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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Parnell

Sentences Change Lives

In one of my daughters’ favorite books Dr. Seuss tells us, “The more you read, the more things you will know.”

True. Reading is thinking is learning—and there are “mountains of treasures waiting to be mined.” But this doesn’t mean the books we read have to be long. While encouraging Sunday School teachers, John Piper said,

What I have learned from [years] of serious reading is this. It is sentences that change my life, not books. What changes my life is some new glimpse of truth, some powerful challenge, some resolution to a long-standing dilemma, and these usually come concentrated in a sentence or two (Quantitative Hopelessness and the Immeasurable Moment).

Sometimes this “sentence or two” is found in a short book. In fact, there’s quite a collection of short books that are chocked full of insight. Here’s my favorite list of five books less than 150 pages.

1Life Together, Dietrich Bonhoeffer 2Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die, John Piper 3Holiness, John Webster 4Redemption Accomplished and Applied, John Murray 5Resurrection and Redemption, Richard Gaffin

Though the books are small, the truths in them are great.


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