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Other than the Bible, what are the most important Christian texts?
4-22-08 | vanity

Posted on 04/22/2008 12:08:45 PM PDT by ChurtleDawg

Other than the Holy Bible, what writings should every Christian try to find and read, in your opinion?

For example: The Didache, writings by early Christian apologetics like Justin Matyr, St. Augustine's books, The Nicene Creed, the works of C.S. Lewis, Pope Benedict's book "Jesus of Nazareth", the Dead Sea Scrolls....etc.

These can be any book, writing or article that you think was essential to your understanding of Christianity, theology or to your interpretation of the Bible.


TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Theology; Worship
KEYWORDS: bible; scripture; theology; tradition
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1 posted on 04/22/2008 12:09:01 PM PDT by ChurtleDawg
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To: ChurtleDawg

Pilgrim’s Progress (Bunyon) and anything at all by Randy Alcorn.


2 posted on 04/22/2008 12:10:17 PM PDT by freepertoo
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To: ChurtleDawg

I’d add Francis Schaeffer’s works as well as Charles Spurgeon’s sermons.


3 posted on 04/22/2008 12:11:15 PM PDT by flying_bullet (El Conservo tribe member)
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To: ChurtleDawg

“Christian Institutes” by Calvin, “Religious Affections” by Johnathan Edwards, “Knowing God” by J.I. Packer, and “The Cross of Christ” by John Stott.


4 posted on 04/22/2008 12:13:44 PM PDT by joebuck (Finitum non capax infinitum!)
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To: ChurtleDawg

A.W. Tozer, The pursuit of God (actually any of his works).


5 posted on 04/22/2008 12:17:10 PM PDT by ThisLittleLightofMine
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To: ChurtleDawg

“Reign of the Servant Kings” by Joseph Dillow

and

“Once Saved Always Saved” by R.T. Kendall


6 posted on 04/22/2008 12:17:35 PM PDT by fishtank (Fenced BORDERS, English LANGUAGE, Patriotic CULTURE: A good plan.)
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To: joebuck
The Heidelberg Catechism
7 posted on 04/22/2008 12:18:00 PM PDT by P8riot (I carry a gun because I can't carry a cop.)
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To: ThisLittleLightofMine
Tozer is great. I love his emphasis on the need for repentance as well as forgiveness.
8 posted on 04/22/2008 12:18:29 PM PDT by quadrant
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To: ChurtleDawg

C.S Lewis for sure.

I also highly recommend anything by Norman Geisler.


9 posted on 04/22/2008 12:19:02 PM PDT by marinamuffy (I really dislike McCain but I'll crawl over broken glass to vote against Hillary or the Obamanation.)
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To: ChurtleDawg
Summa Theologica
10 posted on 04/22/2008 12:19:04 PM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: quadrant

Anything by Max Lucado.


11 posted on 04/22/2008 12:19:28 PM PDT by freepertoo
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To: ChurtleDawg

lets get bibical by singer


12 posted on 04/22/2008 12:19:32 PM PDT by jy1297
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To: ThisLittleLightofMine

Tozer! Yes! Very powerful, very convicting. Have you read anything by G. Campbell Morgan or C.H. MacKintosh? 2 very good Christian writers.


13 posted on 04/22/2008 12:19:59 PM PDT by MarDav
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To: freepertoo

You’re not serious.


14 posted on 04/22/2008 12:20:39 PM PDT by P8riot (I carry a gun because I can't carry a cop.)
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To: ChurtleDawg

Martyrs Mirror, 1660.


15 posted on 04/22/2008 12:23:08 PM PDT by aimhigh
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To: ChurtleDawg

Since you mentioned C.S. Lewis, my very favorite writing of his is “A Grief Observed.” On the same subject, the only book actually penned by Oswald Chambers, “Baffled to Fight Better” is a must read. “The School of Christ” by T. Austin Sparks had a big impact on me, and a book by present day author, Gene Edwards, “The Prisoner in the Third Cell.”


