When my church holds its quarterly “Training Day” Saturday seminars, it offers books for sale (at cost) during the event. So when I planned to teach on Job, for instance, I suggested they offer Francis Andersen’s Tyndale Commentary on Job. It was a good choice for someone hoping to dive deeper into the topic – not too scholarly, but with some good substance. (I also suggested a few other commentaries during my class.)

Likewise, the other teachers on Saturday suggested a book or two, and our Training Day team made sure there were some on-hand to sell.

You could easily do that for every series or topic that your ministry addresses (in Large Group Meetings, small groups, or other teaching venues). And yes, I think there’s probably an advantage in having some copies available for sale (if you’ve got the budget for that); leftovers will still be good to hold onto as those same topics come up with individual students in the future. (Or you could even hold a “Christmas reading sale” or “summer reading sale” with all the leftovers each December and May – what a great way to remind people what they’ve learned over the course of a semester!)

Providing books at the back end of teaching accomplishes (at least) two things:

  • It allows students who want to (and need to) go deeper on a topic to do that well
  • It trains the whole group to think about going deeper (through reading books or other means) – “discipling themselves” is one of those skills we have to impart before graduation, right?