The Job of a Pastor Intro


We’ll see more on this series about the job of a pastor over the coming year. I just wanted to get a headstart on this.

From http://thepastorslibrary.com/surveys/

About Pastor’s Book Budgets

40% of pastors have a book budget provided by their church for purchasing books, Bible software, and related resources.

Pastors who do not have a book budget say the main reason is that they pay for books out of their own pocket. (47%)

Other reasons why pastors do not have book budgets:

They believe their church is too small (23.7%)
The church never thought of having one (8.9%)
The pastor is unsure of how to establish one (5%)
The pastor is only part-time (6.2%)
Other (9.1%)

72% of all pastors with book budgets felt their current book budget met their needs in relation to their experience and role in their church.

There are a couple common ways pastor’s book budgets are accounted for within a church budget. First, 36% of respondents with a book budget said they receive a “Pastor’s Expenses” account from which they spend where they need. Second, 32% of pastors have a separate line item in their budget for “Pastor’s Book Budget”, which is devoted specifically to purchasing for the pastor’s library.

The Pastor’s Library recommends prioritizing a pastor’s book budget into its own category because it is a vital part of a pastor’s day-to-day work. To separate the “Pastor’s Book Budget” from other pastoral expenses is to assure your pastor that their continuing education is important to the church.

Is your book budget outdated?

36% of pastors who responded that they had book budgets say their book budget was increased within the last two years.
32% of pastors surveyed who have book budgets have never seen their budget increase.
72% of pastors surveyed who have book budgets feel their book budget is about the same or lower than pastors in similar roles at other churches.
It is clear that many churches have considered revising their pastor’s book budget in the last few years. As books become more expensive, it is important that pastors and their congregations develop or reevaluate book budgets so pastors can acquire the resources they need.

Also, with advancements in technology that make Bible software a strong resource for a pastor’s library, pastor’s should consider using their book budget for more than print materials. If your church has not considered a book budget or has not evaluated it recently, now is the time!

How many books do other pastor’s libraries include?

14% of pastors have 101-200 books in their print-based pastoral library, the most common response. 201-300 books was the second most common response.

31% of pastors have spent more than $5000 on their existing personal pastoral library in print.

Where do most pastors acquire resources for their libraries?

1. Local Christian Bookstores (1064 responses)
2. Online Christian retailers (923 responses)
3. Online retailers that aren’t expressly Christian (737 responses)
4. Mail order catalogs (513 responses)

Most pastors find that utilizing their local Christian bookstore is the most promising avenue for finding new resources for their pastoral library. Another alternative which will only continue to gain popularity is online retailers, which can include Christian retailers like Christianbook.com or non-exclusive retailers like Amazon.com.

Where do other pastors learn about new resources?

Nearly 3 out of 4 pastors obtain information about new resources to add to their personal pastoral library through referrals from other pastors.

What are the most popular sources for new resources for pastor’s libraries?

1. Referrals from other pastors (952 responses)
2. Browsing items at a local bookstore (791 responses)
3. Referrals from friends (787 responses)
4. Magazine reviews (685 responses)
5. Ministry newsletters (650 responses)

It is clear from our results that pastors appreciate the ability to hear what their peers think about valuable resources for their libraries and how they utilize their book budgets. The Pastor’s Library has compiled a recommendations section, which includes reference articles describing valuable library resources and guidelines on how to discern what types of resources you should add to your library.

Find out more about books and other resource recommendations

What tools do pastors use to prepare their sermons?

In the next two years, over 1/2 of our surveyed pastors say they will spend at least 30% of their book budget on software or electronic books.

Most pastors spend somewhere between 10-20 hours a week preparing for their sermon and doing personal study. (1318 total responses)

Most commonly, pastors say they save 2-3 hours a week by using Bible software over print resources for their sermon prep. (1335 total responses)

What about Bible software?

More than 4 out of 5 (83.2%) pastors feel Bible software has become more commonplace in the Christian community during the last two years. What Bible software programs are most pastors using and why?

