A Blog of Geek Eccentricities
I would go begging for a list of clergy retiring in the conference and area churches asking for their castoffs, or the chance to pick through their library...Free!After that - Six must haves for my library- Harper Collins Study Bible- New Interpreters Bible- The Writings of the New Testament , By Luke Timothy Johnson- The Gospel According to Biff: Christ's Childhood Pal, by Christopher Moore- The Discipline of the United Methodist Church (2004)- The United Methodist Hymnal
I'd just add to the wisdom previously commented: Anchor Bible Dictionary, 6 vols., $60 each (go online and find used, total $400 or less). I think the annotations in the old Oxford Annotated RSV are superb for preaching and study; online used (since it's been supplanted by a new version which is all lit-crit) for under $20. All of N.T. Wright's Fortress series on Jesus, Resurrection, the NT church, say $100, and pay $30 for the leather bound "A Reader's Greek New Testament."Then scavenge for paperback copies of Susan Howatch's Starbridge and St. Benet's series (get over the high church stuff, i'm low church evangelical myself), Gail Godwin's "Evensong," and an oldie but goodie, "The Minister," by Charles Mercer (publ. 1969); plus even older, but still worth sorting through the dated rhetoric: Harold Bell Wright's "That Printer of Udell's," and "The Calling of Dan Matthews." They're sympathetic responses to "In His Steps," the original WWJD novel of 1896, but looking at what a local church and leadership faces in transforming lives. They are eerily relevant from a hundred years later.Tack on used copies of "A Prayer for Owen Meany" by John Irving, and "Gilead" by Marilynne Robinson, and you're good to go for a ministry library. You should still have a thousand to spend on a ticket to Tel-Aviv and hitch a ride up to Jersualem, spend a week living in a hostel and walking around, and then return ticket back.That's how i'd commend the use of $2000 for a minister today setting up some mental furniture and a few books for the practice of parish ministry.
Bonhoeffer's The Cost of Discipleship and Miller's Blue Like Jazz. Old school, new school (speaking of schools, I'd probably have more ideas if I was done with school).And a piece of paper that said e-sword.net.
mhDear John, I am not a pastor, but I got some practical stuff for you, man. Each of these books has dramatically influenced my Christian walk.Strong's Strongest ConcordanceAny Bible translation I can get my paws on Pedagogy of the Oppressed by FreireThe Religious Potential of the Child by CavallettiAny stories about missionaries Hudson Taylor or Gladys AlywardHow to Talk so Children Will Listen and Listen so Children Will Talk by Farber and MazlishRelational Parenting by Ross CampbellAnything you like on finances such as Financial Peace by Dave RamseyAnything you like on marriage like How to Divorce Proof your MarriageHenry NouwenC.S. Lewis including the Chronicles because nothing gets to the heart faster than a storyThe Violence of Love excerpts by Oscar RomeroTo Know as We are Known by Parker PalmerThe Path by Laurie Beth JonesHow to Read the Bible for all its Worth by Fee and StuartPraise Habit by David Crowder
Most of this is in my library now but a few still on the wish list. All of these have proven themselves in my ministry.-Wesley's Works ($49 @ CBD)-Adam Clarke's Commentary-New Interpreter's Bible-The Wesley Study Bible-Expositor's Bible Commentary (all @ CBD $149)-New Greek-English Interlinear New Testament, NRSV, ($20 @ CBD)-Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, 10 Volumes ($149 @ CBD)-The Book of Discipline-The UM Hymnal-The UM Book of Worship-My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers-Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis-Man's Search for Meaning - Victor Frankl-The Pursuit of Holiness - Jerry Bridges-E-sword Software (free)-Spend whatever is left @ i-tunes!
I'll sell you my library for $2000 bucks. Really!
I'd definitely get a lot of Thomas Oden's books...the "Systematic Theology" trilogy, "John Wesley's Scriptural Christianity", "Pastoral Theology", his "Classical Pastoral Care" series, and at least a few of the "Ancient Christian Commentaries". Invaluable reference works.
John -Considering your new appointment, there were a couple books that were recommended to me early in my ministry:Letters to Lee - a series of correspondence between a young, new pastor and his mentor.Willimon's Pastor and Character & Calling (both excellent)Personal favorites:Bonhoeffer (I think I saw him mentioned already)- Cost of Discipleship and Life TogetherNT Wright's - Simply ChristianKinghorn's 3 vols. of Wesley's Standard sermons in modern english.Luke Timothy Johnson's Writings of the New Testament.The list could go on, but I stop before I become overly redundant.IN CHRISTtom
Since I'm not a pastor, what do I know, but in addition to all the others in this list I'd add:The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan The Authorized King James BibleThe Journal and Letters of Bishop Francis AsburyThe Autobiography of Peter Cartwright(I'm old school)
I really fast laptop, a great wifi internet connection and electronic versions of bible study resources like commentaries/etc. ... of course a membership at a local seminary's library would be good too :)
There are very good ideas. The question is, by the way, quite hypothetical for me. I don't have $2,000. I mostly do my sermon exegesis from the Asbury Seminary library, or check out circulating commentaries if there are any of value available. But with the money, I would start out my library with:The Anchor Bible DictionaryAn exegetical commentary series for the entire Bible, such as the NICT.The Collected Works of John Wesley
The whole set of William Barclay's New Daily Study Bible.
Keith has a good idea about the KJV. This is essential for funerals and hospital visits for the elderly.
1. I'd start with at least one Bible2. New Interpreter's Bible Commentaries3. Barclay4. Wesley's Sermons (updated translation)5. (forget the exact name) The UM pastors pocket Book of Worship - Use it for all my funerals and weddings6. Then maybe another Bible...and another (But I like having different translations of the Bible around)7. Don't need a concordance because all that can be found online, but what I do like is my book that of pronounciations of Biblical words.
I don't know nothin' about pastorin' but my pastor is an excellent, best-ever preacher and SHE quotes from:Wendell BerryMarcus BorgWalter WinkJohn Howard YoderSojourner TruthSupertrampvarious poetsMLKOscar RomeroFrederick BuechnerAlice WalkerAmong others. She mixes it up a good bit.
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