Saturday, June 5, 2010

Everyone's Entitled to My Opinion . . . About My Best Friends

In my opinion there are three people you absolutely must meet--and only one of them is dead. Every Student of Jesus needs to drink from the well of older brothers and sisters. Here are three sources of fresh water:

C.S. Lewis: I had been a high-school evangelical for three years when someone handed me this collection of essays, God in the Dock. They changed my life, and Lewis became my first teacher. He's more than the Narnia movie guy: if you have never read C.S. Lewis, you have missed one of God’s great gifts to the church in the last hundred years. God in the Dock was the most formative work of Lewis for me because it captured my heart and my attention. Thirty-plus years later, Lewis is my constant companion. There’s an excellent introductory website as well.

Dallas Willard:  An ordained Southern Baptist minister, with a PhD in Philosophy, who teaches at USC: that ought to catch your attention! His book, The Divine Conspiracy, put into words things which I knew, but didn’t know that I knew! Willard cracks open our narrow ideas of “the gospel” and re-introduces evangelicals to “the gospel of the Kingdom of God.” It was the message of John the Baptist, Jesus, and the Apostle Paul. That ought to be good enough for any disciple. There’s a killer-good iPhone app (you know Jesus used an iPhone, right?) entitled “Hearing God Devotional.” It’ll be the best $2.99 you’ve ever spent.

Bill Johnson: Oddly enough, I recommend his audio above his books. Bethel Church (Redding, CA) has a Sermon of the week (it’s also available as a podcast). Bill Johnson is the kind of guy who drives theological types crazy. “Everything you read in the scripture is an invitation to experience,” and "It’s unethical to take the promises of God and consign them to the millennium.” He is a practitioner. Take it from me--I’ve been to his church and seen the fruit--he’s the real deal. He and his staff will challenge you, but that's OK, right?

There you go: in my opinion these guys ought to be your new best friends.

1 comment:

  1. Three great suggestions!

    BTW, love the new look on the blog. Very nice!