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A Personal Theological Library
These books will give you a powerful jumpstart on a personal journey to deeper biblical knowledge, theological understanding and spiritual growth. Whether you’re studying to go into full-
7 Volumes for Bible Study (start with the fundamentals!):
Young's Analytical Concordance to the Bible by Robert Young. helps the reader to analyze more accurately the various uses of the original Hebrew and Greek words.
Strong’s Bible Concordance (James Strong)– necessary for your word study.
The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary – because you need it!
Unger’s Bible Handbook – illustrations, maps and diagrams bring information to light making it more easily understood.
Synopsis of the Four Gospels (American Bible Society) – Revised and translated to English; used for parallel passages and the different perspectives included in each.
Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible – 1,492 pages.
Word Pictures in the New Testament (A.T. Robertson) – 6 volumes of English translation from Greek with nuances and meanings explained.
11 resources for theology:
The Faith Once for All: Bible Doctrine for Today (Jack Cottrell) This is a great systematic theology book. HIGHLY recommended √√
Hell Is Real (But I Hate to Admit It) -
Alleged Discrepancies of the Bible (John Haley) Addresses questions surrounding common misunderstandings of Scripture. This book is essential for your personal library because it explains questionable passages, and helps answer skeptics' questions.
Abstract of Systematic Theology (Boyce) – the premier handbook for Southern Baptists
Handbook of Christian Theology (Field_Symon) -
Basic Theology (Ryrie) – accessible to laymen and graduates, this is a strong resource to keep near
Christian Theology – An Introduction (McGrath) – internationally acclaimed text
Essentials of Evangelical Theology (Bloesch) – a study of contemporary theology from an evangelical and reformed perspective
Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (Ewell) – covering systematic, historical and philosophical theology
God, Revelation, and Authority (Henry) – a discussion in response to Humanism and its doctrine. Henry is brilliant in his analysis.
Theopneustia: The Plenary Inspiration of the Holy Scriptures -
3 Old Testament study resources:
A Popular Survey of the Old Testament (Geisler) – uniquely Christ-
A Survey of the Old Testament Introduction (Archer) – provides both a general ad specific point of view.
A Survey of the Old Testament (Hill & Walton) – balances literary, historical and theological issues with each book of the OT
2 New Testament study resources:
An Introduction to the New Testament (Carson & Moo) – focuses on historical questions about authorship, dates, sources and purpose of each book of the NT
New Testament Survey (Tenney) – excellent introduction for teacher, student and congregant to the NT
1 book on Biblical Theology
The Faith Once for All: Bible Doctrine for Today (Cottrell) -
4 sources for language study (extract deeper meaning from Scripture):
The Greek New Testament (Aland) – accessible and faithful rendering (also from the NA27)
Basics of Biblical Greek Grammar (Mounce) – you need to become fluent; here is a good resource.
Linguistic Key to the Greek New Testament (Rienecker & Rogers) – learn tense, voice and mood of the Greek text.
Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament (Harris, Archer, & Waltke) – there is more than Greek in Scripture
9 books on Church history (better to know where we’ve been):
Foxes Book of Martyrs (Foxe) – you need this book.
Baptists and the Bible (Bush & Nettles) – a look at how bibliology was understood in the 18th and 19th centuries among the Calvinistic Baptists.
History of the Christian Church (Sheldon) – thorough review of church history including strong post-
The Story of Christianity (Gonzalez) – these 2 volumes present a good overview of church history
The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, 5 vols. (1973–1990) -
Volume 1: The Emergence of the Catholic Tradition 100–600 (1973)
Volume 2: The Spirit of Eastern Christendom 600–1700 (1974)
Volume 3: The Growth of Medieval Theology 600–1300 (1978)
Volume 4: Reformation of Church and Dogma 1300–1700 (1984)
Volume 5: Christian Doctrine and Modern Culture since 1700 (1990)
3 books on philosophy:
How Should We Then Live (Schaffer) – you’ll not regret reading Schaffer.
Philosophy & the Christian Faith (Brown) – impact of thoughts and ideas and their impact on the church over the last 400 years
The Consequences of Ideas (Sproul) – impact of history’s most influential philosophies from the view of a staunch Calvinist.
2 books on-
Ethics for a Brave New World (Feinberg & Feinberg) – a response to Huxley’s Brave New World and how close Huxley came in his 1932 publication
Principles of Conduct (Murray) – biblical basis for ethics in our culture
6 books on apologetics:
Classical Readings in Christian Apologetics (Bush – Editor) – selected readings of significance for apologetics
Dialogical Apologetics (Clark) – how to earn attention for the Gospel in contemporary culture
Evidence That Demands a Verdict (McDowell) – this should already be in your possession
Mere Christianity (Lewis) – so should this
Reasonable Faith (Corduan) – arguments for the truth of historic Christian faith
The Case for Christ (Strobel) – a presentation of the author’s journey from unbelief to faith
8 resources for preaching:
As One Without Authority (Craddock) -
Preaching (1985) (Craddock) -
Between Two Worlds (Stott) – contemporary preaching is examined in light of current cultural objections
Biblical Preaching (Robinson) – modern-
Homiletical Handbook (Hamilton) – a deceptively simple primer on getting to the point!
Principles of Expository Preaching (Unger) – helpful advice and warnings for expositing the Word of God
The Hermeneutical Spiral (Osborne) – connects exegesis to theologies for solid biblical sermons
The 12 Essential Skills for Great Preaching (McDill) – the author’s lengthy career provide insights into preaching
3 resources for Missions:
The Christian Pastor (Oates) – a look at today’s changing ministry and how to maintain the role of Pastor in the contemporary community. Oates was one of my profs.
A Concise History of the Christian World Mission (Kane) – overview of historical mission work
From Jerusalem to Irian Jaya (Tucker) – approachable, informative and honest look at the missionary’s life through the lens of history
Life and Work on the Mission Field (Kane) – factual experiences are shared to provide insight into the life of a missionary
4 books for Pastoral Leadership:
Criswell’s Guidebook for Pastors (Criswell) – While Baptist in orientation, a practical manual for the pastor of any size church
Effective Church Leadership (Callahan) – guide for pastors in building on their creativity to revitalize the flock
The Making of a Christian Leader (Engstrom) – management and human relations are addressed in this study of growth and development of leaders
3 books for personal devotion:
My Utmost for His Highest (Chambers) -
Morning and Evening (Spurgeon) – brief daily readings for your meditation times