16 posted on 04/22/2008 12:23:35 PM PDT by dawn53
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To: ChurtleDawg

Eusebius’ History of the Church through 300 AD. Luther’s commentaries on Romans and Galations


17 posted on 04/22/2008 12:24:57 PM PDT by Augustinian monk (Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin - Romans 4:8)
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To: ChurtleDawg

Catechism of the Catholic Church

“God in the Dock” by CS Lewis


18 posted on 04/22/2008 12:25:53 PM PDT by papertyger
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To: P8riot

Anything by Joyce Meyers /s


19 posted on 04/22/2008 12:25:59 PM PDT by Augustinian monk (Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin - Romans 4:8)
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To: marinamuffy
"C.S Lewis for sure."

Lewis himself acknowledged his indebtedness to:


20 posted on 04/22/2008 12:25:59 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: ChurtleDawg

Asimov’s Guide to the Bible


21 posted on 04/22/2008 12:25:59 PM PDT by Soliton (McCain couldn't even win a McCain look-alike contest)
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To: ChurtleDawg
I love Pope John Paul II encyclicals. They were ahead of their time and prohetic. Redemtoris Mater is beautiful for women. He explains how important women are for God and the special role women play in humanity. God gave us a true role model and of course that is the blessed mother. He called it the feminine genious if I recall correctly.

"The Virgin Mother is constantly present on this journey of faith of the People of God towards the light. This is shown in a special way by the canticle of the "Magnificat," which, having welled up from the depths of Mary's faith at the Visitation, ceaselessly re-echoes in the heart of the Church down the centuries. This is proved by its daily recitation in the liturgy of Vespers and at many other moments of both personal and communal devotion."

"My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on his servant in her lowliness. For behold, henceforth all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name:

http://www.vatican.va/edocs/ENG0224/__P3.HTM

http://www.vatican.va/edocs/ENG0224/__P2.HTM

22 posted on 04/22/2008 12:26:19 PM PDT by mgist
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To: ChurtleDawg
The Summa would top my list.
23 posted on 04/22/2008 12:27:50 PM PDT by curiosity
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To: ChurtleDawg
The Confessions of Saint Augustine.
The Breviloquium of Saint Bonaventure
The Divine Comedy of Dante Alighieri
The Summa Theologiae of Saint Thomas Aquinas
The Catechism of the Council of Trent
The Practice Of The Presence Of God by Brother Lawrence
The Dark Night Of The Soul/The Ascent Of Mount Carmel by Saint John Of The Cross
The Dialogue of Saint Catherine of Siena
The Spiritual Combat of Father Lorenzo Scupoli
Faith And Reason by John Paul II
The Catechism Of The Catholic Church

24 posted on 04/22/2008 12:30:58 PM PDT by wideawake (Why is it that those who call themselves Constitutionalists know the least about the Constitution?)
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To: ChurtleDawg

The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer.


25 posted on 04/22/2008 12:33:22 PM PDT by mouse_35 (Vote Demorcrat for 2008! Lets do for Iraq what we did for Cambodia!!!)
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To: Augustinian monk

LOL!


26 posted on 04/22/2008 12:35:30 PM PDT by P8riot (I carry a gun because I can't carry a cop.)
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To: P8riot

(((You’re not serious.)))

About what?


27 posted on 04/22/2008 12:37:25 PM PDT by freepertoo
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To: freepertoo

Max Lucado is okie dokie, but I don’t find his writings to be “important Christian texts”


28 posted on 04/22/2008 12:39:19 PM PDT by P8riot (I carry a gun because I can't carry a cop.)
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To: freepertoo

Pilgrim’s Progress? You have to be kidding. This is what Bunyam would write about this thread:

Then, Newbie Freeper asked anyone who would read his letter what books they might recommend to anyone traveling from New Christian Town to Well-Read Christian City. Then Sectarian proposed first that Childish Screed should be read, but Offended Catholic protested, and mocked the proposal. He said, “1. Firstly, I find it quite poorly written, and 2. Secondly, it’s teachings are simply bitter sectarianism.”


29 posted on 04/22/2008 12:40:59 PM PDT by dangus
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To: freepertoo

I think Heaven by Randy Alcorn is fascinating. It’s amazing that Heaven is the ultimate goal of Christians yet it is discussed so little. Alcorn tries to bring it to life based on scripture, although he has little to go on. It’s a very interesting read.


30 posted on 04/22/2008 12:41:21 PM PDT by cdga5for4
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To: mouse_35

One of the first books I read when I became a Christian. I think the first chapter is called “Cheap Grace/Costly Grace.”


