Top Five (Christian) Books For Summer Reading

If you are at all like me, you do more reading during the summer than any other time of the year.

The sun on your face, the sand between your toes, the clock permanently set at 5 o’clock somewhere and voila! you get to gorge on some reading.

And most of the time, for most of us, what occupies our reading time consists of novels, histories, and biographies.

But what about those books that specifically advance your spiritual life?  Or, as we say it at Good Shepherd, your living relationship with Jesus Christ.

Can spiritual reading and summer vacation possibly co-exist?

Here are five titles that may just allow a “yes” to that question.

1. John Stott, Basic Christianity.  Think of CS Lewis’ Mere Christianity, only much more understandable.  Stott is concise yet compelling, deep yet deliberate.  There’s enough meet here for the veteran and enough bone for newcomers to chew on for a long, long time.

Basic Christianity

2. Richard Friedman, Who Wrote The Bible.  Scholarly yet accessible, Friedman’s Who Wrote The Bible reads like a detective story and leads to some startling assertions that can never be proven.  Or dis-proven, for that matter.

Who Wrote bible


3.  Andy Stanley, Deep & Wide.  If you want to know what is involved in a church that uses culture without being consumed by it, this is for you.  As with all of Stanley’s work, the wordsmithing alone is worth the purchase price.

deep & wide

4.  Tim Tennent, This We Believe.  Tennent, the president of Asbury Seminary, has crafted an exploration of the Apostles’ Creed that is thin on pages but thick with meaning.  You’ll never stand and declare “I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth . . .” in quite the same way again.

this we believe

5.  James Bryan Smith, The Good & Beautiful God.  How can a book with that kind of title not be a summer salve to your soul?  It can, and it should.

Good & Beautiful God


Speaking of works that are relatively quick reads yet contain spiritual fodder, Solve from Abingdon Press is now available.  Here’s what pastor Daniel Wilson has to say about it:

“Talbot’s books can be picked up and read in manageable chunks without having to devote hours of time to completing one section.”




In other words, another of those Christian books and Bible studies for summer that can easily co-exist with your vacation or summer plans.

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