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Re: Recommended Books

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  • Graham Old
    ... pastor. Here ... This is so true. I have wasted so much time, energy and hard-earned cash reading utter rubbish. ... balance Tim Keller is ... Here s what
    Message 1 of 23 , Jun 1, 2003
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      --- In pipertalk@yahoogroups.com, brianghedges@a... wrote:
      > These book lists are always interesting and helpful to me as a
      pastor. Here
      > are some questions to kick around:
      >
      > 1) Is not the enemy of the best is often the good?

      This is so true. I have wasted so much time, energy and hard-earned
      cash reading utter rubbish.

      > 2) Should we schedule a certain amount of fiction, poetry, secular
      > non-fiction, etc. into our reading, just to ensure the kind of
      balance Tim Keller is
      > aiming at?

      Here's what I do: I tend to read books in blocks of 4. So, I might
      have four books that I want to get through in a certain amount of
      time. (I tend to read different books at different times. E.g. easier-
      going books in bed etc.) Originally, I planned for 1 of those 4 to be
      fiction, but that never happened! Now, one in 16 is fiction. I also
      try to make 1 in 16 "secular" - to do with memory, history, computers
      etc.

      I tend to be kinda reading poetry pretty much continually.

      > 3) How do we (as pastors) strike the balance between, on the one
      hand,
      > reading and study and preparation, and on the other, time with our
      people,
      > discipling, etc.

      For me, it has been essential to keep the latter at the fore-front of
      my focus. Thus, if my reading is not serving my life in the real-
      world then it has to go. I still feel like I've got loads to learn on
      this one. I'm aware that I'm naturally the kind of guy who would be
      happy locked in my study for weeks. As a result, I almost over-
      compensate in the other direction.

      > And then, in our reading, how do we strike the balance between
      > pursuing exegetical precision in our sermon prep and enlivening the
      sermon with
      > illustration, relating to current events, etc.?

      Is it Moody who said we should write our sermons with a Bible in one
      hand and the paper in the other?

      > 4) A comment: I do think we need to make and take time to "be
      mastered by the
      > masters" as Sinclair Ferguson said in February at the Bethlehem
      Conference
      > for Pastors. This gives us depth, if not breadth. We as pastors
      will benefit far
      > more by slowly moving through the Works of Edwards, Owen, Charnock,
      and
      > Manton than we will by broadly reading current Evangelical
      literature. Too often we
      > go to the Puritans to cull quotes (or I'm guessing others do this
      too), while
      > we need to spend more time actually digesting their works. (This is
      fresh for
      > me, because yesterday I got in the mail the 22 volume Works of
      Thomas Manton
      > - what a treasure! what a daunting bunch of books, though!)

      I have mixed thoughts on this one, Brian. On the one hand, I like to
      read from the Orthodox and Mennonite traditions and from some of the
      puritans. But I also think that some of us Reformed folk can operate
      in a certain reverse-chronological snobbery. Does the fact that a
      book is older make it better? To be honest, I have read a lot of
      puritan rubbish! More to the point, if we are judging current
      theological thought from who is in the Christian Media spot-light
      then we are missing the wealth of material that is available even
      today. I think that some of today's authors are writing some of the
      most important stuff written in years.

      I do take your main point though. And I try to make sure that 1 in 4
      books that I read are from another generation (I think I got that
      habit from Piper?!).

      Graham
    • Graham Old
      ... recommended ... read all of ... Hi Mike, I didn t read all of those books in one setting! ;o) I ve found that, with practice, it s possible to read an
      Message 2 of 23 , Jun 1, 2003
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        --- In pipertalk@yahoogroups.com, CHOPENDOOR@a... wrote:
        > Dearest Brothers, As one who loves to read, I still found the
        recommended
        > reading list daunting. I wonder how many years it would take me to
        read all of
        > those books.

        Hi Mike,

        I didn't read all of those books in one setting! ;o)

        I've found that, with practice, it's possible to read an average size
        book in an evening. It shouldn't take much longer than a typical
        video.

        I was reading some Piper recently (can't think where from,
        maybe "Brother") and he was talking about how many books someone
        could read in a year if they read at an average reading-speed. I
        think it was around 30. And that doesn't take into consideration that
        it is possible to *improve* one's natural reading-speed.

