Yesterday, Dallas Willard passed into eternal glory.
I hadn’t read his books much over the last decade, but prior to that they played very important role in my own formation. As an aspiring philosopher myself at the time I was really digging into his work, I appreciated that he thought seriously and rigorously about following Christ, and that he was never afraid to ask hard questions. I’ve appreciated hearing many stories over the last day of his gentleness and humility.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Dallas Willard, or who may have only read a book or two of his, here is a brief guide to his seven essential works by ERB editor Chris Smith.
Which books have you read? Which have impacted you most?
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For me, this is Willard’s masterpiece. I read it at a crucial time, not long after I had graduated from college, and was in a period of seeking a faith that I could identify myself with. Willard’s depiction of a vivacious gospel that stood in contrast to the burdensome “gospel of sin management” that I had grown up with, played a major role in drawing me into the abundant life of God’s kingdom. Following in the footsteps of Bonhoeffer’s THE COST OF DISCIPLESHIP, this book is a clarion call to take the life and teachings of Jesus seriously and to follow in his way. It also paints a compelling picture of the vibrant life we find as we do follow after Jesus.