Monday, February 20, 2012

Constructing a Booklist

I'm building a book list of short but informative and interesting books to give away to my congregation. There are plenty of longer tomes, but I'd like something short and sharp without being superficial. In a way this list represents my worldview because I only want to recommend books I'm confident in and I feel represent my worldview.

These are the topics I have books for so far ...

These are the topics I don't have books for ...

  • Discipleship (gentle spurring-on)
  • Doctrines of Grace
  • Cosmology
  • Homosexuality
  • Gender
  • Judgement
  • Justification
  • Sanctification
  • Sin (A summary)

Books I've heard might be useful and may find their way onto the list ...

Are there any topics I've missed, books I should find a topic for, books that I should replace or books that need to be added?


John Dekker said...

Does John Piper's Don't Waste Your Life count as gentle spurring on? It's very good.

There are lots of other topics: the cross, the future, marriage, history, the character of God, suffering, work, friendship, the Trinity, hospitality, how to read the Bible.

Steve Isham said...

What a useful list! There are a few on there I have not read .... and would definitely like to be able to reach for.
Will you have a box of copies at church that people can borrow?

Randle Bond said...

to name a few that I regularly recommend...
C.J. Mahaney - Cross Centered Life, Humility.
Keller - Reason for God, Prodigal God, Marriage...
Vaughn Roberts - God's Big Picture (bible overview)
instead of Challies Sexual Detox - Tim Chester - Captured by a better vision
Tim Chester - You Can Change
Ed Welch, Paul Tripp and Timothy Lane on topics such as growth in the Gospel, fear, worry, depression...etc
Mark Sayers - The Vertical Self
Craig Groeschel - Love, Sex and Happily Ever After

Radagast said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Radagast said...

I need to read some of these...

And what's a good book on prayer?

Nathan said...

Other key topics would be:
- mission (perhaps Piper's 'Let the Nations be Glad)
- other religions (Dickson's 'Spectators Guide to World Religions')
- evangelism (Dickson's 'Promoting the Gospel')
- social justice (Keller's 'Generous Justice')

Alex Smith said...

I wouldn't recommend Defending the Faith by Richard Abanes, at least based on his chapter on Universalism. Don't you remember I went through that chapter, sentence by sentence, pointing out to you it's flaws?

Also I'm surprised you chose "The Great Divorce"? Whilst I think Arminian soft-annihilationism, with partial post-mortem salvation, is slightly easier to swallow than 5 point Calvinism, I didn't think that was your position?

Alex Smith said...

Maybe Perspectives on Election would be a helpful one?

PB said...

Great list, Luke. I'm keen to read all those I haven't yet.

Heaven and Hell — Bold move choosing Lewis. I love the book, but aren't you concerned that it fringes a bit on orthodoxy — e.g., it could easily be used as a defence for not very Biblical perspectives on Heaven + Hell, incl. purgatory.

General — For all it's faults, I recommend G.K.'s Orthodoxy highly, esp. for anyone with a slightly artistic bent. C.S.'s M.C. gives solid foundation for the question 'Why be a Christian?', but G.K.'s Orthodoxy goes a league further. It fills you with wonder and excitement at the joy of being allowed to join in the adventure of following God and serving Christ.

Also, to add poetry to the list, you should liberally give away T.S. Eliot's Four Quartets.

Luke Isham said...

Thanks for the suggestions everyone, both of the topics and books.

Regarding The Great Divorce: I'd recommend that people don't skip the Preface where Lewis himself writes in his very own hand: "I beg readers to remember that this is a fantasy. It has of course - or I intended it to have - a moral. But the transmortal conditions are solely an imaginative supposal: they are not even a guess or s speculation at what may actually await us."

I want people to fear the horror of hell and eagerly anticipate the glory of heaven. It also contains that important idea of Lewis' that everyone is on a trajectory. Like with most of the books on this list I'd make a comment or two about it when I pass it on and chat about it afterwards.