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Growing In Christ: Resources to Enrich Your Christian Life

Baptized We Live - Daniel Erlander

Easy to read and understand, with great illustrations; curriculum in one thin book for understanding the Lutheran way of life. (MLC has a few if you're interested. It can also be ordered from Augsburg Fortress; they also have other Erlander publications for children, youth, and adults.)

Lutheran Study Bible, Augsburg Fortress

An essential tool as you study the Bible; contains backgrounds on the books of the Bible, study notes, commentary, etc. (There are a lot of Bibles out there describing themselves as study Bibles, such as those of Joyce Mayer and Joel Osteen; they are not based on sound Biblical scholarship.)

Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again - Rachel Held Evans

The late Ms. Held Evans, herself a lay person, gets into the Bible from a scholarly perspective and makes it accessible to other lay people.

Rescuing the Bible From Fundamentalism - Bishop John Shelby Spong

Dear Church: A Love Letter from a Black Preacher to the Whitest Denomination in the U. S. - Lenny Duncan

Rev. Duncan rejects the narrative of church decline and calls everyone--leaders and laity alike--to the front lines of the church's renewal through racial equality and justice.

It is time for the church to rise up, dust itself off, and take on forces of this world that act against God: whiteness, misogyny, nationalism, homophobia, and economic injustice. Duncan gives a blueprint for the way forward and urges us to follow in the revolutionary path of Jesus.

Dear Church also features a discussion guide at the back--perfect for church groups, book clubs, and other group discussion.

The Case for the Psalms: Why They Are Essential - N. T. Wright

Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes: Cultural Studies in the Bible - Kenneth E. Bailey

Dr. Bailey discusses well known passages and parables of Jesus and explains them from a Middle Eastern perspective. An eye-opening book!

Baptized in Tear Gas: From White Moderate to Abolitionist - Elle Dowd

Wild Woman (About Mary of Egypt) - Amy Frykholm