Favourite Books of 2023

Monday, 22nd January 2024
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Favourite Books of 2023


Last year we compiled a list of the books that some of our staff and students had read and enjoyed during 2022, and this year we’ve done the same. We hope this will encourage you to pick up a book and spending a little more time this year reading!


Grounded in Heaven: Recentering Christian Hope and Life on God by Michael Allen. It’s a rich theological work that seeks to reorientate our hearts towards the beatific vision as the goal of the Christian life.


Embodied: Living as Whole People in as Fractured World by Gregg R. Allison. It’s a provocative treatment of an often-overlooked aspect of the Christian life.


The Kingdom of God Bible Storybook by Tyler Van Halteren. As the publisher claims, this is a children’s storybook Bible that they will grow into rather than grow out of. It is faithful to the text, well-illustrated, and has loads of helpful material for parents to make the most out of it with their children.


'The Path to being a Pastor: A Guide for the Aspiring' by Bobby Jamieson. This is a simple but a thought-provoking book which discusses many different elements of the preparation for pastoral ministry. It has very short chapters which makes it easy to read and allows time to think through the different topics at a good pace.


Speaking the Truth in Love: The Theology of John M Frame by John J Hughes. This chunky volume is a festschrift for John Frame who taught in various American seminaries over many years. It provides a detailed introduction to Frame’s theology with contributions from an extensive range of scholars. The thirty nine chapters beautifully capture the essence of Frame’s approach to theology, speaking the truth in love!


Dignity and Destiny: Humanity in the Image of God by John Kilner. As the title suggests Kilner thoroughly explains what the Bible teaches about humanity being in the image of God and shows how our creation in God’s image brings dignity and great hope. The book will enrich your understanding of this great topic and encourage your heart.


Galatians For You by Tim Keller. A wonderful book for study or devotional purpose. I enjoyed Keller's ability to make Scripture accessible for all and wonderful thought-provoking questions at the end of each explanation of the passage of Scripture.


The Whole Christ by Sinclair Ferguson. Ferguson offers a helpful summary of the Marrow Controversy as an introduction to the rest of the book, where he diagnoses the problems of antinomianism and legalism. He then prescribes the gospel of Christ as the only remedy for both.


Spurgeon's Sorrows by Zach Eswine. I couldn't recommend this book highly enough to those who desire to work with hurting people. Spurgeon's insight into physical, circumstantial and spiritual depression, along with his personal experience of flash backs, fear and anxiety, combine to create a powerful resource for anyone desiring to bring the light of God's grace, mercy and peace to those who are suffering with occasional or lifelong mental illness.


Women Who Risk Their Lives by Tom and JoAnne Doyle. Powerful testimonies from women in the Arab world who are coming to faith in Christ and witnessing for Him, even though everyday could be their last. Many must keep moving from city to city or country to country as relatives try to hunt them down and kill them for converting to Christianity. These women have little doctrinal teaching, but they know and love Jesus with all their hearts and go on telling others about him, often witnessing the signs, wonders and miracles that we read about in our Bibles. A truly heart wrenching yet heartwarming book of real, courageous, life-changing faith.  This book is not just for women!


Lessons from the Upper Room by Sinclair Ferguson. In this book, Ferguson ‘opens the door’ into the Upper Room, and we taste something of the intimacy of these five hours as Jesus prepares his disciples for his death, comforts their anxious hearts, and prays for them (and us) to the Father.  Ferguson combines a close treatment of the Farewell Discourse of John 13-17 with his hallmark pastoral applications. It’s a gem of a book, radiating the heart of Jesus in the shadow of the cross.


In Light of Eternity: The Life of Leonard Ravenhill by Mack Tomlinson. This is a stirring, well–written biography of the fiery evangelist and revivalist, Leonard Ravenhill, and the title fits his life well: Ravenhill lived in light of eternity. It’s the sort of book that shakes a man to the core, having him ask the question, “Are the things I am living for worth Christ dying for?”


The Mystery of Christ by Samuel Renihan. A clear break down of Baptist Covenant Theology but a helpful reminder that this should lead to praise and be a devotional exercise rather than lead to division.


Newton on the Christian Life by Tony Reinke. An incredibly encouraging summary of John Newton’s theology both through his letters and his hymns and an insight into his pastoral heart for his people!

