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The James Montgomery Boice Manuscript Collection

Identifier: SCM 234

Scope and Content

This collection is comprised of the personal papers of the Rev. Dr. James M. Boice, Senior Minister of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from 1968 to 2000. The collection includes his sermon and lecture materials, files from organizations that he was a part of, files relating to the organization of Tenth Presbyterian Church, the general correspondence files of Dr. Boice, and manuscripts and proofs from "Tenth", a former publication of Tenth Presbyterian Church.


  • 1966-2000

Language of Materials



There are no special restrictions to access of this collection. It may be examined by library patrons under the normal rules and conditions of Special Collections.


1938 July 7
Born, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Diploma, The Stony Brook School
A.B., Harvard University
B. D., Princeton Theological Seminary
D. Theol., University of Basel, Switzerland
Assistant Editor, Christianity Today
Senior Minister, Tenth Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
President, The Bible Study Hour (which, in 1994 became the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals)
Chairman, The Philadelphia Conference on Reformed Theology
Chairman, The International Council on Bible Inerrancy
D. D., The Theological Seminary of the Reformed Episcopal Church
June 15, 2000
Died, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Biographical Information

James Montgomery Boice, better known as Jim Boice, was born July 7th, 1938, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the firstborn son of Newton and Jean Boice. Just after Jim’s first birthday, his family relocated from McKeesport, Pennsylvania, to Philadelphia, where his father pursued orthopedic training at the University of Pennsylvania. During their time in Philadelphia, Newton and Jean attended Tenth Presbyterian Church for two years. During their two years at Tenth, the Boice family became close to their pastor Donald Barnhouse, who was supportive of them in their faith journey. After Newton’s degree was completed, Newton and Jean returned to McKeesport where they attended the Evangelical Free Church and raised their four children, Jim, Judy, Nancy, and Elizabeth.

In 1951, Boice moved to Long Island to attend Stony Brook School, an all-boys Christian preparatory school. It was during his years at Stony Brook that Jim cultivated his academic skills for a lifetime of studying and writing. After graduating from Stony Brook, he attended Harvard University to pursue a degree in English. During his final year at Harvard, Boice met Linda McNamara, a graduate student at Harvard pursuing a degree in education. Both Jim and Linda were involved in the Harvard Christian Fellowship and Intervarsity, and attended Park Street Church on Sundays. After graduation, Boice enrolled at Princeton Theological Seminary where he participated in a pilot program in which seminary students studied in a seminar format under a single advisor. He studied the New Testament under Dr. Bruce Metzger, and it was during this time in his life that Boice came to the conviction the Bible is inerrant and infallible.

While working toward his degree at Princeton Theological Seminary, Jim and Linda were married at Linda’s home church in Montclair, New Jersey, in June 1962. After completing his Bachelor of Divinity degree, Jim and Linda relocated to Basel, Switzerland, so he could pursue a doctorate before seeking a long-term church position. During his PhD program, Boice worked under Dr. Bo Reicke and Dr. Oscar Cullmann, finally completing his dissertation in 1966, titled "Witness and Revelation in the Gospel of John". During their time in Basel, Jim and Linda founded a small church out of their two-room apartment, Basel Community Church. They remember this as an unexpected but valuable time in their ministry journey. It was also during their time in Basel that Jim and Linda had their first child in 1964, Elizabeth Anne.

In December 1966, the Boice family relocated to Alexandria, Virginia, where he served as the assistant editor of Christianity Today. He also preached frequently at local churches, most commonly at McLean Presbyterian Church in Virginia. While working at Christianity Today, Boice concluded that Christian journalism was not his goal, for his intention was to pastor a church, which he did March 17th, 1968 when he accepted the call to Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia. Soon after moving to Philadelphia, Jim and Linda had two children, Heather Louise in March 1970 and Jennifer Sue in 1972.

