There are so many Enneagram resources available these days, it can be hard to discern which will be most helpful! I’ve put together a list of the very best Christian Enneagram books along with brief descriptions so you can find the one that will be most helpful to you.
Everything we learn in the world around us can be refined by Scripture for our growth in Christlikeness.
Some Christians may be concerned that the Enneagram is used outside of Christian circles. But the Enneagram can be a window to understanding yourself and drawing closer to Jesus.
All nine personality numbers in the Enneagram can be redeemed from brokenness and sin to emotional health through Christ’s cross and resurrection power.
Top Christian Enneagram Books
In this article, you will learn the 5 best Christian Enneagram books to shepherd you on your faith-journey with Jesus. These Christ-centered works will guide you into a more thriving relationship with the Lord, others, and your healthiest self.
Before surveying in depth, if you are looking for a swift answer, here are the top options to consider.
- Best: Enneagram and the Way of Jesus – by A.J. Sherill
- Runner-Up: Nine Portraits of Jesus – Discovering Jesus Through the Enneagram – by Robert J. Nogosek
Let’s look at all 5 in depth so you can discover the book that’s best for you.
Best: Enneagram and the Way of Jesus– by A.J. Sherill
“People are not homogeneous creatures that can simply be reduced to a type to explain the totality of their existence. However, everyone resides within one core personality more than the others.
This is the starting place to discovering one’s uniqueness.”
Best for type-specific disciplines and the Enneagram in a Church-setting.
A.J. Sherill is one of Christendom’s most thoughtful, dynamic Enneagram teachers. Author of Enneagram-related works (such as The Enneagram for Spiritual Formation and Being with God) and a pastor by trade, Sherill approaches the Enneagram with a pastor’s heart.
In this short self-published book, Sherill not only gives a survey of the Enneagram historically, he examines how personality can be a road to Christ-likeness. Centering on spiritual formation and spiritual disciplines, Sherill gives the church a great resource for spiritual growth.
For each of the nine types, Sherill recommends a “downstream” discipline—a spiritual discipline that will feel natural and fitting for your type—and an “upstream” disciple—one that will be potentially challenging, but beneficial for growth.
- Type-specific “upstream” and “downstream” spiritual disciplines
- Wisdom on how a church could use the Enneagram
- At a little over 100-pages, this is an accessible read
– by Robert J. Nogosek
“In Jesus, above all, humanity is the image and likeness of God. He did not come wearing his humanness like clothes, but rather he brought the essence of being human to its full capacity of revealing what God is like. That essence becomes known through what we call personality.”
Best for seeing the Enneagram as a portrait of Jesus.
If you want to see Jesus through the Enneagram, this book is for you.
The late Robert Nogosek was a Catholic Priest and author of multiple works on the Enneagram and Christian spiritual life. Nogosek’s goal in this book is to present Jesus as the perfection of every type.
At Soul Shepherding, the core of our understanding and teaching of the Enneagram is that it allows us to see Jesus as the perfection of human personhood.
By putting Jesus as the clear frame and fulfillment of each Enneagram type, Nogosek gives a picture of the redemption of human personality in Christ.
- Every type description is thoroughly Christ-centered
- Accessible to all readers, regardless of denominational background
- Examples of the type-specific strengths as embodied in Jesus in the Gospels
– by Richard Rohr
“Much of what is called Christianity has more to do with disguising the ego behind the screen of religion and culture than any real movement toward a God beyond the small self, and a new self in God.”
Best for a thorough, more scholarly study on the Enneagram.
Richard Rohr’s book is one of the most widely acclaimed Christian Enneagram works and is an excellent starting point for those interested in scholarship.
Richard Rohr has been a leading thinker in spirituality over the past decades. Though in recent years Rohr’s hermeneutics have arguably strayed from orthodoxy towards universalism, he is a brilliant thinker and incredibly tender-hearted man. At the time of his writing The Enneagram: A Christian Perspective, his teaching was strongly Christ-centered.
Rohr’s treatment of the Enneagram focuses mainly on our ego and need for humility. His book provides a path to draw near to God by uncovering your unique personality. You will also discover possible hurdles and walls that may naturally isolate you from God, others, and your healthiest self.
Rohr shows the Enneagram to be a unique framework where your soul can be shaped into the redeemed, thriving person Jesus saved you to be!
- Accessible progression – moves from basic to thorough explanations
- Framed around the context of community – Why do we need others? How can we bless others?
- Explores different Enneagram types through personalities in the Bible
- Highlights the redemptive potential of the Enneagram as a tool for spiritual growth
– by Adele & Doug Calhoun, and Clare & Scott Loughrige
“Recognizing our Enneagram number is just the beginning of the journey . . .”
Best for developing your unique rhythm of life with God.
Have you felt full of Enneagram inspiration, but are unsure about practical next steps? Spiritual Rhythms for the Enneagram may be an excellent companion for the next stage of your faith-journey!
The transformational potential of the Enneagram doesn’t end with increased self-awareness. In fact, the genuine power is found when you engage in heart-forming practices.
The authors form a cadre of wise pastors, spiritual directors and entrepreneurs. They blend this dynamic mix of backgrounds to offer helpful insights on how the Enneagram can be a tool for spiritual growth.
This resource focuses on the Enneagram triads or intelligence centers (see our in-depth articles on head, heart, and gut triads) rather than specific number-types. The authors provide a deep well of spiritually forming rhythms appropriate for your personality and show you how to incorporate the strengths of all three intelligence centers.
- A helpful guide full of spiritual disciplines
- Centers on your Enneagram triad
- Gives type-specific subsections with empathy for each type
– by Marilyn Vancil
“This invitation [to deny oneself] is less about depriving the self, and more about disowning, or renouncing a relationship with the part of ourself that is not what God created us to be.”
Best for finding healing and identity.
Life can be hard. Sometimes, we put up walls to block or numb the pain. But in Self to Lose – Self to Find, Marilyn Vancil uses the Enneagram to show how our protective mechanisms can block us from the abundant life Jesus desires for us.
Vancil is a certified Enneagram coach and practitioner who has also worked as a spiritual director. Her book features this wise, tender touch.
She does not shy away from the far ends of the personality spectrum. You will find a full picture of the brightness and the shadow of each type – yet she roots everything back on Christ’s ability to “make all things new” (Rev. 21:5). This resource provides helpful descriptions of how God intends each personality to grow from a hiding, guarded “adapted self” to a Christ-freed, thriving “authentic self.”
Vancil shows how to use the Enneagram as a positive tool in your spiritual journey. Drawing heavily on Scriptural wisdom, while not skimping on in-depth Enneagram analysis, you will find Vancil’s work to be one of the best Christian Enneagram books.
- Insights and practices for finding freedom and growth
- Grounded in Christian discipleship and spiritual direction
- Helpful distinction between the “authentic self” and the “adapted self”
You may be just starting your Enneagram journey. Or perhaps you are a pile of books in! Wherever you find yourself, we believe these Christian Enneagram books can be a tool in the hands of God to shepherd your soul towards thriving in Jesus.
At Soul Shepherding, we believe Jesus is the most beautiful embodiment of each of the nine types!
We welcome you to continue exploring the Enneagram with us through other articles like Is the Enneagram Christian? and Seven Benefits of the Enneagram, or videos: The Enneagram as a Tool to Grow in Grace and The Enneagram & Ministry.
Our new book Healthy Feelings, Thriving Faith: Growing Emotionally and Spiritually Through the Enneagram will be released this fall. Preorders are available in March.
I hope this list of the best Christian Enneagram books will help you draw close to God and seek to know yourself and others better!