31 posted on 04/22/2008 12:41:39 PM PDT by MarDav
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To: Soliton

Is this Isaac Asimov, the noted science fiction writer?


32 posted on 04/22/2008 12:41:59 PM PDT by dawn53
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To: ChurtleDawg

Of the Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity by Richard Hooker

The Collects of Thomas Cranmer by Paul Zahl

Anything by CS Lewis


33 posted on 04/22/2008 12:42:07 PM PDT by kalee (The offenses we give, we write in the dust; Those we take, we write in marble. JHuett)
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To: P8riot

The title mentioned “important Christian texts”, but the body of the post included “These can be any book, writing or article that you think was essential to your understanding of Christianity, theology or to your interpretation of the Bible”...and if somebody thinks Lucado helped them understand their faith, who is anybody else to say that he didn’t, or that his writings aren’t important to certain individuals.


34 posted on 04/22/2008 12:46:10 PM PDT by dawn53
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To: dawn53

Yes, and professor of Biochemistry at Johns Hopkins. His non-fiction works (hundreds of them) are better than his fiction. His Guide to Shakespeare is also brilliant.


35 posted on 04/22/2008 12:48:22 PM PDT by Soliton (McCain couldn't even win a McCain look-alike contest)
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To: ChurtleDawg

Book of Mormon.

{sarc.}


36 posted on 04/22/2008 12:52:26 PM PDT by proudpapa (May God Bless Our Troops.)
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To: ChurtleDawg

“The Faith” by Charles Colson


37 posted on 04/22/2008 12:53:08 PM PDT by llmc1
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To: dawn53

Max Lucado was amazing to me, and I’m Catholic. What is so great is that he can be understood by anyone. I read him as a kid and it is all I could comprehend at that point. The Catechism Of The Catholic Church is profound, and certainly not for the average Christian. The Catechism is good for someone who is biblically very knowledgable and has a deep faith. In my opinion all have their merit.


38 posted on 04/22/2008 12:54:32 PM PDT by mgist
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To: ChurtleDawg
Scanning down the thread, I see that after the Bible, the greatest religious works in the 2,000 year history of Christendom are by people named Alcorn, Schaeffer, Edwards, Packer, Stott, Dillow, Kendall, Lucado, Morgan and MacKintosh?

Aren't they the Dolphins' defensive starters?

Who are these people and what are you guys smoking?

The Imitation of Christ, by Thomas a Kempis, and The Way of Perfection and The Interior Castle by St. Teresa of Avila dwarf all of this twaddle.

For an easy but wonderful read, try Introduction to the Spiritual Life by St. Francis de Sales.

39 posted on 04/22/2008 12:55:19 PM PDT by marshmallow
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To: ChurtleDawg

The Orations of Arminius.


40 posted on 04/22/2008 12:58:28 PM PDT by tal hajus
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To: ChurtleDawg

To answer your question directly, the bible is the only foundational document of Christianity. To ask which OTHER books one should read is to ask which commentaries on the bible are the best, or which best commends a Christian way of life. I’m a little taken aback by some of the highly sectarian suggestions. (Sectarianism is to religious denominations what partisanship is to political parties.)

As a Catholic, I find “the Soul of the Apostolate” to be an my favorite book on how to fall in love with God through an inner prayer life. I think the most contra-Catholic Calvinists would love its reliance on grace alone, but for the very Catholic-specific expressions. For instance, the author recommends nightly keeping a confessional journal, a practice Calvinists could love, but the expectation is that the journal will also perfect one’s mindfulness during the sacrament of reconciliation, which Calivinists don’t believe in.

In general, I’d recommend the writings of Augustine of Hippo, Therese of Lisieux, and C. S. Lewis (among Lewis’, particularly “the Screwtape Letters,” “Mere Christianity,” and “Out of the Silent Planet.”) But these are hardly foundational to Christianity.

For the record, C.S. Lewis was an atheist, converted to Christianity by J.R.R. Tolkein. He became England’s leading Christian apologist in the 20th century. He was an Anglican, with a very Catholic sensibility.

Augustine was a 4th-century bishop in Africa. Although a staunch defender of the papacy, he is much admired by Calvinists and other protestants, for his arguments against Pellagianism, the idea that man could merit salvation by his works. He is the first person to express the doctrine of original sin.

