Bad Books

Why do Christians tend to be enamored by very popular but very vacuous books? We have centuries of great teachers, preachers, scholars, and theologians that people don’t take advantage of. (The latter of which we all are. It’s just a matter of how well we know God.) There are thousands of great books out there. With an electronic eReader you could even get so many good ones for free.

But many of the sheeple just notice what’s popular and read them on occasion. Books on prophecy and the economy have gotten popular, or maybe I’m just noticing it. I didn’t realize that prophecy can predict things like what’s going to happen to the economy. (I’m not referring to my FB friend Kathy on this.) I’m leaving names out on the negative side but I think many reading this know who and what I’m talking about. I’m not going to give him any more publicity. I suppose one of the reasons could be this:

2 Timothy 4:3 NLT
For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear.

Now there’s some prophecy. I think that “itching ears” can also be gossip-like and/or people addicted to drama.

How can we encourage others to read books with sound doctrine? Many just get a 45 minute sermon–that they’re too tired at that point in time to listen to anyway–and that’s all the teaching they get. Or maybe reading a one page devotional each day in addition to praying, which is much better than nothing even if it’s a snail’s pace. This is pretty much what I did for many years in addition to reviewing memorized Scripture. So I can’t leave myself out of this.

I’m so thankful  for these authors and the desire to read them, along with more of the Bible, when because of other chronic difficulties, I’ve lost interest for many things in my  life.

Maybe I should write a post on how to recognize and find good books.

7 Responses to “Bad Books”

  1. 1 Mike Gantt

    I think one way to manage this issue is to place reading and re-reading the Bible at the top of our priority list, and every other book below it.

    I do not suggest that this alone will completely solve the problem you raise, but I do think it is an important first step.

  2. 2 Scripture Zealot

    Mike, I think someone brought this up on a blog quite a while ago and I’ve thought about it ever since. How many of us spend more time reading and studying the Bible more than other books? Or maybe that isn’t necessarily necessary?

    I think people who gravitate to these books may be less inclined to spend more time with the Bible. Maybe then they would see the difference. Are you saying to encourage those people to read the Bible more?

  3. 3 Mike Gantt


    The Bereans heard truth from Paul, and it led them to the Scriptures (Acts 17:11).

    The citizens of Sychar heard truth from the woman who’d gone for water, but it led them to Jesus (John 4:42).

    The Ethiopian official heard truth from Philip, and it led him to understand the Scriptures better (Acts 8:26-39).

    Thus we can be enlightened by books, but if it doesn’t lead us back to the Book then we invite confusion.

    “For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard lest we drift away from it.” (Heb 2:1)

  4. 4 tim

    it seems like many of the latest books that hit the shelves are all the same.

    so what classics would you recommend?

    i’ve been meaning to break open The Cost of Discipleship by Bonhoeffer.

  5. 5 Scripture Zealot

    Thanks Mike. That’s a good thing to keep in mind.

    tim, I don’t have a lot of classics to recommend but I’m confident to recommend Knowing God by J.I. Packer and The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozier.

  6. 6 Michael Acidri

    Most of the good books these days seem to be the books by dead men or rather classics as you call it.

  7. 7 Scripture Zealot

    I call the commentaries I have in eSword ‘Dead people commentaries’. Mark Driscoll calls Charles Spurgeon one of his mentors. Although there are a lot of alive people who have given him some advice to tone him down a little.

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