Below are a few books I highly recommend. I’ve limited this list to those topics that are particularly useful for college students and young adults. Many of these books, though, are helpful to any Christian regardless of your age or station in life.

The Lost Art of Disciple Making by Leroy Eims — This book focuses on the ministry strategy of Jesus and how we can implement it in our churches and lives today. Eims discusses the concept of spiritual multiplication, a concept that’s often “lost” in today’s bigger-is-better culture of church. Start with a few men or women, train them to know Jesus and share the Gospel, and empower them to train a few others who train a few others who train a few others.

The Powerful Percent by Patricia Bergen — Sadly, this book is out of print, so you’ll have to track down a used copy on Amazon or AddAll. College students are only about 1% of the world’s population, but many (if not most) of the major movements of God in Christian history have been initiated by students.

The Fuel and the Flame by Steve Shadrach — This is a great discussion of how to “ignite your college campus for Christ.” It contains some great practical ideas for how to minister to college students. It’s particularly helpful for those in college ministry, but I think students can learn a great deal from it as well.

Survey of Bible Doctrine by Charles Ryrie — This isn’t necessarily a gripping page-turner, but it’s a good solid introduction to systematic theology and its categories. It’s also short enough to read quickly and understand.

Thy Kingdom Come by Dwight Pentecost — Pentecost is a professor at Dallas Theological Seminary, where I received my Master’s degree. This book is a great overview of the flow of biblical history, using key covenants (agreements between God and His people) as signposts. If you’ve always struggled to fit the Bible together as one coherent story, this book will help.

To the Golden Shore: The Life of Adoniram Judson by Courtney Anderson — There are a number of great Christian biographies, but this is my favorite. Don’t be intimidated by its length or small print; once you begin this book you won’t be able to put it down. Judson was one of the very first American missionaries. He left for Burma at the age of 25, and spent his life sharing the Gospel there. I really can’t recommend this highly enough.

A Tale of Three Kings by Gene Edwards — This is a fabulous little book about the importance of respecting and submitting to authority. Edwards uses Saul, David, and Absalom as models of the right and wrong ways to interact with authority in our lives, whether it is just or unjust authority. You can probably finish this book in 3-4 hours.

The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard and Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster — Two great books about the importance of the spiritual disciplines in the life of a believer. Willard’s book provides a theological discussion of the disciplines, while Foster’s book provides a very practical overview of them.

Honest to God? and Just Walk Across the Room by Bill Hybels — Hybels is a very practical and easy-to-read author. Honest to God is about living a life of authenticity before God and others. Just Walk Across the Room is a challenging but down-to-earth approach to personal evangelism.

This is by no means a comprehensive list. If you have other recommendations, feel free to share them in the comments here. I’m always looking for new resources to read and to share!

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