One of the greatest things I learned in seminary was “who to read; and who not to read.” In fact, I would argue that my most important spiritual and academic developments while in seminary came from reading good books. For me it’s in the process of wrestling with an idea, trying to prove a point, attempting to validate what I have always believed, that I find my whole world shaken and my roots grasping tighter in the soil.
I have been out of seminary for almost a year now, but the education has not stopped. The Christian book industry has been a perpetual flood of resources. Not all of them are good. Actually, most of them are not very good. See, once you regain your senses after passing through the “potpourri and decoration section” of the “Christian” bookstore you are left to your own devises to find a good book in a sea of ‘good looking books.’ (Hint: good marketing can’t make the book any better).
So, for all its worth, here is my list of books that I would recommend you read in the coming year. These are a few books that I have read (or that I am currently reading) in 2009. If you have not read them check them out;
In no particular order….
- The Prodigal God – Tim Keller
- Christ and Culture Revisited – D.A. Carson (academic)
- Finally Alive– John Piper
- How People Change – Timothy Lane & Paul Tripp
- Just Do Something– Kevin DeYoung
- The Meaning of the Pentateuch– John Sailhamer (academic)
- Jesus Made in America – Stephen Nichols
- We Become What We Worship – G.K. Beale (academic)
- The Courage to Be Protestant – David Wells (academic)
- Adopted for Life – Russell Moore
Note: Just because I have labeled a book ‘academic’ do not shy away from it. I often find that the deepest stirring of my Christian affections comes about as I work through a hard read.