        Graham
      • CHOPENDOOR@aol.com
        Dear Graham I easily read 30 books a year but not all heavy ones. I suspect that Tim Keller took years to read all he recommends, and also that he may be more
        Message 3 of 23 , Jun 1, 2003
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          Dear Graham I easily read 30 books a year but not all heavy ones. I suspect
          that Tim Keller took years to read all he recommends, and also that he may be
          more of a reader at heart than a pastor. As much as I love to read and to
          learn, people still drive me more than books. Guess that has something to do
          with the shepherding gift. Pastor Mike

          "When God is the supreme hunger of our hearts, he will be supreme in
          everything."
          John Piper
          I have had more trouble with myself than with any other man
          I have ever met." Dwight L. Moody (1837-1899)
          "If sinners be dammed, at least let them leap to Hell over our bodies.  If
          they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees.  Let no one
          go there unwarned and unprayed for."
          ... Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)






          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Daniel Beck
          ... Of course, a book being older doesn t make it better. However, time often filters out much of the junk. This is not a perfect system, but books that stay
          Message 4 of 23 , Jun 1, 2003
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            On Monday, June 2, 2003, at 09:09 AM, Graham Old wrote:

            > I have mixed thoughts on this one, Brian. On the one hand, I like to
            > read from the Orthodox and Mennonite traditions and from some of the
            > puritans. But I also think that some of us Reformed folk can operate
            > in a certain reverse-chronological snobbery. Does the fact that a
            > book is older make it better?

            Of course, a book being older doesn't make it better. However, time
            often filters out much of the junk. This is not a perfect system, but
            books that stay in print for 300 years tend to be of higher quality
            than ones that were published last month. I think this is often because
            these books stay relevant because of their focus on timeless issues
            (i.e. sin, guilt, grace, glory, etc...). Of course, there are modern
            classics (eg. some of Piper's books, especially "Desiring God" and "The
            Pleasures of God"), but there are far more old classics. And, much of
            what's being written now is too concerned with what topics are "in".

            So, I would say that we'd do better to lean toward the time-tested,
            while not ignoring the new.

            Daniel
            --------------
            "The gospel is a gospel of grace! And grace is the pleasure of God to
            magnify the worth of God by giving sinners the right and power to
            delight in God without obscuring the glory of God." -John Piper
          • brianghedges@aol.com
            Good thoughts Graham and Daniel. It s true, old is not necessarily better any more than new is better. A book should supremely be judged by its content not its
            Message 5 of 23 , Jun 2, 2003
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              Good thoughts Graham and Daniel. It's true, old is not necessarily better any
              more than new is better. A book should supremely be judged by its content not
              its age. But Ferguson's point in the conference was that we should seek to be
              mastered by the really great masters of theology - I think he had in mind
              Owen, Calvin, and the great Scottish theologians such as James Buchanan and
              William Cunningham - and personally, I don't think I've read any Puritan rubbish,
              yet, although my exposure may be fairly limited! But, practically speaking, of
              the 23 books I've read this year, only one is pre-20th century! (5
              preaching/leadership, 5 theology, 3 popular Christian, 3 biography, 2 apologetic, 2
              expository, 2 secular non-fiction).

              I'm currently on
              Piper's Don't Waste Your Life (very good)
              biography on Adoniram Judson (as a result of Pipers biography at the BCP)
              For All God's Worth by N. T. Wright
              Paul: Apostle of God's Glory in Christ by Thomas Schreiner (excellent!)
              spot reading in The Works of Thomas Manton
              and about a dozen commentaries on 1 John

              Brian

              On Monday, June 2, 2003, at 09:09 AM, Graham Old wrote:

              > I have mixed thoughts on this one, Brian. On the one hand, I like to
              > read from the Orthodox and Mennonite traditions and from some of the
              > puritans. But I also think that some of us Reformed folk can operate
              > in a certain reverse-chronological snobbery. Does the fact that a
              > book is older make it better?

              Of course, a book being older doesn't make it better. However, time
              often filters out much of the junk. This is not a perfect system, but
              books that stay in print for 300 years tend to be of higher quality
              than ones that were published last month. I think this is often because
              these books stay relevant because of their focus on timeless issues
              (i.e. sin, guilt, grace, glory, etc...). Of course, there are modern
              classics (eg. some of Piper's books, especially "Desiring God" and "The
              Pleasures of God"), but there are far more old classics. And, much of
              what's being written now is too concerned with what topics are "in".

