There is no end to the books that one might recommend to those wishing to grow in their understanding of a given subject. For each subject we list only a few helpful titles. More challenging works for those without formal theological training are labeled either I (Intermediate Reading Level) or A (Advanced Reading Level). Works that are highly recommended are identified by an asterisk (*).
Bebbington, David. Baptists through the Centuries. Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2010.
Dockery, David and Timothy George. Theologians of the Baptist Tradition. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Academic, 2001.*
Early, Joseph. Readings in Baptist History: Four Centuries of Selected Documents. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2008.
Nettles, Tom. Why I’m a Baptist. Nashville: Broadman and Holman, 2001.
Norman, R. Stanton. The Baptist Way: Distinctives of a Baptist Church. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2005.
Church History Surveys
Dowley, Timothy, ed. Introduction to the History of Christianity: First Century to the Present Day. Minneapolis: Fortress, 2006.
González, Justo L. The Story of Christianity. 2 Volumes. 2nd ed. New York: HarperCollins, 2010. (A) *
Jones, Timothy P. Church History Made Easy. Torrance, CA: Rose Publishing, 2009.
Shelley, Bruce. Church History in Plain Language. 4th ed. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2012. (I) *
Devotional and Spiritual Growth
Augustine. Confessions. Translated by Henry Chadwick. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009. *
Bonhoeffer, Dietrich. The Cost of Discipleship. Revised and Unabridged. New York, NY: Macmillan, 1972.
Carson, D. A., A Call to Spiritual Reformation: Priorities from Paul and His Prayers. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1992. (I)
_______. For the Love of God. Volume One. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 1998.
_______. For the Love of God. Volume Two. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 1999.
Packer, J. I. Knowing God. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1993.* This is a “must read.”
Ryle, J. C. Holiness. Its Nature, Hindrances, Difficulties, and Roots. Greensboro, NC, 1956.
Stott, John R. W. Basic Christianity. Grand Rapids: InterVarsity, 2007.
Whitney, Donald S. Spiritual Disciplines of the Christian Life. Colorado Springs, CO: Navpress, 1997.*
Ethics (General Works, Works on Selected Topics)
Adams, Jay. Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage in the Bible. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1986.
Blomberg, Craig L. Neither Poverty Nor Riches: A Biblical Theology of Possessions. Downers Grove: IVP, 2000. (I) *
De Young, James B. Homosexuality: Contemporary Claims in Light of the Bible and Other Ancient Literature and Law. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2000. (I)
Feinberg, John and Paul D. Feinberg. Ethics for a Brave New World. 2nd ed. Wheaton: Crossway, 2010. (I)
Frame, John. The Doctrine of the Christian Life. Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R Publishing, 2008. (I)
Geisler, Norman L. Christian Ethics. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1979. (I)
Gorman, Michael J. Abortion and the Early Church: Christian, Jewish, and Pagan Attitudes in the Greco-Roman World. Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock, 1998. *
Keener, Craig S. And Marries Another: Divorce and Remarriage in the Teaching of the New Testament. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1996. (I)
Rae, Scott B. Moral Choices: An Introduction to Christian Ethics. 3rd ed. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2009. *
Via, Dan O. and A. J. Gagnon. Homosexuality and the Bible: Two Views. Minneapolis: Fortress, 2003. (I)
Wright, Christopher J. H. Old Testament Ethics for the People of God. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2004. (I)
Coleman, Robert E. The Master Plan of Evangelism. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1993.
_______. The Master Plan of Discipleship. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1998.
Dever, Mark. The Gospel and Personal Evangelism. Wheaton: Crossway, 2007. *
Green, Michael. Evangelism in the Early Church. Revised ed. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003. (I)*
Harris, Murray J. “Salvation.” In New Dictionary of Biblical Theology. Edited by T. Desmond Alexander and Brian S. Rosner. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2000. (I) *
Jensen, Phillip D. and Tony Payne. Two Ways to Live: Know and Share the Gospel. Kingsford, Australia: Matthias Media, 2003.
Little, Paul. How to Give Away Your Faith. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1966.
Metzger, Will. Tell the Truth: The Whole Gospel to the Whole Person by Whole People. 3rd ed. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2002.
