There are 66 books that everybody needs to read. These books were written by more than 40 diverse authors — rich people and poor people, intellectuals and uneducated folks. These 66 books were written over a 1,500 year time period. Some of these books are poetry; some are history; some are letters; some are biography, some are exhortations.
An amazing thing about these 66 books is that in the 4th Century AD they were brought together as a unit. As diverse as they are, they fit together so well that for centuries they have been considered to be one book.
These 66 books have the power to radically transform human lives. Through out history millions of people have testified to the fact that reading these books lifted their heart, their thinking, and their life to amazing new levels.
When I first began to read these books 41 years ago, they began to change me at the depths of my being. I seldom find a book that I will reread. Not so with these 66 books — I’ve read them over and over and over — and they still burn in my heart, challenge me, and inspire me to be a better man.
An amazing thing about these books is that they are brutally honest — they call a spade a spade. Most history books put a spin on history and make the heroes look superhuman. For example, American history books make George Washington and Thomas Jefferson look almost godlike. They fail to tell the details of their terrible cruelty to their fellow humans — how they forcibly held innocent men, women, and children in bondage, made them work without pay, whipped them if they disobeyed, and wouldn’t let them read any of the 66 books (or even learn to read for that matter).
However, the 66 books are just the opposite. Unlike distorted history books written by human beings, these 66 books reveal the bad things about their heroes, in shocking and vivid detail.
Bound together, these 66 books are the number one best seller in human history. The best selling English translation of these books was first translated 500 years ago this year and is known as the KJV. Through the KJV (and other translations) these books have been the greatest literary influence on Western culture and thought.
Everybody should read these books. It would be a shame to die having missed out on the best books ever written.
If I had to pick a favorite of the 66 books, I think I would pick Acts, with Matthew, James, and John right behind. My least favorite is probably Leviticus. However, they have all impacted me powerfully. They are a mirror — they reveal my heart and call me to come clean of my wrongful thoughts and deeds. They challenge me to be totally honest, to love and serve people, and to live right.
Why not give the 66 books a chance? Why not read one of them today?