1. Name the five books (or scholars) that had the most immediate and lasting influence on how you read the Bible. Note that these need not be your five favorite books, or even the five with which you most strongly agree. Instead, I want to know what five books have permanently changed the way you think.
2. Tag five others.
1. David Pawson. Was the first theologian and Pastor whose work I really got into and shaped the way I approached theology and attitudes to church. Very conservative evangelical whose work on leadership and church I would now disagree with. I would probably disagree with most of his work now, although I'm sure there are things I would want to affirm that he has written. Introduced me to guys like Wayne Grudem and John Piper.
2. Tom Wright. Has helped me grapple with concepts of heaven and the kingdom in new ways. Has enabled me to read scripture in new ways and understand the Bible in terms of culture and context.
3. John Colwell. A lecturer at Spurgeons who blew my mind open in the first year. His books Promise and Presence and Living the Christian Story are still important to me in terms of how I understand God and the Church. His lectures were always controversial and stimulating. Shame he's leaving Spurgeons to go back into Pastoral ministry!
4. Pentecostalism. I read a whole range of the weird and wonderful when I first became a Christian and so many were about 'Apostolic Power!' and the like. A lot of the books came out of Pentecostalism and while I would read these books now and struggle, they did introduce me to the person of the Holy Spirit and have helped me to desire to meet with God in more intimate ways and to seek God in enabling me to be minister who prayed for God's Spirit to heal and transform lives.
5. Rob Bell. His theological generosity has been hugely helpful. Enabled me to read and study the Bible with fresh eyes. Also helped me to read scripture through a mission lens and thus led me to guys like Hirsch, Frost and Mclaren.