Bible-Centered Leadership

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The Biblical Leadership Myth

Principles of Christian Leadership


The Biblical Model for Training Leaders

The following is based on “Training Church Leaders, New Testament Style” by Eric Svendsen, Founder and Director of New Testament Research Ministries.

The seminary system of learning should be one of several methods used when training a leader.  If not used in collaboration with other training tools, it will be ineffective tool for leadership training, because it does not provide for practical real time experience.  In order to be more effective in transitioning individuals from followership to leadership, the instructor should be a practising theologian as well as an academic.

The New Testament scriptures has examples of the church leaders methods for training its members for the ministry.  While exercising their gifts within the church, the scriptures teach that all qualified candidates for leadership should make full proof of their ministry to their senior leadership and congregation.  Acquisition of biblical, administrative, community and spiritual knowledge is to be approved of by other church leaders.  For example, Paul sent Timothy and Titus to cities to find, train and ordain elders within the church.

  • In Acts 11:22-26, after the good news was proclaimed to those in Antioch, Luke records that the Jerusalem church sent Barnabas there to strengthen them.  Barnabas in turn found Paul and “so for a whole year Barnabas and Saul met with the church and taught great numbers of people.”
  • Acts 13:1 indicates that in addition to Paul and Barnabas there were more “prophets and teachers” who had been sent to Antioch, presumably to train men wat the Antioch church.  After their first evangelistic visits to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch, Paul and Barnabas returned to these cities and appointed elders in each church (Acts 14:21-23).  We must assume here that Paul was consistent with his own policy of appointing only qualified elders, whose qualifications he lays down elsewhere (I Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9). 
  • Another instance of this training pattern is found in Acts 19:9-10.  Here Luke says that Paul held daily discussions in a lecture hall for a period of two years.

The church should be a matrix of discipleship and all other institutions should complement its specific needs.



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