Bible Books

Favorite Reads and Resources of 2017

December 27, 2017, 0 Comments

It was an unusual year in reading for me. I completed a good amount of writing so much of my reading was tied to study materials or simply leisure reading. The fiction I read was just for fun or unwinding (mostly spy stories or sci-fi novels). I did, however, encounter some wonderful books and resources. Here are a few of my favorites for 2017.

A Reader’s Guide to the Major Writings of Jonathan Edwards edited by Nathan Finn and Jeremy Kimble. The impact of Jonathan Edwards’ ministry cannot be overestimated. Finn and Kimble assembled a dynamic group of guides to help us get to the heart of the continent’s most influential theologian. It will become an essential part of studying Edwards.

Unimaginable by Jeremiah Johnston. My friend Jeremiah simply wanted to answer the question, “What would the world be like if Christianity did not exist?” It is a book that will encourage believers to be faithful and guide skeptics in answering their questions.

The Practice of Prayer by G. Campbell Morgan. I would like to read every word that was ever written or spoken by Morgan. His messages and writing lead me to be a more faithful believer. In this small volume on prayer, you will find yourself drawn to a deeper level of faith in what God does in our lives.

Sharing Jesus {without freaking out} by Alvin Reid. Written with the normal church member in mind, this is an exceedingly helpful book. If you need personal encouragement, a resource for a group study, or, as a pastor, want to teach evangelism to the whole church – start with this book.

1,000 Churches: How Past Movements Did It—and How Your Church Can, Too by Ed Stetzer and Daniel Im. In a brief 42 pages, Ed and Daniel lay out a sketch of how mass church planting can happen. It is just a skeleton plan but it is one that will inspire you to think in terms of mass mission rather than minimal ministry.

1 & 2 Timothy and Titus, Christ-Centered Exposition series by David Platt, Daniel Akin, and Tony Merida. I preached through 1 Timothy this year and loved this short commentary. It is an engaging resource where David, Danny, and Tony offer a powerful challenge to faithfulness in Christ’s mission.

1 Timothy (Reformed Expository Commentary) by Philip Graham Ryken. Of the resources I used for my 1 Timothy series, this was consistently the most helpful. Though I don’t agree on the nuances of soteriology with Ryken, His exposition of this epistle was outstanding. It was my favorite resource while studying this year.

The Letters to the Seven Church of Asia in Their Local Setting by Colin J. Hemer. For a writing project, I constructed expository notes on the seven letters to the churches in Revelation 2-3. Hemer’s work was indispensible in understanding the historical context and much of the word play involved in these letters.

The Disciple’s Bible. I recommend all-things CSB as a Bible translation. I read, study, and teach from this translation. This Bible uses the Foundations 260 Reading Plan and H.E.A.R. Journaling pages both created by Robby Gallaty. In 2018, I’ll be using this as my go-to resource for personal devotions and a men’s group.

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