5 (Other) Books I'm Looking Forward To

At T4G last week, I was actually restrained in the zero dollar bookstore. Yes, even in the bookstore where every book was free, I didn’t “buy” everything, because for the time being I’m seeking to reduce input in order to increase output (a strategy I’m testing — it’s not always good, but I’m trying to let my mind catch up with a bunch of reading from the last few years).

But then a few days later I checked out the bookstore at Southern Seminary and saw some amazing new (and old) books. Between T4G and my trip to Souther, I narrowed it down to about five that I’m most looking forward to read right now.

These aren’t necessarily the best books out of all those I encountered. But they are those that are most strategic for some things I’m thinking through, especially the strategy of global missions (which I think needs to be improved).

Here are the top five:

1. Theology and Practice of Mission: God, the Church, and the Nations, edited by Bruce Riley Ashford

I don’t even know who Bruce Ashford is, but what I’ve dipped into has been helpful and it has endorsements by Al Mohler, Chris Wright, Ed Stetzer, and Russ Moore. What grabbed me is the topic: the theology and practice of mission. I think we need to do much better with this, and so I’m looking forward to this book.

2. Reading Scripture with the Reformers by Timothy George

I love the Reformers, and Timothy George’s Theology of the Reformersis excellent.

3. Who Am I?: Identity in Christ by Jerry Bridges

This is Jerry Bridges’ latest book, published with Cruciform Press and very short — it can be read in about an hour or less. Jerry Bridges is one of the best gospel-centered thinkers out there and what he writes is always worth reading.

4. Am I Called?: The Summons to Pastoral Ministry by Dave Harvey

Dave Harvey’s new book. Looks fantastic. The table of contents is already helpful. Note part two, diagnosing the call:

  • Are you godly?
  • How’s your home
  • Can you preach?
  • Can you shepherd?
  • Do you love the lost?
  • Who agrees?

Already, you start to get a good feel of how to discern whether you are called to the pastorate.

5. Challenging Church, by Mark Dever

This looks good because it’s on 1 Corinthians 1-9 and it’s by Mark Dever. The table of contents gives a good summary of the first 9 chapters of 1 Corinthians:

  • Count your blessings (1 Corinthians 1:1-9)
  • Unite in “foolishness” (1 Corinthians 1:10 – 2:16)
  • Unite as God’s community (1 Corinthians 3)
  • Recognize Real Ministers (1 Corinthians 4)
  • Don’t go soft on sin (1 Corinthians 5-6)
  • Let your calling count (1 Corinthians 7)
  • Use your rights (1 Corinthians 8-9)

Challies’ site is down at my time of writing this for some reason, but I think he recently posted a review which would be worth checking out.

  • http://staffaction.blogspot.com staffaction

    I totally hear you, Matt. I mean, It will probably take years before I’m through all 19 of those books. Not because I’m a slower reader but there’s other stuff to read. And I’m trying to make a much more concerted effort to process well and deeply my inputs.

    Thanks for mentioning book #1

  • Jonathan

    Ashford is dean of the College at Southeastern Seminary and I had him as a professor. He blogs at http://betweenthetimes.com/ I just picked up his book, but haven’t read it yet. Thanks for the list.