My Favorite Christmas Gifts for Believers

8 Dec

If you are shopping this year for a Christian Christmas gift, something to encourage a believer or help them in their walk with God, I have a few suggestions. But first, let me give one disclaimer . . . evangelism by gifts should be approached very carefully. Giving a detailed Bible commentary to someone who hasn’t read a Bible in ten years will probably not be helpful. So, if you are fairly confident that your friend or family member will appreciate a Christian gift, here are a few suggestions . . .

Bible-oriented Gifts . . . 

One possibility is a good Study Bible. My favorites are the Reformation Study Bible, the MacArthur Study Bible, the ESV Study Bible and the NIV Zondervan Study Bible. I am not a big fan of study Bibles which revolve around specific groups (men, women, missions, etc) with the exception of the above study Bibles which have a Student Edition. One other note about Study Bibles; get the hardcover. You probably won’t haul your Study Bible to church but keep it at home for deeper study. Therefore, you don’t need an expensive leather cover because this Bible is unlikely to be exposed to weather and the wear and tear of everyday life.

Books . . .

This is such a subjective deal, but generally I would gift a book to someone only when I am fairly confident they will read it. Then, I want to get a feel for their interests. I also generally would not give a book to someone that I haven’t read myself. I also think normally a gifted book ought to tend toward being brief rather than long (unless you have a friend with a real interest in a certain subject). Some of my favorite short books for Christians include The Cross He Bore by Frederick Leahy, Today’s Gospel by Walter Chantry, DA Carson’s The Cross and Christian Ministry, and AW Tozer books like The Pursuit of God and The Knowledge of the Holy. Other authors I like who write longer books for a popular audience include Dallas Willard, Tim Keller, and NT Wright. I don’t agree with them on everything but they challenge my heart in fresh ways.

Subscriptions . . .

A magazine subscription to World magazine or Christianity Today can be a gift that keeps on giving.

Music and Movies . . . 

This one is tricky for a couple of reasons. First, you better be really sure of the person’s musical tastes. Second, you must be careful about buying media the person no longer uses. Buying a CD for someone who streams all their music may not be the nicest gift for them. When it comes to movies, again the streaming issue comes into view as many people no longer use DVD’s. Also, many Christian movies contain suspect teaching. Lots of discernment is needed here.

A Final Word . . . 

Christmas gifts are a tricky thing. In trying to commemorate Christ’s birth and show those in our lives our love for them, we are only a step or two away from consumerism and a focus on things which takes away our focus on Jesus. If you can gift a gift of spiritual encouragement to a believer, this can blunt some of the overwhelming materialism during this season. But even here we must be careful with our hearts both in giving and receiving.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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