Thursday, January 1, 2015

Top Reads for 2014 - Part 2: A Year of Perspicuity

For the past two years (2012 and 2013), my top reads lists have included numerous weighty tomes, such as several systematic and biblical theologies containing more than 1100 pages, academic biographies, apologetics treatises, and original doctrinal works.

In contrast to the past couple of years, my personal reading for 2014 was marked primarily by some marvelously clear and concise contributions that effectively and winsomely simplified deep historical truths and doctrine. These authors have been a blessing to me in many ways, not the least of which is by providing such perspicuous teaching models! Enjoy this list (and don't miss my Top Reads for 2014 - Part 1: The Year of Reformed Women Authors)!

1. Taking God at His Word:  Why the Bible is Knowable, Necessary, and Enough, and What that Means for You and Me by Kevin DeYoung

2. Hidden But Now Revealed: A Biblical Theology of Mystery by G. K. Beale and Benjamin L. Gladd

3. Calvin on The Christian Life: Glorifying and Enjoying God Forever by Michael S. Horton

4. Everyone's a Theologian: An Introduction to Systematic Theology by R. C. Sproul

5. Show Them Jesus: Teaching the Gospel to Kids by Jack Klumpenhower

6. The Triune God (a collection of essays by the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals from leading pastors and preachers on God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit)

7. Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God by Timothy Keller.

8. Recovering Eden: The Gospel According to Ecclesiastes by Zack Eswine

9 The Gospel at Work: How Working for King Jesus Gives Purpose and Meaning to Our Jobs [Kindle Edition] by Sebastian Traeger and Greg D. Gilbert. (Don't miss my Top Reads Part 1 - The Year of Reformed Women Authors, in which Carolyn McCulley's book is highlighted:

10. How (Not) to Be Secular: Reading Charles Taylor by James K. A. Smith. This helpful, insightful, and thought-provoking book makes a good pairing with George Marsden's The Twilight of the American Enlightenment: The 1950's and the Crisis of Liberal Belief .  Both books provide interesting cultural analysis, but I found Smith's more workable and practical.

Published prior to 2014, Read this Year. Each of these deserve to be on one of my top reads lists:

Sex, Dating, and Relationships: A Fresh Approach by Gerald Hiestand and Jay Thomas (2012)
A Reformed Approach to Science and Scripture by Keith Mathison (2013) - free for Kindle
Malcolm Gladwell
Fallen: A Theology of Sin (Theology in Community) [Kindle Edition] by Christopher W. Morgan (Author, Editor)

One final note: After spending time this week reviewing the books I've read this year, as well as some books I still need to read or wish to re-read, I've had a few thoughts about how I might merge my reading and gleaning and this blog a bit more. One concept in the works is to do a series called: You Are What You Read, which is a phrase partially co-opted from Rosario Butterfield's blog at The Gospel Coalition early last year here. I hope to say more about this in a later blog post.

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