According to surveys conducted by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life, religious sentiment in the United States is becoming more diverse with a larger number than ever dropping any connection to a specific religious tradition.
In such an environment, Christians need to be prepared to engage the culture effectively. To that end I share the the following lists of book recommendations on cultural criticism and apologetics.
Michael Craven of the Center For Christ and Culture recommends the following books on Culture and Apologetics:
The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in an Age of Diminishing Expectations, by Christopher Lasch
Culture Wars: The Struggle To Define America, by James Davison Hunter
Bowling Alone : The Collapse and Revival of American Community, by Robert D. Putnam
Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business, by Neil Postman
On Earth as It Is in Advertising?: Moving from Commercial Hype to Gospel Hope, by Sam Van Eman
Prophetic Untimeliness: A Challenge to the Idol of Relevance, by Os Guinness
The Rape of the Masters: How Political Correctness Sabotages Art, by Roger Kimball
Art And the Bible, by Francis A. Schaeffer
Why America Needs Religion: Secular Modernity and Its Discontents, by Guenter Lewy
Apologetics to the Glory of God: An Introduction, by John H. Frame
Christian Apologetics, by Cornelius Van Til
The Defense of the Faith, by Cornelius Van Til
Tearing Down Strongholds: And Defending the Truth, by R. C. Sproul
Christian Apologetics, by Norman Geisler
Christian Ethics: Options and Issues, by Norman Geisler
The New Evidence That Demands A Verdict Fully Updated To Answer The Questions Challenging Christians Today, by Josh McDowell
Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics, by Norman L. Geisler
David Noebel and Chuck Edwards
The following books are recommended in the chapter on “The Theology Of Secular Humanism” in Countering Culture: Arming Yourself to Confront Non-Biblical Worldviews, written by David Noebel and Chuck Edwards.
Answers for Atheists, Agnostics, and Other Thoughtful Skeptics: Dialogs About Christian Faith and Life (Calvin Beisner)
Faith Has Its Reasons: An Integrative Approach to Defending Christianity (Kenneth Boa and Robert Bowman)
Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics (Norman Geisler)
God–The Evidence: The Reconciliation of Faith and Reason in a Postsecular World (Patrick Glynn)
The Problem of Pain (C.S. Lewis)
Scaling the Secular City (J.P. Moreland)
Does God Exist? (J.P. Moreland and Kai Nielsen)
Why I am not a Christian: And other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects (Bertrand Russell)
Grace Baptist Church
Grace Baptist Church (Cape Coral, Florida), pastored by Tom Ascol, lists on its website the following list of recommended books in the area of “Christianity and Culture”:
Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling by Andy Crouch
unChristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks about Christianity… and Why It Matters by David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons
They Like Jesus but Not the Church: Insights from Emerging Generations by Dan Kimball
The Unchurched Next Door: Understanding Faith Stages as Keys to Sharing Your Faith by Thom Rainer
Christ and Culture Revisited by D.A. Carson
Jesus Made in America: A Cultural History from the Puritans to the Passion of the Christ by Stephen Nichols
Culture Shift: Engaging Current Issues with Timeless Truth by R. Albert Mohler
In his book Why Should Anyone Believe Anything At All, James Sire recommends the following books on The Rationality of Christian Faith:
Orthodoxy, by G. K. Chesterton
Quest for Faith, by C. Stephen Evans
Philosophy of Religion, by C. Stephen Evans
The Best Things in Life, by Peter Kreeft
Handbook of Christian Apologetics, by Peter Kreeft and Ronald Tacelli
Mere Christianity, by C. S. Lewis
Miracles, by C. S. Lewis
Belief in God, by George Mavrodes
Scaling the Secular City, by J. P. Moreland
Making Sense of it All: Pascal and the Meaning of Life, by Thomas V. Morris
Lost in the Cosmos, by Walker Percy
Faith and Rationality: Reason and Belief, by Alvin Plantinga and Nicholas Wolterstorff
The Coherence of Theism, by Richard Swinburne
The Concept of Miracle, by Richard Swinburne
The Existence of God, by Richard Swinburne
Danny Akin, President of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, has recommended the following books on Christian Apologetics.
Boa, Kenneth D. and Robert M. Bowman, Jr. Faith Has Its Reasons: An Integrative Approach to Defending Christianity. Colorado Springs: NavPress, 2001.
Bush, L. Russ. The Advancement: Keeping the Faith in an Evolutionary Age. Nashville: Broadman, 2003.
________. Classical Readings in Christian Apologetics. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1983.
Carson, D. A. The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996.
________. How Long, O Lord? Grand Rapids: Baker, 1990.
Colson, Charles, and Nancy Pearcey. How Now Shall We Live? Wheaton, Ill.: Tyndale House, 1999.
Corduan, Winfried. Reasonable Faith: Basic Christian Apologetics. Nashville: Broadman & Holman, 1993.
Craig, William Lane. Reasonable Faith: Christian Truth and Apologetics. Wheaton: Crossway, 1994.
