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 Robert Thomson:

Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • BIBLE: An Expanded Paraphrase of the Epistles of Paul
  • See below . . .
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • Synopsis of the Books of the Bible (5 volumes)
  • by J. N. Darby
  • I bought this book when I was 19 and I would give away every other book I have as long as I could keep this one. This is the real ‘what the bible teaches’! A masterly work from a theological genius. Where other commentators waffle on for pages and give no real insight into the meaning of the passage, JND summarises the contents of the Bible in a way that gets to the spiritual heart of each book. When young men asked the great William Kelly for help in understanding the scriptures, he advised. ‘Read Darby’. I can give no better advice.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • Explore the Book 1 Volume edition
  • by J Sidlow Baxter
  • Much of the oral ministry we receive is based around specific verses or passages of scripture. Often the brethren are restricted to sessions of 30-40 minutes. It is most unlikely that a young believer will develop an overview of the bible through attending ministry meetings – but keep attending! This book will help a young believer develop and understanding of the key themes of each book of the Bible. In many ways it is a simplified version of the JND Synopsis and much easier to read.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • Things to Come
  • by J Dwight Pentecost
  • This is a systematic study of Bible prophecy that will keep the reader busy for many months and years to come. Once again, I am attracted to this book because it covers the subject comprehensively from Genesis to Revelation and provides the reader with the big picture. It covers such important truths as the basis of interpretation, biblical covenants, the rapture, the tribulation, the second advent, the millennium, and the eternal state.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • The Tabernacle, the Priesthood and the Offerings
  • by Henry W Soltau
  • The Old Testament is full of teaching about our Lord Jesus Christ. It is often given in typical, or pictorial, form. Mr Soltau was a barrister who gave up his law practice to devote himself to the study of scripture. The note on the cover of this book says, ‘Those who have wandered in the maze of the tabernacle furniture and the details of the various offerings, will find a welcome ray of light as the author simply, but accurately, treats the subject. I don’t think I could explain it any better than that.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • The Law of the Offerings
  • by Andrew Jukes
  • This is a classic study of the offerings presented in the opening chapters of Leviticus – the burnt offering, the meal offering, the peace offering, the sin offering and the trespass offering. The book explains their meaning and helpfully distinguishes between the types as they relate to the offerer, the offering and the priest.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • Notes on the Epistle to the Romans
  • by C. A. Coates
  • The epistle to the Romans is the gateway to the theology of the New Testament. C.A. Coates was a beautiful writer and a man of true spiritual insight. He lived for many years with an illness that restricted his travels and this perhaps explains the depth of his understanding. This book is easy to read and yet is not simplistic in its exposition. He is particularly helpful in explaining the truth of deliverance in chapters 5-8.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • The Blood, the Death and the Cross of Jesus Christ
  • by G. V. Wigram
  • We depend for our eternity on the death of Christ. Scripture carefully separates out various truths relating to Calvary for our understanding. This is an unusual book, as it reads like a notebook and will require the reader to look up many scriptural quotations. But if the reader follows through the quotations and the notes, this book will lead to a much deeper understanding of the sufferings of Christ and the reasons for them.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • The Gospel and its Ministry
  • by Sir Robert Anderson
  • The message of the gospel must be communicated accurately, whether through public preaching or on an individual basis. This book was written by the former Chief of Scotland Yard! Sir Robert Anderson brought clarity of thought to explaining scriptural principles. He often publicly defended the truth of the gospel in articles and letters published by the Times newspaper. Every young preacher should read this book – and many older ones need to read it again!
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • The Pilgrim Church
  • by E. H. Broadbent
  • A heart warming book that traces the history, as best as historical records allow, of Christians who tried to practice N.T. principles of church gathering. This often brought them into conflict with established church systems. These believers acted on the light that they had and are an example to all who claim to be ‘gathered to the name of the Lord Jesus’.
Robert Thomson Book Recommendations
  • An Expanded Paraphrase of the Epistles of Paul
  • by F. F. Bruce
  • The only problem with this book is that it does not cover all the New Testament. If you have ever felt like the apostle Peter, that Paul’s writings contain ‘some things hard to be understood’ then this book will go a long way to making things clearer. Much to be preferred than other modern paraphrases and translations. Gives helpful insights into many passages. Take it with you to your local assembly bible reading!

Other Contributors:

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