Published on January 28, 2022 by Ashley Smith  
Payne Publication

Christian ministry professor J.D. Payne is dedicated to his students and has published thirteen books, with two publishing this month, to ensure that there are textbooks that can assist in their education. “I try to research and write for my students. Publishing and teaching go hand-in-hand. They influence one another. My research and writing allow me to engage in activities that I can quickly translate into the classroom,” said Payne of his writing projects. 

His new releases include Apostolic Imagination: Recovering a Biblical Vision for the Church’s Mission Today and Theology of Mission: A Concise Biblical Theology. “These were books that I had been wanting to write for some time, particularly Apostolic Imagination. Both fill a gap in the literature. After prayer and conversations with two interested publishers, I felt that the time was right to publish them,” said Payne. Both books can be ordered on Amazon. 

Additionally, he has been busy with other projects this past year.  He hosts a podcast called Strike the Match which is devoted to matters related to missions, innovation, and leadership. Each episode challenges listeners to be students of both God's Word and God's world. He published a chapter on David Brainerd’s eighteenth-century ministry among Native Americans in Thomas Johnston’s book A History of Evangelism in North America (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Academic, 2021). He wrote “Apostolic Imagination: Recovering a Biblical Vision for Mission,” for Mission Frontiers,  published in October-December 2021 volume. And, he has presented the following papers to the Evangelical Missiological Society: “Apostolic Imagination: Re-Thinking the Future of Evangelical Mission,” Oct 9-10, 2020, and “Communication Breakdown: Speaking the Language of Mission while Using Different Dictionaries,” March 20, 2021.

Payne teaches introduction to intercultural engagement, my major and the mission of God, evangelism, church multiplication, intercultural engagement strategies, intercultural engagement field experience, religious diversity and the mission of God, and biblical foundations.  The Christian ministry program is designed to equip committed individuals for the work of ministry and missions through a biblically grounded, missionally focused curriculum.  He shares his extensive knowledge of Evangelism, church planting, mission and ministry to his students and stays active in research.

“Our students need to understand not only history but contemporary issues facing the Church and mission. They need to know what the Spirit is doing in the world and how to lead others effectively. Students’ questions and feedback assist me with understanding how to communicate to readers. Questions and comments raised in the classroom influence the questions I ask when researching and writing.”

“I generally write for students at the undergraduate and seminary levels and church and mission agency leaders. While it is academic writing, I attempt to make certain it is not out-of-touch with local and global church realities. All biblical teaching should move toward application. This is true for my writings; I lead with the Word but bend toward the practical. For me, writing is to develop students in the areas of head (intellects), heart (emotions), and hands (actions),” said Payne. 


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.