Dyrness, William. Christian Apologetics in a World Community. Downers Grove: IVP, 1983.
Geisler, Norman L. Christian Apologetics. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1976.
________. Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1999.
Lewis, C.S. Mere Christianity. New York: Macmillan, 1979.
Mayers, Ronald B. Both/And: A Balanced Apologetic. Chicago: Moody, 1984.
Moreland, J. P. Scaling the Secular City. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1987.
Moseley, Allan. Thinking Against the Grain: Developing a Biblical Worldview in a Culture of Myths. Grand Rapids: Kregel, 2003.
Schaeffer, Francis. The Complete Works of Francis Schaeffer: A Christian Worldview. New York: Crossway, 1985.
Strobel, Lee. The Case for Christ: A Journalist’s Personal Investigation of the Evidence for Jesus. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1998.
________. The Case for Faith: A Journalist Investigates the Toughest Objections to Christianity. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2000.
________. The Case for a Creator: A Journalist Investigates Scientific Evidence That Points Toward God. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2004.
Van Til, Cornelius. The Defense of the Faith. Phillipsburg, NJ: P & R, 1980.
In his Facts & Trends article “Unchurched Americans Turned Off By Church, Open To Christians”, Mark Kelly recommends the following books:
The Apologetics Study Bible
When Worldviews Collide, by Ergun Caner
Countering Culture: Arming Yourself to Confront Non-Biblical Worldviews, by Chuck Edwards and David Noebel
Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia)
And, this list comes from Westminster’s recommended reading list for prospective students.
Oliphint, K. Scott. The Battle Belongs to the Lord. Phillipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 2003.
Edgar, William. Reasons of the Heart. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House, 1996.
Keller, Timothy. The Reason for God: Belief in an Age of Skepticism. New York: Dutton, 2008.
Bahnsen, Greg L. Van Til’s Apologetic. Phillipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1998.
Machen, J. Gresham. Christianity and Liberalism. Grand Rapids, Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 2009.
Poythress, Vern S. Redeeming Science. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2006.
Edgar, William and K. Scott Oliphint. Christian Apologetics: Past and Present. Vol. 1. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2009.
Edgar, William and K. Scott Oliphint. Christian Apologetics: Past and Present. Vol. 2. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2011.
Bradley, Anthony. Liberating Black Theology. Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2010.
Van Til, Cornelius. The Defense of the Faith. Phillipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Co., 2008.
Oliphint, K. Scott, and Lane G. Tipton, (eds.) Revelation and Reason. Phillipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 2007.
Oliphint, K. Scott. Reasons for Faith: Philosophy in the Service of Theology. Phillipsburg, N. J.: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 2006.
Kenneth Boa & Larry Moody
In the General Bibliography of I’m Glad You Asked, Kenneth Boa & Larry Moody recommend the following as books that “cover the whole range of topics related to apologetics and evangelism” in a manner less technical than most philosophy of religion books:
Joseph Aldrich, Lifestyle Evangelism
J.N.D. Anderson, Christianity and Comparative Religion
Kenneth Boa, God I Don’t Understand
Kenneth Boa, Cults, World Religions, and You
James Montgomery Boice, Does Inerrancy Matter?
James Mongomery Boice, ed., The Foundation of Biblical Authority
Colin Brown, ed., History, Criticism, & Faith
F.F. Bruce, The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable?
Edward John Carnell, The Case for Biblical Christianity
Edward John Carnell, An Introduction to Christian Apologetics
Edward John Carnell, A Philosophy of the Christian Religion
J.V. Langmead Casserly, Apologetics and Evangelism
Colin Chapman, The Case For Christianity
Colin Chapman, Christianity on Trial
Gordon, H. Clark, ed., Can I Trust My Bible
Robert E.D. Clark, Science and Christianity–A Partnership
James F. Coppedge, Evolution: Possible or Impossible?
William Lane Craig, The Existence of God and the Beginning of the Universe
William Lane Craig, The Son Rises: Historical Evidence for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ
Bolton Davidheiser, Evolution and Christian Faith
David A. DeWitt, Answering the Tough Ones
David Hugh Freeman, A Philosophical Study of Religion
Norman L. Geisler, Apologetics
Norman L. Geisler, ed., Inerrancy
Norman L. Geisler, Philosophy of Religion
Norman L. Geisler an Paul D. Feinberg, Introduction to Philosophy
John Gerstner, Reason for Faith
Jerry H. Gill, The Possibility of Religious Knowledge
Michael Green, Man Alive!
