Friday, December 18

What kind of Biblical leadership are we modeling?

Alan Knox makes a great point below. Go ahead and click on the links. If you're like me, you'll be shocked to see how far the meanings of these Biblical terms have changed...
Here’s an interesting exercise. Surf over to Google Images. (You may want to make sure that “SafeSearch” is on.) Then, search the image database for whatever term you or others use to identify the leaders among your church. Here are a few examples: "pastor," "preacher," "minister," "elder," "deacon," "priest," "presbyter," "bishop," "vicar."

Now, remembering that Jesus said that we should follow those who serve (that is, our leaders should be servants – Matthew 20:24-28 for example), search for the term "servant".

Why are the images so drastically different?

Of course, I suppose, there’s a better way to check this than by doing a Google search. Do the lives of our leaders look like the lives of servants?

Are we modeling the right kind of leadership that closer resembles Biblical servanthood? Or are we contributing to the false image the world already has of followers of Christ?


Strider said...

I like the title of the post. It makes it sound like there is more than one kind of 'Biblical leadership'! I suppose that technically there is: You could lead like Jesus or like Herod. Two kinds of leadership modeled on Biblical characters.... that probably is not what you meant by Biblical leadership.
Anyway, Good article. It is interesting what is happening here in Gondor. No one would listen to us ten years ago about the Biblical model. Foreigners and Nationals alike insisted that while I might push something like servant leadership that this was not cultural here and that people expected the more 'direct' large and in-charge kind of leader. Ten years later every single traditional style ministry is shrinking and in trouble. The two groups we work with and who model multiple, humble, non-titled, non-paid, leaders are the only groups healthy and growing. Now people are asking me how to get the same results in their ministries- without of course, having to change anything substantial!
Keep writing Guy- some are beginning to listen and maybe when the pain levels get high enough some will actually start obeying.

GuyMuse said...


Your words above remind me of an Ed Stetzer quote,

People will not change until the pain of remaining the same exceeds the pain of change.

We too, are beginning to see some who once held us in disdain, getting to pain levels than are almost intense enough to be willing to make the needed changes.

My own understanding of what is beginning to happen, is that we have entered a new spiritual phase, or era, in the work here. Many of the things that were taken for granted as the "way things are done", are now being questioned. There is a lot of upheaval taking place on multiple fronts. Indeed many are beginning to ask questions that 3 years ago would not even be on people's radar screens.

Mark Finger said...

Personally, I have found that I have the most spiritual influence when I am in situations where I have the least worldly influence: perhaps, this is because, at such times, I am most focused upon being a good servant (am most humble and considerate of others and their needs). Interesting, eh?