During 2015 I was blessed to read a number of great books. Here are ten of my favorites. These were not all written in 2015, I just read them this year. I list these books in no particular order, just ten of my favorite reads in 2015.
- The Baptist Story: From English Sect to Global Movement by Anthony Chute, Nathan Finn, and Michael Haykin
A great survey of Baptist history from three friends and respected historians.
- Baptists in America: A History by Thomas S. Kidd and Barry Hankins
A survey of Baptists in America (I know, who would have thunk it?). This book does an excellent job, especially with issues of slavery and race.
- The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert by Rosaria Butterfield
This book is not only a fascinating autobiographical of a former lesbian turned homeschooling wife of a Presbyterian pastor, it is also an excellent model and case study of the attributes of genuine conversion.
- Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hannah More?Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist by Karen Swallow Prior
Excellent study of a once popular, but now largely forgotten, literary figure who was influential in the ending of the slave trade.
- The Life and Thought of Andrew Fuller (1754-1815) by Peter Morden
The best full-length treatment of the life and theology of one of the most influential Baptist pastors and theologians in history. Modern-day missions-minded Baptists are still swimming in the current of his thought.
- The New American Commentary: 1, 2 Peter, Jude by Thomas R. Schreiner
It was a delight to interact with this commentary every week as I preached through the book of 1 Peter. It is equal parts exegetical, theological, and practical.
- The First Thanksgiving: What the Real Story Tells Us About Loving God and Learning from History by Robert Tracy McKenzie
A model for doing history. MacKenzie mythbusts the first Thanksgiving, while using it as a case study on how Christians should approach and appropriate history.
- American Exceptionalism and Civil Religion: Reassessing the History of An Idea by John D. Wilsey
I wish every American, and certainly everyone running for public office in America, would read this book. Wilsey not only explains the perils of one strand of American Exceptionalism, but also holds out an alternate strand that allows one to remain patriotic while avoiding national idolatry.
- Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry
Fascinating insights into human nature and the importance of place. Masterful storytelling with moral implications.
- Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry
Another masterful story in the same literary context of Port William, Kentucky. Similar themes as found in Jayber Crow, but approached from the perspective of a woman. Paradigm-shaping narrative.