For every part of life, these Christian books offer a way to living a fulfilling and godly life as a modern Christian man.
Being a man isn’t easy, simply because being a man isn’t any one, single thing.
But the world’s idea of manliness is what we are most often presented with. The reticent and powerful statue persona: Atlas bearing the weight of the world on his shoulders. Men are painted in a way that has grown into a toxic expectation far off-course from what God wants.
William Shakespeare - whose plays frequently portrayed the tragic outcomes of hard-headed masculinity (if only Othello just talked with Desdemona, or Macbeth didn’t see personal fulfilment in power) - wrote that:
‘One man in his time plays many parts’ - As You Like It, Act II, Scene VII ]
He wasn’t wrong. Being a man is a series of parts from puberty to parenting and beyond that bring challenges with every steps, but also meaning and joys.
And for all these stages, there are insightful Christian books for men that offer up the wisdom, encouragement, and paths to growing into a man of God. These books are written by Christian men who have travelled all of those ways before, and who share their experiences and tips for along the way: all with the knowledge that you were made by God to be the best person possible.
The most reliable port-of-call for discovering a world of role-models, as well as the negative examples, sources of practical wisdom and words to turn to in difficulties, is the Bible. And, amongst the plethora of different Bibles, here’s a list of ones specially curated to help guide Christian men on their journey.
These are men's Bibles which are made to be applied to life. To be a guide in each and every stage of male life.
- NLT Every Man's Bible - When every day feels like a battle, this Bible is made to be your armour. Using the accessible NLT version, and with practical and down-to-earth guides to life, this Bible is for every man, in any age.
- ESV Men's Devotional Bible - Men are busy creatures: work, life, commute, family, responsibilities. But, amidst distractions and pressures of society, this ESV brings a different way of reading the Bible: one day at a time, and focused on being a modern Christian man.
- The Voice Bible - Using a distinct and engaging voice throughout, this reimagining of the Bible is in plain-speak: perfect for busy men with little time for in-depth research. This Bible reads like a novel, and can be taken anywhere as a result.
- KJV Waterproof Bible Blue - For the outdoors-loving man, this Bible is waterproof, stain resistant, non-bleeding, non-paper, and able to float. This Bible is for any man’s inner-Bear-Grylls.
The precarious first steps into manhood are often the most fraught. It is a time where bad influences, pressures, and worry can set askew ideas of manliness for life. And these books, more than most, know this.
They are a signpost to the right way to grow into a man, offering fatherly advice for boys lacking dads, as well as a voice that understands everything they are going through without judgment.
- To My Sons - Well-known epitome of thoughtful manliness, Bear Grylls imparts well-worn advice in this grounded book of wisdom for young men.
- 3 Minute Devotions For Guys - When you are a young man, and the world feels like it’s waiting out there to be explored, taking time to sit and read can be easily neglected. But when that reading is only 3 minutes long, young can read and go out there a little more emboldened in Christ.
- Unreachable - An authentic and tough story of drugs, violence, prison and redemption, Unreachable is a key book for showing what happens when a young man follows dangerous masculinity, rage, and anger.
- The Christian Zombie Killers Handbook - Shuffling, speaking only in grunts and groans, possessing a ravenous appetite, and often appearing messy and decayed: it is hardly unfathomable why many teenage boys are fascinated with zombies, and this book speaks to them is this language, showing how to slay the unhealthy parts of themselves.
- The Cross and the Switchblade - David Wilkerson's true-story of gangs and grace has become one of the most iconic stories ever told of God’s power in a young man’s life. A must read for any teenaged boys.
More than anything, men come to define themselves through their work. I’m an accountant. I’m a driver. I’m in woodwork. It often offers meaning and purpose, but that was never what God intended for identity and a full life. Believing work bestows value gave birth to phrases such as It’s not exactly brain surgery.
But these books are a response to a world view of work. They explore what we’ve been taught about work, and how it is a place of fruitful growth, rather than the solution to problems of identity.
- Know Your Why - A challenging call to find your purpose, Know Your Why is an intelligent examination of where we find our calling.
- Every Good Endeavour - Tim Keller strips away all of the competitiveness, aggression, and insecurity that expectations of manliness have cultured in the workplace by showing how there is a better attitude to work, and where identity fits in it.
- Revolutionary Work - Encouraging for anyone who feels trapped by the 9-5ness of life on the job, Revolutionary Work is a liberating collection of thoughts that will help you grow into a wise and godly worker.
- Called by God - Echoing Know Your Why, Called by God is tightly focused on personal identity, and comes with chances to ponder who you are, as a man, as a worker, as a person in Christ.
We all know the stereotype. The strong, silent husband who goes to work, comes home to eat, maybe drinks a beer, and watches tv - all the while growing an oily paunch beneath his mustard-stained vest. Being a husband is one of the most ill-defined roles in culture today. Every story of love seems to end with either a wedding or death (and sometimes, both), seeing life spent after Marriage as not worthy of a narrative
But, marriage can be a source of joy and fulfilment when done right. And it is a topic that Christian books certainly haven’t let slack.
Here are some of the wonderfully instructive books, based on personal experience as well as Biblical advice, that offer better ways to communicate, cherish, and celebrate the years of marriage that will make up the majority of a life.
- The 5 Love Languages - Think of this as secret code to being a better husband. The 5 Love Languages shows in simple terms how to show love, and communicate it, effectively. It is concrete, real, and can be put into practice immediately.
- Date Your Wife - Dating doesn’t stop at I do, but it can be so easy to forget that when dishes need doing, bills need paying, and you both feel exhausted for the day. Date Your Wife is a shot in the arm for romance post-marriage, and will push you to do more for each other..
