20 Books every pastor should read
I have two categories of a top 10 list: One category of books that explain how to think through pastoral ministry as you do it; the other set to help a pastor remain steadfast in the work.
Have you ever tried to pick a favorite hymn or Scripture passage when asked? Impossible, isn’t it? At least it is for me. I had similar feelings when my pastoral interns asked me to pick my top books every pastor should read. Too many to choose from and where does the list end? Nevertheless, they demanded this of me and I conceded.
So, I thought I would share it with you hoping it might prioritize your reading list for the future. I have chosen my lists based on the two greatest needs I see modern pastors face:
- How do I do faithful ministry?
- How do I persevere in the ministry?
Therefore, I have two categories of a top 10 list: One category of books that explain how to think through pastoral ministry as you do it; the other set to help a pastor remain steadfast in the work. These are books apart from the Practical Shepherding books. I obviously commend to you also.
Doing Pastoral Ministry (Top 10 List)
- The Christian Ministry by Charles Bridges
- The Reformed Pastor by Richard Baxter
- Lectures to My Students by C. H. Spurgeon
- Practical Wisdom for Pastors by Curtis Thomas
- On Being a Pastor by Alester Begg and Derek Prime
- An Earnest Ministry by J. A. James
- Brothers, We are not Professionals by John Piper
- The Elder and his Work by David Dickson
- The Work of the Pastor by William Still
- Concerning the True Care of Souls by Martin Bucer
Enduring Pastoral Ministry (Top 10 List)
- Jonathan Edwards: A Life by George Marsden
- H. Spurgeon’s Autobiography –Volume 1, Volume 2 by C. H. Spurgeon
- Memoirs of an Ordinary Pastor by Don Carson
- The Life of George Whitfield –Volume 1, Volume 2 by Arnold Dallimore
- The Life and Diary of David Brainerd by Jonathan Edwards
- John G. Paton, D.D., Missionary to the New Hebrides: An Autobiography
- Memoir and Remains of Robert Murray M’Cheyne by Horatius Bonar
- Wise Counsel by John Newton
- Letters of Samuel Rutherford by Samuel Rutherford/Bonar
- Archibald G. Brown: Spurgeon’s Successor by Iain Murray
Brian Croft serves as senior pastor of Auburndale Baptist Church in Louisville. He is also senior fellow for the Mathena Center for Church Revitalization at Southern Seminary. A veteran pastor and author of numerous books on practical aspects of pastoral ministry, Brian oversees Practical Shepherding, a gospel-driven resource center for pastors and church leaders to equip them in the practical matters of pastoral ministry. His latest book is Biblical Church Revitalization: Solutions for Dying & Divided Churches (Christian Focus, 2016)