I fell in love with Systematic Theology pretty early because I was such a blank slate after my conversion. Having not grown up in the church (not even sitting through a worship service until I was 17) I found myself very ignorant of and hungry for the truths most Christians take for granted. I first picked up Hodge's Sys Theo and have been hooked ever since, and continue to read and learn. Systematic Theology isn't the Bible, but it's all about the Bible and the truth contained therein. And there's a new kid on the block that I will be ordering in the next few days. A Puritan Theology: Doctrine for Life by Joel Beeke and Mark Jones looks like a thorough treatment of puritan theology from which everyone can benefit. From the publisher:
A Puritan Theology addresses Puritan teachings on all six loci of theology, covering fifty areas of doctrine. The book explores Puritan teachings on biblical interpretation, God, predestination, providence, angels, sin, the covenants, the gospel, Christ, preparation for conversion, regeneration, coming to Christ, justification, adoption, church government, the Sabbath, preaching, baptism, heaven, hell, and many other topics. It ends with eight chapters that explore Puritan 'theology in practice.' Some chapters highlight the work of a specific theologian such as William Perkins, William Ames, John Owen, Stephen Charnock, or Thomas Goodwin on a specific topic. Other chapters survey various authors on a particular subject.
If you are familiar with puritan theology you know that this book is not merely academic, but experiential. "The goal of A Puritan Theology is to increase knowledge in the mind and godliness in the soul." This is a must-have, especially for the theology nerds.
But, let me also encourage everyone to please have and use more than one Systematic Theology. I know, you all dig Grudem. Awesome. I like it as well. And I hope you have Calvin's Institutes. It's rich theology aimed at the heart. But you need more than that. I have several, but here are a few of my favorites I'm always pushing. Pick up a couple to begin balancing out your library. Feel free to share your favorites in the comments.