- Emotionally Healthy Spirituality - “Wait, this isn’t a book about marriage!” Technically, you aren’t wrong. But becoming able to understand your emotions (despite the reticence that often characterised as manly) will benefit not only your own life, but your marriage. You wouldn’t get into fights as often if you were able to express and understand how you’re really feeling.
- Highway Code to Marriage - Want a better marriage, but don’t have the time to plough through a whole book? This Highway Code gives you the pointers to a better marriage, and is written in incredibly clear and simple terms.
- The Power Of A Praying Husband - From the bestselling series, The Power of a Praying Husband encourages men to pray for every aspect of their marriage, so that is will flourish in a way that honours God.
I can think of nothing scarier than being wholly responsible for another human being. Especially when said human is the size of a melon, and can’t even burp unassisted. Years spent being presented with examples of strength, durability, and power have let whither the nurturing spirit of many a man. And so, when presented with parenthood, we can quite often be scared witless.
So, wasting no time, these are the books that show what God-inspired fatherhood looks like, and how we can become better fathers, husbands, and role-models ourselves.
- What Mums Want (and Dads Need to Know) - Told with real life tales and useful advice, this book gives you the tools to be a successful husband and father by helping you re-prioritize your life and the positive effect of taking responsibility for your family’s happiness.
- The Sixty Minute Father - An hour read, but with a lifetime’s worth of wisdom, The Sixty Minute Father knows that you have almost no free time when you have kids, and so delivers in the shortest possible time the tools you need to prosper in parenthood.
- To My Sons - Returning to this list again, To My Sons is as valuable for fathers as it is for children. Its lessons from the wilds of the world give you the guidance to deal with the wildlife that live under your very roof.
- The Highway Code for Parenting - Just as the Highway Code for Marriage gave you the pointers to being a fruitful husband, Highway Code for Parenting will equip you to be a godly parent, an equipped parent, and a good father for you children.
Of course, being a man is more than being a professional, a husband, a parent (roles which many man never fill, and can often feel marginalised by as a result). And that is where these books come in.
These Christian books for men are all about developing a healthy masculinity, and about discovering who you are in God. They are for every man, no matter where they are in life, and offer a counter-narrative to the Bonds, Bournes, and Bauers who fight their way through life.
- The Dark Night of the Shed - Covering all things manly, The Dark Night of the Shed explores manliness, mid-life crises, and maintaining a healthy spirituality in a way that is humorous and honest.
- Fathered by God - Sonship is an integral idea to faith as it is to masculinity for many, but what about when there is an absence of a father figure in your life? Shifting the course of modern manhood, John Eldredge explores what God as a father figure means, and how that changes how you live.
- Manhood Restored - What does the gospel say about manliness? This hard-talking book deconstructs the stereotypes of being a man, and goes back to what godly masculinity looks like, and how faith fills the gap that many seek to fill with manliness.
- Rough Diamonds - Exploring the challenges that men face, Rough Diamonds shows how to be a new man, who doesn’t find meaning in set roles, but in identity in God, and in being a follower of Christ.
What happens when you retire, and the kids have moved out and started families of their own? It can seem like the end of life, but in reality, that is far from the truth (just look at the ages of some of the Bible’s key figures). These are the books to help you move-into, and live out fruitfully, the final years of life.
They are an encouragement, as source of light, and explore the potential power of being an old man, of being the mentor to a newer generation, and a beacon of experience for the storms that rage in young hearts.
They show how old age isn’t the end: rather, it’s the culmination, the crescendo, of a life.
- The Sixty Minute Grandparent - Showing clearly, and concisely, the nuances and roles that come with being a grandparent, Rob Parson’s book will guide you into being the best possible grandparent.
- The Power of a Praying Grandparent - For when you want to be there for your Grandkids, but aren’t around as often as you like, The Power of a Praying Grandparent give you a way to bless your grandchildren through focused and meaningful prayer.
- Old, But Not Out! - Fighting the stereotype of the old man past usefulness, Old But Not Out is a rousing call to jump back into a life of purpose, and to know that following God is for all ages.
- Creative Grandparenting - A wellspring of ideas for how to love and nurture your grandchildren, Creative Grandparenting is rooted in real experience, Biblical wisdom, and genuine insight.
But what about today? What about being a modern man when the very idea of manliness seems to change and fluctuate on an almost daily basis. There seems to be a shrinking list of things masculinity can be anchored in, and that is where Christian writers have stepped up to offer a stable foundation.
- Man Prayer Manual - A book on being a praying modern man, this small guide form Carl Beech is a dynamic book tailor made for modern, busy men.
- Killing Lions - A fatherly guide for young men struggling to find and sharpen the edges of their identity, this book by father and son John Eldredge and Samuel Eldredge is a timeless wellspring of advice. No lions were harmed in the making of this book.
- Play the Man - The author of The Circle Maker is on a mission to help re-define manliness by offering a new mantra for manhood. Play the Man is a book with is a solid route to fulfillment and solidity.
- Iron Men - Sadly not a guide to being a metal-suited superhero, Iron Men is a book on equipping the Gospel to help men define who they are in God and in modern days.
Christian books for men investigate what the Bible says about manliness, and examine how that relates to modern times. They are books which reflect every aspect of growing up, growing old, and growing closer to God as a Christian man.
For a greater selection of books that explain, explore, and expound the issues and aspects of being a Christian man, take a look at out Men's Issues department!
And if we missed any of your favourite books on being a modern, Chirstian man, let us know!
March 21st, 2017 - Posted & Written by Aaron Lewendon