Lifeway Research recently conducted a survey asking Protestant pastors to “name the top three living Christian preachers that most influence you.” Billy Graham topped the list followed by Chuck Swindoll, Charles Stanley and Rick Warren. Here is the complete list:
- Billy Graham, preacher, evangelist, founder of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.
- Charles Swindoll, senior pastor of Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, Texas, and founder of Insight for Living Ministries.
- Charles Stanley, senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Atlanta, and founder of In Touch Ministries.
- Rick Warren, senior pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., and author of the best-selling book, “The Purpose-Driven Life.”
- John MacArthur, pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, Calif., and president and featured teacher of the Grace to You ministry.
- Barbara Brown Taylor, religion teacher at Piedmont College in northeast Georgia and author of 12 books including “An Altar in the World.”
- David Jeremiah, founder of Turning Point Radio and Television Ministries and senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in San Diego County, Calif.
- Max Lucado, minister of writing and preaching at the Oak Hills Church in San Antonio, Texas, and the recipient of three Christian Book of the Year awards.
- John Piper, pastor for preaching at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis and author of more than 30 books, including “Desiring God.”
- Andy Stanley, senior pastor of North Point Community Church, Buckhead Church, and Browns Bridge Community Church – all in the Atlanta area – and founder of North Point Ministries.
I am familiar with most of these names, and I would say most of them have had a positive influence in my life. Still, none of them have influenced me as much as the pastors who have faithfully preached God’s word to me over the years in the various churches where I have attended.