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26 Essential Christian Reads

26 Essential Christian Reads Hero Image 26 Essential Christian Reads Hero Image

In a world that can often feel overwhelmed with content, it can be hard to determine what is worth your time. That’s why Watermark’s Equipping Team has a created a list of 26 essential books for believers looking to grow in their faith. From Apologetics to Christian Fiction, these time-worn reads will help you better understand and apply Scripture as you look to become a more fully devoted follower of Christ. Happy reading!

Thoughts for Young Men

By J.C. Ryle

If you are unfamiliar with or need an introduction to J.C. Ryle, then this short but mistitled book is for you. Ryle has long been a Pastor to this pastor, and I am grateful to him for his clarity and faithfulness to Truth. This is NOT a book for young men—this is a book ALL men should read and reread until they model, teach, and pass on its content to others. If you haven’t read this book yet, read it next!

—Todd Wagner

30 Days to Understanding the Bible

By Max Anders

One of the most transformational books out there because it helps you to understand THE book! Like starting a puzzle with all the border pieces, 30 Days to Understanding the Bible helps you build the structure for going deep in God’s Word.

—Patrick Blocker

Accidental Pharisees

By Larry Osborne

If you immediately think of someone else when you read this title, you need to read this book.

—Nathan Wagnon

The Case for Christ

By Lee Strobel

A hard-charging, take-no-prisoners reporter examines the story of Jesus Christ using all his investigative powers and techniques. As a result, Lee Strobel becomes convinced that the Gospels are true and that Jesus is who He says He is. Convinced me, too. Who do you say that Jesus is?

—Bobby Crotty

The Chronicles of Narnia

By C. S. Lewis

I first read the seven books of The Chronicles of Narnia in three weeks during law school. I could not put them down. I wept at the Stone Table scene in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. I have read them several times since and read them to my children a couple of times. They are children’s stories filled with insights into the nature of Christ that will captivate and instruct any adult. Aslan is not a tame lion, but he is good.

—Bobby Crotty

Disappointment With God

By Philip Yancey

When circumstances in your life are not making sense, Yancey helps you drive down stakes of God’s truth that lead to a confidence in God’s love for you and His ultimate goodness and a desire to know Him more.

—Krista Sanders

Heaven

By Randy Alcorn

With all of the confusing cultural images of heaven, we needed a book based on biblical truth. I am so grateful Randy Alcorn has created a work that makes us long for heaven while we are still here on earth!

—Krista Sanders

The Jesus I Never Knew

By Philip Yancey

This book changed the way I viewed Jesus’ life while He was on the earth. Philip Yancey will help you understand the Gospels better, while also engaging your heart as you see more fully the Savior who died for you.

—Jayson Fisher

Know What You Believe

By Paul E. Little

This book is a foundational resource for every believer either to answer their own questions or equip them to answer tough questions from critics. Paul Little gives concise and direct answers to questions you will always desire to respond to well!

—Patrick Blocker

Know Why You Believe

By Paul E. Little

Without knowing why you believe, you may throw your faith away when life gets difficult. Paul Little walks you through why you should trust in the God of the Scriptures.

—Jayson Fisher

Knowing God

J. I. Packer

Knowing God lays a sweet foundation for the heart of all of Christianity—to have a deep relationship with the Lord where you don’t just know ABOUT him, you actually know Him in an intimate way.

—Karen Henson

Master Plan of Evangelism

By Robert Coleman

This short read answers one single question, “How did Jesus make disciples?” By looking at the Master, we see the simplicity and beauty of what it means to be and make disciples.

—Derek Matthews

Mere Christianity

By C. S. Lewis

Mere Christianity is an excellent resource that unpacks a logical defense of the Christian faith. Lewis is thorough, yet compelling, as he engages with questions that believers and unbelievers alike commonly ask regarding Christianity.

—Karen Henson

Money, Possessions, and Eternity

By Randy Alcorn

We all have room to grow in viewing money and possessions as a tool and testimony to show the love of Christ to others. Randy Alcorn shows how viewing everything in light of eternity changes how you view the money and possessions God has given you to steward.

—Jayson Fisher

More Than a Carpenter

By Josh McDowell

More Than a Carpenter is a short, compelling apologetic of the Christian faith that focuses on who Jesus is and what He came to do. Josh McDowell, a former atheist, clearly explains the reliability of Scripture, the deity of Christ, and the significance of His resurrection. This book would be very helpful to young believers or skeptics.

—Gigi Hornberger

My Utmost for His Highest

By Oswald Chambers

My Upmost for His Highest is a classic devotional with insightful daily readings that will draw you into the Lord’s presence as you drink deeply from sound theological truth.

—Gigi Hornberger

New Morning Mercies

By Paul David Tripp

New Morning Mercies are daily reminders of God’s amazing grace and mercy through tender words and deep theology. You will be encouraged and strengthened through messages filled with gospel hope to apply to our daily struggles and celebrations.

—Gigi Hornberger

None Like Him

By Jen Wilkin

God is without equal; and yet we, as humans, attempt daily to put ourselves in His place. None Like Him counteracts this desire by reminding readers, chapter after chapter, of the distinctness of God. This book helped me focus on the characteristics that only God possesses, an exercise that was both humbling and refreshing.

—Karen Henson

Pilgrim’s Progress

By John Bunyan

This book helped me, in a creative and thought-provoking way, to better understand the journey that is following Jesus.

—Karen Henson

The Practice of the Presence of God

By Brother Lawrence

If you want to know what it’s like to be in the mind of a man consumed with the love of God, read this book. It’s one I return to often.

—Nathan Wagnon

The Pursuit of God

By A. W. Tozer

The Pursuit of God pushes past surface-level religiosity and encourages readers to seek after God with great diligence and desire. It is a short book packed with words of wisdom that every believer should read and apply!

—Karen Henson

Reason for God

By Timothy Keller

Tim Keller uses reason and revelation to present the foundational beliefs of the Christian faith. This book is easily understood, yet thought provoking. Simply put, this is a modern day Mere Christianity.

—Derek Matthew

The Screwtape Letters

By C. S. Lewis

A C.S. Lewis classic that all believers should read. I have read it several times, read it to my children, listened to it as an audiobook, and seen it performed as a theatrical production. Uncanny insights into both our adversary’s stratagems and our Savior’s love and grace.

—Bobby Crotty

Tactics

By Gregory Koukl

Tactics gives you the basic tools you need to boost your confidence in your ability to have conversations about Jesus.

—Nathan Wagnon

A Tale of Three Kings

By Gene Edwards

Want to discover how to not be prideful in your youth or arrogant in your age? You will find A Tale of Three Kings to be a great read! Using the stories of Saul, David, and Absalom, Edwards unwraps the idea of true humility in each season of our lives.

—Patrick Blocker

Women of the Word

By Jen Wilkin

No other book I’ve read has given me a better understanding on the why and the how we study God’s Word in so few words! It’s an easy read, packed full of truth, challenge, and inspiration to open your Bible and study.

—Krista Sanders