…there is no end, thanks be to God.

Arlen tagged me with a book meme, and since books are dear to my heart anyway, I’m responding here.

  1. Total number of books I own / have owned:
  2. I thought the number was around 1500, but I went and did a quick approximation to come up with an updated number: 2400. I must have another 4-500 that have been “retired” over the years, or which have otherwise changed ownership. These represent quite a variety of subjects, with a few notable concentrations in particular areas… the collection includes more than 45 on the Gospel of John. Also of interest (perhaps) might be the largest number of books acquired in a single day, which for me would be well over 100, almost 150… a good used book market can do that to you. Almost every volume in the library is stamped with an impression that says, “Three things: old friends, old wine, old books.”

  3. Last book I bought:
  4. Leslie Allen’s Commentary on Pslams 101-150 (Word Biblical Commentary series). This one was a lucky break in a bargain bin yesterday.

  5. Last book I read:
  6. Excluding books on-the-go, the last one completed was Leonard Sweet’s Out of the Question… Into the Mystery.

  7. Five books that mean a lot to me:
  8. I’ve answered a similar question to this here previously, but I would list:
    Desiring God by John Piper
    The Last Battle by C.S. Lewis
    The Cluetrain Manifesto by Chris Locke, Doc Searls, and David Weinberger
    The Spirit of the Disciplines by Dallas Willard
    Fifth spot is up in the air, it could be Leonard Sweet’s Out of the Question… Into the Mystery or could be Scot McKnight’s The Jesus Creed …but I’m only a couple of chapters into that one. There will always be a few that stand out as clear leaders in answering a question like this one (different for each respondent) and when it comes down to the last one or two in the list, there seem to be many that could fit, and it’s harder to choose. Maybe I should go a different way altogether, and say,
    The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie.

    It’s difficult, but I’m going to skip providing annotations and review comments on each of these.

  9. Two major books when I was a kid:
  10. I’m going to cheat on this one and say the Bible. If you interpreted the last question as sentimental meaning, this would be it. When I was quite young, I had a copy of the new testament in a Living Bible version… it was a special “evangelistic”-oriented version titled, The Greatest is Love. I used to read this particular copy with my dad, and I read it a lot on my own… and in no small way I would attribute this to an early love of reading and of the Bible. I practically learned to read with this one, and I still have it; old and tattered, the binding is shot so the book is about three “pieces” plus some loose leafs. If I dig even farther back than that one, I am told my very first favorite book was called It’s a Horse, of Course! …I still have that one, too. Maybe I should have answered this question differently… but I was an avid reader even when I was young, so the memory is fading, and there were just so many books.

  11. People I want to tag:
  12. Robbymac
    Bob Robinson
    Will Samson
    Brad Hightower
    Bill Millar
    Something of a cross-section here… I know Rob and Bob will have some good, thoughtful lists, and Will just loves memes ;^) Brad is a bit on the edge of the emerging church conversation, but emerging types would do well to frequent his blog to converse, and I expect he’ll also have a good list. Bill Millar isn’t widely known in EC circles yet, but his blog is worth the visit — and he’s a fellow Winnipegger.

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