2010 New Year’s Resolutions for the Mind

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Originally Posted 12/8/09
via: Reasons to Believe Kenneth Richard Samples

When most of us think about New Year’s resolutions things like diet and exercise usually come to mind. However, there is another important sphere of life that needs reflection and discipline—the mind.

Several years ago, Christian thinker and author Os Guinness wrote a provocative book: Fit Bodies Fat Minds: Why Evangelicals Don’t Think and What to Do about It. He illustrates that today’s evangelical churches face a serious problem concerning intellectual ignorance and apathy. Guinness argues that many Christians experience chronic laziness of mind. Believers today could undoubtedly benefit as much from mental exercise and a healthy consumption of good books, as from physical exertion and good eating habits. After all, the Lord Jesus Christ called his disciples to love God with all of their being, which includes the gift of the mind (Matthew 22:37).

Reading quality books is a prime method of feeding and exercising the mind. The last two years I’ve given sermons at my church challenging congregants to read six classic or apologetics-oriented Christian books. To my delight, two book clubs formed and they read the works I had recommended. Book clubs can be great opportunities for intellectual, social, and spiritual growth.

This year I am again challenging my fellow believers to read six contemporary apologetics books. If you are adventurous enough to make this one of your New Year’s resolutions, then let me recommend six RTB books for you to consider in the upcoming year.

2010 RTB Apologetics Reading List

These books were written by RTB staff scholars Hugh Ross, Fazale Rana, Jeff Zweerink, and myself. Some of the books are fairly new, while others have been around a while. Because of their robust content, few of them can be read and digested quickly. So my motto “Life is short, read fast!” may not apply to these meaty works.

1. Lights in the Sky and Little Green Men by Hugh Ross, Kenneth Samples, and Mark Clark

If you are a Christian and interested in such topics as UFOs and extraterrestrials, then this is definitely the book for you. It covers such topics as the possibility of life on other planets, space travel, and government conspiracies. It also addresses unusual phenomena such as close encounters, abductees, contactees, and UFO cults, all from a biblical perspective.

2. A Matter of Days by Hugh Ross 

If you are looking for a book that advocates and defends the position of old-earth creationism, this book is a must-read. Hugh skillfully presents the case for the old-earth view by appealing to both the book of nature and the book of Scripture and responds to all the major objections to a progressive creationist position.

3. Origins of Life by Fazale Rana and Hugh Ross

One of science’s truly big questions concerns the origin of Earth’s first life. Did life arise through purely natural processes? Or did God create and nurture it? Fuz and Hugh present a scientific model for the creation of life based upon the biblical perspective. They propose testable predictions for both creationist and naturalistic scenarios.

4. The Genesis Question by Hugh Ross

For many people, the early chapters of Genesis raise questions about such keys events as  the days of creation, the specific creation of man, and Noah’s flood. Hugh examines the first eleven chapters of Genesis and offers a way to integrate of the book of nature with the book of Scripture. He argues that science and Scripture are allies—not enemies.

5. More Than a Theory by Hugh Ross

Often times, naturalistic evolutionists criticize the position of divine design and creation for not providing a testable scientific model. This book addresses that challenge and represents a truly original contribution to the field of science and faith. Hugh introduces and summarizes the Reasons To Believe creation model and illustrates how science and the Christian faith can be genuinely complementary.

6. Who’s Afraid of the Multiverse? by Jeffrey A. Zweerink

The multiverse theory is quickly becoming the major naturalistic attempt to explain how the cosmos came into being without a Creator. In this booklet, Jeff explains the various multiverse models and notes their strengths and the weaknesses from both a scientific and a philosophical point of view. He also shows how the historic Christian worldview relates to this important topic. 

Well, that’s my list for another year.

Happy New Year and happy apologetics reading!

For more about the importance of logic and critical thinking, see my book A World of Difference: Putting Christian Truth-Claims to the Worldview Test.

For a modern classic on reading skills and comprehension, see Mortimer J. Adler and Charles Van Doren, How to Read a Book.


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