Good Books for Students and Student Ministers


Tim Challies recently shared his 10 Books Every Christian Teenager Should Read. As a minister to students, I couldn’t agree more with this list and the need for these kinds of resources to find their way into the hands of teenagers.

As I was thinking through other books I might add to this list, I came across some other lists that are worth checking out—27 Books Christian Teens Should Read and Top 10 Books for Youth Groups.

To add to these already helpful lists, I wanted suggested some of the books we have used or hope to use within our own student ministry. Additionally, I have categorized these books within some of the essential categories we think through within our student ministry. Some of these books are written with teenagers in mind, many of them are relatively short and accessible,  but all of them are worth every teenager reading. Additionally, I think these books provide a helpful guide for student ministers as they seek equip and send out students for the gospel.

Gospel Clarity: Helping students know and share the gospel

Trustworthy Faith: Helping students grow confident in what they believe & why they believe it

Personal Holiness: Helping students fight sin and walk in holiness

Purity Matters: Helping students pursue purity and understand their sexuality

Spiritual Discipline: Helping students develop disciplines for growth and maturity

Meaningful Community: Helping students desire & enjoy life together in the local church

Missional Living: Helping students see their everyday life in light of God’s mission

Disciple Making: Helping students know what it means to be a disciple and make disciples

If your a parent, some of these books would make a gift. Others would be a helpful tool to walk through a difficult issue your student may be facing. If you are a student minister, some of these books may provide direction for a teaching series. Others may prove helpful in thinking through your approach to various topics. Either way, I’d love to hear from you. What would you add to this list?

*indicates that I have not personally read this book, but hope to do so soon!

2 thoughts on “Good Books for Students and Student Ministers

  1. This is a great list! I have read many of these books, and will take the others as recommendations. One title I would add is Ed Shaw’s “Same-Sex Attraction and the Church: the Surprising Plausibility of the Celibate Life.” It is written from the author’s personal experience with adults in mind, but is accessible and appropriate for teenagers. This book does a wonderful job explaining why same-sex attraction should not be fulfilled, but also explains how the church can provide love and community to those who experience it. It addresses ways that the church has approached the issue wrongly, but provides positive solutions. It also includes an appendix that addresses common misinterpretations and misapplications of Scripture. I think this would be a wonderful tool for teens who are struggling with same-sex attraction and need hope that they can deny themselves and follow Jesus. It would also be a great resource for those who need to understand and learn how to defend biblical ethics on this issue, while still loving their neighbor.


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