Book Recommendations

The books listed below are suggested readings from HCC's senior pastor. Consider reading the suggested books for supplemental spiritual growth. Interested in a specific topic? Click on one of the following topics to find additional readings:  

 
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Knowing God by J.I. Packer

For over 40 years, J. I. Packer's classic has been an important tool to help Christians around the world discover the wonder, the glory and the joy of knowing God. In 2006, Christianity Today voted this title one of the top 50 books that have shaped evangelicals. Stemming from Packer's profound theological knowledge, Knowing God brings together two important facets of the Christian faith― knowing about God and also knowing God through the context of a close relationship with the person of Jesus Christ. Written in an engaging and practical tone, this thought-provoking work seeks to transform and enrich the Christian understanding of God. Explaining both who God is and how we can relate to him, Packer divides his book into three sections: The first directs our attention to how and why we know God, the second to the attributes of God and the third to the benefits enjoyed by a those who know him intimately. This guide leads readers into a greater understanding of God while providing advice to gaining a closer relationship with him as a result.

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Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

One of the most popular introductions to Christian faith ever written, Mere Christianity has sold millions of copies worldwide. The book brings together C.S. Lewis's legendary broadcast talks of the war years, talks in which he set out simply to "explain and defend the belief that has been common to nearly all Christians at all times." Rejecting the boundaries that divide Christianity's many denominations, Lewis provides an unequaled opportunity for believers and nonbelievers alike to hear a powerful, rational case for the Christian faith. It is a collection of scintillating brilliance that remains strikingly fresh for the modern reader and at the same time confirms C.S. Lewis's reputation as one of the leading writers and thinkers of our age.

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Basic Christianity by R.W. Stott

In this book world-renowned scholar and preacher John Stott clearly defines both the fundamental claims of Christianity and the proper outworkings of those basic beliefs in the daily lives of believers. Stott's Basic Christianity is a sound, sensible guide for anyone seeking an intellectually satisfying presentation of the Christian faith.

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What Is the Gospel? by Greg Gilbert

What is the gospel? It seems like a simple question, yet it has been known to incite some heated responses, even in the church. How are we to formulate a clear, biblical understanding of the gospel? Tradition, reason, and experience all leave us ultimately disappointed. If we want answers, we must turn to the Word of God.

Greg Gilbert does so in What Is the Gospel? Beginning with Paul's systematic presentation of the gospel in Romans and moving through the sermons in Acts, Gilbert argues that the central structure of the gospel consists of four main subjects: God, man, Christ, and a response. The book carefully examines each and then explores the effects the gospel can have in individuals, churches, and the world. Both Christian and non-Christian readers will gain a clearer understanding of the gospel in this valuable resource.

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The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism
by Timothy Keller

Timothy Keller, the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, addresses the frequent doubts that skeptics and non-believers bring to religion. Using literature, philosophy, anthropology, pop culture, and intellectual reasoning, Keller explains how the belief in a Christian God is, in fact, a sound and rational one. To true believers he offers a solid platform on which to stand against the backlash toward religion spawned by the Age of Skepticism. And to skeptics, atheists, and agnostics he provides a challenging argument for pursuing the reason for God.

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Desiring God by John Piper

Desiring God is a paradigm-shattering work that dramatically alters common perspectives on relating to God.  Piper reveals that there really is no need to choose between duty and delight in the Christian life. In fact, for the follower of Jesus, delight is the duty as Christ is most magnified in His people when they are most satisfied in Him. Constantly drawing on Scripture to build his case, Piper shows why pursuing maximum joy is essential to glorifying God. He discusses the implications of this for conversion, worship, love, Scripture, prayer, money, marriage, missions, and suffering. Piper beckons us to approach God with the hedonist’s abandon. Finally, we are freed to enjoy Jesus—not only as our Lord and Savior, but also as our all-surpassing, soul-satisfying Treasure. Desiring God may turn your Christian world upside down. And that will be a good thing, for the glory of God, and for your deepest joy.

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Here I Stand: A Life of Martin Luther by Roland Bainton

The Reformation of the sixteenth century was a vast and complicated movement. It involved kings and peasants, cardinals and country priests, monks and merchants. It spread from one end of Europe to the other, and manifested itself in widely differing forms. Yet in spite of its diverse and complex character, to start to understand the Reformation you need know only one name: Martin Luther. Roland Bainton’s Here I Stand: A Life of Martin Luther remains the definitive introduction to the great Reformer and is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand this towering historical figure.

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Turning Points: Decisive Moments in the History of Christianity
by Mark A. Noll

In this popular introduction to church history, now in its third edition, Mark Noll isolates key events that provide a framework for understanding the history of Christianity. The book presents Christianity as a worldwide phenomenon rather than just a Western experience. Now organized around fourteen key moments in church history, this well-received text provides contemporary Christians with a fuller understanding of God as he has revealed his purpose through the centuries. This new edition includes a new preface; updates throughout the book; revised "further readings" for each chapter; and two new chapters, including one spotlighting Vatican II and Lausanne as turning points of the recent past.

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The Discipline of Grace by Jerry Bridges

The Discipline of Grace offers a clear and thorough explanation of the gospel and what it means to be a believer. Written by Navigator author Jerry Bridges, this book explores how the same grace that brings us to faith in Christ also disciplines us in Christ. In learning more about grace, you also will learn about God’s character, His forgiveness, and the Holy Spirit.

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Confessions by Saint Augustine

The son of a pagan father and a Christian mother, Saint Augustine spent his early years torn between conflicting faiths and world views. His Confessions, written when he was in his forties, recount how, slowly and painfully, he came to turn away from his youthful ideas and licentious lifestyle, to become instead a staunch advocate of Christianity and one of its most influential thinkers. A remarkably honest and revealing spiritual autobiography, the Confessions also address fundamental issues of Christian doctrine, and many of the prayers and meditations it includes are still an integral part of the practice of Christianity today.

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Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney

Drawn from a rich heritage, Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life will guide you through a carefully selected array of disciplines. By illustrating why the disciplines are important, showing how each one will help you grow in godliness, and offering practical suggestions for cultivating them, Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life will provide you with a refreshing opportunity to become more like Christ and grow in character and maturity. Now updated and revised to equip a new generation of readers, this anniversary edition features in-depth discussions on each of the key disciplines.

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How to Read the Bible for All It's Worth by Gordon Fee

Understanding the Bible isn’t for the few, the gifted, the scholarly. The Bible is accessible. It’s meant to be read and comprehended by everyone from armchair readers to seminary students. A few essential insights into the Bible can clear up a lot of misconceptions and help you grasp the meaning of Scripture and its application to your twenty-first-century life.

Covering everything from translational concerns to different genres of biblical writing, How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth is used all around the world. In clear, simple language, it helps you accurately understand the different parts of the Bible―their meaning for ancient audiences and their implications for you today―so you can uncover the inexhaustible worth that is in God’s Word.

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Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan

One of the most widely read books of all time, this adventure reveals John Bunyan's intense grasp of the Scriptures. Penned while in prison for refusing to compromise the gospel, The Pilgrim's Progress is a guide for the journey from death to life. The times have changed, but the landmarks and adversaries are very much the same.

The Pilgrim's Progress is a call to the high stakes of every Christian's journey. Don't pick it up expecting quaint amusement; it is a story of the undeniable truth, great cost, and overwhelming joy of the gospel. 

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