I thought I’d offer some book suggestions at the beginning of December for those of you who are wondering about books to buy someone (or yourself) for Christmas. Again, buy something for yourself for I have often bought myself a present (usually a fountain pen) and wrapped it up secretly, placed it quietly where no one can see it under the tree, and then waited for someone to find a gift marked “To Scot from Scot.” Well, here are my recommendations:
Preface: Editor of the year goes to John Wilson, at Books and Culture. They don’t come any better than John, and I’m glad to know him. I wish I could sit and chat weekly with him.
New Testament studies: N.T. Wright, Paul in Fresh Perspective (Fortress) — it can’t be accidental that Tom uses “fresh” instead of “new” and thereby sets himself over against some of the new perspective folks.
Old Testament Studies: (Be warned: I’m behind, way behind, in my OT studies.) T. Longman, How to Read Genesis (IVP)
Christian Spirituality: E. Peterson, Christ Plays in Ten Thousand Places (Eerdmans)
Theology: K. Vanhoozer, The Drama of Doctrine (WJKP) and J. Franke, The Character of Theology (Baker)
Emerging Movement/Church/Conversation: E. Gibbs, R.K. Bolger, Emerging Church: Creating Christian Community in Postmodern Cultures (Baker)
Ministry: John Burke, No Perfect People Allowed (Zondervan)
Memoir: Karen Spears Zacharias, Hero Mama (Morrow)
Biography: A. Hollingsworth, The Simple Life of Mr. Rogers (Integrity)
Reference books: Dictionary of the Old Testament: Historical Books (IVP) and K. Vanhoozer and some others, Dictionary for Theological Interpretation of the Bible (Baker)
Essays: A. Jacobs, Shaming the Devil (Eerdmans)
Education: (I’m a sucker for books on education.) Jacobsen and Jacobsen, Scholarship and the Christian Faith (Oxford — 2004, but I got it in 2005).
Novel: M. Robinson, Gilead (FSG) [Most years I couldn’t recommend a novel because I would not have read one, but I liked this one.]
Kris just read this list and can’t understand why I didn’t put Embracing Grace and my others on the list. My answer: I posted on books I read not ones I wrote.