“The Best Book I Read in 2018”: Family Worship, Apologetics, Excellence

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What’s the best book you read in 2018? We posed this question to our Intersect contributors, and we’ll share their recommendations over the coming weeks. (Read list 1list 2, list 3, list 4, list 5 and list 6.)

Today, Intersect contributors highlight books on pastoring, family worship, the pursuit of excellence and apologetics.

Editor’s Note: You can download two Intersect-exclusive ebooks from Bruce Ashford for free. Details>>

Start Strong: Advice for Young Pastors
by Walter C. Jackson (WestBowPress, 2016)

Jayson Rowe

Jayson Rowe: Start Strong is a hidden gem that deserves to be well known. Dr. Jackson does a fantastic job of helping a first-time pastor better understand the fundamentals what the life of a pastor is going to be like. He tells young pastors to preach the Word, love your people, don’t be lazy, don’t be a mooch and let God’s will be your primary agenda.

He uses his personal experiences as a pastor to illustrate as he goes, and the book is very personal and well-written. Dr. Jackson has a pastor’s heart, and I truly felt like I had been mentored after reading the book.

Family Worship 
by Donald S. Whitney (Crossway, 2016)

Stephanie Jackson

Stephanie Jackson: In his book, Family Worship, Whitney outlines how families can worship God together using three basic principles: read, pray, and sing. As parents, often it can seem as an overwhelming task and Dr. Whitney reminds us “you don’t need to prepare anything beforehand. Just read, pray, and sing” (44). 

The recommendation for this little book can be said no better than from it’s back cover by Russell Moore, “His book will equip you to lead your family in worship, without fear or awkwardness or intimidation. This book could change your home.” 

Excellence: The Character of God and the Pursuit of Scholarly Virtue
by Andreas J. Köstenberger (Crossway, 2011)

Eddy Wu

Eddy Wu: Although Excellence is primarily a book focused on pursuing excellence in scholarship and academics, many of the principles are applicable for daily life and ministry. Christians are called to pursue all they do with excellence, and this book challenges the Christian to examine their life and see whether they are obedient to this call of excellence.

This book challenges the Christian to consider their schedule, their family and their calling. I would recommend this book to any Christian man or woman (specifically to the college or seminary student as their studies should exemplify excellence).

Expository Apologetics: Answering Objections with the Power of the Word
by Voddie Baucham (IVP Books, 2013)

Ronnie Winterton

Ronnie Winterton: If you’re anything like me, studying apologetics seems overwhelming. You feel like you need to get advanced degrees in religious studies, science, psychology, history and philosophy to be prepared for every possible objection to our faith.

Dr. Baucham’s Expository Apologetics provides a helpful framework for engaging apologetics from the faith we know rather than the objections we don’t. Drawing from the Scriptures, creeds, confessions, and catechisms, Dr. Baucham equips the reader to preach the gospel with confidence in God’s Word.

What is your favorite book of 2018? Comment below and let us know!

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The L. Russ Bush Center for Faith and Culture seeks to engage culture as salt and light, presenting the Christian faith and demonstrating its implications for all areas of human existence.

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