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Recommended Reads - Oct. 30, 2018

On Sunday, Oct. 28, Pastor Tim Prince taught on the discipleship principle, ALIGN (Psalm 19) about the role the Bible has in the life of followers of Jesus. You can watch or listen to the sermon here. The Bible is sufficient to teach us everything God thinks we need to know about him and life, so that we can live for him, glorify him, be acceptable to him, and experience joy in this life as we wait to see Jesus face-to-face.

Here are the books recommended by Pastor Prince, along with a brief description of each resource and why it’s been helpful to him:

1. “Don’t Check Your Brains at the Door” by Josh McDowell and Bob Hostetler.

This brief apologetic book from premier Christian apologist Josh McDowell is written for a Middle School audience. The chapters are very short (2-3 pages) and cover just about every myth surrounding Christianity you can think of, and probably several you haven’t thought of. The topics cover a host of issues, but I recommend it specifically for its information about the Bible and where it comes from. Here are a few of the chapter titles:

  • One Among Many – The ‘Just Another Great Book Myth’
  • The Bible and Swiss Cheese – The ‘Holey Bible Myth’
  • The Bible and the Telephone Game – The ‘Variant Readings Myth’
  • Changing Fact to Fiction – The ‘Myths and Legends Myth’

These are just a few of the chapters that may be helpful to you and your kids. We know that kids start asking these kinds of questions when their seven, eight or nine years old. It’s never too early to start listening and dealing honestly with their questions.

Find it here.

2. “Is the Bible Intolerant?” by Amy Orr-Ewing

This resource is the one that has been most helpful to me personally and came to me at a time when I was struggling with these questions the most. It is brief (only 127 pages) and engaging. Orr-Ewing is a lecturer at Oxford University and one of the premier apologists for Ravi Zacharias Ministries. She has travelled all over the world engaging university students’ most pressing questions.

This book was written with university students in mind, but I’m confident that a Junior or Senior in High School could engage the material. Each chapter can be read by itself or you can read the book straight through. Here’s a peek at some of the chapter titles:

  • Are the Biblical Manuscripts Reliable?
  • What About the Canon?
  • What About the Other Holy Books?
  • Isn’t the Bible Sexist?
  • What About All of the Wars?
  • Isn’t the Bible out of Date on Sex?
  • How Can I Know?

Easily my favorite book as an introduction to the subject.

Find it here.

3. “Taking God At His Word” by Kevin DeYoung

Another excellent, brief (124 pages) introduction to the doctrine of the scripture.

This book isn’t an apologetics book as much as it is a book about the doctrine of the scripture, and why we believe the Bible is authoritative, sufficient, necessary, and clear. These historic doctrines regarding the Bible are important and I would recommend that every college/career age person take the time to read this book.

DeYoung’s writing is easy to engage, easy to understand and moves quickly. He doesn’t use 10 words when two will do so the book moves quickly and stays out of the weeds.

Find it here.

For more from DeYoung on one of the most sensitive and hotly debated topics in our world today check out his book “What Does the Bible Really Teach About Homosexuality?” – an absolute must-read for every college/career age person.

Find it here.

4. “Misquoting Truth” – by Timothy Paul Jones

Every five to eight years a new challenge against the authenticity of the Bible rises along with a compelling and charismatic champion to give voice to that challenge. Ten years ago it was “The Davinci Code” by Dan Brown. Today it is books like “Misquoting Jesus” and “How Jesus Became God – The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee” by Bart Ehrman.

Bart Ehrman is a professor at UNC-Chapel Hill and former evangelical. Today he packs out university lecture halls and auditoriums teaching about why the Bible and the “Jesus legend,” while innocuous and helpful to many, should not really be trusted.

“Misquoting Truth” by Timothy Paul Jones is one of many excellent resources written in direct response to Mr. Ehrman. It is witty, engaging, and most of all exposes many of the fallacies at the root of Mr. Ehrman’s teaching. The reason that I would recommend it to any university student is because it makes the reader aware of how half-truths can be presented as the whole picture and how a simplistic understanding of the Bible and what we believe about it can open the door to being “refuted,” when in fact the “refutation” is based on nothing more than a misunderstanding about what Christians really believe about why the Bible has authority.

Recommended reading for anyone who has already read “Is the Bible Intolerant?” or anyone that has come across Mr. Ehrman’s teaching in a university lecture or class.

Find it here.

Tim Prince

Pastor of Missional Community


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