Surveyed pastors most commonly use the following Bible software programs:

Logos Bible Software (46.6%)
BibleWorks (6.7 %)
PC Study Bible (5.5%)
QuickVerse (6.3%)
WORDSearch (4.8%)
Online Bible (4.6%)
All others (25.5%)

The best aspects of using Bible software over traditional resources are:

Time-Savings (28.1%)
Portability (9.7 %)
Thoroughness (21.1%)
Search entire library at once (19.3%)

Find out more about Bible Software

About the pastors and their churches:

Surveyed pastor’s primary roles:

Senior Pastor (58.8%)
Executive Pastor (2.4%)
Teaching Pastor (9.9%)
Associate Pastor (12.7%)
Youth Pastor (8.7%)
Other – includes Lay People (7.4%)

Church size breakdown of surveyed pastors (average Sunday attendance)

Under 50 people (21.6%)
51-100 (26.3%)
101-200 (23%)
201-300 (10.5%)
301-400 (5.1%)
401-500 (2.8%)
501-1000 (5.6%)
Greater than 1000 (5%)

Issues with the Faithlife Company


I’m going to take the time to discuss my wife’s conclusion about Logos, that it is not a Christian company. I do have to agree with her. It’s a business. The prices they charge, and the tactics they use to force people to constantly give them money may be sound business practice, but it’s not Christian principles. Christian principles is that the laborer is worthy of his hire, and to pay your people fairly, and charge an honest price for your software. Bibleworks was an honest contender until I found out that they really didn’t give you much in the way of Bible dictionaries, grammars, etc. At least with that software, you pay one price… and you get everything.

But let’s not forget Logos was started by a Christian employee of Microsoft, who went on his own. He turned it into a major software business, eventually creating the greatest Bible software package.

And then recently, he began offering packages for cults and unSaved people, as if lending legitimacy to them. You can buy Verbum, for Roman Catholics. He must have hired some Roman Catholics for the Content teams, because now you get Roman Catholic materials in almost every base package of Logos. What, pray tell, am I going to do with the Roman Catholic lectionary, or the Confessions of “St.” Augustine? The Standard Silver package has a devotional to Mary!!! Are they offering Baptist materials in Verbum, I wonder? Hmmm… let’s see… no.

So, sadly, Logos will probably after the Rapture be instrumental in building a one world religion. I’m not saying that Christians do not work at Logos. I am not saying that there’s something wrong with the software, or the materials they offer (except the RCC stuff). But if you’ve learned to spot agendas (something I taught my readers to do two years ago) – these facts should be setting off alarm bells.

Logos 7 Upgrade


Okay, Logos gave me a credit because I bought version 6 just two days before 7 came out. We knew 6 was afraid of 7, because 7 8 9.

Anyway, the credit was almost completely enough money to get into the Bronze package, meaning I only needed $77 to get all of the features of Logos. Before this, you had to spend thousands to get all of the features in Logos. Now, they’re all available in the Bronze package.

How do you buy this Bible software when it’s so ridiculously expensive? THe pricing is so steep that the average Independent Baptist pastor cannot even dream of affording it. But here’s the trick – the dynamic pricing.

Once you buy something in Logos, they remove the discounted price of that object from the packages. I started out with the free engine, and the $9.99 KIng James. I have only rarely bought anything from Bible companies, because I really believe that the pricing for these things should be much lower. And if Logos ever were to hire me for product innovation or some such job, I would argue vociferously that the King James should be a free download with the engine, because that’s INDUSTRY STANDARD. Logos remains the only company who charges for the KIng James, a royalty free Bible translation.

When I came into a work bonus, and I bought the first package (Baptist Starter), the price of every single Logos package dropped. Their website knew what items I had, and discounted every package to compare to those datasets that I had.

Then of course 7 came out. I upgraded last month. I couldn’t afford much, so I bought the standard package Starter. It was heavily discounted, since I already owned Baptist Starter.

