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My Top 7 Books of 2007

A few days ago Tullian Tchividjian published his list of his favorite books of 2007 and asked me if I’d do the same. I had, in fact, already worked up a list, and thought that, now that the year is drawing to a close, I’d publish it. So these are my 7 favorite books that were published in 2007 and which I read in 2007. So this is the top 7 in 07 of 07. Or something like that. Why seven? Well, because it’s catchy to say “the top 7 in 07 of 07,” but also because keeping a small list makes it more meaningful, I think.

Do note that these are the “favorite” books I read in 2007, not necessarily the “best” books I read in 2007. Hence this list is a bit more subjective than objective and looks more to the joy of reading a book than the quantity of what I learned from it. Often they go hand-in-hand, but not always.

So here they are. The top 7 in 07 of 07. In each case I’ve linked to my review of the title. With the exception of the final title, they are in no particular order.

When Sinners Say “I Do” by Dave Harvey is probably the best book I’ve read on marriage. It’s a book I’d unhesitatingly recommend to any engaged or married couple because of the way it deals so well with matters of the heart and because of the way it points always to the message of the gospel.

Running Scared by Edward Welch deals with the universal problem of fear. A book that is filled with great quotes and impactful teaching, it is one worth reading and worth reading slowly. Because I do not know anyone who is immune from fear, I do not know of anyone who would not benefit from reading it.

A Journey Worth Taking by Charles Drew is the only book I read twice this year. It is a book that deals superbly with the notion of calling and finding our place in this world. Written by a pastor who is in the thick of things, planting a church in New York City, it provides a biblical perspective on the “self-help” genre.

Respectable Sins by Jerry Bridges is Bridges at his best. He deals harshly but biblically with the kinds of sins we too often overlook. This is exactly the kind of book I love to see coming from the pen of one of Christian publishing’s elder statesmen.

Pierced for Our Transgressions by Steve Jeffery, Michael Ovey and Andrew Sach is an important contribution in the area of theology. This book is a line in the sand, so to speak, and one that has served to shine a biblical light on the doctrine of atonement, standing for the orthodox view in opposition to the many alternate and unbiblical views.

Amazing Grace by Eric Metaxas. This is a biography of William Wilberforce that coincided with the 200th bicentenary of the abolition of the British slave-trade—a movement tirelessly headed by Wilberforce. I gave this book a slight edge to John Newton by Jonathan Aitken. But you may well wish to read both, especially since the men were friends and co-laborers in this work.

Polishing God’s Monuments by Jim Andrews gets the nod as my favorite book of 2007. I was drawn by the author’s ability to seamlessly blend biography with theology. Andrews models the kind of grace I hope I could display in a similar situation of pain and suffering. I’ve recommended it to more people this year than any other title. I’m going to make sure I read it again in 2008.

There are many other titles that could have made the list. There were plenty of books published this year that look excellent but which I have not yet read. While I admit that this list is no doubt imperfect, it does represent the books I most enjoyed reading this year.