Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Ten things on reading

As my LibraryThing panel testifies, thanks to a generous gift from a church, I've recently bought some new books. Here are some thoughts on reading (with pastors especially, but not exclusively in mind):
1. Read the Scriptures. With the M'Cheyne scheme, you can read the whole Bible in a year, Psalms and the New Testament twice.
2. Read widely, with a variety of biblical studies, theology, Church history, biography, apologetics, fiction poetry and other interests.
3. Read critically, test what you have learned by the Scriptures.
4. Read the theological classics such as Calvin's Institutes and Augustine's Confessions.
5. Read cutting edge works like Kevin Vanhoozer's The Drama of Doctrine.
6. Read passionately to be built up and challenged not professionally for information.
7. Read meditatively, give yourself time to think about and reflect on your reading.
8. Read books that will stretch you beyond your 'comfort zone'.
9. Read with discrimination, go for quality over quantity.
10. Read a list of things about reading on this blog.

3 comments:

Alan Davey said...

Something I have found helpful is to read with others.

I used to read with guys at Deeside and I do it here. Some people have trouble getting through the Institutes (fancy!) - why not read the Institutes with one or two friends ? That way you can discuss as you go, too.

Exiled Preacher said...

Good suggestion, Alan. I've sometimes thought about getting a reading group going, but have never done anything about it. Perhaps I'll give it a go.

Graham Weeks said...

11. Post reviews of books you read on Amazon.co.uk. It is a good witness and no extra labour if you already blog reviews.