Then just a week ago, I got the postcard in my mailbox, telling me I had a credit if I upgraded before the end of the year. So I called, and upgraded to Standard Bronze. You should have heard the sales rep’s voice when he recommended the Baptist Bronze package, and I told him that it was too over-loaded with Calvinist material and had almost no traditional Baptist material! I think it was the first time that anyone working for Faithlife ever heard the words “Too much Calvinism”, or even the suggestion that Calvinism is not Baptist, or that Baptist is not Calvinism.

The good news is that Logos has fixed everyone’s criticism. Now when you buy Logos, yes… you do own your books. Logos 7 is guaranteed to keep working with new operating systems, and you will always own your library. This is a big deal for them. It means they’re cutting off the robbery they used to do to existing customers who just want to upgrade the package they own without being forced to add many books, a tactic that fills the comment section of their blog routinely with nasty comments.

Now I just have to learn how to take advantage of all the new tools.

IFB Blogs


Out of all the IFB blogs there were out there, a number of them – most of them – are gone.

I think it’s just battle fatigue. When you start a IFB, Narrow is the way, King James only blog, you immediately are beset on all sides from apostates and heretics who want to argue with you. And precious few people come on and say, “That article was great!”

no, they want to argue.

It takes a toll on you.

There were some that started a year ago, when I was writing articles on how to start one. They’re gone now.

It’s really tough. And you, after a few months, struggle through the feeling you’re fighting this alone.

You’re not, but boy, it really feels that way.

Oddly enough, the most common challenges I was getting was from Roman Catholic apologists, most of whom are apostate Protestants. So this last year, i did something I needed to do, and took a month off. And I threw up my entire Roman Catholic apologetics series again, after a Roman Catholic apologist demanded that “just ONCE I’d like to see a protestant answer these questions!”

So, I’m not a protestant – I’m a Baptist – but I obliged him. He made no comment at all, because the very first thing in that series I challenge is the Magisterium.

So, if you’re one of the few left with IFB blogs, when it gets tough, consider taking a month off. It helps. Then back into the battle.

If you’re debating whether you should start one… yes. Go back through my archives to find the blog articles on starting an apologetics blog.

Thinking About Last year


really, the enormity of it just hit me.

I wrote commentary on the Bible this year. And if all of you followed the instructions on how to set up your Bible software to take down commentary, you would have been able to copy and paste those sections you felt were an “aha!” moment.

Me. Grumpy ol’ Philip Dean.

You’re only as good as your Bible tools. So, there’s quite a few tools I place high priority on. It’s all a matter of finances, I guess.

I’ve taught, in the last 15 months, how to study the Bible, to preach, how to put together a Baptist church, how to pastor, how to research and study the Bible, and even how to start an apologetics blog.

If you’re interested in these topics, I urge you to go back into the archives anmd study them. I’m surprised that nobody has left a comment that “I’ve felt the call of God into the Ministry, and I found your blog… it’s been a help!”

Truly, over the last 4 years of this blog, I’ve written a lot of articles. There must be SOMETHING that will help you!

What’s Next 2017


Preparation. I’m going to work in two directions at once, writing down info on how to prepare your life for the Rapture, info for those who will be left behind what to do, and also, for Pastors, how to prepare your congregations.

I’ll still work on the Expository study of the Bible – it’s crucial, I think. But for the most part, I think this is an area that needs to be dealt with.

I’ve been crying out for Christianity to wake up for several years. Absolutely, I’ve prayed for it, and invited you all to do the same. And Christians world wide since November have made the same comment – “It’s as if we’ve been asleep, and suddenly woken up.”

“Awake, awake, put on strength, O arm of the LORD; Awake, as in the ancient days, in the generations of old. Art thou not it that hath cut Rahab, and wounded the dragon?” (Isaiah 51:9, KJV)

I have to believe it just happened.

So, now we’ve got to get busy!

“The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.” (Romans 13:12–14, KJV)