Beeke, Joel R. & Jones, Mark
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What does a true pastor look like, and what constitutes a faithful ministry? How can we identify the life and labors of one called by God to serve in the church of Jesus Christ? To address these questions, Rob Ventura and Jeremy Walker examine how the apostle Paul describes his pastoral relation to the people of God in Colossians 1:24–2:5. By discussing these essential attitudes, qualities, and characteristics of a faithful minister of Christ, A Portrait of Paul provides gospel ministers an example of what they should be, and demonstrates for churches the kind of pastors they will seek if they desire men after God’s own heart.
Churches looking for a pastor will find guidance in what a faithful man of God will look like. Christians looking for a church will find a tool by which they can assess the pastors of the flock in the light of God’s Word, finding men to whom they can commit the care of their souls.· Christians already in a church will be better equipped to pray for their pastors and will further understand what it really means to be shepherded by a man after God’s own heart.· Ministerial students pursuing the work of the ministry will see a picture of a man they should seek to imitate.· Pastors will be encouraged to persevere in the high calling of gospel ministry.
Table of Contents:
1. The Joy of Paul’s Ministry
2. The Focus of Paul’s Ministry
3. The Hardships of Paul’s Ministry
4. The Origin of Paul’s Ministry
5. The Essence of Paul’s Ministry
6. The Subject of Paul’s Ministry
7. The Goal of Paul’s Ministry
8. The Strength of Paul’s Ministry
9. The Conflict of Paul’s Ministry
10. The Warnings of Paul’s Ministry
Rob Ventura is a pastor of Grace Community Baptist Church in Cumberland, Rhode Island.
Jeremy Walker is a pastor of Maidenbower Baptist Church in Crawley, England.
“The apostle Paul has always been a hero whom I look to as a model for my ministry. His unrelenting faithfulness in the worst kinds of trials is a remarkable example to every pastor and missionary. In the midst of suffering, hardship, and (in the end) the abandonment of his own friends and fellow workers, Paul remained steadfast, dynamic, and utterly devoted to Christ. This invaluable study of Paul’s life from Rob Ventura and Jeremy Walker is a wonderful, powerful, soul-stirring examination of Paul’s self-sacrifice and his unfaltering service to the church. It will both motivate and encourage you, especially if you’re facing trials, opposition, or discouragement in your service for Christ.”—John MacArthur, Pastor/Teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California and President of The Master’s College and Seminary
“In this dual-authored portrait of Paul as a minister of the gospel, Ventura and Walker have captured the very essence of ministry. On every page, we are forced to reflect upon the dimensions of apostolic ministry and urged to comply. Packed with exposition and application of the finest sort, these pages urge gospel-focused, Christ-centered, God-exalting, Spirit-empowered, self-denying ministry. I warmly recommend it.”—Derek W. H. Thomas, John Richards Professor of Theology, Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, Mississippi
“The greatest need in churches today is for godly men to shepherd the flock of God. No church will rise any higher than the level of its spiritual leaders. Like priest, like people. To this end, Rob Ventura and Jeremy Walker have done an exceptional job in providing a model for pastoral ministry, drawn from the extraordinary example of the apostle Paul. This book is built upon careful exegesis, proper interpretation, penetrating insight, and challenging application. Herein is profiled the kind of minister every church so desperately needs and what every true minister should desire to become.”—Steven J. Lawson, Senior Pastor of Christ Fellowship Baptist Church in Mobile, Alabama
“This work on the Christian ministry is a clarion call to true devotion and piety in the pastorate. The theology is pure and the language is as powerful as it is beautiful. I pray that every pastor and congregant might take up this book and read it. It will hold a place in my library beside Baxter’s Reformed Pastor, Bridges’s Christian Ministry, and Spurgeon’s Lectures. I will refer to it often. It will serve as a great antidote against all that might cause my heart to stray from Christ’s call.”—Paul Washer, Director of HeartCry Missionary Society
“When I first sensed God’s call to the preaching ministry, I did a study of the life and ministry of the apostle Paul. And, oh, what a study that was! It opened my eyes to the difference between ministry in the New Testament and what is in vogue today. Rob Ventura and Jeremy Walker have now brought all of those truths that I saw into this one volume. I, therefore, commend this book to all who want to take God’s call to the work of ministry seriously. For, in these pages, is the heart and experience of a true minister of the new covenant.”—Conrad Mbewe, Pastor of Kabwata Baptist Church in Lusaka, Zambia