Newman, Randy. Questioning Evangelism. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2004.
Packer, J. I. Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1991.
Reid, Alvin Evangelism Handbook: Biblical, Spiritual, Intentional, Missional. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2009.
Duvall, Scot J. and J. Daniel Hays. Grasping God’s Word. A Hand’s-On Approach to Reading, Interpreting, and Applying the Bible. 3rd ed. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2012. *
_______. Journey Into God’s Word. Your Guide to Understanding and Applying the Bible. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2008.* This is an abridgement of Grasping God’s Word.
Guthrie, George. Read the Bible for Life. Your Guide to Understanding and Living God’s Word. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2011. *
Plummer, Robert. 40 Questions about Interpreting the Bible. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2010. *
Burns, James MacGregor. Leadership. New York, NY: Perennial Publishers, 1978.
Ford, Leighton. Transforming Leadership. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1991.
Gangel, Kenneth O., and Samuel A. Canine. Communication and Conflict Management in Churches and Christian Organizations. Eugene: Wipf and Stock, 2002.
Herrington, Jim, Mike Bonem, and James H. Furr. Leading Congregational Change: A Practical Guide for the Transformational Journey. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2000.
Kouzes, James M., and Barry Z. Posner. The Leadership Challenge. 3rd ed. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2002.
Thrall, Bill, Bruce McNicol, and Ken McElrath. The Ascent of the Leader. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1999.
Marriage and Family (General)
Bromiley, Geoffrey W. God and Marriage. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1980. *
Campbell, Ken M., ed. Marriage and Family in the Biblical World. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2003. (I) *
Hurley, James B. Man and Woman in Biblical Perspective. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1981. *
Köstenberger, Andreas and David Jones. God, Marriage, and Family: Rebuilding the Biblical Foundation. 2nd ed. Crossway: Wheaton, IL, 2010. (I)* This book provides the best general overview of matters tied to marriage and family.
New Testament Surveys
Blomberg, Craig L. From Pentecost to Patmos: An Introduction to Acts through Revelation. Nashville: Broadman and Holman, 2006. (I) *
_______. Jesus and the Gospels: An Introduction and Survey. 2nd ed. Nashville: Broadman and Holman, 2009. (I) *
Carson, D. A. and Douglas Moo. An Introduction to the New Testament. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2005. (A) *
Carson, D. A.; Douglas Moo; and Andrew Naselli. Introducing the New Testament: A Short Guide to Its History and Message. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2010. *
Elwell, W. A. and Robert W. Yarbrough. Encountering the New Testament: A Historical and Theological Survey. 2nd ed. Enountering Biblical Studies. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2005. (I) *
Guthrie, Donald. New Testament Introduction. 4th ed. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 1990. (I)
Köstenberger, Andreas, Charles Quarles, and Scott Kellum. The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown: An Introduction to the New Testament. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Academic, 2009. (I) *
______. The Lion and the Lamb: New Testament Essentials from The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2012.* Abridgement of The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown.
Old Testament Surveys
Arnold, Bill T. and Bryan E. Beyer. Encountering the Old Testament: A Christian Survey. Encountering Biblical Studies. 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2008. (I)*
Hill, Andrew E. and John H. Walton. A Survey of the Old Testament. 3rd ed. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2009. (I)*
LaSor, William S.; David A. Hubbard; and Frederic Bush. Old Testament Survey. The Message, Form, and Background of the Old Testament. 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996. (I)
Longman III, Tremper and Raymond B. Dillard. An Introduction to the Old Testament. 2nd edition. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2006. (I)*
Preaching (History, Preparation, Planning)
Dargan, E. C. A History of Preaching. 2 Volumes. Hodder and Stoughton, 1905-1912. Reprint, New York: Burt Franklin, 1968.*
Edwards, O. C. A History of Preaching. Nashville: Abingdon, 2004. (A)*
Holifield, E. Brooks Holifield, God’s Ambassador’s: A History of the Christian Clergy in America. Grand Rapids:Eerdmans, 2007. (A)*
McDill, Wayne. 12 Essential Skills for Great Preaching. 2nd ed. Nashville, Broadman & Holman, 2006.*
Robinson, Haddon. Biblical Preaching. 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2001.*
Rummage, Stephen N. Planning Your Preaching: A Step-by-Step Guide for Developing a One-Year Preaching Calendar. Grand Rapids: Kregel Academic, 2002.*
Warren Wiersbe, Living with the Giants: The Lives of Great Men of the Faith. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1993.
