A son of Pittsburgh, R.C. Sproul spent the early years of his life pursuing sports and the girl he met while in the first grade. He attended Westminster College on an athletic scholarship. And the girl from grade school? R.C. married Vesta in 1960. It’s been R.C. and Vesta ever since. He wrote his college senior philosophy thesis on the topic, “The Existential Implications of Moby Dick.” It would certainly not be the last thing written by R.C. Sproul.
R.C. served at Gordon College in Massachusetts, Conwell Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, and then in a pastorate in Cincinnati. In 1971, R.C., Vesta, and their two children, Sherrie and R.C. Jr. settled in the mountains of Western Pennsylvania to serve at the newly established Ligonier Valley Study Center. R.C. published his first book in 1973, The Symbol, an exposition of the Apostles’ Creed, winning a Christianity Today book award.
R.C. led a team of scholars and churchmen in writing what would come to be one of the most significant documents of the 20th century church, The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy. In 1984, the Sprouls and the Ligonier staff moved to Orlando, Florida. In addition to leading a rapidly growing ministry and delivering lectures for teaching series, R.C. also served as a professor of theology for a Reformed seminary.
The capstone of all of the teaching series was The Holiness of God, published as a book in 1985. In it, R.C. aimed to address humanity’s fundamental problem: we do not know who God is and we do not know who we are. At the core of this book was Isaiah 6, a touchstone text for R.C. Sproul and Ligonier Ministries. In it, we also meet all of R.C.’s favorites from church history: Luther, Edwards, Calvin, and Augustine.
R.C. published Chosen by God in 1986. That book was used by God to call thousands of Christians to a higher view of the sovereignty of God. In 1994, R.C. took a strong stand against Evangelicals and Catholics Together (ECT). That same year, Renewing Your Mind first aired on the radio. Over the coming years, radio broadcasts would reach millions of listeners.
The New Geneva Study Bible, edited by R.C. and released in 1995, introduced the riches of Reformed Christianity through helpful interpretive notes and study aids. In 1997, Saint Andrew’s Chapel was founded. R.C. was a pastor again. A distinctive trait of R.C.’s teaching is his grasp of the flow of ideas. The Consequences of Ideas (2000) offers an insightful tour through the history of philosophy from a Christian perspective.
2006 - Present
As a great-grandfather, R.C. wrote several children’s books. In 2010, R.C. founded Reformation Bible College, giving it the curriculum he wished he had as an undergraduate. In 2015, R.C. collaborated with Jeff Lippencott, producing a full-length CD of hymns, Glory to the Holy One. Today, R.C. lives in Sanford, Florida where he continues to serve Ligonier Ministries and Saint Andrew’s Chapel.