Reading is making a comeback. Numerous bloggers have commented on the collection and reading of books in the past few weeks and I’ve started to compile an ever growing list of these posts for my own future reference.
One of the reasons behind the recent resurgence of bookish discussion by bloggers was the article by Christianity Today on the top 50 books that have influenced evangelicalism. The list is subjective if not downright suspect, but it received a fair amount of attention nonetheless. I knew this was no small subject when the über-Christian blogmaster Tim Challies weighed in with his perspective.
All of that to say, I’ve come up with a list of the 25 books that have influenced me the most. And though the description of my list may sound like any other prejudiced, postmodern perspective, I can assure you that no sympathetic postmodernite would be interested in the meta of these narratives. So while my library list is nothing special, it might be useful to others who need help.
This list was born Saturday on the back of a Burger King bag while riding in a Volkswagen to Pullman for the WSU/Cal game with Jonathan and Curtis. These are either just personal favorites or those with the most influence on the Void. I’m already planing an additional post with a catalog of the 10 books every Christian should own. I also want to point out that the Bible is the default superscript over the whole list. So with those qualifications in place and in particular order:
- The Sovereignty of God A.W. Pink
- The End for Which God Created the World Jonathan Edwards
- Ashamed of the Gospel John MacArthur
- Brothers, We are Not Professionals John Piper
- The Master Plan of Evangelism Robert Coleman
- Exegetical Fallacies D.A. Carson
- The Death of Death in the Death of Christ John Owen
- The Legacy of Sovereign Joy John Piper
- The Religious Affections Jonathan Edwards
- The Five Points of Calvinism: Defined, Defended, and Documented Curtis Steel and Daniel Thomas
- On The Bondage of the Will Martin Luther
- The Institutes of the Christian Religion John Calvin
- Evangelicalism Divided Ian Murray
- The Reformed Pastor Richard Baxter
- The Rise and Fall of the American Teenager Thomas Hine
- Greek Grammar Beyond the Basics Daniel Wallace
- Faith Works (re-titled: The Gospel According to the Apostles) John MacArthur
- No Place for Truth David Wells
- Why One Way John MacArthur
- The Way of the Modern World Craig Gay
- The Forgotten Spurgeon Ian Murray
- A Call to Spiritual Reformation D.A. Carson
- “Rejoicing and Heaviness” Charles Spurgeon (a sermon, not a book, but a must read)
- Our Sufficiency in Christ John MacArthur
- Diagrammatical Analysis Lee Kantenwein
Honorable mentions go to Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God by J.I. Packer, God’s Outlaw by Brian Edwards, Future Men by Doug Wilson, The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis, The Vanishing Conscience by John MacArthur, and Boy, Was I Mad! by Kathryn Hitte.
Dishonorable mentions go to the original Revolve biblezine, Create in Me a Youth Ministry, and all The Prayer of Jabez spin-offs. Other books were generously and purposefully driven from the list and no books in the Left Behind series were harmed in the production of this post.