              So, I would say that we'd do better to lean toward the time-tested,
              while not ignoring the new.

              Daniel
              --------------
              "The gospel is a gospel of grace! And grace is the pleasure of God to
              magnify the worth of God by giving sinners the right and power to
              delight in God without obscuring the glory of God." -John Piper


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • aaron arledge
              why has no one endorsed reading the left behind books. just kidding. i recently read my first book by os guinness which i enjoyed tremendously. The title is
              Message 6 of 23 , Jun 3, 2003
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                why has no one endorsed reading the left behind books. just kidding. i
                recently read my first book by os guinness which i enjoyed tremendously.
                The title is "the call" . what do yall know about guinness?

                aaron

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              • CHOPENDOOR@aol.com
                Os Guinness grew up in Christ under Francis Schaeffer. He worked alongside him for years. Pastor Mike When God is the supreme hunger of our hearts, he
                Message 7 of 23 , Jun 3, 2003
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                  Os Guinness grew up in Christ under Francis Schaeffer. He worked alongside
                  him for years. Pastor Mike


                  "When God is the supreme hunger of our hearts, he will be supreme in
                  everything."
                  John Piper
                  I have had more trouble with myself than with any other man
                  I have ever met." Dwight L. Moody (1837-1899)
                  "If sinners be dammed, at least let them leap to Hell over our bodies.  If
                  they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees.  Let no one
                  go there unwarned and unprayed for."
                  ... Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)






                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • CHOPENDOOR@aol.com
                  In a message dated 6/3/2003 9:59:46 AM Mountain Daylight Time, ... It is interesting that in our recommended reading lists no one mentions the work of Francis
                  Message 8 of 23 , Jun 3, 2003
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                    In a message dated 6/3/2003 9:59:46 AM Mountain Daylight Time,
                    aaronarledge@... writes:

                    > os guinness

                    It is interesting that in our recommended reading lists no one mentions the
                    work of Francis Schaeffer who once had such an impact on thinking evangelicals.
                    Pastor Mike
                    "When God is the supreme hunger of our hearts, he will be supreme in
                    everything."
                    John Piper
                    I have had more trouble with myself than with any other man
                    I have ever met." Dwight L. Moody (1837-1899)
                    "If sinners be dammed, at least let them leap to Hell over our bodies.  If
                    they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees.  Let no one
                    go there unwarned and unprayed for."
                    ... Charles Spurgeon (1834-1892)






                    [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                  • Chuck Taylor
                    ... From: CHOPENDOOR@aol.com ... the ... evangelicals. He is still one of my favorites. Chuck Taylor
                    Message 9 of 23 , Jun 3, 2003
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                      ----- Original Message -----
                      From: CHOPENDOOR@...

                      > It is interesting that in our recommended reading lists no one mentions
                      the
                      > work of Francis Schaeffer who once had such an impact on thinking
                      evangelicals.

                      He is still one of my favorites.

                      Chuck Taylor
                    • One of the McKays
                      ... A book title springs to mind, Aaron: Don t Waste Your Life! David McKay musicke@ozemail.com.au http://members.ozemail.com.au/~musicke
                      Message 10 of 23 , Jun 3, 2003
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                        > why has no one endorsed reading the left behind books. just kidding.
                        A book title springs to mind, Aaron: Don't Waste Your Life!
                        David McKay
                        musicke@...
                        http://members.ozemail.com.au/~musicke
                        http://www.bathurstevangelical.org.au
                      • Richard Campeau
                        ... Superb thinker. Related to the famous Guiness beer family (Really!) Richard
                        Message 11 of 23 , Jun 4, 2003
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                          > i recently read my first book by os guinness which i enjoyed tremendously.
                          > The title is "the call" . what do yall know about guinness?

                          Superb thinker. Related to the famous Guiness beer family (Really!)

                          Richard
                        • Graham Old
                          Have you read, Os Guiness s Fit bodies, Fat minds ? Great book. I m waiting for a sequel on Fat bodies, Fit minds which I need to read as well! Graham
                          Message 12 of 23 , Jun 4, 2003
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                            Have you read, Os Guiness's "Fit bodies, Fat minds"? Great book.

