Books of the Year?

book pile
One of my favorite bloggers, Dr. Scot McKnight of Northern Seminary, offered his picks for the top books of the year today on his blog, Jesus Creed. It’s worth a look for those who enjoy biblical and theological studies.

He mentions one of the books that I would consider in my top five, Tim Keller’s Center Church, as well as a number of other fascinating books. His top pick was one that I hadn’t heard of yet.

He writes:

Every year we choose Books of the Year for the Jesus Creed readers, and this year’s choices are a bumper crop — but also see the note at the end of this post. We sample books in a variety of areas. I hope you enjoy our choices.

Book of the Year: David Swarz, The Moral Minority: The Evangelical Left in an Age of Conservatism. Swarz unveils a history largely ignored, a history of a movement that has a decisive impact on the church today, and which is (so I think) destined to have a bigger impact in the next two decades. Exceptionally well researched; clear prose; focuses on people and their impact….[read more here]

What about you? What has been the best new book, whether fiction or non-fiction, that you have encountered during this past year?

8 thoughts on “Books of the Year?

      • In some ways it is a summary of his three previous books. So if you have read those then you might not get much out of this. I had only read his God’s Battalions (about the Crusades). But this includes the rise of early Christianity (as does Cities of God) and the rise of Western Culture (as does Victory of Reason).

        Its real point is that there are some reasons why Christianity is the largest religion in the world. And he tries to counter what he things are bad reasons for this. So he says Christianity, while it had many lower class early participants, actually was really spread by the up class and powerful and urban. By the time of Constantine he believes that most cities of the Roman Empire were primarily Christian. (He actually says that one of the problems of this is that once constantine came to power Christianity was such an urban religion that there was little motivation for evangelizing rural areas. So Christianity never really seeped into rural Europe and mostly it was rich and powerful that were the serious Christians.)

        He also counters the very idea of a Dark Ages and asserts that 500-1000 or so was one of the most innovative points of European history.

        He also has a section on religious pluralism and the counters the state churches of Europe with the pluralism of the Western hemisphere.

        It is a bit all over the place in focus. But the central theme is that Christianity is the central religious tradition of the west for significant sociological and historical reasons.

  1. In a pit with a lion on a snowy day by Mark Batterson. Very good book. Themed around Benaiah in 2 Samuel. It’s all about overcoming your fear, doing big things, & being ok with uncertainty so God can do great things through us.

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