I see two different types of leaders in the church.
- Those who make decisions for others to follow
- Those who live their lives as examples that others follow
I know in many cases some people do a bit of both.
1) I love this funny leadership lessons from dancing guy video. It shows what leading by example can look like. Could it be that in the church leadership is not decision making?
2) To form a Christian perspective on leadership, I think it makes sense to start by looking at what Jesus had to say on the topic of leadership.
3) We should also look at the example of the early church. What titles did early church leaders use? It seems many in the early church despised titles of honor.
4) The topic then becomes complex because we do see verses in the New Testament that talk about elders, overseers, pastor/shepherd, deacons. I don't want to overlook these verses. I did a 9 post series looking at the verses related to elders, overseers, shepherds, deacons. For each passage I looked at the greek meanings of the terms in question. I looked at what we could conclude from each passage, and what questions were still left unanswered.
5) I took a closer look at the word pastor/shepherd . I don't think anybody used the title pastor in the early church, it seems the first time pastor was used as a title was during the protestant reformation. I concluded I've got the best senior pastor. Jesus is refered to as our Chief shepherd. We are all called to care for and serve others, following the example of Jesus. I'd like to encourage you to be a pastor (but I'd skip the title).
6) What do you think Jesus would say about leadership today?
7) Church Hierarchical Leadership is common today. People like to create flow charts placing some people above others. It seems this practice can be traced all the way back to the influence of Ignatius.
8) Top-down leadership is likely the most efficient leadership structure as long as your goal is not equipping the saints or mutual edification.
9) I have been encouraged that some pastors are leaving the building of institutional church. They are simply leading by example. The choice to follow is up to us.
So as you can see I've invested some thought into this topic lately. But I don't want this to be the main focus of my journey moving forward.
I'd love to hear your thoughts.