As a pastor, I make theological reading a priority. The truth contained in these books informs my teaching and writing, undergirds and permeates my counseling, and enables me to discern harmful doctrinal trends that may be influencing my people and the greater church.
Earlier this year I read The Holy Trinity by Robert Letham and Inerrancy and the Gospels Vern Poythress. These were followed by Ladd’s The Blessed Hope, Biblical Hermeneutics: Five Views, edited by Stanley Porter and Beth Stovall and The Pastor-Theologian by Gerald Hiestand and Todd Wilson. I am currently reading Sam Storms’ treatise on amillennialism, Kingdom Come and just finished Steve Wellum’s excellent book in the Five Solas series, Christ Alone. I also recently finished Barrett’s book in the same series, God’s Word Alone as well as Trueman’s Grace Alone. Peter Gentry’s little book Reading and Understanding the Biblical Prophets was helpful, and I am looking forward to tackling Matt Waymeyer’s response to amillennialism, Amillennialism and the Age to Come in the near future (no pun intended). Continue reading “The Importance of Devotional Reading for Pastors and Theologians”
Many if not most professing Christians are familiar the song “Amazing Grace.” The hymn’s author John Newton (1725-1807), however, is not as well known. In this brief article, I want acquaint you with Newton so that you might (1) praise God for His grace in the life of a sinner; and (2) learn from Newton’s example in one specific area. Continue reading “In Praise of Private Ministry: Reflections on John Newton the Great Letter-Writer”
I was a college sophomore when I trusted in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of my sins. The spiritual joy that characterized much of my first few months as a new believer, however, would eventually face significant obstacles. One obstacle in particular that threatened to throw me completely off course was the sad yet steady reality of Christian defection. Continue reading “Ministry as a Means of Perseverance”
Prior to D.A. Carson’s biography of his father, few of us had ever heard of Tom Carson. He did not pastor a large congregation, he did not preside over a college or seminary, he did not leave a legacy of voluminous writings, he was not a sought after conference speaker; in a word—in his son’s words—he was an ordinary pastor. He was what many of us already are or will be in the near future. That is not to look down on those who have been gifted to shepherd and reach a large number of men and women for Christ; being unknown is no more a virtue than being well-known, and we can thank God for the gift of godly teachers he has given the Church. But the main encouragement Carson provides in this little book from the life of an “ordinary pastor” is found in the faithfulness with which his father carried out his charge, despite what appeared to be, to Tom at least, seasons of little fruit.
Continue reading “Ministry and Perfectionism – Reflections on 'Memoirs of an Ordinary Pastor' by D.A. Carson”