The Training of the Twelve
In more than twenty years in the ministry few books have influenced and helped me more than A. B. Bruce's The Training of the Twelve. I was delighted to discover that Kregel Publications was planning to reissue this very valuable book, and I thank God for their foresight in this undertaking. With confidence and enthusiasm I commend this volume to my fellow ministers throughout the English speaking world.
As never before in the history of the Christian ministry the servant of Jesus Christ is constantly grappling with the problem of how to reproduce himself and multiply his endeavors so as to encounter our ever increasing world population with the gospel of Jesus Christ. This book, as few other books, gives the practical as well as the theological guidelines for the man of God working with his flock. Every pastor knows the frustration of looking out upon a broken and often hostile world and experiencing haunting limitations to meet those needs. Obviously, a part of the answer to this kind of frustration is the genius of "getting things done through other people." This is precisely what Jesus Christ did with his apostles. The pattern and the ageless principles of this endeavor on the part of our Lord is lifted from the Holy Scriptures to guide us in the day in which we live.
The value of this volume is increased today as so many Christian workers are delving into the subject of management. For the first time in church history modern management techniques and principles are being sought out for their application to the local church, the mission, the missionary, and various types of Christian organizations. In the midst of this kind of upsurge of interest in management skills and tools it is increasingly vital that we have firmly fixed in our understanding the ageless management principles employed by our Lord in his relationships with his apostles.
It is difficult to estimate the value of Bruce's instruction for the young pastor just beginning his ministry. It would be well for ordination councils to consider this as required reading for the young man facing ordination. I would recommend the book to my brethren who have been in the ministry for many years as an ideal refresher course to lift and inspire the servant of God. I have read and reread the book through the years of my own ministry and always with increasing profit.
All of this is to say nothing of the devotional benefit of these blessed pages. How wonderful and encouraging to realize that the problems we face in working with our people whom the Holy Spirit has called out into our flocks or organizations are like the problems the Lord Jesus faced in the apostolate.
Further, I am delighted for the reappearance of this volume because of the depth and stability it will unquestionably bring to the ministry in this day when superficiality and wavering tends to abound.Olan Hendrix