by Glen H. Jones
Prolific author and energetic preacher John MacArthur has given us some insights into what constitutes an effective spiritual leader. At the outset, the author makes it quite plain that successful business leaders are not usually models for spiritual leaders. Business leaders usually measure success by their ability to become masters of their situation. Others cater to them because of their mastery.
That, states MacArthur, stands in opposition to the leadership principles that Jesus taught: "Whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your servant" (Matt. 20: 26). To illustrate this servanthood principle, MacArthur uses two passages whose primary focus is the Apostle Paul. Acts 21-28 recounts Paul's arrest in Jerusalem and subsequent journey to Rome. Despite his captivity, Paul displays strength, humility and Christ-like character. The storm and shipwreck bring out Paul's inner spiritual strength.
The author uses a second set of scriptural passages from the Corinthian epistles to illustrate the traits of a Christian leader. A Christian leader, like a Greek athlete, trains hard, disciplines himself, and is careful not to disqualify himself. The Christian leader must not falter or fail; he must be faithful all his life. He must finish the race. Anything less will negate much of what he has tried to accomplish.
In the final section of the book MacArthur comments on the "team" that Paul built through his leadership. One of the identifying marks of a Christian leader is his ability to reproduce himself. The faithfulness of Timothy, Titus, and Luke speak volumes on the effectiveness of Paul's leadership.
The author lists twenty-six characteristics of an effective spiritual leader in an appendix.
<![if !supportEmptyParas]> <![endif]>