Best Christian Book of All Time: The Sweet Sixteen

After a frantic week of voting, our original field of 64 has been whittled down to the Sweet Sixteen! Check out the Round 2 scores below, download the official bracket, and then head to Facebook to begin voting for our next winners.

The Sweet Sixteen for the Best Christian Book of ALL TIME Tournament. Click for a larger image.

Round Two Results

Note: The official vote tallies were collected early Monday morning, so they may differ from what you currently see online.

Theology & Apologetics

In a battle of prolific Anglicans, C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity (1) defeated N.T. Wright’s The Resurrection of the Son of God (9) 90–25.

Luther’s Large Catechism (5) was knocked out by G.K. Chesterton’s Orthodoxy (4) 58–28, breaking the hearts of Lutherans worldwide.

The City of God by Augustine (3) knocked the Cinderella slipper off Blaise Pascal’s Pensées (11) by a score of 68–23.

In a shocking upset (if you’re Reformed), Summa Theologica by Thomas Aquinas (7) overcame Calvin’s Institutes (2) 60–40.

Sweet Sixteen Pairings: In the Theology & Apologetics bracket, it will be two classics of 20th century apologetics and two giants (literally) of theology.

  • Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis (1) vs. Orthodoxy by G.K. Chesterton (4)
  • The City of God by Augustine (3) vs. Summa Theologica by Thomas Aquinas (7)

Christian Life & Discipleship

The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1) knocked out The Gospel in a Pluralist Society by Lesslie Newbigin (8) 72–15.

Another favorite by Bonhoeffer, Life Together (5) defeated Augustine’s On Christian Teaching (13) 64–25.

It was The Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster (6) in a 44–32 upset over The Cross of Christ by John Stott (3).

A Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard (2) overcame A Long Obedience in the Same Direction by Eugene Peterson (7) 45–28.

Sweet Sixteen Pairings: The winner of Bonhoeffer v. Bonhoeffer will advance against the winner of two classics on spiritual discipline.

  • The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1) vs. Life Together by Bonhoeffer (5)
  • The Celebration of Discipline by Richard Foster (6) vs. A Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard (2)

Fiction & Poetry

The Divine Comedy by Dante (1) dominated Silence by Shusaku Endo (9) by a score of 59–16.

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (4) defeated John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress (5) 66–22.

In an epic battle, Les Misérables by Victor Hugo (3) overcame Paradise Lost by John Milton (6) 57–36.

J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings (2) won going away 66–25 over John Donne’s Complete Poetry and Selected Prose (7).

Sweet Sixteen Pairings: The top four seeds all advanced, a true credit to the wisdom of the selection committee of one.

  • The Divine Comedy by Dante (1) vs. The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (4)
  • Les Misérables by Victor Hugo (3) vs. The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (2)

Memoirs, Devotionals, & Spirituality

Confessions by Augustine (1) defeated Oswald Chamber’s My Utmost for His Highest (56–13), giving the Bishop of Hippo his second Sweet Sixteen selection.

The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence (4) overcame Spiritual Exercises by Ignatius of Loyola (5) 33–21.

A buzzer-beater upset! Taking advantage of a slowed-down tempo and great defense, Revelations of Divne Love by Julian of Norwich (11) beat Henri Nowen’s The Return of the Prodigal Son (3) to become the lowest-seeded book in the Sweet Sixteen.

No upset here, though. The Imitation of Christ by Thomas á Kempis (2) held on to defeat The Dark Night of the Soul by John of the Cross (7) 31–24.

Sweet Sixteen Pairings: A 300-year-old collection of letters by an elderly monk is the “young pup” in this bracket dominated by classics of spiritual literature.

  • Confessions by Augustine (1) vs. The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence (4)
  • Revelations of Divne Love by Julian of Norwich (11) vs. The Imitation of Christ by Thomas á Kempis (2)

Who will advance to the Regional Finals? Vote on Facebook for your choices! Theology & Apologetics and Christian Life & Discipleship will be competing today, with the next two brackets voting tomorrow.

mikehickerson@gmail.com'

Micheal Hickerson

The former Associate Director for the Emerging Scholars Network, Micheal lives in Cincinnati with his wife and three children and works as a web manager for a national storage and organization company. He writes about work, vocation, and finding meaning in what you do at No Small Actors.

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