It’s that time of year again, the time for people to post the book’s they’ve read, to announce their favorite books, and to share with others the books they’ve loved. This year, because I’m working on a new book on the doctrine of atonement, I focused on reading books and lots articles on various theologians’ takes on atonement. The articles don’t show up here but those books do. Also, I moved into a new ministry role this year in Young Life, so there was a new focus on learning more about GenZ. In light of all of that, I present to you the forty-three books I read this year along with my favorite book of 2023!

Youth Ministry as Mission: A Conversation About Theology and Culture – Brian Hall and Patrick Mays

This book captured a lot of what I think about how to approach youth ministry. It emphasizes the missional nature of youth ministry, not only that it emphasizes the need for cross-cultural intelligence when dealing with generations other than one’s own. Written in dialogue with Lesslie Newbigin’s theology–and including a narrative element–this book invites youth ministers to approach their ministry as a missionary would: learning to listen, hearing the cultural narratives, coming alongside, being “incarnational,” etc. I originally started my time in seminary in a missiology program. Later I switched over to theology. In the final year of my PhD in Systematic Theology I went back and finished that missiology program that I had left incomplete. Given my missiological emphasis and my new role with Young Life this book was right up my alley.

A quote from one of the narrative sections captures the heart of the book:

“All the things we did in the Czech Republic we do here. We live among the people, we learn their language and culture, we craft ways to translate the gospel, and we find creative ways to articulate and embody the gospel that makes sense in this context where God has called and sent us.” (30)

What if youth ministers approached their ministry in this way? Imagine the fruit that would bear!

Now on to the books I read this year…


  1. Introducing Christology – Stephen Wellum
  2. Conservatism – Roger Scruton
  3. The Satisfied Life: Medieval Women Mystics on Atonement – Jane McAvoy
  4. Aspects of the Atonement – I. Howard Marshall
  5. The Women are Up to Something: How Elizabeth Anscombe, Philippa Foot, Mary Midgley, and Iris Murdoch Revolutionized Ethics – Benjamin J.B. Lipscomb
  6. Mapping Atonement: The Doctrine of Reconciliation in Christian History and Theology – William Witt and Joel Scandrett


  1. Atonement: Soundings in Biblical, Trinitarian, and Spiritual Theology – Margaret Turek
  2. Cultural Identity and the Purposes of God – Steven Bryan
  3. Reformed Dogmatics in Dialogue: The Theology of Karl Barth and Jonathan Edwards – Uche Anizor and Kyle Strobel


  1. Timothy Keller: His Intellectual and Spiritual Formation – Collin Hansen
  2. Youth Ministry as Mission: A Conversation About Theology and Culture – Brian Hall and Patrick Mays
  3. Speaking Across Generations: Messages that Satisfy Boomers, Xers, Millennials, Gen Z and Beyond – Darrell Hall
  4. The Masters: Golf, Money, and Power in Augusta, Georgia – Curt Sampson


  1. On the Tree and the Cross: Georges Florovsky and the Patristic Doctrine of Atonement – Matthew Baker, Seraphim Dankaert, and Nicholas Marinides
  2. On Writing (and Writers) – C.S. Lewis
  3. Fans First: Change the Game, Break the Rules & Create an Unforgettable Experience – Jesse Cole


  1. Continental Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction – Simon Critchley
  2. Generation Z Unfiltered: Facing Nine Hidden Challenges of the Most Anxious Population – Tim Elmore


  1. C.S. Lewis: A Very Short Introduction – Roger Clark
  2. Gospel Eldership – Robert Thune


  1. Managing Generation Z: How to Recruit, Onboard, Develop, and Retain the Newest Generation in the Workplace – Robin Paggi & Kat Clowes
  2. Prodigal God – Tim Keller


  1. Calvin on Sovereignty, Providence, and Predestination – Joel Beeke
  2. Golf is Not a Game of Perfect – Bob Rotella and Bob Cullen
  3. The Election of Grace: A Riddle without a Resolution? – Stephen N. Williams
  4. God has Chosen: The Doctrine of Election Through Christian History – Mark Lindsay
  5. The US Constitution: A Very Short Introduction – David Bodenhamer


  1. The Defining Decade – Meg Jay
  2. A Leader’s Guide to Unlocking Gen Z – Hannah Grady Williams
  3. On Getting Out of Bed: The Burden and Gift of Living – Alan Noble


  1. Four Stages of Psychological Safety – Timothy Clark
  2. Atonement: An Introduction – Jeremy Treat


  1. Christianity and Science – Herman Bavinck
  2. Generations: The Real Differences Between Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, Boomers, and Silents―and What They Mean for America’s Future – Jean Twenge
  3. Christus Victor – Gustaf Aulen


  1. An Infinite Fountain of Light: Jonathan Edwards for the Twenty First Century
  2. Jonathan Edwards on Genesis – Brian Borgman
  3. Into the Heart of Romans – N.T. Wright
  4. Postcoloniaism: A Very Short Introduction – Robert J.C. Young
  5. Atonement – Eleonore Stump
  6. Christian Philosophy as a Way of Life: An Invitation to Wonder – Ross Inman
  7. Advent – Tish Harrison Warren
  8. Christ and Horrors – Marilyn McCord Adams

This was originally published January 5, 2024, on Chris Woznicki’s blog.