One year after accepting the call at Tenth Church, Boice inherited the broadcast ministry The Bible Study Hour and founded by Donald Barnhouse. By the mid-1970’s the broadcast had grown to more than 100 air times each week. Boice continued this ministry until his death in 2000, by which time the ministry had grown to more than 850 airtimes a week on more than 200 stations worldwide.

During his time at Tenth Church, Boice also developed the annual Philadelphia Conference on Reformed Theology (PCRT). The first PCRT was held in 1974 to “glorify God through a rediscovery of the Church’s great doctrinal foundations.” The first gathering grew from the threefold objectives of the PCRT: “1)To awaken a new interest in biblical theology and to give greater visibility to the doctrines of grace throughout the Church generally; 2) To establish a forum at which men and women in the Reformed tradition (from all denominations) might meet and be encouraged by others of like mind, 3) To marshal resources to the end that believers might propagate the faith more effectively and thus ‘establish, strengthen, and settle’ the Church upon the firm foundation of the doctrines of the Apostles.” Boice led this ministry until his death in 2000.

Boice was committed to a life of ministry that took shape in many additional ways. He worked as a chairman for the International Council of Biblical Inerrancy, whose goal was to “elucidate, vindicate, and apply the doctrine of biblical inerrancy as an essential element for the authority of Scripture and a necessity for the health of the Church of God, and as to attempt to win the Church back to its historic position.” Additionally, after growing concern about the state of the city schools that their daughters attended, Jim and Linda founded the City Center Academy (CCA) in Philadelphia in 1983, a Christian academic institution dedicated to the humanities. Jim served as the principal of CCA for its first four years, and remained involved in its commitment to quality education in line with the Judeo-Christian value system until his death. Finally, Boice played an important role in the Bible Study Fellowship International (BSF), writing two of the seven study guides in the BSF series that were available at the time of his death and traveling all over the world to teach and encourage BSF leaders serving domestically and internationally.

On Good Friday of 2000, two hours before he was to deliver a sermon on the crucifixion to his congregation at Tenth Church, Jim Boice was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer. He delivered his final sermon on May 7, 2000, and died in his sleep June 15, 2000, eight weeks after his diagnosis.


15.85 Linear Feet (38 Boxes)


The James Montgomery Boice Manuscript Collection has been arranged in five series that document his various ministries.

Series 1: Preaching Materials (13 boxes) - This series contains sermon materials for textual and topical sermons. Also included in this collection are various BSF Study Guide manuscripts, and manuscripts for video sermons series.

Series 2: Organizations (4 Boxes) - This series documents Boice's involvement with the Bible Study Fellowship, the Huguenot Fellowship, the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals, Tenth Presbyterian Church, the Bible Study Hour, and the Philadelphia Conference of Reformed Theology.

Series 3: General Correspondence (17 Boxes) - This series contains general correspondence, sorted chronologically and alphabetically, covering the years from 1967 to 2000.

Series 4: Tenth Journal (2 Boxes) - This series contains manuscripts and proofs regarding the Tenth Church Journal.

Series 5: Miscellaneous (2 Boxes)- This series contains unsorted materials and interviews conducted by Robert C. Beasley.

Processing Information

This collection was assembled and inventoried by Tenth Presbyterian Church staff after the death of Dr. Boice in 2000. The collection was donated to Special Collections by Linda McNamara Boice, Dr. Boice's widow, October 2008. A partial written inventory was provided at the time of accession. After accessioning, a box-level inventory was completed and the collection was reboxed by Special Collections staff. Further processing of the collection may be completed at a later date. This collection has been maintained in the original order in which it was received. Any additional materials sent to Special Collections by either the Church or Linda Boice may be added to this collection.

The James Montgomery Boice Manuscript Collection
Sarah Seraphin and Kristen Nivling
October 2014
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Repository Details

Part of the Princeton Theological Seminary. Library. Special Collections Repository

Princeton Theological Seminary
Wright Library
25 Library Place
Princeton NJ 08540 USA