Church Leadership; December 2, 2019


Hosea 4:6 “My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge.
Because you have rejected knowledge,
I also reject you as my priests;
because you have ignored the law of your God,
I also will ignore your children.”

Leadership, and specifically Church leadership, carries a lot of responsibility. Like James said, “Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” (James 3:1) We tend to like titles and authority, but ignore the responsibility that goes with them. This of course isn’t limited to the Church. A Christian song of several years ago said, “Tired of the men who make the laws and break them any time they please.” Just about everyone can identify with that line! However, it is much more serious when it’s in the Church, because the human leadership is charged with nurturing God’s people, and that is a heavy responsibility indeed. Church leadership is charged with listening to God and communicating what they hear to the people. However, that calls for consistent faithfulness, and that can seem like hard work. Those in leadership must be careful to listen to, and put into practice, the sermons they preach. Their words will not transmit genuine spiritual knowledge if they haven’t gone through the heart of the preacher before they come through his or her mouth.

As a pastor myself, my heartfelt desire is for each believer to learn to listen to God themselves, to have a regular devotional time when they allow God to speak into their heart life, but that desire must not be a cop-out from speaking the Word of the Lord myself. I have been given Teacher gifting, but if my words come across as pronouncements, that won’t be very effective teaching, because what I say won’t be absorbed and applied. As I have been learning through the Coaching movement, I need to come alongside people and encourage them to recognize truth for themselves. That’s when it starts to make a real difference in their lives. I realized a long time ago that things that seem entirely obvious to me can seem like deep revelation to others. However, they won’t receive such truths if I stand over them and say, effectively, “I’m giving you deep revelation, so listen up.” Like Jesus did in His parables, I need to connect God’s truth to people’s daily lives, or it will remain theoretical to them and not something to be lived out. I am to be faithful to transmit knowledge of God and His kingdom, but I must do so in ways that people can receive.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Yesterday’s message seemed almost shallow to me as I prepared it, but there was a dear lady here who needed it that way. Help me meet people where they are, not leaving them there but not placing any preconditions on them either, so that they may indeed receive Your truth and be set free, (John 8:32) for their salvation and Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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