2018 was a spectacular year for books. My personal reading interests are varied, which include theology, apologetics, biography, history, philosophy, politics, and spy thrillers. My selections focus on books that made a direct impact on my life, sparked additional research, and enriched my pastoral ministry.
# 10 From Death to Life: How Salvation Works – Allen S. Nelson IV
This short book addresses the question, “What is a Christian?” I was struck with the depth and ability of Nelson to crystalize the soteriological framework in a way that is faithful to Scripture and engaging. The author traces the path of salvation from darkness to light and challenges readers to embrace a Reformed understanding of Scripture.
# 9 The Kremlin Conspiracy – Joel Rosenberg
Joel Rosenberg does not disappoint with his newest thriller. The Kremlin Conspiracy is a well-researched political powder keg of a book. Joel Rosenberg writes with a deep understanding of Russian culture and has a good working knowledge of the intelligentsia – both American and Russian.
# 8 Holy Sexuality and the Gospel – Christopher Yuan
Rosaria Butterfield calls Christopher Yuan’s book, Holy Sexuality and the Gospel “the most important humanly composed book about biblical sexuality and godly living for our times.” I predict that this book will be a standard textbook in Bible Colleges and Seminaries for many years to come.
# 7 Three Days in Moscow: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of the Soviet Empire – Brett Baier
The fortieth president of the United States marked our nation and led us through some troubling times. Brett Baier’s excellent work reminds us why Ronald Reagan was one of our most inspiring and effective presidents.
#6 Always in God’s Hands: Day by Day in the Company of Jonathan Edwards – Owen Strachan
The influence of Jonathan Edwards’s writing and ministry has helped shape my worldview and theological framework more than any other. Dr. Strachan’s devotional book, which features the Puritan divine shows why.
#5 Christian Ethics: An Introduction to Biblical Moral Reasoning – Wayne Grudem
Ethics is a topic that Christians tend to avoid. Wayne Grudem illustrates why this should never be the case in his thought-provoking book.
# 4 Reformed Preaching – Joel Beeke
Joel R. Beeke addresses the matter of preaching in his latest volume. Reformed Preaching: Proclaiming God’s Word from the Heart of the Preacher to the Heart of the People underscores the importance of the preaching task and inspires every expositor who is set on obeying the biblical mandate.
# 3 Expository Exultation – John Piper
Expository Exultation, by John Piper should be read by rookie and veteran preachers alike. It should be read and re-read. Every Bible College and Seminary professor should immediately add this work to their list of required reading for preaching courses.
# 2 Suffering – Paul David Tripp
C.S. wrote, “If I knew a way of escape I would crawl through the sewers to escape the pain.” Whether a person agrees with Lewis’s radical conclusion or not is a matter of personal opinion. However, the problem of suffering is a universal dilemma that every person must face. How we respond to suffering reveals the strength of our Christian resolve and character. Paul David Tripp cuts through the fog in his most recent book, Suffering: Gospel Hope When Life Doesn’t Make Sense.
#1 The Preacher’s Catechism – Lewis Allen
The Preacher’s Catechism by Lewis Allen is my number 1 pick for 2018. Here’s why —