The church has a leadership problem. There are well-trained, educated, articulate, and organized people who are often recognized as leaders among the church. There’s just one problem: these may not be the real leaders among the church. Oh, they’re making decisions and making plans and casting visions… but, according to Scripture, is that what leading among the church is all about? I don’t think so… and someone else agrees with me.
In his post, Arthur writes:
I am also not saying we don’t have any leaders in the church at all. We certainly do! What we lack is a recognition of people who are actually leading in the church through the Biblical means of service and example in favor of focusing on people based on position and title.Those are the leaders, the people who live and love as Christ lived and loved as best they can. It is the example of your life, the way you live, that makes you a leader.
The church is full of leaders and those leaders rarely if ever make demands of deference to their supposed “authority”. Say what you like and dress it up all you want in religious jargon but someone who is more concerned with people “submitting to their authority” than they are with serving people in humility and love is not a leader in any Biblical sense.More pointedly, the more you have to remind people that you are a leader, the less of a leader you really are.
Think about what Arthur is saying. Among most church organizations, there are positions of leadership, and people are placed in those positions of leadership, and those people perform certain functions and duties based on their particular positions of leadership.
But, that’s not the kind of leading that we find in Scripture. In Scripture, serving is leading, and leading is serving. I’m not talking about “servant-leadership.” I’m talking about serving – actually serving other people. The real leaders are the ones who are serving others.
If we follow the example or teaching of people based on their position of leadership, then we are not following leaders as described in Scripture.
Instead, according to Scripture, we follow the example of people’s lives as we see them serving others. This is leadership, and the proper response to this scriptural leadership is to serve others as well… to see others serve and then to follow their example.