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About Church Leadership

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About Church Leadership
Good Leaders
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In Acts chapter 20, Paul calls the elders of the church at Ephesus to him so that he can say goodbye. In the midst of this heart-rending farewell, Paul offers one of the greatest challenges ever issued in the Bible. Discussing their duties, he says, "Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be on the alert, remembering that night and day for a period of three years I did not cease to admonish each one with tears" (vv. 28-31).

What an awesome responsibility! And furthermore, what difficult kinds of men to find. Where and how do we go about finding men such as this to lead the church of God?

Fortunately, we have not been left alone to figure out how to find good leaders. In the first place, we have the letters of Paul to Timothy and Titus in which he details the characteristics of elders. A man who can meet these qualities will be well on his way to being the kind of leader we need to guide the church.

In addition to these qualities, a good study is to determine what other leaders of God's people did. There are many great leaders in the Bible, men who did what was right when it was less than popular, and men who served God against tremendous odds. Studying the character of such leaders is important to developing the kinds of qualities which will make for good leaders in the future.

Besides this, there are a number of men who are very poor leaders. The Bible does not spare us the details of their lives, because we can learn from negative examples as well. Avoiding the mistakes and character flaws of men like Jeroboam, Ahab and Diotrophes is as important as developing the qualities of men like Joshua, Jeremiah and Peter.

Inside this issue, you will find two articles about leaders of God's people. These articles focus on the first two kings of Israel, Saul and David. Saul was a bad king and poor leader who lost the kingdom. David was a good king and good leader (despite his flaws) who was able to receive the promise that the Messiah would come from his lineage (2 Sam. 7:16; Acts 2:30-36). In these two men, we find much of what can go right or horribly wrong for leaders of God's people, and a careful study of their lives provides much insight into the kind of leader whom God seeks.

As we examine the lives of Saul and David, it falls to us to examine our own lives as well. How many of the qualities of good leaders do we have? Are we attempting to develop these qualities? Or are we more characterized by poor leadership qualities?



Last Updated ( Friday, 21 January 2011 09:12 )