Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Christian Books

I think it's a good job that God decided what was going to be in the Bible. I think otherwise a lot of things would have been different. I, for one, know how John 3:16 would have turned out:
For God so loved the world that he gave us lots of books to read, and by reading them we may be saved and have eternal life.
Quite often I'll be told about a book that I must absolutely, unequivocally read. It's as if by reading them we are suddenly going to discover the secret of grace. Or that this book holds the key to redemption. Okay, I think that last link was to a DVD, but same difference. And, I know, I know. Don't judge a book by it's cover.

Don't get me wrong, I think books can be fantastic for learning more about God, or for reminding us of the basics. Christianity is never a passive faith, you have to go out there and learn and discover. But we must remember, it is the Holy Spirit who instructs and reveals. Not IVP. Also, books should never be read instead of the Bible.

Perhaps this is just my way of rationalising why I've never really finished a Christian book. I probably should read more. But God loves me just the same whether I've read John Bunyan, Oswald Chambers and Billy Graham's autobiography as when I haven't.

  1. What was the last Christian book you've read? What did you like/dislike about it?
  2. What is your favourite Christian book?
  3. Which Christian figures have really inspired/challenged you?


  1. 1. Going on the assumption you mean Christian Non-fiction... wow, it's been a while. Purity Makes the Heart Grow Stronger by Julia Duin. I liked that a lot of what she talked about was similar to my own life experience, and I liked what she said about finding a roomate.

    I disliked that the chapters didn't really flow together, and also that all the statistics were outdated, since it was written in the 1980's.

    2. Eep, so many good ones to choose from. Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis is probably the one I've read the most times, so I'll go with that one.

    3. C.S. Lewis, most definitely. Jared Wilson, Michael Spencer, Jon Acuff, Curtis Hunicutt. N.T. Wright, Tim Keller.

  2. I know this is -your- profile etc. and really you could write whatever you like on it. However personally I buck to see you write that it's a good job God decided the contents of the Bible. I mean using the same logic (extended, obviously) why don't you say it's a good idea God decided the contents of the Qu'ran or indeed the Sybilline books of the Roman pantheon, for example. I can anticipate an answer, but it's notoriously cyclical - revelation/the bible informs you that your God wrote only SUCH AND SUCH a text.
    More analytically of the Christian holy book, though - can you accept that God really had a personal hand in the construction of the Bible (through other people etc., or indeed 'personally'?)? Doesn't this grossly overlook the ethnogenetic/political/religious concerns and motivations of the authors that arguably constructed a manifesto, a panegyric if you will, for a 'people'? I wonder.

  3. If my mum wrote a book I would be able to tell that she had written it because I'm close to her, same goes for God and the Bible really.

    Anyway was just going to say that apparently the Chinese church wasn't divided when they only had the Bible and it was the introduction of other books with their varying ideas and viewpoints that split the church. Still there are so many xtian books I really want to read, well a few at least, like 'the end of religion'.

  4. The bible somehow serves as a handbook for us to follow and ponder on.


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