Christian Books For Summer Reading–Picks By Tim KellerJune 2008
On the Bible:
Craig Blomberg, The Historical Reliability of the Gospels (IVP, 2nd edition, 2008.)
This makes the case that the Biblical account of Jesus is not legend but historically trustworthy. Blomberg incorporates insights from Richard Bauckham’s Jesus and the Eyewitnesses, an important work but much longer and more difficult to read.
On the Cross:
J.I.Packer and Mark Dever, In My Place Condemned He Stood (Crossway, 2007.)
This volume assembles several older essays by J.I . Packer. They are classics and had a profound influence on my understanding of Jesus’ death.
John Stott, The Cross of Christ (IVP, 2006)
This volume along with the Packer book will give you a complete and Biblically rich understanding of the Cross.
On Faith and Culture:
Andy Crouch, Culture-Making: Recovering our Creative Calling (IVP, 2008)
This is coming out during the summer, so order it and read it before Labor Day. It’s one of the best books yet on how Christians can integrate their faith with their work.
Philip Bess, Till We Have Built Jerusalem (ISI Books, 2006.)
This is a fascinating set of essays by a Christian architect laying out a Christian vision for a ‘new urbanism,’ the belief and practice that cities are the best social arrangement for human flourishing. Bess is the Director of Graduate Studies at the Notre Dame School of Architecture. the Resurrection:
N.T.Wright, Surprised by Hope (HarperOne, 2008)
It’s always a little dangerous to recommend a book I haven’t read yet, but I suggest it because it is basically a shorter and more accessible summary of his bigger classic The Resurrection of the Son of God, which is wonderful but very long and academic.
On Church History:
Mark Noll, Turning Points: Decisive Moments in the History of Christianity (Baker, 2001, 2nd ed)
This is maybe the best, short, most accessible overview of Christian history available. It doesn’t try to survey every century, but chooses 10 major turning points (the split between the eastern and western church, the Reformation, the Great Awakening, etc.).
John Newton, The Letters of John Newton or Cardiphonia: The Utterance of the Heart (various ed.)
Either of these editions of John Newton’s letters are classics of spirituality and devotion. He was the former slave trader who was converted and became a minister and who wrote the hymn ‘Amazing Grace.’
C.S.Lewis, Mere Christianity (Harper, 1952)
You may not want to admit (around Redeemer) that you have never read this book—so stop being a hypocrite and read it! And if you have already read it, read one of the other big CSL classics: The Screwtape Letters or The Great Divorce or even The Narnia Chronicles.
For fiction picks by Kathy Keller and family & kid picks by Brent Bounds, check our website: www.redeemer.com
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