Looking for something to read, but not sure what to read? Then you have come to the right spot. I have put together a few books that I have found to be rather worth reading. I am endeavoring to categorize the books by accessibility as in how hard would they be for a person who has only gone to Sunday School and Confirmation/Adult New Member classes. I do plan on updating the list as I come across new books so check back to see what’s new.
Recommended Bible Translation (With so many to choose which one should I read?)
Each translation follows a translational methodology. Some translations will be done to simplify reading. Other translations will attempt to translate each word in the original languages with an equivalent word in English and tend to be a bit harder to read. As a note the easier to read it is the more the translator has inserted his or her interpretation. With this in mind, I would encourage you to lean more towards those with a word for word methodology such as:
- King James Version
- English Standard Version – we use this one on Sunday Mornings.
- New King James Version
- Revised Standard Version
- Recommended Study Bible: The Lutheran Study Bible by CPH – It has a bunch of great notes and articles that will help you understand God’s Word.
Novice (I am new to this, only attended Sunday Services, or been to a few Bible Studies)
- Congregation at Prayer – A free resource we provide each week on the website and in our bulletin. It’s not a book but it is a great starting place and review.
- Luther’s Small Catechism – A great starting place and review for everybody.
- Lutheranism 101 – Easy to understand introduction on Lutheran theology.
- One Way Love by Tullian Tchvidijian
- Spirituality of the Cross by Gene Veith – Introduces you to theology but also traces the author’s journey to the Lutheran Church.
- The Story Bible – It is a children’s picture Bible, but if you are not familiar with the Biblical narrative this is a great introduction.
- What They Need to Hear by Klemet Preus. A series of letters Pastor Preus wrote to his Father-in-Law answering various questions about the faith and sharing the Gospel.
- Treasure of Daily Prayer – A daily devotional book utilizing the Daily Reading list (aka Daily Lectionary). It also includes the writings of many influential Christian writers. A very flexible tool that each day gives you a reading from Psalms, Old Testament, and New Testament. It also includes prayers and suggested further readings. As a note, this is what I use for my daily devotions.
- A Simple Way to Pray by Martin Luther – struggling with prayer? Here is a good place to start.
- Broken by Jonathan Fisk – With more pop culture references than you can shake a fist at Fisk introduces you to why good Theology matters in everyday life
Intermediate (I have read a few of the books on the Novice list or regularly attend Bible Studies and Services)
- Luther’s Large Catechism – Expands on what is in the Small Catechism, it’s also a great introduction to Martin Luther’s other writings.
- Family Vocation by Gene Veith – How are Christian families supposed to live?
- Dying To Live by Harold Senkbeil – A fantastic book on being forgiven and forgiving.
- God At Work by Gene Veith – Answers the question of how does God give us our Daily Bread.
- Jesus + Nothing = Everthing by Tullian Tchvidijian – Very similar to One Way Love but with greater depth.
- Concordia: The Lutheran Confessions or Book of Concord – They are the same work, the Concordia edition includes some study notes and historical information. The Book of Concord is the collection of writings that the Lutheran Church believes to be the correct explanation of the Bible. If you have read Luther’s Small and Large Catechisms you have already read part of the Book of Concord.
- Concordia Popular Commentary: Revelation by Louis Brighton – A simplified version of Dr. Brighton’s Concordia Commentary Series volume on Revelation. It is an excellent study on the meaning of this book that confuses so many people.
Advanced (I have read books on the Intermediate list and pretty much all of the books on Novice)
- The Proper Distinction of Law and Gospel by C.F.W. Walther – It is a series of lectures by Walther given at Concordia Seminary in St. Louis. It is not a hard read, but his lengthy quotes can be intimidating and make him a bit hard to follow. He also makes use of biblical languages, Latin and German. It has all been translated.
- The Two Natures of Christ by Martin Chemnitz – A rather in depth look into who Jesus is.
- Christian Dogmatics vol I-III by Francis Pieper – A very in depth look at Christian theology.
- Year of the Warrior by Lars Walker – Viking Fantasy
- Hammer of God by Bo Giertz – Follow the journey of three pastors
- Skeleton in God’s Closest by Paul Maier – Archaeological thriller
- Flames of Rome by Paul Maier – Political intrigue in the Roman court during the reign of Nero
- House of Living Stones by Katie Schuermann – Christian fiction about life in a small town church
- The Choir Immortal by Katie Schuermann – Continuation of the story in House of Living Stones
- the Messengers: Discovered by Lisa Clark – Young Adult Near future dystopian