My Top 10 Christian Books

Based upon the long running BBC Radio 4 programme ‘Desert Island Discs’, we are hoping to compile a list of books that contributors feel should be essential for any young believer’s library.

Many of the books recommended by the contributors to this list are available either new or second-hand. We have included details of some of these suppliers on the Links page. This should not be taken as an endorsement of everything that appears on those sites.

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Recommended by Ian Rees:

Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • BIBLE: The Interlinear Bible
  • An excellent edition of the Bible which, with a stroke of genius, gives both the Authorised Version and the Revised Version, where it differs from the AV, together in the same verse. This makes alternative translations of a word or phrase, which are often picked up by commentators, immediately available to the reader.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Expository Dictionary of Words
  • by W.E. Vine
  • A classic and well-loved dictionary giving the meaning of Greek words used in the New Testament and written in a style ideally suited to the average Bible student who does not know any Greek. There are more complex Greek dictionaries available, such as the ‘Little Kittel’, for instance, but Vine’s is far and away the most accessible to the young Christian and has had an untold influence on Bible students for generations.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible
  • by James Strong
  • Of the many concordances (lists of words with their references) of the Bible that are in print, Strong’s is indispensible because of his system of numbering all the words. Many Hebrew and Greek dictionaries have subsequently linked their definitions to Strong’s numbers. Available on line and with many electronic versions of Bible software, but none-the-less essential to good Bible study.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Matthew Henry on the Whole Bible
  • Commentaries on the Bible give the fruit of the study and research of Bible scholars from the past. Matthew Henry’s commentary, available either in abridged form or in the full six-volume set, was one of the first and greatest ever written. It was so well-respected in its day that C. H. Spurgeon read it every year, along with his Bible, on his knees. There are many more up-to-date commentaries available today, but for devotional writing none has surpassed Matthew Henry.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Foundations of the Christian Faith
  • by J M Boice
  • A simple, yet scholarly, study of the most important doctrines of the Bible, written in a readable style. Boice treats doctrines such as the attributes of God, the trinity, the process of salvation, the Christian life, the work of God etc, in a profoundly moving style. There are many more complicated systematic theologies around, but this one will not disappoint and is very readable.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Treasury of Bible Doctrine
  • by J. Heading & C.E. Hocking
  • This is an excellent compilation of articles written and published over the years in Precious Seed magazine, with special articles commissioned to fill any gaps. Like all compilations, there are both strong and weak contributions in the book, but overall this is a good systematic theology written by brethren and is an essential book for the library of young believers.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Church Doctrine and Practice
  • by J. Heading & C.E. Hocking
  • Very little has been written on the Biblical basis of how a local church should function. Here is another compilation of writings from brethren of the years which is put together to give an excellent overview of the New Testament teaching on the assembly. Works that deal with the local church are often heavily denominational or imbalanced. This one is both balanced and practical.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Reformation in Germany, Switzerland and France
  • by Merle d’Aubigney
  • No Christian’s library should be complete without some church history, and d’Aubigney has brought to life a period of fundamental importance in the history of the true church of God. The stories he writes of early reformers such as Hus, Luther, Calvin and Zwingli and there struggles to recover the true doctrines of the Bible are inspirational.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Reformation in England
  • by Merle d’Aubigney
  • Britain has, since the Reformation, has been a cradle of Biblical truth which has resulted in the world-wide spread of the Gospel through missionary work. Sadly, this is no longer true, but the lives of men who gave everything for Christian truth and liberty are detailed once again in the readable style of d’Aubigney.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Foxe’s Book of Martyrs
  • Should believers today think that being a Christian has always been a relatively easy thing (at least in the west in recent centuries) this book of biographies of men and women who were martyred for their faith in Britain centuries ago will bring tears to the eyes, gratitude to God for those in whose debt we stand, and give back-bone to us all. Persecution for our faith may not be far away from us; this book will give us courage from the example of those who stood firm in the past.
Ian Rees Book Recommendations
  • Knowing God
  • by J I Packer
  • This is a devotional book that encourages us all to lose ourselves in the greatness of God. The book is not a commentary on the Bible and it is not a systematic theology, but it will succeed in helping the young believer to have a thirst for knowing God better. And that, after all, is the key to devoted Christian living.

Other Contributors:

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