    Blog Archive

Let’s Read: Spurgeon the Pastor: Recovering a Biblical and Theological Vision for Ministry Let's Talk: Surviving Ministry Staff & Students Favourite Books of 2022 Let's Read: Spurgeon the Pastor: The Church Gathered BYE Teams Hugh D. Brown Lectures How I spent my sabbatical Let’s Read Spurgeon the Pastor: The Church Identified 1st Year Reflections from Andrew and Debbie Second Year Placement (Josh and Glenn) Final Year Reflection: Chris Banks Let’s Read Spurgeon the Pastor: The Church Functioning New Library Books (April 2023) Easter Reflection 2023 Irish Baptist Historical Society Lecture Report on the Life of Hugh Orr Let's Read: Spurgeon the Pastor: The Church Multiplying Friends of the College May 2023 Let's Read: Reflections on Spurgeon the Pastor by Geoff Chang Student Reflections on Graduation 2023 Where will our students will be serving this summer? Pray Without Ceasing: A Week of Summer Prayer 2023 Reflections on returning to Peru Recognition Service Report 2023 Commencement Service Report 2023 Cross Cultural Report in Ireland Cross Cultural Reports 2023 2 Short Book Reviews Let's Read: Keeping Your Children's Ministry On Mission: Practical Strategies For Discipling The Next Generation by Jared Kennedy Let's Read: When Children Become Brothers And Sisters What's in a name? Evangelism Teams 2023: Coleraine and Keady Evangelism Teams 2023: Castlederg and Tobermore Let's Read: Welcoming and Safeguarding Book Review: Weakness Our Strength A Strange Man from Another World
Let’s Read: The Path to Being a Pastor: A Guide for the Aspiring Graduate Updates Tribute How to Avoid Becoming a Graceless Theological Thug Let's Read: The Path to Being a Pastor Hugh D. Brown Lectures—Understanding and Applying Zephaniah Book Review: Children of Abraham: A Reformed Baptist View of the Covenants by David Kingdon Graduate Updates: Laetitia Let's Read: The Path to Being a Pastor (chapters 5-12) New Books in the Library Friends of the College—March 2022 Graduate Updates: Andrew Let's Read: The Path To Being A Pastor (chapters 13-23) Deacons The Risen Christ Changes Everything Why Four Gospels? Let's Read: The Path to Being a Pastor (Chapters 24–27) The College Graduation MA Missions Module Reflection Student Reflections (first and second year) Book Review: The Crucible of Leadership Let’s Read: Why Should We Love the Local Church? (Introduction) Let’s Read: Why Should We Love the Local Church? (Introduction) Friends of the College: September 2022 Let’s Read: Why Should We Love the Local Church—You’re Beautiful Commencement Report Cross Cultural Placements 1 Cross Cultural Placements 2 Cross Cultural Placements 3 Let’s Read: Why Should We Love the Local Church—Beauty Demonstrated 1st Year Reflection (Ana Rut) Evangelism Teams 2022 (Armagh and Cavan) Evangelism Team 2022 (Ballycrochan & Comber) Let's Read: Living Beautifully Let's Read: Why Should We Love The Local Church “Always winter and never Christmas” Three Kings
Let’s Read Irish Baptist College Conference (Online) From Intern to Undergraduate (Emily Middleton) Let's Read: The Hole in our Holiness — The Reason for Redemption Baptists and Revival in the Long 18th Century Second Year Placements From Intern to Undergraduate (Josh Brown) Let's Read: The Hole in our Holiness — The What and Why of Holiness Final Year During A Pandemic 2nd Year Placement Experience Friends of the College 2021 Update The Art of Reading More Books Let's Read: The Hole in our Holiness — The Real Possibility of Holiness A Basic Easter Fact The Servant King Podcast Let's Read: The Hole in our Holiness — You Are Holy Third Year Reflection Gospel Guardians: Protecting the Purity of the Gospel for Future Generations Graduation 2021 Book Review: Succeeding at Seminary Let's Read: The Hole in Our Holiness — A Work in Progress Why the Irish Baptist College is Vital to the Health of the Association A Good News Story: The Ministry Partnership Scheme Why Study the Biblical Languages? Profit in Toil: A Short Message on A Level Results Day Let's Read: Small Preaching Recognition Service Report 2021 Sin Forgiven: Nourishment for Life and Joy for Living Let’s Read: Small Preaching—The Character of the Preacher Commencement Service Report Placement God Rejoices over His People: A Meditation on Zephaniah 3:17 Let’s Read: Small Preaching—Constructing the Sermon Evangelism Teams: Newcastle and Brannockstown Evangelism Teams: Stonepark and North Belfast Christian Fellowship First Year Reflections (Reuben and Andrew) Some New Books Let’s Read: Small Preaching—The Craft of Preaching Let's Read: Small Preaching—What is God Saying? A Christmas Reflection on John 1 - ‘The coming of the light’ Christmas Reflection on John 1 - ‘Life, Light & Glory’
Time to read Genesis...again Friends of the College - January 2020 Friends of the College - January 2020 Finances Tribute to Marion Craig The Resilient Pastor: Surviving & Thriving in Ministry Just a Blow-in? What is new on the shelves at IBC? Friends of the College - February 2020 Four Reasons to Study Theology Academically From Spain to Moira Testimonial Financial Update Friends of the College – March 2020 Irish Baptist Historical Society: The Mayflower Thomas Patient: the Father of the Irish Baptist Church Testimonials The Pastors’ Conference: An Encouraging Privilege Testimonials (part-time studies) In the worst of times: COVID-19 and the Book of Ruth Friends of the College - April 2020 The Long Wait: Victory Delayed Testimonials - Preparation for Ministry and Evening Classes The Leadership Podcast Testimonials - Ladies Study Fellowship The Leadership Podcast (part 2) Friends of the College - May 2020 Reflections from the Student Chairman Why do we teach the Old Testament? Reflections on first year at IBC Friends of the College - June 2020 Why do we teach Romans? IBC Placement Is Church History a Thing of the Past? Friends of the College - July 2020 Friends of the College – August 2020 Friends of the College September 2020 Recognition and Graduation Service Introducing the Irish Baptist College’s New Logo Commencement Service Friends of the College - October 2020 Filled with the Spirit: Soundings in Luke’s Theology of the Holy Spirit The Famous Five: The Abiding Relevance of the Solas of the Reformation Friends of the College - November 2020 The Importance of Theological Training in Fulfilling the Great Commission First Year Reflections — Tim Houston Singing: The Place of Theology in Corporate Worship New Library Books Friends of the College – Unite to Pray – December Christmas Reflections
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