Thursday, June 7, 2012

Reading List

From time to time I've been asked for a book recommendation. A while back I wrote down a list of recommended reading for a friend, and I thought it might not be a bad idea to post something like that here. This isn't exactly the same list I gave him, but it's very similar.

Please note, just because I recommend a book, that doesn't mean I recommend the book's author, nor the other books that author wrote. I hate to make that disclaimer, but I'm afraid I have to.

So here are some books I highly recommend:

Collected Writings of J. N. Darby, Volume 12 This is a collection of Darby's Gospel messages, and it centers on God's grace. This volume contains "God's Grace and Man's Need," "The Prodigal with the Father," and "Two Warnings and an Example." This is undoubtedly Darby's best work, and probably the best Christian book I've ever read. I recommend this book unconditionally to anyone.

Sit, Walk, Stand by Watchman Nee. This book is very close to my heart, reading this book was a life-changing moment for me. It was also the time I had to learn that just because something spoke to me, it doesn't mean it'll speak to everyone. At any rate, this book is short and easy to read, but very powerful. It's a brief overview of the principles of the Christian life based on Ephesians. I can't recommend this book highly enough. You can find it on Amazon.

Discipline in the School of God by J. B. Stoney. This is Volume 13 of Ministry by J. B. Stoney, New Series. Not the easiest book to find (I recommend trying the Dover Bible Fund), but well worth the effort to find it. This is probably Stoney's most famous work, originally published as a series of articles in Bible Treasury. Stoney examines the lives of Biblical characters from Adam to Abel, to Noah, to Paul. He looks at God's dealings with each of them. This book is wonderful, but it's humbling and cuts straight to the conscience. I've bought this one several times, it's one of those books you buy just to give away.

Romans Verse by Verse by William R. Newell. I've talked about this one before. Buy it now. You can find it on Amazon.

Lectures on the Church of God by William Kelly. This is hands-down the best thing I've ever read on the Church. William Kelly is a stellar expositor. I prefer Darby's writings to Kelly's, but I don't think there's any question that Kelly was the more careful expositor. This books is very easy to read, and not terribly long; but it's thorough and careful. I need to read it again.

The Church and it's Order According to Scripture by Samuel Ridout. If it weren't for Kelly's book, this would be the best I've read on the Church. If you only have one book on the Church, it should be Kelly's; but this should be the second.

Law and Grace by Alva J. McClain. This is another I've talked about before. I am convinced the whole topic of Law and Grace is of the first importance in the Christian life. This book is not the most complete, but it's dead-on. Short, readable, and straight to the point, this is a great book, and worth running out to get. You can find it on Amazon.

The Coming Prince by Sir Robert Anderson. I have to admit I'm not done this one yet, but I'll go out on a limb and recommend it anyway. This book is stunning for it's careful and painstakingly thorough exposition of Scripture. It's a study of Daniel's 70 weeks. You can find it on Amazon.

The Believer Established by C. A. Coates. This is an introduction to the Christian life for new believers. It's really worth a read, although the last chapter is a little legalistic. This is another one you'll be able to find at the Dover Bible Fund.

Collected Writings of J. N. Darby, Volume 10. This volume is all about the Law, and it's incredible. Well worth reading. You can read this one online at STEM Publishing. It's Darby, so it's not the easiest read in the world, but it's really worth the time and effort it takes.

I've a lot more books that are worth reading, but this is a solid core. Maybe we'll get more recommendations in the comments.


Shan said...

Mark, just a quick question: a blogger friend recently noted this:

"The holiness of God, or holy, or sanctification, or any word in that family, is not mentioned in the Bible between the 7th day of creation (Genesis 2:3) and Moses (Exodus 3:5). That's quite a gap! It seems like the topic should have come up with Abraham. Or Isaac. Or Jacob. If it did, it didn't make it into the Biblical record."

Any thoughts on why that might be?

Chuck Hicks said...

Delighted to see Sir Robert's book on your list. One of my favorites. And JBS's Discipline is indispensible.