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What is involved in good leadership?

1. EXAMPLE. Jesus was spoken of as One “who went about doing good.” (Acts 10:38).  When George C Marshall took command of the infantry school of Fort Benning, Georgia, before World War II, he found the post in a generally deteriorated condition. Rather than issue orders for specific improvements, he simply got out his own paint brushes, lawn equipment, and other tools and went to work on his personal quarters.

The other officers and men, first on his block, then throughout the post, did the same thing, and Fort Benning was brightened up.

2. INVITATION. Many so-called leaders are not leaders at all but very good workers. Someone said, “he who thinketh he leadeth and hath no one following him is only taking a walk.” Jesus said to Peter and Andrew, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” (Matthew 4:19). A good leader trains others to take his place. This multiplies his effectiveness.

3. MOTIVATION. This comes by encouragement, training and accountability. Jesus promised to be with his disciples. Paul wrote to encourage the Corinthians to do what they promised to do. People will come closer to doing what is both expected and inspected. If a task was worth starting, it is worth completing – even if it takes reminding or replacing.

Let’s work on being good leaders and good followers. “For we are laborers together with God.” (1 Corinthians 3:9)


 A great dictum of the Restoration movement is stated in the following words: “In matters of faith, unity; in matters of opinion, liberty; and in all things charity.” We would do well to repeat this from time to time, and to be reminded of its implications. Perhaps it is superfluous to point out that matters of faith are those things believed because they are clearly revealed in the Bible; for “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17). Matters of opinion are those things concerning which one has formed a judgment, and yet concerning which the Bible is silent. In such cases, of course, each one is free to have his own opinion. It is a tragic mistake to treat matters of faith as if they were nothing more than matters of opinion and is also tragic to treat matters of opinion as if they were matters of faith.

And yet there is a sense in which all members of a given congregation must maintain unity, even in matters of judgment or opinion. “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” (1 Corinthians 1:10). This is not to say that we can all think alike in matters of judgment; it is rather admonishing a harmony and unity of action, even in matters of judgment.

It is easy to see why there must be unity in matters of judgment in each congregation. If such did not prevail, it would be impossible to have an orderly worship period or an effective program of work. The hour at which the church begins its worship on the Lord’s day is a matter of judgment; but each member of the congregation is not at liberty to begin at whatever hour his own personal judgment dictates. The number of songs to be sung and the number of verses of each song are matters of judgment; and doubtless there are differences of opinions with reference to these in practically every congregation. Even so, there must be unity of action in the singing of songs. Who is to preach in meetings, and how long they are to last are matters of judgment. What kind of meeting house to build, how to best use it, whether to begin a bus program, who is to be in charge of it, what the busses will be used for . . . are all matters of judgment. Different ones will have different opinions about these matters. And yet there must be unity in regard to each one.

We can be united in matters of faith when everyone submits to the word of God. How can we be united in matters of judgment? We can be united in matters of judgment only if all in a given congregation will submit to the judgment of some in that congregation; and the Bible tells us to whose judgment we are to submit. “Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves, for they watch for your souls, as they must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.” (Hebrews 13:17). R.C.H Lenski, commenting on this verse, says it refers to the fact that “one yields, gives up, when he has a contrary opinion; — to yield or give up his judgments to the eldership.”

Needless to say, in practically every congregation there would be those whose judgment would differ from that of the eldership. One may differ with the judgment of the eldership because he does not have all access to the facts in the case. He may differ because he has not taken the time to study and investigate the matter as thoroughly as have the elders, or because his knowledge of the Scriptures and his experience in making such judgments are limited. Or he may differ with the eldership in a given situation because the elders have made a poor judgment, and his judgment is better. In any case, however, every member of the congregation must yield to the eldership in matters of judgment, this is God’s plan for unity in matters of judgment.

Bobby Duncan Words of Truth

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