There is a great need for dynamic leadership in the twenty-first century. A growing world compels it. It is estimated that the world’s population is in excess of seven billion souls. Also, the increase in crime and immorality demands good leadership. We live in the “do your own thing” age. This is the age of the new morality. We are plagued with many problems in America, but doubtless our greatest one is a moral problem. Furthermore, a decline in religious fervor necessitates good leadership. It was waning religious commitment that was a contributing factor in the fall of ancient Rome and those forces are at work in our own country today.
Every institution and organization is but the lengthened shadow of its leadership, and in no area is effective leadership needed more than in the church of our Lord. Poor leadership can have disastrous consequences. Isaiah wrote, “For the leaders of this people cause them err; and they that are led of them are destroyed.” Isaiah 9:16) Poor leadership can lead to digression. Paul warned the elders of Ephesus of this danger. “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.” (Acts 20:28-30) In addition, it should be observed that poor leadership can lead the church to a dead end.
Jesus declared, “Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind, and if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.” (Matthew 15:14) The work of Christ’s church has been hindered in many places because of ineffective leadership. It should also be pointed out that poor leadership can lead to hell and destruction. In his scathing rebuke of the scribes and Pharisees, Jesus pointed out the danger of poor leadership. “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.” (Matthew 23:15)
One concept of eldering is that elders are a ruling class in the church, much like a policeman, mayor, or governor. Another concept that is gaining in popularity is that elders have no authority – not even delegated authority. “Some teach that bishops actually possess no authority, that they do render a service to the church, but that they lead only by influence and example.” (Virgil Poe, ANCHOR, 34).
There is still much to be said on this subject. In the next blog, we will consider the unscriptural trends and the need for biblical church leadership.
May the Lord bless you and keep you!
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