Thursday, September 27, 2012

Basic Books on Theology

Last Sunday I preached on the need to study theology. All of us should be growing in our understanding of the great doctrines of the Christian faith. It is impossible to do this without stretching ourselves theologically. Here are some books I would recommend for a basic understanding of reformed theology. I know there are many other good books out there. These are ones I have read and profited from.

J.I. Packer's Concise Theology is one the best introductions to reformed theology around. It covers every major topic in usually 1-2 pages. It would be a great reference tool to pull off the shelf as you study various topics. It would also be an excellent study for high school students.

Next I would recommend R.C. Sproul's book Essential Truths of the Christian Faith. R.C. Sproul has the wonderful ability to clearly communicate profound truths. This book is much like Packer's, but a little more thorough.

Next  I would recommend John Calvin's Truth for All Time. Don't let John Calvin's name scare you. This book is a little gem. It is only 76 pages long. It is perfect for someone who is growing in the faith. What makes this book different from the ones above is that Calvin briefly goes through the Ten Commandments, the Apostles' Creed, and the Lord's Prayer. These three things formed the foundation for teaching biblical truth in the Reformation.

Finally, I would encourage reading Kevin DeYoung's The Good News We Almost Forgot. In this book Pastor DeYoung walks through the Heidelberg Catechism. He originally wrote each chapter as a newsletter to his congregation. Each chapter is around three pages. He is relevant, easy to understand, witty, and biblical.

Besides these books I would recommend the Westminster Confession, Larger Catechism, and Shorter Catechism, along with the Heidelberg Catechism, the Canons of Dordt, and the Beglic Confession. These can all be found online.

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Let the saints be joyful in glory, let them sing aloud on their beds, let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two edged sword in their hand, to execute vengeance on the nations, and punishments on the peoples; to bind the kings with chains and their nobles with fetters of iron. Psalm 149:5-8