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Various authors share about experiencing God's wonderful presence by knowing Jesus Christ personally through the power of the Holy Spirit.


BY:  Brian E. Trenhaile, November 17, 2007

Table of Contents


I.       Mankind Created to Lead

II.      Preparation for Leadership

         Having the Right Heart Attitude

III.    Lifestyle Requirements for Leaders

         Leaders must have a Lifestyle of Prayer

         Leaders require a Lifestyle of Bible Study

         Leaders need a Lifestyle of Walking in the Spirit

IV.    Tapping into God Within

         Wisdom Available to Leaders

         Power Available to Leaders

         All the Resources of Heaven are Available





Leadership naturally flows out of the lives of growing Christians.   Obviously by His very nature, God is a leader.  Because growing Christians stick close to God, God’s very nature will rub off, or be imparted, on them.   Great leaders have always had intimate relationships with God.  Some obvious examples are Moses, Joshua, David, Daniel, Jesus, Peter, Paul and John the Beloved.  Tapping into the life of God that is in us through the Holy Spirit is essential not only for the Christian life but also for effective leadership.

I.  Mankind was Created to Lead

God always intended for mankind to lead.  In the beginning God gave Adam dominion over the earth (cf. Gen. 1:28).  During the Exodus God said He wanted His people to be a kingdom of kings and priests (cf. Ex. 19:6).  Peter and John also said that the church is a kingdom of priests (cf. I Pet. 2:9, Rev. 1:6 and 5:10).  King David said, “What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor.  You made him ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet” (Psalm 8:4-6 NIV). 

In the following verse Paul said Christians are to reign as kings in their own lives.  “For if because of one man's trespass (lapse, offense) death reigned through that one, much more surely will those who receive [God's] overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them into right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one Man Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One)” (Romans 5:17 AMP).  When a Christian starts leading they are simply fulfilling what God had intended for them in the first place.  

II. Preparaton for Leaders

Several important prerequisites are required of leaders.  First, leaders must have repentant and humble hearts.  Second, leaders must have a servant’s heart, be steadfast and recognize that all authority comes from God.

Having the Right Heart Attitude

Repentance from sin is one of the first things required for leaders.  But the blessings that come afterwards are well worth the price paid.  A Biblical example that illustrates this reward involves Joshua the high priest:  "Thus says the LORD of hosts, 'If you will walk in My ways and if you will perform My service, then you will also govern My house and also have charge of My courts, and I will grant you free access among these who are standing here” (Zechariah 3:7).  In context, Joshua was being condemned by Satan, who was then rebuked by God.  Joshua wore filthy garments which were then exchanged for clean ones.  Then the aforementioned admonition and encouragement was given to him.  Another example is in Paul’s speaking to Timothy: “Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from these things, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work” (I Timothy 2:21 NASB).

Humility is required: Peter put it it this way, “All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE.[1]  Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time” (I Peter 5:5, 6 NASB).  Leaders need grace to operate effectively; they are not going to operate in grace if they have a proud spirit.

A servant’s heart is also required of Christian leaders.  Jesus said "If anyone wants to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all" (Mark 9:35 NASB).  Jesus also said:

"You call Me Teacher and Lord; and you are right, for so I am. "If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet.  "For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you” (John 14:13-15 NASB).

A steadfast heart is another essential for Christian leaders.  According to Steve Barry a winner’s most prominent characteristic is that winners never give up.[2]   Dave Van De Puy says that the worst thing a Christian servant can do is give up after falling. [3]  That is precisely what the enemy wants; Judas gave up, even after Jesus called him friend as Judas was betraying him.  Jesus wants His people to accept His forgiveness and go on no matter how badly they blunder.  Peter exemplifies a blunderer who received forgiveness and then got up and went on to powerfully lead the early church.  James put it this way: “As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job's perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy” (James 4:11 NIV).

A leader must also have a deep understanding that all authority comes from God.  Daniel was keenly sensitivity to authority; he instantly knew the meaning of Nebuchadnezzar’s tree dream.  He said to the king: “The command to leave the stump of the tree with its roots means that your kingdom will be restored to you when you acknowledge that Heaven rules”  (Daniel 4:26).  Jesus was also keenly aware of authority.  He told Pilate that Pilate only had authority because it was given to him from above (cf. John 19:11).

III. Lifestyle Requirements for Leaders

Leaders need to be like Moses who sincerely desired to know God’s ways, not just His deeds (cf. Exodus 33:13).  To have this kind of understanding about God, a leader must have a consistent prayer life, be constantly feeding on God’s word, and steadfastly walk in the Spirit.

Leaders must have a Lifestyle of Prayer

Prayer is spending time with God.  A person always has time for the things that are most important to them.  Leaders who love God will naturally express their love for Him through a lifestyle of prayer.  Furthermore, effective Christian leaders also know that communication with God is vital to their own spiritual life as well as the well being of those for whom they care.

