There are oodles and oodles of fantastic theological and Christian living books to read. The books on my reading list continue to grow exponentially as each month passes with the release of more and more solid resources for the believer. Even for people who can blow through multiple books in a week, the widespread availability of good books has got to seem overwhelming. So, how does the normal Christian know what to read in order to maximize the time and energy he has to read, especially considering the reality that he’s got a thousand other things he’s juggling at the same time? There are specific books I would recommend to Christians in various seasons and trials of life, but the following is a short list of books that I think every church member should and can read, no matter what his/her educational level, attention span, and time availability (that means each book is relatively short and to-the-point). Each book deals with a topic or topics pertinent to living a well-balanced life for the glory of God.
What is the Gospel? by Greg Gilbert – It’s crucial that we all know the biblical answer to this question not only for the health of our own faith but because there are others in our culture who are tenaciously trying to redefine it.
The Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges – As Bridges says in this book, “Holiness is for everyone” – being a Christian necessitates a pursuit of being morally and spiritually set apart for the honor of our King.
What is a Healthy Church Member? By Thabiti Anyabwile – If a Christian has the opportunity to be a member of a local church, he should be. This book talks about the blessings and responsibilities of a Christian inside the context of a local body of believers.
The Christian Life by Sinclair Ferguson – If you’re a Christian, then you cannot escape theology. The way you live will be determined by what you believe about who God is and what he’s done. This book is an introduction to the doctrines of the Christian Faith.
Living the Cross-Centered Life by C.J. Mahaney – Where the first book on the list defines the Gospel, this book discusses how to live in light of it.