Recommended Books: Theology

(The Study of God)

BCL rotates recommended books periodically to keep our resource lists compact for ease of use. If you don't see your favorite book on this list, please check back periodically as it may be featured later. (Please note: This page contains affiliate links through which Beautiful Christian Life may receive a commission to help cover its operating costs.)

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All That Is in God by James E. Dolezal

James Dolezal wrote All That Is in God to help recover the basic truths about God at a time when Christians seem to have forgotten the historic understanding of God’s nature. In a relatively short book, Dolezal has written to all of us with clear biblical and historical theological teaching covering theism, God’s unchanging nature, divine simplicity, eternality, and the Trinity.

The Christian View of Man by J. Gresham Machen

How do we understand mankind? Are we more evolved animals? What differentiates us from other creatures? J. Gresham Machen gives us a biblical understanding of who and what humanity is from God's perspective. If you feel confused about your place and status in God's sight, get clarity from this great book. 

Cur Deus Homo: Why God Became Man by Anselm of Canterbury

Just because it's old doesn't mean it's useless. As an example of this truth, we have a wonderful gem from Anselm, an early church father. Delve into a rich and thoughtful explanation of the importance of God becoming man. Take a stimulating walk with an old saint and uncover a wealth of blessings as you come to understand better the humanity and deity of Jesus Christ.

Everyone’s a Theologian by R. C. Sproul

What does the Bible teach? R. C. Sproul helps answer this question in one very readable book covering all of the critical topics found in Scripture. Chapters include God and his attributes; creation, fall and the condition of humanity; the person, nature, offices and work of Christ Jesus; the Holy Spirit, salvation, the church, and eschatology. If you are looking for one volume with concise, historical, and biblical explanations of the Bible's critical theological topics, this is it.

Getting the Gospel Right by Cornelis P. Venema

If you have ever heard the term “New Perspectives on Paul” or are even vaguely familiar with the eminent theologian N. T. Wright, and you would like a clear and concise explanation of a current and critical debate at the heart of the gospel, this is the book. As the title demonstrates, what is at stake is the gospel itself—and today it is a pressing matter to get it right. At the heart is the question: How are we, as sinners, accepted by God—how are we justified? It is a question facing all of us—and not merely academic theologians—for what is at risk is the truth of the gospel of Christ Jesus and its proclamation.

On the Incarnation by Athanasius

One important reason contemporary Christian scholars have much to teach us about Christianity is that, in addition to the Bible, they have spent an abundance of time studying the great theologians of the past. Every Christian will benefit from reading On the Incarnation, a classic book that explains why Jesus, the second person of the Trinity, took on human flesh.   

On the Trinity by Saint Augustine

Travel in time to the fourth and fifth centuries and learn from Augustine of Hippo about the Trinity. Alhough this influential church father joined the heavenly array of saints centuries ago, his writings continue to offer edifying, thoughtful, and nourishing wisdom concerning Scripture and its doctrine. 

Pilgrim Theology: Core Doctrines for Christian Disciples by Michael Horton

This is a wonderful book that clarifies so many issues. Michael Horton’s modern systematic theology is dense—but also very rich. Covering typical topics of systematic theology, but weaving them together in an organic fashion, Horton gives an in-depth and fruitful look at biblical Christian teachings.

Redemption Accomplished and Applied by John Murray

This classic book is most helpful in focusing our understanding of the redemption of sinners where it belongs—on God the Father who determined it, on Christ Jesus who accomplished it, and on the Holy Spirit who applies it to individual persons. In a short work of just under 200 pages, theologian John Murray begins with the work of atonement by Christ Jesus—its necessity, its nature, its perfection, and its extent. Then, he proceeds to explain how the Holy Spirit applies the redemption accomplished by Christ Jesus with a biblical exposition of the order of salvation—how it begins, the logical steps God uses, and its ultimate goal. Murray’s stand-out book belongs on every Christian’s bookshelf.

Rediscovering the Holy Spirit: God’s Perfecting Presence in Creation, Redemption, and Everyday Life by Michael Horton

The Holy Spirit is present throughout the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. Michael Horton points out how it is easy to overlook the Spirit’s work because he “is so actively involved in our lives.” Join Dr. Horton as he brings much needed attention to the critical role of the Holy Spirit in the biblical drama.

Sacred Bond: Covenant Theology Explored by Michael Brown and Zach Keele

At first glance, the covenants in the Bible can seem like strange, ancient practices from the long-ago past that have no relevance for us today, but nothing could be farther from the truth! In Sacred Bond, Michael Brown and Zach Keele clearly explain the eight covenants of the Bible—and what each one means for you personally.

The Unfolding Mystery: Discovering Christ in the Old Testament by Edmund Clowney

Many Christians avoid reading the Old Testament and find they connect better with the New Testament, as it teaches about Jesus. While the stories in the Old Testament may be interesting, it is often difficult to understand how to apply them to the Christian life in a productive and appropriate way. Join Edmund Clowney as he explains the wonders of the Old Testament as it declares Christ to us and sets the stage for a fuller, richer understanding of the work of Christ in the New Testament.