I haven’t posted in a while, so I thought I would update a few books I have completed this year. These are all great reads. The first one is not from a christian, but in fact by an atheist that I have previously reviewed. The other three are great reads, mainly historically driven. I beleive they will help you to know the faith you have inherited from a great historical past and will help you faith to proclaim the message with a multitude of people.
Letter to a Christian Nation by Sam Harris
My Response: This is a popular book by a well known atheist. Sam Harris simply lays out all the reasons by he has issue, not with the Christian faith, by with current American Christianity. Simply put, he is facing many false assumptions and misinformed experiences and ideas about Christianity. My response initially to Harris was, “you just need to see the real Christianity,” but then I thought maybe this is our fault. Maybe it is our fault that Same Harris looks at Christianity and comes to his conclusions. That’s what I appreciated about this book. It helped me to look in the mirror and ask myself if I am representing Christ to our culture.
Scandal of the Evangelical Mind by Mark Noll
My Response: One of the key historical books and a must read for all Christians. Want to know why evangelicalism is the was it is? Why our dealings with science, politics, and the seemingly manipulative culture presentations of the gospel exist? Noll’s work is an excellent read.
Retro Christianity by Michael Svigel (One of my favorite professors from DTS)
My Response: Dr. Svigel’s book is a close cousin to Noll’s. The purpose of the book is to deal with a great tension. On the one hand, churches desire to reach back into the past and retain the truth of the historical church. On the other hand, we need to be progressive and interpret the gospel in our present day context. To deny both is to stay stagnate. So, Svigel attempts to breach a proper and biblical way of handling this tension.
Heresy: A History of Defending the Truth by Alister McGrath
My Response: If you have never looked into the heresies of the past, you should. McGrath does a great job of briefly explaining and discussing the heresies of the early church. He also deals with many of the social factors and reasons why heresies arose and their origin. A great read, but if you have never heard of Arius or Marcion, you might get a little lost in the mix, so go slow.