Saturday, March 9, 2013

How Would You Spend $100 on Pastoral Ministry Resources

I’m a new pastor. I’ve got about $100 and not much of any library. I want hard copies—non of that e-reader stuff. When I was ordained last week a former professor bought me 5 books from your preaching list. Now I need to focus on building a few resources to help me with pastoral ministry. What do you suggest?

Here is my answer:

  1. Dangerous Calling by Paul Tripp for $12 
  2. The Reformed Pastor by Richard Baxter $8
  3. 9 Marks of a Healthy Church by Mark Dever $11
  4. The Conviction to Lead by Albert Mohler $15
  5. Brothers We Are Not Professionals by John Piper $10
  6. Instruments in the Redeemers Hands by Paul Tripp  $12
  7. Download this letter from John Newton $FREE

That’s about 70 bucks. Take the next $30 and take your wife out on a date.

Also there are a couple of books that you can get online for free that are great classics. I know you like hard copies so maybe you can save up a little money and print these off somewhere. Lectures to My Students by Spurgeon is an invaluable resource as is Charles Bridges’ The Christian Ministry.

I would also advise you to find an older pastor that is willing to mentor you. He’ll be really helpful also when you have questions about how to do a baptism, how to train a Sunday school teacher, etc. And he will talk you off the ledge when you want to give up after a few Monday’s on the job.

Lastly, find another pastor from history and make it your life ambition to follow him as he follows Christ. I’ve begun a lifelong friendship with John Newton—I just wish he knew it. You can get his 6 Volume works online for about $100.

How would you answer this question?


  1. I think those are great book recommendations, Mike, though I've tended to use my resource money on books that are actual resources, dictionaries that I'll return to again and again. I'm thinking about Carson & Beale's NT Use of the OT, the Dictionary of Biblical Theology, and any of those IVP dictionaries (some of which are now dated). I'm just always pulling them off my shelf, so I'm getting a good return from my money. They're pricey, so a hundred bucks will only get you about three of them. Since I've read and benefited immensely from your list, perhaps my suggestion would be, "How You Spend the Next $100 on Pastoral Ministry Resources."

    1. Those are phenomenal books. I especially love those IVP dictionaries. And I like you have used those and commentaries time and time again. This list is more reflective of the "how to do pastoral ministry" or "how to live life as a pastor" than what resources are great to use in sermon prep. But I do believe you've given me a great idea for my next Saturday's list. Thanks!

  2. David (NAS) RogersMarch 9, 2013 at 8:14 PM

    IVP Bible Background Commentary OT and NT
    Commentary on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament by Beale and Carson
    Classic Christianity: A Systematic Theology by Thomas Oden
    Handbook of Denominations in the United States 13th Edition Mead, Hill, and Atwood
    A good pocket-size minister's handbook for weddings, funerals, etc.

  3. David (NAS) RogersMarch 9, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    Eugene Peterson's Spiritual Theology series



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