Therese of Lisieux was the youngest of many daughters of parents who were denied entrance into religious orders for mental incompetence. (They were, nonetheless, very devout and exemplary parents) She was very sickly for much of her brief life, and was unable to perform any great works. She was very humble, and considered herself barely literate. In great obedience to the demands of her superiors, she kept a diary, which, after her death, became a most moving tribute to her love of God. The best selling book of the 20th century (behind all the various publications of the bibles combined), she was named as the greatest saint of modern times, despite having done practically nothing in the eyes of the world.


41 posted on 04/22/2008 1:02:52 PM PDT by dangus
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To: ChurtleDawg
The Angelic Doctor's Summa Theologica.
42 posted on 04/22/2008 1:03:05 PM PDT by TotusTuus (Christos Voskrese!)
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To: ChurtleDawg

The Lutheran Confessions, as contained in the Book of Concord


43 posted on 04/22/2008 1:04:06 PM PDT by RepRivFarm
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To: marshmallow; ChurtleDawg

>> For an easy but wonderful read, try Introduction to the Spiritual Life by St. Francis de Sales. <<

Oh, yes, I second that! How could I have neglected that!


44 posted on 04/22/2008 1:04:07 PM PDT by dangus
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To: ChurtleDawg

Luther’s Catechism and the Augsburg Confession


45 posted on 04/22/2008 1:08:32 PM PDT by stefanbatory
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To: ChurtleDawg

The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis


46 posted on 04/22/2008 1:08:52 PM PDT by veritas2002
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To: ChurtleDawg

Jack Chick cuts right to the chase. ;)


47 posted on 04/22/2008 1:08:53 PM PDT by Mr. Jeeves ("Wise men don't need to debate; men who need to debate are not wise." -- Tao Te Ching)
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To: ChurtleDawg
I see a lot of people mentioning C.S. Lewis. Great writer for sure. But for these type of books and articles, I'm surprised nobody has mentioned the giant "apostle of common sense" from early 20th Century British fame:

G.K. Chesterton

48 posted on 04/22/2008 1:10:33 PM PDT by TotusTuus (Christos Voskrese!)
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To: ChurtleDawg
I'd say anything from the last century hasn't been around long enough to determine it's long term worth. That includes Lewis and Schaeffer.
Other than the Holy Bible, what writings should every Christian try to find and read, in your opinion?

Every Christian?

Every Christian should be familiar with the ecumenical creeds, and have some idea of where they come from and why they were drawn up. I mean, it doesn't get any more basic than "I believe in God the father almighty, maker of heaven and earth, ...".

Every Christian should have some knowledge of Christian history, and try to be aware of where they sit in that history, so there's not some long vague gap between John on Patmos and the coming of D. L. Moody.

The Heidelberg Catechism

Heidelberg is good. Here's a musical version of question one.

These can be any book, writing or article that you think was essential to your understanding of Christianity, theology or to your interpretation of the Bible.

Personal? One out of many, an odd one: Dale Frederick Bruner's A Theology of the Holy Spirit. I read that around 1977 or so, to try to make sense of what was happening in a church that was wandering off into charismatic signs and wonders stuff. It's been that long since I read it, but I recall it as being a radically Christ centered reading of 1 Corinthians. That, BB. Warfield and some long mislaid primer on TULIP took me away from charismania straightaway.

49 posted on 04/22/2008 1:10:40 PM PDT by Lee N. Field (Q1) What is your only comfort in life and death? A)That I am not my own ....)
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To: ChurtleDawg
Summa Theologica by St. Thomas Aquinas

It was intended as a manual for beginners as a compilation of all of the main theological teachings of that time. It summarizes the reasonings for almost all points of Christian theology in the West, which, before the Protestant Reformation, subsisted solely in the Roman Catholic Church. The Summa's topics follow a cycle: the existence of God, God's creation, Man, Man's purpose, Christ, the Sacraments, and back to God. It is famous for its five arguments for the existence of God, the Quinquae viae (Latin: five ways). Throughout his work, Aquinas cites Augustine, Aristotle, and other Christian, Jewish and even Muslim and ancient pagan scholars.

50 posted on 04/22/2008 1:11:34 PM PDT by CWW (Make the most of the loss, and regroup for 2008!!)
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