Is Leadership Development a Biblical Concept?
The first question is answered in the creation account of man:
“Then God said, ‘Let Us make every man in Our image, and in Our likeness; let them rule over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. ’” (Genesis 1:26)
Please reread Genesis 1: 26 and following. You will quickly discover that we were born to lead(!), to have authority, to “rule,” and to take dominion. That is how God has wired us. Let’s look at this a little deeper.
I love the wisdom of the Leadership Development material from Equip. It points out that we need to “be comfortable with two positions. The first position is being under God’s authority. The second position is being in authority over the world. God has given us this calling. We must discover what it means to lead like God does.” They go on to note that God never commands us to do anything without enabling us to do it. So, “based on your gifts and personality, you have the ability to lead in some area.”
But there’s more. Probably the best definition of Leadership comes from J. Oswald Sanders: Leadership is Influence.
The New Testament certainly affirms and confirms our calling by Christ to influence others. An easy to comprehend verse notes:
“Therefore, knowing the fear of God, we persuade others…” (2 Corinthians 5:11)
Leadership development is actually developing our ability to influence others for Christ. Consider Christ’s admonition for us to be people of influence is clearly seen in Matthew 5:
“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do men light a lamp, and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand; and it gives light to all who are in the house. So, let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:13-14)
That passage is very descriptive of the influence that we are to have. Salt influences the flavor of our food and light influences the place in which we live. In this passage, God is very clearly calling us to embrace His calling on our lives to be a positive influence. What about you? Are you willing to let yourself be used by God so that you might persuade others?
Leadership Development is a biblical concept.