Os Guinness, The Dust of Death
Don J. Gutteridge, Jr., The Defense Rests Its Case
Gary R. Habermas, The Resurrection of Jesus
R. Laird Harris, Inspiration and Canonicity of the Bible
Arthur F. Holmes, Faith Seeks Understanding
Arlie J. Hoover, The Case for Christian Theism
Arlie J. Hoover, Fallacies of Unbelief
Cedric B. Johnson and H. Newton Malony, Christian Conversion: Biblical and Psychological Perspectives
C.S. Lewis, The Abolition of Man
C.S. Lewis, God in the Dock
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
C.S. Lewis, Miracles. A Preliminary Study
C. S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain
Gordon R. Lewis, Judge for Yourself
Gordon R. Lewis, Testing Christianity’s Truth Claims
Paul E. Little, How to Give Away Your Faith
Paul E. Little, Know Why You Believe
Wayne McDill, Making Friends for Christ
Josh McDowell, Evidence That Demands a Verdict
Josh McDowell, More Than A Carpenter
Josh McDowell, The Resurrection Factor
Josh McDowell and Don Stewart, Answers To Tough Questions
Josh McDowell and Don Stewart, Reasons Why Skeptics Ought to Consider Christianity
Alan Loy McGinnis, The Friendship Factor
John Warwick Montgomery, ed., Christianity for the Tough Minded
John Warwick Montgomery, Faith Founded on Fact
John Warwick Montgomery, ed., God’s Inerrant Word
John Warwick Montgomery, History and Christianity
Frank Morrison, Who Moved the Stone?
Henry Morris, Biblical Cosmology and Modern Science
Henry Morris, Many Infallible Proofs
Jon Tal Murphree, A Loving God and A Suffering World
J.I. Packer, God Has Spoken
Jim Peterson, Evangelism As A Lifestyle
Clark Pinnock, Reason Enough
Clark H. Pinnock, Set Forth Your Case
Matthew Prince, Winning Through Caring
Richard L. Purtill, Reason To Believe
Earl Radmacher, ed., Can We Trust the Bible?
Bernard Ramm, A Christian Appeal to Reason
Robert L. Reymond, The Justification of Knowledge
Don Richardson, Eternity In Their Hearts
Francis Schaeffer, Escape From Reason
Francis Schaeffer, The God Who Is There
Francis Schaeffer, He Is There and he Is Not Silent
Francis Schaeffer, How Should We Then Live
Hugh Sylvester, Arguing With God
James Sire, The Universe Next Door
A.E. Wilder Smith, Man’s Origin, Man’s Destiny
R.C. Sproul, If There Is a God, Why Are There Atheists
R.C. Sproul, Objections Answered
Kenneth E. Stevenson and Gary R. Habermas, Verdict on the Shroud
John R.W. Stott, Basic Christianity
Merrill C. Tenney, The Reality of the Resurrection
L. Duane Thurman, How to Think About Evolution
Cornelius Van Til, Apologetics
Cornelius Van Til, Christian-Theistic Evidences
Cornelius Van Til, The Defense of the Faith
John Wenham, The Goodness of God
Rheinallt Nantlais Williams, Faith, Facts, History, Science–and How They Fit Together
Clifford A. Wilson, Rocks, Relics, and Biblical Reliability
Nicholas Wolterstorff, Reason Within the Bounds of Religion
Barry Wood, Questions Non-Christians Ask
Edwin Yamauchi, The Stones and the Scriptures
Philip Yancey, Where is God When It Hurts?
Reformed Theological Seminary
Reformed Theological Seminary publishes a recommended reading list for prospective students. It includes the following titles on contemporary culture and apologetics.
Contemporary Western Culture
Engaging God’s World, Cornelius Plantinga
Christ and Culture, H. Richard Niebuhr
No Place for Truth, David Wells
Culture Wars, James D. Hunter
Resident Aliens, Stanley Hauerwas & William Willimon
A Primer on Postmodernism, Stanlye Grenz
Postmodern Times, Gene Veith
Pop Culture Wars, William Romanowski
Scandal of the Evangelical Mind, Mark Noll
The Struggle for America’s Soul, Robert Wuthnow
The Culture of Interpretation, Roger Lundin
Total Truth, Nancy Pearsey
The Sensate Culture, Harold O.J. Brown
Every Thought Captive, Richard Pratt, Jr.
God in the Dock, C.S. Lewis
Apologetics to the Glory of God, John Frame
Christian Apologetics, Cornelius Van Til
Why I Believe in God, Cornelius Van Til (available online)
The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God, John Frame
Van Til: An Analysis of His Thought, John Frame
Van Til’s Apologetic, Greg Bahnsen
Five Views of Apologetics, ed. Steve Cowan
The following books on Christian Apologetics are recommended in the publication Beginning Your Theological Library published by the Criswell College.
Ronald Nash taught a course on Christian Apologetics at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida. He recommended several of his own books for the class.
Faith and Reason, Ronald Nash
Life’s Ultimate Questions, Ronald Nash
The Concept of God, Ronald Nash
Is Jesus the Only Savior?, Ronald Nash
When a Baby Dies, Ronald Nash
What do you think?
What are your thoughts on the books that have been recommended above? What titles would you add to their lists? Share your suggestions in the comment section below.
More Books of Interest
Apologetics – select quotes
C.S. Lewis – select quotes
Asking Questions of Christianity