I Read Dead People

Why reading contemporary Christians books may be a waste of your time.

People ask me all the time, "Who do you read?" In most cases they're looking for book recommendations. (Some people, particularly Calvinistas, are trying to determine if I'm safe–are my ideas and my theology grounded in what they see as credible sources.) But my answer usually surprises them: "I read dead people."

What do I mean? In my role with Leadership Journal I get dozens of books sent to me almost every week from publishers. They're looking for some good press, an endorsement, or a review in our pages. And while there are some very good books being written these days (we feature the best every year with our Golden Canon awards), there is also a lot of chaff. I simply don't have time to read everything.

So here's what I've learned. If someone has been dead for a while and his book is still in print and widely read, then it's probably worth reading. And, if we're honest, there are precious few books written by Christian authors today that will still be read in 24 months, let alone 24 ...

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