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What are you going to do with all your free time? How about read some books!!!

I put together a list of books, sermons, and articles you might want to read:

In general, I’d say you can’t go wrong with anything by Sinclair Ferguson or Stephen Wellum. But if you’d like to get started, check out Ferguson’s The Whole Christ or Wellum’s God the Son Incarnate.

Most recently I enjoyed James Dolezal’s All That Is in God and the late John Webster’s Holiness (both are more advanced and require slow, careful reading, and [probably] rereading).

For something both theological and practical, you might try Thomas Watson’s (1620–1686) A Body of Divinity. Don’t let the fact that it was published in seventeenth century deter you. Watson writes simply, beautifully, and practically. I recently finished his Doctrine of Repentance, and it solidified my sense that Watson may be one of my favorite writers.

Probably the best historical book I’ve read in the past few years was Harry Stout’s The New England Soul: Preaching and Religious Culture in Colonial New England. Don’t let the title intimidate you. Stout is a masterful writer and is engaging throughout.

Although I don’t share his theological convictions, I appreciated Barry Hankins’s book Francis Schaeffer and the Shaping of Evangelical America

Additionally, one that I think American evangelicals should read carefully is Nathan Hatch’s The Democratization of American ChristianityI don’t think you can understand American evangelicalism unless you work through this volume. Also, since most American evangelicals have a limited (and often skewed) understanding of church history, you might want to use all this extra time to carefully peruse D. H. Williams’s Retrieving the Tradition & Renewing Evangelicalism: A Primer for Suspicious Protestants. Note: More people should read Williams’s books.

Admittedly this is a bit dated now (it was published in 2016), but if you haven’t read Yuval Levin’s The Fractured Republic, you might enjoy it. (If you’d like my brief summary of the book, contact me personally and I can email it to you.)

With respect to ethics, you might want to check out Denny Burk’s What Is the Meaning of Sex? 

For cultural issues, see Tim Keller’s Making Sense of God.

Two of my favorite are John Flavel’s The Mystery of Providence and Richard Sibbes’s The Bruised Reed. Maybe challenge yourself and work through Augustine’s Confessions. (Make sure you get this translation.) If none of those tickle your fancy, perhaps consider reading these sermons by Jonathan Edwards. If you don’t want to spend the money (or Amazon can’t get to your house fast enough), I would recommend reading the following sermons by Edwards: “The Excellency of Christ,“God the Best Portion of the Christian,” or “The Importance and Advantage of a Thorough Knowledge of Divine Truth.”

But you also can’t go wrong reading Spurgeon’s sermons as well, in particular, “Sweet Stimulants for the Fainting Soul,” or “Israel’s God and God’s Israel.” One of his most moving sermons (which he preached after a local disaster) is “The Wailing of Risca.”

If you’d like to work on your prayer life, I always recommend that people start with Paul Miller’s A Praying Life

If you want to identify personal weaknesses and cultivate virtues, read Rebecca DeYoung’s Glittiering Vices

Lastly, since the Coronavirus is doing a superb job of reminding us of our mortality, you might want to check out David Gibson’s Living Life Backwards

Challenging Essays
George Weigel, “A Better Concept of Freedom”

Scott R. Swain, “That Your Joy May Be Full: A Theology of Happiness”

Jane Kenyon, Otherwise: New and Selected Poems.

Mary Oliver, Devotions.

Leland Ryken, ed. The Soul in Paraphrase: A Treasury of Classic Devotional Poems.