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Recommended Reading

The following is a selection of the books that we recommend, many are available on the book stall at Letchworth Baptist Church, most are generally available via the normal sources.

Doctrine

The Doctrines of Grace

James Montgomery Boice and Philip Graham Ryken
Published by Crossway

“The doctrines of grace find their origins in the teaching of Jesus, which has been preserved throughout the church in many periods, and which has always been characteristic of the church at its greatest periods of faith and expansion. It follows from this that the evangelical church will again see great days when these truths are widely and fearlessly proclaimed. If that is true, then nothing is more needed today than a recovery of precisely these doctrines: total depravity, unconditional election, limited atonement, irresistible grace and the perseverance of the saints. These gracious doctrines have been prominent in the minds and hearts of God’s people in some of the church’s finest hours”

This is an exceedingly readable examination of these vital doctrines.

The Five Points of Calvinism

Edwin H. Palmer
Published by Baker

This is an excellent, concise, contemporary and challenging study guide on the doctrines of grace

Evangelism

Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God

J.I. Packer
Published by IVP

“Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God” is a clear and insightful examination of evangelism in the context of a sovereign God. Packer shows how a right understanding of God’s sovereignty is not so much a barrier to evangelism as an incentive and powerful support for it.

Revival and Revivalism – The Making and Marring of American Evangelism 1750 – 1858

Iain H Murray
Published by Banner of Truth

Murray’s book provides the reader with great insight into the difference between God ordained revival and the man-generated process of revivalism. He illuminates its impact on evangelism which sets the tone for much of today’s endeavours and in so doing challenges the reader to ask fundamental questions about the process of spreading the Gospel.

Creation and Evolution

The Answers Book

Ken Ham, Jonathan Safarti, Carl Wieland
Edited by Don Batten
Published by Answers in Genesis

This book is an excellent help to Christians who are embarking on their quest to understand the issues around the Creation v Evolution debate and then subsequently it provides a very good reference book. It answers the 20 most-asked questions about creation, evolution and the book of Genesis. It is a “must read”.

In the Beginning was Information

Professor Dr-Ing. Werner Gitt
Published by CLV

Information confronts us on all sides; newspapers, radio and television bring new information daily, and information processing systems are found practically everywhere, for example in computers, numerical control equipment, automatic assembly lines, and even car wash machines. It should be noted that the activities of all living organisms are controlled by programs comprising information.

Because information is required for all life processes, it can be stated unequivocally that information is an essential characteristic of all life. All efforts to explain life processes in terms of physics and chemistry only, will always be unsuccessful. This is the fundamental problem confronting present-day biology, which is based on evolution.

This book is for the “scientifically inclined”

Starlight, Time and the New Physics

Dr John Hartnett
Published by Creation
Solving the starlight travel-time problem.

Despite increasingly compelling arguments for biblical creation, many still doubt the Bible’s clear time scale because, they think, it is impossible for light to have reached Earth in only a few thousand years from stars that are millions of light-years away. This misconception is often the ultimate stumbling block to a straightforward acceptance of the Bible – even the gospel itself.

Positively, the answer to the creationists’ starlight problem ‘falls out’ of the same equations that, in the process, do away with many of the props for big bang thinking. Inspired by the pioneering creationist physicist D. Russell Humphreys, and building on the work of secular cosmologist Moshe Carmeli, physics professor John Hartnett employs the evidence which demands another revolution in cosmological physics.

Supporting technical papers make up a series of technical appendices, so that the main text of Starlight, Time and the New Physics is easily digestible for the intelligent lay person

Discipleship

Seeing and Savouring Jesus Christ

John Piper
Published by IVP

You’ve never met him in person, and you don’t know anyone who has. But there is a way to know who he is. How? Jesus Christ – the divine Person revealed in the Bible – has a unique excellence and a spiritual beauty that speaks directly to our souls and says, ‘Yes, this is truth.’ It’s like seeing the sun and knowing that it is light, or tasting honey and knowing that it is sweet.

The depth and complexity of Jesus shatter our simple mental frameworks. He baffled proud scribes with his wisdom but was understood and loved by children. He calmed a raging storm with a word but would not get himself down from the cross.

Look at the Jesus of the Bible. Keep your eyes open, and fill them with the portrait of Jesus in God’s Word. Jesus said, ‘If anyone’s will is to do God’s will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority.’ Ask God for the grace to do his will, and you will see the truth of his Son.

John Piper has written this excellent study and mediation on the character of Jesus in the hope that all will see him for who he really is and will come to enjoy him above all else.

China

Jesus in Beijing – How Christianity is Transforming China and Changing the Global Balance of Power

David Aikman
Published by Regnery

An unreported tectonic shift is happening in global politics – and it’s driven by religion.

Within the next thirty years, one-third of China’s population could be Christian, making China one of the largest Christian nations in the world. These Christians could also be China’s leaders, guiding the largest economy in the world.

What is happening in China is what happened to the Roman Empire nearly two millennia ago – a great power transforming itself. The results could be astonishing.

Veteran reporter David Aikman, former Beijing bureau chief for Time magazine, takes you inside this revolution to reveal some shocking facts. In Jesus in Beijing, you’ll learn:

  • Why China might be America’s next ally against radical Islam.
  • Why the Chinese believe that Christianity is crucial to the rise of the West and of China
  • Why fierce anti-Christian persecution and covert government encouragement exist side by side in China.
  • Why Chinese Christians see themselves as allies of the United States and of Israel.
  • How the Christian underground has spread and won over key members of the Chinese Communist Party.
  • The impact of a Christianising China on global Christendom at large.

In Jesus in Beijing, David Aikman recounts the fascinating story of how Christianity began in China (even predating Francis Xavier and the Jesuits), the bloody anti-Christian persecutions (especially under the Communists), the revival of an underground Christian movement led by brave men and women risking death, and the flowering of Christianity today — though still under persecution.

While China’s Communist rulers hope to reap the social and economic benefits of Christianity without losing power, as David Aikman so provocatively points out, the Chinese dragon might just be tamed by the Christian Lamb. Few books change the way a reader views the world. Jesus in Beijing is one of those books.

Mountain Rain

Eileen Crossman
STL

Mountain Rain is the biography of James Fraser, a pioneer missionary in China with the China Inland Mission. He was born in 1886 and died on the mission field in 1938. His story is one of the supremacy of God and the outworking of his sovereign grace; of Fraser’s spiritual battle against demonic powers and depression through prayer – his own and that of those who supported him in the UK – Letchworth in fact. This book is not only a biography it is an exposition on spiritual warfare.

This book is now out of print but its well worth trying to find a second hand copy.

General

The Forgotten History of the Western People

Mike Gascoigne
Published by Anno Mundi Books

This intriguing book examines some of the very earliest histories, beginning with the Babylonian ten kings before the flood, the story of Gilgamesh, and the foundation of Troy. The claims of the Greek philosopher Euhemerus are considered, that all the gods were deified kings. The story continues with the destruction of Troy, the flight of Aeneas to Italy and the arrival of his great-grandson Brutus in Britain. The early Irish and Scottish histories are also considered, together with the arrival of Christianity in these islands during the first century and the building of the first church at Glastonbury. Finally, all the histories agree that, just as the world had a beginning, so also it will have an end.

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