The Suffering of Pastoral Ministry

In 2 Corinthians 11, Paul defends his ministry as an apostle by listing the ways that he has suffered as a minister of the gospel. Against his opponents, he says that he has been imprisoned, flogged, beaten, stoned, shipwrecked, hunted, and starved for the sake of his ministry. Paul’s list of suffering doesn’t stop at... Continue Reading →

A Theology of Church Finance

I’ve worked at two churches and I have many friends who are pastors. Here’s one thing that nearly all of our churches have in common: Finances are sometimes a little too slim for comfort. Very few churches have way too much cash lying around. Instead, many churches have to follow a strict budget. Managing church... Continue Reading →

A Theology of Scripture for Ministers

Ministry is a difficult job to say the very least. There are constant demands for your time, you have to be able to multi-task to keep up, and sometimes you have to have difficult conversations with people you love dearly. The reason for the difficult nature of the job is that ministers focus on bringing... Continue Reading →

A Theology of God for Ministers

What ministers believe affects our ministries more than we often realize. So important is our theology that the New Testament repeatedly insists that bad theology points to a false teacher. If we teach the wrong ideas, then it doesn’t really matter how many bodies we put in the pews, people we baptize, or budgets we... Continue Reading →

Three Things Church Membership Means

Writing to perhaps the most troubled of the New Testament churches, Paul said: “I appeal to you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another in what you say and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly united in... Continue Reading →

The Value of Redundant Preaching

I typically preach my way through entire books of the Bible. In 2018, I’ve already preached through the book of Colossians, and I’m currently hitting the high points of the book of Genesis. This approach to sermon writing has numerous benefits for me: It keeps me from focusing on my favorite Bible verses, it forces... Continue Reading →

The Role of the Pastor’s Wife

A pastor’s wife is one of the hardest roles to occupy in a church. These ladies don’t technically have a position: There’s no job description for being the pastor’s wife, and she doesn’t directly receive a paycheck. However, make no mistakes about it, there are expectations: More than a few churches expect the pastor’s wife... Continue Reading →

Does Your Pastor Have an Office or a Study?

Words are important: Often times, the words we use reveal much about what we believe. For example, when a person calls the book of Revelation “Revelations,” I cringe. The reason is that adding the “s,” though it seems small, implies that we believe there are multiple revelations in the book of Revelation. Without the “s,”... Continue Reading →

Having a Successful Ministry

What does it take to be a successful minister? Pastors typically judge our effectiveness based upon the holy trinity of ministry success: budgets, baptisms, and bodies. The more money the church takes in, the better we feel about how we’re doing. The more people we baptize, the more the Lord approves of us. If we... Continue Reading →

St. Patrick of Ireland

On March 17, 461, St. Patrick of Ireland died in Ireland, the land he spent his life working to convert to the Christian religion. Patrick lived an amazing life and was a role model for effective evangelism; however, much of what we associate with him is mythical. For example, we don’t really know whether Patrick... Continue Reading →

What Every Pastor Wants

Recently, my wife's flatiron unexpectedly gave up the ghost. Like the good, dutiful husband I am, or at least attempt to be on my better days, I bought her a replacement flatiron which arrived in the mail later that week. Now, this process revealed two things to me: First, flatirons are outrageously expensive! I'm currently... Continue Reading →

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