kenites inhabit Canaan with Israel 78
44 The Israelites commanded to extirpate the Canaanites, yet some of them providentially preserved to prove Israel 79
45 The Midianites providentially invade and waste Israel on account of their sins 80
46 The dream of the Midianitish soldier 81
47 Jephthah’s vow 82
48 Samson married to a Philistine 83
49 Awful wickedness of the Benjamites 84
50 The history of Ruth 85
51 The people of Israel ask a king 86
52 Loss of the asses of Kish 87
53 Samuel’s delay in coming to Saul at Gilgal 88
54 David, as a type of Christ, brought by Providence into the field against Goliath 90
55 David’s preservation from Saul 91
56 Doeg present when David came to Ahimelech 92
57 David put in possession of the kingdom 93
58 Ill-treatment of the messengers of David by Hanun, king of the Ammonites 94
59 David’s scheme to hide his crime with respect to Bathsheba providentially defeated 95
60 Punishment of David’s crime with respect to Uriah providentially executed 97
61 Ahithophel’s prudent advice providentially rejected by Absalom 98
62 Solomon’s decision with respect to the mother of the child 99
63 Rehoboam’s rejection of the old men’s counsel 100
64 The land of the Shunammite providentially restored 101
65 Jezebel eaten by dogs 103
66 Providential preservation of Jehoash 104
67 Captivity of Israel effected providentially 105
68 The book of the law found in the temple in the time of Josiah 106
69 Captivity of Judah 106
70 Glory and wealth of the kingdom of Israel in the time of Solomon 107
71 Disasters and miserable death of Jehoram 108
72 Wicked people—oppressive rulers 109
73 A way of return providentially opened to the Jews on the overthrow of the Babylonish empire by Cyrus 110
74 Obstacles in the way of the Jews, in building the temple, on their return to Jerusalem, providentially thrown in their way and removed 113
75 Book of Esther 114