On My Shelf helps you get to know various writers through a behind-the-scenes glimpse into their lives as readers.
I corresponded with John Frame, professor of systematic theology and philosophy at Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, Florida. In this interview we learn what books have profoundly shaped Frame, what he’s learning about life and following Jesus, his current writing projects, and more.
What’s on your nightstand right now?
A lamp, two alarm clocks, and a CPAP machine.
What are you learning about life and following Jesus?
There’s no predictable pattern in life; but God teaches through every circumstance. At 76 I can say that it’s all been good, even situations I used to agonize about.
What books have most profoundly shaped how you serve and lead others for the sake of the gospel?
- The Bible
- C. S. Lewis, Miracles
- Cornelius Van Til, The Defense of the Faith
- J. Gresham Machen, Christianity and Liberalism
- Abraham Kuyper, Lectures on Calvinism
- C. John Miller, Outgrowing the Ingrown Church
- Herman Bavinck, Reformed Dogmatics
- John Murray, Collected Writings
- J. I. Packer, ‘Fundamentalism’ and the Word of God
- Meredith Kline, The Structure of Biblical Authority
What biographies or autobiographies have most influenced you?
- Augustine, Confessions
- Ned Stonehouse’s biography of J. Gresham Machen
- C. S. Lewis, Surprised by Joy
- Bruce Hunt, For a Testimony
These figures have callings parallel to mine in various ways and have faced problems similar to those I’ve had. But mostly they are people I admire immensely.
What are your favorite fiction books?
I rarely read fiction, but I do enjoy films of fictional events like Star Wars.
How do you best balance reading and writing?
I don’t read much anymore, except to research something I’m teaching or writing about.
What writing projects are you hoping to complete in the next few years?
No more huge books. I’m now writing a middle-sized (less than 100 pages) introduction to three-perspective thinking and a bunch of book reviews. Several books of mine are on the shelf, but not yet cleared for publication, including a couple apologetics books directed to unbelieving readers.
What are your top five books on apologetics?
- C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
- Cornelius Van Til, Christian Apologetics
- Tim Keller, The Reason for God
- Vern Poythress, Redeeming Science
- William Edgar and Scott Oliphint, eds., Apologetics Past and Present (2 vols.)
Also in the On My Shelf series: Rod Dreher, James K. A. Smith, Randy Alcorn, Tom Schreiner, Trillia Newbell, Jen Wilkin, Joe Carter, Timothy George, Tim Keller, Bryan Chapell, Lauren Chandler, Mike Cosper, Russell Moore, Jared Wilson, Kathy Keller, J. D. Greear, Kevin DeYoung, Kathleen Nielson, Thabiti Anyabwile, Elyse Fitzpatrick, Collin Hansen, Fred Sanders, Rosaria Butterfield, Nancy Guthrie, and Matt Chandler.