The Company of Pastors

My name is Ben Bailie

 

Ben Bailie

I’d rather not talk much about myself. I’d prefer to talk more about Augustine, Calvin, Spurgeon, and Martyn Lloyd-Jones.

But here are some important things to know about me:

  • I am a struggling pastor in a struggling church.
  • I live with 3 beautiful, fun, and loving ladies. Husband of 1, and father of 2.
  • I did my MDiv at RTS in Orlando, FL.
  • I did my Ph.D. at Southern Seminary in Louisville, KY.
  • I wrote on Martyn Lloyd-Jones. Specifically on how his medical training shaped his preaching.
    The full title: “The Doctor of Ministry: How Martyn Lloyd-Jones’ Medical Training Shaped His Homiletical Methodology.”
  • This site was born out of two things I love deeply: preaching and church history.
  • This site was born out of three things I need to continue developing: preaching, praying, and pastoring.
  • Building this site will be a slow process.
  • What I post and offer here are things that I need.
  • Over the past few years, I have become increasingly interested in understanding expertise. I am fascinated with the process of skill development and the apprenticeship model of skill acquisition and how you can apply that to pastoral ministry.
  • For example, in my studies of Martyn Lloyd-Jones I became fascinated with his intellectual development. What formed the mind that then formed such powerful sermons?

    A little of the back story

This site is a quest born out of my deep sense of need. In my first full-time pastorate, I was the 6th pastor in 6 years. During the previous decade of my arrival, the church had split twice: once as amicable as splits can be, the second was not. In that decade, the Church lost 70% of its regular attendees, 75% of its volunteers, and all the children. Attendance dropped to the lowest it has been since the church’s founding in 1847. Mine is no “success” story. I haven’t “turned it around.” I became very discouraged. But I learned several priceless lessons:

  • When Jesus said “apart from me, you can do nothing,” He meant it. That is not hyperbole.
  • For all of our church’s problems, the worst problems were me.
  • I can’t stay fresh and focused in ministry alone.
  • I can preach often and still not improve.
  • I need critics.
  • I need the gospel.

    Are you competent to teach these courses?

No. Not at all. But the cool thing about this is that I am not the teacher. I am more like a facilitator. The ‘Greats’ of church history will be our teachers. Think of me like their T.A. If you can’t have access to the Masters, then the T.A. is the next best thing. I am more like the Chief Apprentice.