If I could make all Christians to read only one book, it would not be the Bible. It would be Living By the Book.
Why? Because after reading this book, people would want to read the Bible, and they would be equipped to better understand and apply what is in it.
Living by the Book is a distillation of the Bible study class Howard Hendricks taught at Dallas Theological Seminary for decades (and may still teach). There are no tricks to get the most out of the Bible, and there are certainly no magic tricks. Bible study requires hard work to glean the treasures from scripture. But there are methods that make that task easier and clearer, and this book contains some very simple and yet useful ones.
The book is broken up into three basic sections representing the stages of Bible study: observation, interpretation, and application. In the first, Hendricks teaches you how to approach the text in new ways in “Ten Strategies to First-Rate Reading” and clues for finding the buried treasure in “Six Things to Look For.”
In the second section, Hendricks covers how to understand what you’ve seen in the text with his “Five Keys to Interpretation” and his hints on “Figuring Out the Figurative.” In the third section, he takes the reader through the oft neglected topic of applying the truths of scripture to your life. He offers nine questions to ask of the text and some important advice on deriving general principles from specific passages.
This book is not the be-all end-all of Bible study. It is an introductory text, and it is not the only good introductory text out there. But if all Christians read only this book, the Church and the world would be much better for it.