Publish or Perish?


You’ve probably heard the term “publish or perish” used to describe the working environment for many higher education academics.  The idea is that unless faculty members are actively publishing books and articles on a regular basis, their value to the college or university is diminished to the point where they might lose their jobs.  This puts tremendous pressure on young faculty, especially, to publish whatever they can in order to fulfill this expectation.  One effect of this pressure is that a lot of what gets published is of questionable value.

Bethlehem College & Seminary is not a “publish or perish” kind of institution.  We value teaching, mentoring, discipling, and, of course, our number one goal is to help our students learn as much as they possibly can while they are with us.  That isn’t to say that we don’t encourage publishing, however.  We do.  In fact, several of our faculty have a deep burden for strengthening the church by publishing books and articles that are aimed at helping lay people understand and apply the Bible better and to grow deeper in their affection for the Lord.  I admire them for their willingness to do this vital extra work—beyond their primary teaching responsibilities—to serve the church in this important way.

This is why I’m so proud and excited to share with you some of the recent books authored by members of our faculty.  The following books have been published in just the last few weeks (and are available through the Bethlehem College & Seminary Bookstore):

John Piper.  Reading the Bible Supernaturally. Crossway, 2017.

Jason DeRouchie.  How to Understand and Apply the Old Testament. P&R, 2017.

Andy Naselli.  How to Understand and Apply the New Testament. P&R, 2017.

Brian Tabb.  Suffering in Ancient Worldview: Luke, Seneca, and 4 Maccabees in Dialogue. Bloomsbury, 2017.

This is quite an amazing amount of publishing productivity for any school—let alone one as small as ours.  If you are among our financial supporters and/or prayer supporters, this is part of the return on your investment.  In addition to helping us train the next generation of pastors, missionaries, and other Bible-saturated, Christ-exalting workers, you are supporting the creation of such important and helpful books as those listed above.

Thank you for your key role in all of this!


Tim Tomlinson



Prayer Requests:

  1.  Please pray for our students and faculty as we wind down toward the end of the school year.  Pray that they would all finish well and strongly.
  2.  Please continue to be in prayer for our college admissions processes.  We are still assembling the fall Freshman class at the college, and we need wisdom from the Lord to bring in just the right class for this coming Fall.  We want the students that the Lord wants to be here.
  3.  Please pray for the wide dissemination of the books that I described in this letter.  May the Lord use them to build up the saints and strengthen the church worldwide.
  4. Please continue to be in prayer for our financial growth.  We have been blessed by the Lord in so many ways so far!  Now, we are asking him to provide for us some substantial gifts that would help make us strong for the long-term future.  Please pray that the Lord would be gracious to us as we have an important meeting this Friday pertaining to this goal.