                            I'm waiting for a sequel on "Fat bodies, Fit minds" which I need to
                            read as well!

                            Graham
                          • wilsond1979
                            Sorry to respond to such an old message, but I m catching up. I recently read a book that I thought you might appreciate, Graham - Titled, Preaching that
                            Message 13 of 23 , Jun 6, 2003
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                              Sorry to respond to such an old message, but I'm catching up. I
                              recently read a book that I thought you might appreciate, Graham -
                              Titled, Preaching that Speaks to Women, by Alice Mathews. Very
                              insightful while not being radical. She manages to make her point
                              without raising all kinds of controversy.
                              --- In pipertalk@yahoogroups.com, "Graham Old" <divrom@y...> wrote:
                              > --- In pipertalk@yahoogroups.com, "One of the McKays"
                              <musicke@o...>
                              > wrote:
                              > > Graham, with all those books you are reading, you must have
                              plenty
                              > to
                              > > recommend! I'd appreciate it if you would mention again some you
                              > have
                              > > recently referred to, so that we have your recommendations in the
                              > one email.
                              >
                              > Hi David,
                              >
                              > Sorry it's taken so long for me to reply to this. Here are some of
                              > the books that I can remember mentioning, or that I would want to
                              > recommend. (Don't expect anything like the sort of reviews that
                              Brian
                              > and yourself are famed for!)
                              >
                              > *The Anabaptist Story by William Estep
                              > *The Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard (should be required
                              reading!)
                              > *The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard
                              > *Freedom of Simplicity by Richard (Gad zooks!) Foster
                              > *On the Incarnation by Athanasius
                              > *A New Kind of Christian by Brian Mclaren (I don't know whether to
                              > curse or bless the day I read this. Changed everything for me.)
                              > *Being as Communion by John Zizioulas (Greek Orthodox reflections
                              on
                              > the nature of God, personhood, church and so on. Stunning.)
                              > *Transforming Mission by Bosch (Most comprehensive book on Mission
                              > I've come across. Only weakness is the scant attention paid to
                              > the "doxological" motivation for missions.)
                              > *Church Planting by Stuart Murray (One of the few practicioners who
                              > seems to actually have thought through the theological bases and
                              > implications of church planting.)
                              > *The Younger Evangelicals by Robert Webber (A look at the emerging
                              > Church)
                              > *Reflections on the Psalms by CS Lewis
                              > *Women in the Church by Stanley Grenz (Egalitarian)
                              > *Trinity and Subordinationism by Kevin Giles (Changed my mind -
                              after
                              > 13 years - on women in ministry. Very interesting approach.)
                              > *The Gospel according to the Simpsons by Mark Pinsky
                              > *We must stop meeting like this by Pearce and Matthews (How
                              > should/can we do church differently in today's climate?)
                              > *Abolition of the laity by Paul Stevens
                              > *The NT and the people of God by NT WRIGHT
                              > *Jesus and the Victory of God by NT Wright
                              > *The Climax of the Covenant by NT Wright (EXCELLENT collection of
                              > articles)
                              > *What Saint Paul really said by Wright
                              > *The Last Days according to Jesus by RC Sproul (Partial Preterist)
                              > *Christus Victor by Gustav Aulen
                              > *To each its own meaning by McKenzie(edited collection of various
                              > approaches to hermeneutics)
                              > *God's lesser glory by Bruce Ware (Solid response to Open Theism)
                              > *Primer on Post-modernism by Stanley Grenz (should be required
                              > reading for any Christian with a brain and/or a heart)
                              > *More than a Symbol by Stanley Fowler (Excellent discussion of
                              > British Baptist Sacramentalism. Excellent.)
                              > *Fuzzy Thinking by Bart Kosko (remember the stuff on non-
                              > contradiction?! ;o))
                              >
                              > This week I'm reading:
                              >
                              > The Unnecessary Pastor by Eugene Peterson and Marva Dawn
                              > Homosexuality and the Christian faith edited by Walter Wink
                              > After our Likeness by Miroslav Volf
                              > A Future for Truth by Knight
                              >
                              > I'd recommend each of those, but they really are the kind of books
                              > that are only effective if your in the right place to read them.
                              >
                              > I can't think of any others that I might have mentioned. Let me
                              know
                              > if I missed any.
                              >
                              > Bless you,
                              >
                              > Graham
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