A month ago we moved house. It’s not really the most enjoyable of experiences but it’s something that has to be done when the time comes. The process of moving house meant that I had to move all the books that i have. I’m an avid reader and aim to read a book each fortnight (on average over the course of a year). The “industry” I’m in also lends itself to be around books. Ministry requires reading, preaching requires reading, studying requires reading. This means I’ve a growing collecting of around 700 books on the shelves and when the library reaches this point it’s probably time to get it sorted out.
I did toy with the idea of working the Dewey system or using the Library of Congress numbers but decided that might be a bit extreme. In the end the best advice came from Andy Naselli’s post on “Why you should organise your theological library and a way how”. I’ve adjusted some of what he’s suggested but used the main categories to organise mine. My library is obviously not as big as his so it doesn’t need as much detail as what he has laid out. But here it is:
1. Biblical Theology
- Languages (NT Greek)
- Hermenuetics (how to interpret the Bible etc.)
- Commentaries (on each book of the Bible)
- OT & NT introductions, theologies, and overviews
2. Historical Theology
- Church & Christian History
- “Works” by old dead guys
3. Systematic Theology
- Bible doctrine (the sort of topics in a general systematic theology book)
4. Practical Theology
- Christian Living (all those great books people pick up at the front of Christian bookstores ;))
- Youth Ministry
- Pastoral Ministry
At this stage all sub-categories are mixed in together in the broad categories. I’m not convinced this works for the Practical Theology section but it’ll take too much time sorting it out at the moment.
Comments? Suggestions? How do you sort yours?