Within the 192-page work, based off the theme for the seminary’s 2016 For the Church Conference, Allen and eight other contributors from around the Southern Baptist Convention offer insight into nine essential roles a church leader carries out.
Allen explains that there are numerous roles a pastor undertakes during his ministry. Some are healthy and others not so much. Additionally, the pastor’s congregation can place unrealistic expectations upon him which can lead to ineffectiveness and even burnout. So the great questions are “What is the pastor to be?” and “What is the pastor to do?”
In answering these questions, Portraits of a Pastor explores roles and provides keen insight and practical application into areas such as the pastor as shepherd, husband & father, preacher, theologian, church historian, evangelist, missionary, leader, and man of God.
“It has been a privilege to partner with the Moody Publishing team to produce a book that, I pray, will assist church leaders who are seeking to better understand and define the key roles in which they serve on a daily basis,” Allen said.
“I am grateful that over the years of my ministry I’ve had supportive and loving congregations,” he continued. “Now, I find myself one step removed, serving as a seminary president where my responsibility and joy is to train ministers for church service. I consider my calling a high one, but only because I’m in the position of helping to prepare men for an even higher calling: pastoring a local church. My desire is that this book helps them in pursuit of this noble, God-honoring end.”
Authors who contributed chapters to the book include Daniel L. Akin, president of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary; Ronnie W. Floyd, pastor of Cross Church in Fayetteville, Ark.; Jason G. Duesing, provost at Midwestern Seminary; Donald S. Whitney, professor of of biblical spirituality at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary; John Mark Yeats, dean of Midwestern Baptist College; Christian T. George, assistant professor of historical theology and curator of the Spurgeon Library at Midwestern Seminary; Owen D. Strachan, associate professor of Christian theology at Midwestern Seminary; and Jared C. Wilson, director of content strategy & managing editor, For the Church website.
“In Portraits of a Pastor, we are invited into the minds and hearts of nine of the most influential leaders in the church today,” said Thom Rainer, president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources. “We are provided perspectives of pastoral leadership in a rich and powerful way. This book is the book that needs to be in the hands of pastors and those who love, follow, and support pastors.”
“The world at its worst needs the church at its best,” said H.B. Charles, Jr., pastor of Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Fla. “Faithful churches require faithful pastors. Unfortunately, there are many who are confused about what the pastor is to be and do. Portraits of a Pastor paints a clear picture of the biblical role of the Christian pastor.”
“This wise group of pastoral theologians has teamed up to provide church leaders with a valuable resource for local church ministry,” said Tony Merida, pastor of Imago Dei Church in Raleigh, N.C. “Portraits of a Pastor will refresh weary ministry leaders and guide aspiring leaders. This is not corporate business principles baptized, but biblically-rooted, Christ-exalted teaching. I pray that it will strengthen and build up Christ’s church around the globe.”
“It is comforting and encouraging to find a book that takes pastoring seriously, that rightly prioritizes the character of the pastor, and that grounds the practice of pastoring in the words of Scripture,” said Micah Fries, pastor of Brainerd Baptist Church in Chattanooga, Tenn. “This is a wonderful book from Jason Allen and his talented team of contributors, that will help equip the young pastor and encourage the established pastor.”
To pastors and ministry leaders reading Portraits of a Pastor, Allen added, “The point of this book is not to raise the bar of ministry unapproachably high, but to give you the encouragement and counsel to most faithfully serve the body of Christ. As you do, you will honor God, strengthen his church, and one day hear, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’ So press on!”
Order Portraits of a Pastor through Moody Publishing or wherever books are sold today.