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 Jack Hay:

Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • BIBLE: Alexander Scourby’s reading of the KJV (Tape or CD)
  • Perhaps this is cheating! However I’ll risk it! Alexander Scourby’s reading of the KJV (Tape or CD) has been a great blessing, particularly when traveling distances in the car. It helps to get the Word into mind and heart.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • Believer's Bible Commentary
  • by William MacDonald
  • The following have been of help to me, and I recommend them for young believers, without necessarily endorsing everything contained in them. I have divided my selection into sections, to encourage a breadth of reading. Like other contributors, I acknowledge my reliance on help from Strong’s Concordance and Vine’s New Testament Words etc. without adding these to my list. SINGLE VOLUME COMMENTARY: This book is very helpful, particularly the New Testament section. As with similar volumes, it suffers from restricted space in the Old Testament section. Mr. MacDonald is a very lucid communicator, and for a simple mind like mine, his ability to make difficult things understandable is a major plus factor.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • The Moral Glory of the Lord Jesus
  • by J. G. Bellett
  • DEVOTIONAL: This book encouraged me to think seriously about giving diligent thought to areas of the Word where the Saviour is presented, either in type or prophecy, or historically in the Gospels. After forty years, the memory of the thrill of first reading this little book has never left me.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • Bible Exposition Commentary (2 volumes)
  • by W. Wiersbe
  • EXPOSITIONS: I have the range of the “Be” series by Warren Weirsbe, but apparently, New Testament volumes are now incorporated in a two volume set entitled Bible Exposition Commentary. As with others from the same background, he is shaky when it comes to dealing with the sister’s place in the assembly. He leaves a loophole as far as the head covering is concerned, and allows for vocal participation, so we can’t follow him down every route he takes! But what I have found helpful is his ability to summarise a passage, and to give the general drift of the section without necessarily expounding every word and phrase. The simplicity of his presentation appeals to me.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • New Testament Church Principles
  • by A. G. Clarke
  • CHURCH TRUTH: This book presents truth in a very orderly way, and gives a basic understanding of where a New Testament assembly differs from denominational organisations that have deviated from the Word of God. Again, his views do not coincide with my own in every area, but when I was a young believer, I found this little volume very instructive.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • Toward Jerusalem
  • by Amy Carmichael
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • The Caravanserai
  • by I. Y. Ewen
  • POETRY: Not everyone has a liking for poetry, but I mention two books of poetry which have been a source of blessing, although diverse in their format. Amy Carmichael’s Towards Jerusalem contains a delightful sample of her short spiritual verses, and I.Y.Ewen’s The Caravanserai displays a tremendous poetic ability. A wide range of topics grace the pages.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • Shadow of the Almighty
  • by Elizabeth Elliott
  • For my generation, Shadow of the Almighty, was compulsory reading. We lived through the days when Jim Elliot and his colleagues were martyred in Ecuador, and his widow Elisabeth tells his life story in a way which made some of us think that we were playing at being Christians. This book contributed to the conviction that we should live for God, rather than being content with spiritual mediocrity.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • True Discipleship
  • by William MacDonald
  • CHRISTIAN LIVING. For this area, I have to return to William MacDonald. True Discipleship and the other publications now incorporated with it made a massive impact. The emptiness of materialism, and selfish living were exposed, and the importance of living in the light of Calvary stressed. A blend of Bible teaching and quotes and anecdotes from the lives of men of God make the book very weighty and challenging.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • One Day at a time
  • by William MacDonald
  • DAILY READINGS. In fellowship with other writers, I have had the privilege of contributing to such productions from more than one publisher, so I stay clear of these in making recommendations! Again, I go for MacDonald. One Day at a Time is typical of his pithy challenging style, and would give impetus to Christian living as you embark on a new day.
Jack Hay Book Recommendations
  • Selected to live
  • by J. R. Dobschiner
  • CHRISTIAN LIVING: For excitement, Johanna Ruth Dobschiner’s Selected to Live is hard to beat, as time after time she escaped the clutches of Nazi persecutors. It is thrilling to read of that Jewess finding the Saviour, as in hiding, she read the New Testament for herself.

Other Contributors:

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