Three Books

1887 Still Life with Three Books

I was asked by a magazine to recommend some books. Here’s what I gave them.

Three Books I Am Currently Recommending

jesus-way the-doors-of-the-sea-where-was-god-in-the-tsunami-84929292 Surprised-by-Hope-1

The Jesus Way by Eugene Peterson
There isn’t a more important pastoral voice in America than Eugene Peterson. Though he is probably best known for his translation of The Message Bible, Eugene Peterson has authored more than forty books, most of them on the theme of what it means to be a follower of Christ in the contemporary American context. Writing from nearly fifty years of pastoral experience, The Jesus Way is perhaps the best book I’ve read on how to get beyond religious cliché and cultural assumption in considering the Christ we confess and follow. I also highly recommend Eugene Peterson’s just published memoir, The Pastor.

The Doors of the Sea: Where Was God in the Tsunami? by David Bentley Hart
David Bentley Hart is one of Christianity’s finest living theologians and apologists; he is a gifted writer as well. The Doors of Sea is an expansion of an essay that originally appeared in The Wall Street Journal in response to the tsunami that claimed a quarter of a million lives in Southeast Asia in December of 2004. In the wake of the tragic Japanese earthquake and tsunami, this little book has renewed relevance. The Doors of the Sea is the best attempt I’ve found in addressing the age old problem of reconciling the goodness of God with the reality of evil and suffering.

Surprised by Hope by N.T. Wright
I have no hesitation in asserting that N.T. Wright is the most important Christian writer, thinker, and theologian of our day. What C.S. Lewis was to a previous generation of serious Christian readers, N.T. Wright is to our generation. I’ve read nearly everything Wright has published (and he is wildly prolific!) and this is Wright at his best. Quite simply, I wish I could get every Christian to read Surprised by Hope! What is it about? It’s about the great Christian hope of resurrection and how a biblical understanding of the hope of the resurrection should inform and influence every aspect of Christian witness and mission.

If you’re a serious Christian, do yourself a favor and read these three books.


(The art is Still Life With Three Books by Vincent Van Gogh)