4 Tips on How to Choose Christian Books to Read

I am a strong advocate of reading Christian books and articles. In the landscape of Christian media, the options to choose from are so broad and diverse that it is very difficult to find good books or articles worth reading. With almost infinite resources out there, but limited time and brain capacity, it is extremely important to have a way to filter out things that are not worth consuming. Hopefully, sticking to these 4 tips will help you to choose books that are worth reading.

  1. Read mostly old books by passed away authors – This is perhaps the most important tip. Books by old Christian authors that have stood the test of time are more often than not extremely valuable. Sticking to the old classics is a good way to weed out most of the worthless material currently being published. Many publishers are simply in it for the money, and will publish anything they think will sell. Most of the old classics are by authors who have already passed on, which is a good rule of thumb when figuring out what is an old classic or not. Books written in different time periods often offer spiritual insights that are missing from our current generation. They also seem to offer deeper and more profound experiences and revelations of Christ than much of what is out there today. I have heard somebody say something along the lines of, “Modern Christianity is 2 inches deep and 100 miles wide”. I would tend to agree with this sentiment.
  2. Read books recommended by close brothers or sisters in Christ – Generally, people you are very close to you spiritually will recommend books to you that they know will be extremely beneficial in your walk with the Lord. Countless times, I have been beyond blessed to have read a book recommended by a brother or sister who is close to me. I have also been rather disappointed that some people who I think really need to read a certain book, simply don’t bother.
  3. Read books that have influenced authors you value highly – Often authors that you have greatly benefited from will share a list of authors that have have had a big influence on their thinking. If these authors influenced the author you respect, then they will most likely also have a big impact on you. An example of an author I value is Frank Viola who has a list of his top 100 books. Reading books that have already gone through the filter of someone else can save you a lot of time and energy and allow you to find gems you would never have found on your own.
  4. Before picking up a book, read a few reviews – Simply go to google and type “Book Name here + Review” or go to amazon and search for the book. This helps to find out what the book is about and what other people thought of the book. This is a good way of weeding out books that are either dull or are written on a topic you already know. If everyone who reviews the book is saying things like, “This book has totally changed the way I live and see x” or “This is the best book I have ever read”, then perhaps the book is worth picking up.

These rules of thumb have helped me find many amazing gems, which have had large impacts on my journey with the Lord. If you follow these 4 rules of thumb, you will probably save yourself a lot of frustration and effort. One great book can really impact, revolutionize, and accelerate your walk with the Lord. I hope this is helpful. If you have any other tips to add, feel free to comment. Also, if you like my blog posts, then subscribe by typing your email in at the top right of this page for regular updates.

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About the author

Nathan Odell Nathan Odell is the author of Joined to Him. You can connect with him on

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  1. Brad Mann says:

    Great tips Nate. Some quality insight there! What you can also do is use Amazon’s Kindle (or the app, which is free) and read the 1st chapter of a book for free to give you a feel of the authors style and understand where they’re going with the book 🙂


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