In the UK, the elderly population is increasing and the suggestion we get from the media is that this is unremittingly negative. This book looks at a number of Scripture passages which remind older Christians that they still have enormous value and purpose, and will encourage their pastors to see that they remain a great resource. Old age brings with it the need for many adjustments but also many responsibilities and joys and so the purpose of this book is to point to where scripture provides both reassurance and encouragement for those in this ‘third age’ of life.
‘Jim’ Taylor was a Baptist minister who served in Helensburgh , Ayr and Stirling. In 1971, his address to mark his presidency of The Baptist Union of Scotland was entitled The Ministry or the Abolition of the Laity – an appeal for all members of Christian congregations to participate in ministry. He was president of the Scottish Baptist College for a decade from 1986, chairman of the Universities and Colleges Christian Fellowship Scottish committee, vice-chairman of the Strathcarron Hospice in its early years and chairman of the Longhorsley Convention in Northumberland. In retirement he kept active, working as a locum for two periods of time at Moffat Bible College in Kenya. He and his wife, Helen, developed a particular concern for other retired ministers and their spouses and formed the Retired Baptist Ministers’ Fellowship which continues to provide a valuable network of support and encouragement.
Here is a book ‘For such a time as this’. To an increasingly aging culture, and its church component not least, Jim Taylor confronts the special issues of the ‘senior’ years with typical thoughtfulness, biblical insight, and pastoral relevance. Old, but not out! should find a place in every church bookstall, and on every concerned Christian’s bookshelf. It is a worthy legacy from a highly esteemed and fondly remembered Christian leader, who personally embodied so much of what he writes here.
—Rev. Dr. Bruce Milne, author, and former Senior Minister of First Baptist Church, Vancouver, Canada.
I enthusiastically commend this delightful book on living a God-centred and meaningful life in old age. There is no book on the market that quite achieves what this book does. Through careful reflection on key biblical characters in old age and through astute personal insight, Jim Taylor offers great dignity and meaning for ‘third agers’. The book is typical of the author: witty, carefully measured, pastorally insightful, impressively illustrated and spiritually warm.
It is a book for all who are concerned about the loss of hope and purpose for retired people. I lent it to my elderly father (ninety next birthday) who has been a Christian leader for nearly seventy of those years. He read it with great enthusiasm and said he is going to use it as a basis for starting a Bible Study group in his old people’s home!
But it is a book not just for older people. As the proportion of elderly people in our population rapidly increases, all who are involved pastorally should read it. It is a great resource for pastors, pastoral care teams and preachers. It is an outstanding example of the fact that the richest pastoral theology is that which emerges from a lifetime of service to others.
—Rev Andrew Rollinson, Minister of the Baptist Church in St Andrews, Scotland
(Andrew Rollinson has been a Baptist Minister for thirty years serving in churches in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and in Morningside, Edinburgh, and since 2004 has worked as Ministry Advisor to the Baptist Union of Scotland, offering pastoral care to pastors. As part of this work, he worked alongside the late Rev Jim Taylor in supporting retired ministers and their spouses.)