You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Leadership’ category.

2009-02-23_1234_1_VillageSheep

Leadership. It seems impossible to talk at any length about the Bible or the Church without the topic of leadership being discussed at some point. Rightly so. The men and women in Scripture who did great deeds for and with God were, indeed, leaders. Therefore, it is imperative for us to investigate the thoughts concerning leadership from a man who, except for Jesus Himself, is justifiably considered the greatest leader in the New Testament: Paul. From his perspective, what was the position and function of leaders in the Church of Jesus Christ?

Read the rest of this entry »

blindfolded

From time to time, I pray that the Lord will bring down the hierarchical structure of the Church, wherever it exists. Does this sound radical? Well, after studying the concept of leadership in the New Testament, I’ve come to very oppositional conclusions about what we so easily today call “leadership.”

Read the rest of this entry »

p1040002

If someone were to broach the idea of starting a church with us, I would ask them to do the following research in the Bible and supply scriptural answers before we had a serious discussion about how to proceed:

Do a study in the Gospels about what Jesus taught about leadership. How did He tell us to lead? How did He tell us not to lead? How does what Jesus taught about leadership compare with what we teach?

Read the rest of this entry »

img_0340

How about Paul? Did he have authority? He had abundant positional authority as a Pharisee—so much authority that he authorized the death and imprisonment of followers of the Way. However, he completely lost all of that hierarchical power when he became a Christian. Subsequently, however, he came into enormous spiritual authority. This authority was evidenced in the miracles that had been performed through him as well as in his suffering for the Lord and His Church, which he points out in his apostolic defense.

Read the rest of this entry »

img_0340

What did Jesus teach His disciples about leadership? We know the answer. He taught them to lead by being servants, not as those who had power, position, or were seeking a following. “But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brothers. And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Christ. The greatest among you shall be your servant” (Matthew 23:8–11).

Read the rest of this entry »

img_0340

What did Jesus teach His disciples about leadership? We know the answer. He taught them to lead by being servants, not as those who had power, position, or were seeking a following. “But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all brothers. And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Neither be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Christ. The greatest among you shall be your servant” (Matthew 23:8–11).

Jesus teaches us that the greatest among Christian is a servant. Is that how we lead today in the Western Church? Well, we say we do, by virtue of the fact that pastors and leaders give themselves sacrificially for the church and the staff, by teaching, counseling, working hard, and building teams and programs. However, that isn’t what Jesus meant when He talked about servant leadership. He was clear. Let’s look at what He said in Matthew 20:25-28.

Read the rest of this entry »

img_0340

Leadership has been the most taught and discussed topic in the American church in my lifetime. When I did a search recently on Amazon, there were 15,758 hits on the topic of Christian leadership. It makes sense. It doesn’t take much reading in Scripture to find leadership being manifested in one form or another by notable individuals in the Bible. Yet if we do a word search through the Scripture, we find a paucity of references under that word. Why is that? I think the reason we find so little use of the word “leader” in Scripture is because that aspect, that virtue, is secondary in God’s view. Perhaps not even secondary. Therefore, it’s troubling when we have made it our number one emphasis for so many years. If we read about God’s leaders in Scripture, we’ll find, overwhelmingly, an emphasis on only two traits: godliness and obedient, active faith in the power and ability of God.

Read the rest of this entry »

img_0335

Let’s take a quick look at Hebrews 11:32-38. This portion of Scripture is often the focus of our attention because it is included in this wonderful chapter about faith.

“And what more shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Samson of and Samuel and the prophets—who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, mighty in war, foreign armies to flight. Women received back their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated— of whom the world was not worthy—wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.”

Read the rest of this entry »

img_0335

In the last post about how we Christians are to commend Church leaders, we asked these questions:

What do we value in the Church?

What is commendable?

What kind of people are we looking for in our pastors and leaders?

Are the criteria we use for making these value judgments biblical?

Read the rest of this entry »

img_0335

Is there a difference between how the contemporary evangelical church commends its leaders and how the Apostle Paul did?

There is no comparison. Let me begin with a true story, although the names have been changed, as noted by an asterisk.

Dave Hutchinson*, pastor of a new church plant in the urban core of our city, called and invited me to have a cup of coffee at a downtown Starbucks recently. I admired Dave. He was attempting a very demanding task. As we discussed his struggles, he told me about the difficulty of living in the shadow of the mega-church from which his little work was birthed.

“I spoke at their men’s breakfast a couple of months ago, and although I know it’s dumb, I really, really wanted one of the men’s group leaders to tell Chris (the pastor of the mega-church) what a great job I’d done. I know it’s not right. But I really, really wanted that to happen.”

Read the rest of this entry »

For more about the books

POSTS BY THE MONTH / YEAR

POSTS BY CATEGORIES AND TITLES

Follow me on Twitter