Stephen Nichols: Last time, we started a conversation with Dr. Miguel Núñez on his top five books to take to his deserted island. We got off to a great start and now we are going to finish it. Dr. Nuñez, welcome back.
Miguel Núñez: Thank you. It’s good to be here again.
SN: Last time, we were talking about some wonderful books. We started off with Edwards and his Charity and Its Fruits, and that great final sermon, “Heaven Is a World of Love.” Then we talked about Martin Luther’s Bondage of the Will. And then you brought up J.C. Ryle and his book on the holiness of God. We have three solid books from church history so far. You are still allowed to take two more, so what would those two books be?
MN: I would think about some of the writings of John Owen. As you know, it is not easy to read John Owen, and yet, what he wrote about temptation and sin and the mortification of sin in believers, I think those writings are very important.
SN: Owen is a great deserted island guy because sometimes you need to read a paragraph a couple times over.
MN: Or ten times over.
SN: Or ten. So, it is good to have a book that will keep challenging you mentally, right?
MN: And also to remember that on that deserted island, in some ways, you are still tempted and you’re still dealing with sin.
SN: You know, I remember what you said last time. You said, “Our enemy is within.”
MN: That’s right.
SN: And we can’t escape that. So, we’ve got Owen. That brings us to your fifth and final book.
MN: The fifth book is a recent book, but it is a collection of old writings. And you probably know this book; it is Thy Word is Still Truth, edited by Peter Lillback and Richard Gaffin. The subtitle is Essential Writings on the Doctrine of Scripture from the Reformation to Today. So, you find all kinds of writers there. Warfield is there, Spurgeon is there, Calvin is there, Luther is there. So, you’re able to find chapters and portions of writings of all of these giants of the faith in one single book. It is a massive book, but it is an incredible piece of work. I haven’t read the entire book, but I have read portions of that book on the doctrine of the Scriptures, and to have all these giants of the faith writings about the same topic, but together in one single volume, I think it’s monumental.
SN: We say “one single volume,” but it’s hefty. It is a pretty thick book.
MN: Yes, it is.
SN: So, that might come in handy for a lot of reasons for you on your deserted island. And we’ve talked about some great doctrines—we’ve talked about the doctrine of God, we’ve talked about the doctrines of grace, we’ve talked about the doctrine of Scripture, and with Edwards, we even talked about the doctrine of heaven. So, thank you for mentioning these books and for bringing them to the attention of the folks who listen to us. One of the things we do on this island, as well, is we have a lot of authors come through, and we ask authors to leave behind one of their books. You have written a couple of books. Now, future visitors to the island will have to know Spanish, but which of your books would you like to leave behind?
MN: Well, I would leave the last one that I just wrote called Teachings that Transformed the World. It has twelve chapters: five on the solas of the Reformation, five on TULIP, and then the last two are “The Gospel” and “The Power of the Gospel.” I think that message changed the world. It made Europe and North America what they came to be, and that’s what I am hoping for in Latin America. We do not have that worldview. We fail to see that the Bible is not only theology; it is theology that gives us the right view of life and the world. So, that theology, summarized in the solas and TULIP and the gospel and the power of the gospel, I think that is what was behind all the transformation that we saw in history in Europe and in North America. So, I am dreaming about that for our region, and that is why I would leave that book behind.
SN: That’s great. Right theology transforms. What a wonderful book, and thank you for writing that. Thank you for visiting us. I’m going to leave you now and I hope you enjoy your time with your books.