Jesus was in constant communication with His Father (cf. John 8:29).  Also Jesus had a habit of early morning prayer (cf. Mark 1:35).  Dr. James Morocco often says, “Jesus was the spotless Son of God and yet He needed to pray.  So, obviously if He needed to pray, we certainly need to pray!”  Daniel was responsible for running an empire (many kingdoms), yet it was his custom was to pray three times a day (cf. Daniel 6:10, 13).  He could easily have said “I have a lot of responsibilities; I don’t have time to pray.”  But Daniel did not make excuses, instead he prayed faithfully and his work was impeccable.  King David also prayed evening, morning and at noon (cf. Psalm 55:17).

Leaders Require a Lifestyle of Bible Study

The Bible is spiritual food for us.  Jesus said the words I speak to you are spirit and life (cf. John 6:63).  Jesus also said “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).   Obviously leaders need to feed daily on the God’s word in order to stay spiritually healthy and also to feed others.

Leaders also need to know how God thinks and operates.  With so many different inputs constantly bombarding them, they need some kind of screening mechanism in order to know which voices are of God.  The Bible is our screen, our final authority on matters.  Paul told Timothy “Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth” (II Timothy 2:15 NASB).  Paul also said that the mind needs to be constantly renewed in the things of God (cf. Romans 12:2).

Leaders need a Lifestyle of Walking in the Spirit

The Bible teaches that we need the life of God flowing in and through us in order to be effective leaders.  Jesus used this analogy: He is the vine and the apostles (his leaders) are the branches.  He said:

“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. "I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.  "If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned” (John 15: 4-6 NASB).

Effective leaders, like Jesus, have an anointing on them when they lead.  Jesus returned from the wilderness in the power of the Spirit, and then He said “the Spirit of the Lord is upon Me and has anointed Me to …” (cf. Luke 4:14-18).  His awesome anointing came because He walked in the Spirit. 

IV.  Tapping Into God Within

Because Christ is in us, tremendous resources are available to Christians.  In the following verse Paul emphatically tells us that Christ is within:

“that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints, to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1: 26-27 NASB).

It is essential for Christian leaders to first tap into these resources and then show others how to do likewise. 

Wisdom is Available to Leaders

Wisdom is a requisite for leaders.  Daniel said the following: “I thank and praise you, O God of my fathers: You have given me wisdom and power” (Daniel 2: 23 NIV).  Paul said, “In whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3 NASB).  To another group of Christians, Paul said:  “But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption” (I Corinthians 1:30 NASB).  So wisdom is already given to us because the Holy Spirit is dwelling within us.  Also James 1:5 states that we can specifically ask God for wisdom.

Power Available to Leaders

John 1:12 says “But as many as have received Him, to them gave He the power to become the children of God.”  From our relationship with God we receive power (exousia[4]).  This power gives us the ability to do anything including leading.  Paul says of the Holy Spirit within: “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us” (II Corinthians 4: 7 NIV).

All the Resources of Heaven are Available

Leaders need to grasp that heaven’s resources are available.  Paul said “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3 NIV).  Peter said the following:

 His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires (II Peter 1: 3-4 NIV).

Paul said our sufficiency is from God, he said.  “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed” (II Corinthians 9:8).


In a sense, all Christians are leaders because the God of heaven is dwelling within them.  God also intended that His people be a kingdom of priests.  But those who excel at leadership, like David, are the ones that hunger and thirst for God.  They sincerely work at developing correct heart attitudes, and they are constantly sharpening their abilities to serve God better.


Barry, Steve. Faith Classics, Volume 1, The Unusual Characteristics of a Winner.  Jupiter, Florida:  Christian Family Church CDROM, circa 2000.

Christian Family Church. Leadership Seminar Notes. Kapolei, Hawaii.  Pacific Christian University, 2007.

Maxwell, John. Developing the Leader Within You.  Nashville, Tennessee:  Thomas Nelson, 1993.

Van Der Puy, Abe. The High Calling of God, You Can Serve God Successfully.  Lincoln, Nebraska:  Back to the Bible, 1982.

Zodiates, Spiros.  The Hebrew-Greek Key Study Bible.  Chattanooga, Tennessee:  AMG Publishers, Revised Edition 1991.

Unless otherwise indicated, all scriptural quotations are from the King James Version of the Bible.

Scripture references marked NASB are taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright ©1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

Scripture quotations marked AMP are taken from the Amplified® Bible, Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission." (

Scripture references marked NIV are taken from
the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®. NIV ®.  Copyright © 1973,1978,1984 by the International Bible Society.  Used by
permission of Zondervan Publishing House.  All rights reserved.

End Notes

[1] Peter is quoting Proverbs 3:34.  Psalm 138:6, Proverbs 29:23, James 4:6 are also about this same concept.

[2] Theme of Barry CDROM.

[3] From Chapter 3 Promise for Service.

[4] From Zodiates, The Hebrew-Greek Key Study Bible.