Ministry by the Book

Ministry by the Book

New Testament Patterns for Pastoral Leadership

by Derek Tidball

Ministry by the Book
  • Length: 277 pages
  • Published: May 29, 2009
  •  In stock
  • ISBN: 978-0-8308-3859-2
  • Item Code: 3859

The New Testament writers set before us a number of models of ministry, each of which is shaped by the particular needs of the churches they were serving. Their own backgrounds, ambitions and passions also contribute to what they have to say about ministry. The contours of New Testament pastoral leadership, inspired by the Holy Spirit, exhibit a genuine diversity that finds its unity in Christ and his gospel.

Focusing on pastoral leadership within local churches or groups of churches, Derek Tidball provides a comprehensive survey of these models and patterns with applications for today's ministry. Tidball's overview offers "models of permission" that enable a freer approach to ministry and the way it is conducted, challenges the stunted understanding of ministry that can often characterize our churches today, and gives encouragement to those who do not fit a "ministry by numbers" approach.

Well-grounded in relevant scholarship, Tidball's fresh engagement with the biblical texts, stimulating analysis and wise application will be of value to all who are established in pastoral leadership, or training for it, and looking to explore a variety of biblically valid approaches to ministry.

"Pastors often look to the New Testament for theological guidance but often miss the import of the books found there for practical leadership advice. But Derek Tidball's Ministry by the Book is a wonderful contribution to pastors who want to take the New Testament seriously theologically and practically. The author contends that 'the New Testament writers set before us a number of models of ministry, each one of which is shaped by the needs of the church they were serving. . . . Each New Testament book has a lot to say about pastoral leadership.' It is to this end that working pastors will find this book most valuable."

Craig Loscalzo, senior pastor, Immanuel Baptist Church, Lexington, Kentucky, and an IVP author

"This unique book combines significant New Testament theology with great pastoral sensitivity. It helpfully navigates the questions of unity and diversity in the New Testament presentation of pastoral ministry."

Steve Roy, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School

"This book adds a needed injection into the discussion of the nature of the church and its leadership models in the twenty-first century. Many churches and pastors tend to be rigidly model-orientated, even emerging churches. Tidball offers 'models of permission' that enable a freer approach to ministry and the way it is conducted. He provides a refreshingly 'multicolored not monochrome' picture of ministry."

Ross Hastings, Regent College, Vancouver

"Tidball's systematic analysis of the books of the NT provides substantial insights into models of ministry that responded to particular needs of communities of faith in that era. . . Well structured and clearly written."

Kenneth J. McFayden, Interpretation, October 2010

"Ministry by the Book is a valuable resource for anyone who takes the NT seriously in looking for biblically acceptable models for ministry in today's church."

David R. Beck, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, June 2010


1 Matthew: Ministry in a Divided Church
2 Mark: Ministry in an Oppressed Culture
3 Luke: Ministry in a Graceless World
4 John: Ministry in a Spiritual Desert
5 Acts: Ministry in an Emerging Church
6 Paul: Ministry ina n Infant Church
7 Paul: Ministry in a Maturing Church
8 Paul: Ministry in an Aging Church
9 Hebrews: Ministry in a Faltering Church
10 James: Ministry in a Half-Hearted Church
11 1 Peter: Mnistry in a Despised Church
12 John's Letters: Ministry in a Compromised Church
13 Jude and 2 Peter: Ministry in an Endangered Church
14 Revelation: Ministry in a Hostile World
15 Unity and Diversity in New Testament Ministry
Scripture Index
General Index

Derek Tidball

Derek Tidball is visiting scholar at Spurgeon's College, London. Previously he served as principal of the London School of Theology where he lectured in pastoral theology. His books include The Reality of Christ: The Message of Colossians for Today, Skillful Shepherds: Explorations in Pastoral Theology, and commentaries in the Bible Speaks Today Series. In addition, he is series editor for the Bible Speaks Today Bible Themes Series.