_______. Walking with the Giants: A Minister’s Guide to Good Reading and Great Preaching. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1976.
Clark, Chap. Hurt 2.0: Inside the World of Today’s Teenagers. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2011.
DeVries, Mark. Family-Based Youth Ministry. Rev. ed. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2004.
Joiner, Reggie. Think Orange: Imagine the Impact When the Church and Family Collide. Colorado Springs: David C. Cook, 2009.
Jones, Timothy Paul. Family Ministry Field Guide: How Your Church Can Equip Parents to Make Disciples. Indianapolis: Wesleyan Publishing House, 2011.
Renfro, Paul, Brandon Shields, and Jay Strother. Perspectives on Family Ministry: 3 Views. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2009.
Robbins, Duffy. This Way to Youth Ministry: An Introduction to the Adventure. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2004.
Senter, Mark, ed. Four Views of Youth Ministry and the Church. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2001.
Smith, Christian and Melinda Lundquist Denton. Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers. New York: Oxford Press, 2005.
Stanley, Andy and Stuart Hall. The Seven Checkpoints: Seven Principles Every Teenager Needs to Know. West Monroe, LA: Howard Publishing, 2001.
Strommen, Merton, Karen Jones, and Dave Rahn. A Youth Ministry That Transforms. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2001.
Tripp, Tedd and Margie Tripp. Instructing a Child’s Heart. Wapwallopen, PA: Shepherd Press, 2008.
Yount, William R. Created to Learn: A Christian Teacher’s Introduction to Educational Psychology. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 2010.
Alexander, T. Desmond and Brian S. Rosner, eds. New Dictionary of Biblical Theology. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2000. (I)* Excellent source for pastors and serious lay people.
Elwell, Walter A., ed. Evangelical Dictionary of Theology. 2d ed. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2001. (A)*
Erickson, Millard J. Christian Theology. 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1998. (I)
Grudem, Wayne. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. Grand Rapids: InterVarsity, 2000. (I or A)*
Hammett, John S. Biblical Foundations for Baptist Churches: A Contemporary Ecclesiology. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2005. (I)*
Marshall, I. Howard. A Concise New Testament Theology. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2008. (I)*
Will of God
Friesen, Garry with J. Robin Maxon. Decision Making and the Will of God: A Biblical Alternative to the Traditional View. Portland, OR: Multnomah Press, 2004.
Ferguson, Sinclair. Discovering God’s Will. Banner of Truth, 1982.
Huffman, Douglas. How Then Should We Choose? Three Views on God’s Will and Decision Making. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2009.* This is the best book of those listed related to the topic of God’s will.
Corduan, Winfried. Neighboring Faiths: A Christian Introduction to World Religions. 2nd ed. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press Academic, 2012. (I)*
De Lange, Nicholas. An Introduction to Judaism. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010.
Geisler, Norman L., ed. Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1999. (A)
House, H. Wayne. Charts of World Religions. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2006.*
Jenkins, Philip. The Next Christendom: The Coming of Global Christianity. Revised and expanded ed., 2007. (I)*
Riddell, Peter G. and Peter Cotterell. Islam in Context: Past, Present, and Future. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2003. (I)*
Yandell, Keith and Harold Netland. Buddhism: A Christian Exploration and Appraisal. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2009.
Erickson, Millard J. The Postmodern World: Discerning the Times and the Spirit of Our Age. Wheaton: Crossway, 2002.*
Sire, James W. The Universe Next Door: A Basic Worldview Catalog. 5th ed. Downers Grove: InterVarsity, 2009. (I/A)*
Veith, Gene Edward, Jr. Postmodern Times: A Christian Guide to Contemporary Thought and Culture. Wheaton: Crossway, 1994. (I)