John Koessler, professor of Pastoral Studies at Moody Bible Institute, recently celebrated his 25th year as a member of the Moody faculty. Originally from the Detroit, Michigan area, John and his wife, Jane, now live in northwestern Indiana. They have two adult sons. Writer, teacher, and pastor, John writes devotionals for Today in the Word, authors the "Theology Matters" column every month, and serves as our theological editor. His latest book is Practicing the Present: The Neglected Art of Living in the Now (Moody Publishers). Read more of John's writing at johnkoessler.com.
If you had to pick a favorite, what course do you enjoy teaching the most?
Two courses stand out. In Pastoral Theology I get to lay the foundation for the next generation of the church’s pastors. In another favorite course on congregational dynamics, I help future pastors understand why churches behave the way they do.
Is there a teacher who has influenced you as a lifelong student of the Bible? I have been shaped by all the pastors I’ve sat under over the years. Each one has left a mark on me and influenced the way that I lead and teach others to pastor. I’ve also been deeply affected by the writing of Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones.
What did you find especially meaningful while writing this month’s study on Zechariah?
I was impressed by God’s abiding love for His people Israel. His faithfulness to them both in the past and the future gives me assurance that He will be faithful in His promises to me.
If I wanted to go deeper with this month’s study, what resources would you recommend?
Two resources that I found helpful are Joyce Baldwin’s commentary on Zechariah (IVP) and, of course, The Moody Bible Commentary (Moody Publishers). Both give a concise and scholarly treatment of the book.
Do you have a favorite hymn? Jane and I had “Be Thou My Vision” sung at our wedding. It reflects the theme of our lives. The hymn writer says:
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart
High King of Heaven my treasure Thou art.
We want Christ to be first in our hearts.