Leadership is not an inane thing, neither is it a very modern phenomenon. In ancient India, the first battle was fought under the efficient leadership of Raja Bharata against a confederacy of ten clans. Gradually, with the progression of time, the eligibilities for being a leader in a clan, then in broader society, changed. In modern times, we need a leader in almost every aspect of our everyday life. But, what does an ancient religious, social, literary source tell about leadership? What do scriptures on leadership say? Let’s have a look at it.
Scriptures on leadership
Biblical time-zones, events have had a great impact on the everyday life and history of humankind. So, while we talk about being a wise, deft, honest leader, do we think how scriptures on leadership have influenced us? Do we ponder how to become a wise “Biblical leader”?
In the Luke 6:31 line, the Biblical verse resounds much with what Gandhi asked us to follow. The man in the white khadi suggested that we be the change we wanted to see in others. Similarly, the Bible also asks its readers and believers to behave with others in the same way we wanted others to behave with us.
Always put yourself in others’ shoes; in that way, you will become a rightful leader. The conglomeration of all these righteous beings will lead to an exemplary organization. This is one among many important Biblical scriptures on leadership.
Philippians 2:3 verse talks about humility. Unless you can level yourself down to the position of your subordinates or teammates, you cannot really drive a good team. An engine is placed in the front of a train, but it is on the same line as the rest of the compartments. Had it not been the case, the whole train would collapse.
Exodus 18:21 suggests that unless you have good people around you, you cannot really form a good team. Those leaders will have to be faithful, loyal, dedicated, and honest. Thereby you can decentralize your responsibilities to them. This also somewhat sounds like Gandhi’s group of Satyagrahis deployed to save the nation.
In Psalm 78:72, a beautiful visual of a shepherd leading his disciples has been created. Biblical scriptures on leadership are replete with such imageries.
In the way, a shepherd brings his animals back home without losing any one of them; in the same way, a good and visionary leader won’t ever lose track of any of their teammates and skilfully lead them through any and every hurdle.
John 3:30 is typically a Biblical tip on being a good leader. The good and humble leader should never forget that he is not above god. Rather than consider how the Sultanate leaders viewed themselves as rulers, they are shadows of god. Thus, God’s glory should prevail before everything else.
Isaiah 41:10 is a beautiful verse on the comradeship hidden within leadership. The recent Olympics 2020 witnessed one racer pushing another racer towards victory because the latter was confused about the finishing line. When he was asked why he chose to do that, he said victory wouldn’t be his even if he didn’t.
They are the leaders of the world, aren’t they? See the amount of compatriot ship, comradery they shared on such a huge stage like Olympics. This is how leaders should be.
Galatians 6:9 asks us to ignite our minds with an indomitable spirit. These scriptures on leadership encourage us not to be impatient. Our goal shouldn’t be our driving force.
For if you lose once, it becomes hard to gain back the strength and fight again. But if your goal itself is the journey towards your goal, you can again excite yourself by thinking about the journey. No two journeys are identical. Be patient and wait for the time when you reap your harvest.
Peter 5:7 verse acknowledges the hardship that leadership entails. It asks us to share that responsibility with God. If you are an atheist, it can be a verse indicating the virtue of decentralization.
Attempting leadership alone can be overwhelming. Relax a bit and divide the work. As Rabindranath said, if we work together, winning or losing doesn’t matter anymore. All these seers were well-read in the scriptures on leadership. Hence their philosophies also match so much!
Proverbs 4:23 suggests that we should follow our hearts dearly. The heart is what makes us leaders, and we should not corrupt it. If we do that, we lose the quality to lead; we lose the vision which made us the leader we wished to be.
Matthew 20:26 talks about how leadership should be accommodative and devoid of jealousy. A famous film Rocket Singh depicts this theme brilliantly. Rocket Singh or Ranvir Kapoor is an employee whose head has a rivalry with him throughout the film.
Rocket Singh forms a company of his own which outruns his former boss’ company. In the end, when the boss meets Ranvir, we all think that the hatred will be venomous. In the first few minutes, the boss said that he isn’t that fragile that he cannot accept his former employee’s success and a brilliant success. After congratulating him on his work, he walks out, saying, “See you in the field.”
So, as the scriptures on leadership suggest, this openness towards victory is what a good leader should possess.
Matthew 5:37 suggests that there should be transparency in your leadership. Even if you face the hardest of all situations, be vulnerable towards your colleagues or whoever it is. The trust that intertwines you with your mates is what sustains this leadership!
Thus, you see the scriptures on leadership are all about becoming a trustworthy and honest human being. Also, your dependence on divinity or faith in humanity, in other terms is what will get you going as a leader.
What does the Bible say about leadership?
Now, let’s look at some Bible verses that are good guidance for being a wise leader. ‘
A leader should not be biased. Fair judgment is their only virtue. Their throne can never be outlived if they ruled honestly. Law should be equal for law, and its dispenser should be equally non-judgemental.
A wise leader should know good timings. They shouldn’t entangle with anyone and everyone before them. This leads to unnecessary time wastage. The brain also isn’t really fed with something useful. So, it’s better not to engage with people anywhere and everywhere. It will help if you understand the suitability of your intervention. Preach only when you think it’s going somewhere useful; otherwise, refrain from it.
Our Constitution has a Cabinet of Ministers led by the Prime Minister helping the President. Why do you think that is applicable? This is because a good leader should always be all ears about advice. Proverb 11:14 counsels us for believing in democracy, just in different words.
Leaders should possess an open mind. They should not really worry about who is training them, their age, their gender, or their religion in general. They should always be open to learning. Curiosity to know new things is what they should strive for.
In the same manner, one shouldn’t judge a leader based on their age. As the saying goes, age here is really just a number. Greta Thunberg, who is leading the climate change movement right now, is just 17 years old. She started when she was 5. Khudiram Bose was just 18 when he died for the country. So, you see, age is no bar for determination and wisdom. You have to have a vision and a bird’s eye to reach your mission. Failure shouldn’t distract you. As APJ Abdul Kalam said, Failure should be the pillar of success, and rightly so.
Thessalonians 5:14 verse asks the leaders to be patient. That might be a faint-hearted person, or a dull person, also might be someone who has experienced a trauma and needs time to heal; you as a leader should be by them and not lose your calm. You should help them up to their spirit and not take them further down.
So, these are some godly leadership Scripture. The belief in God will take you forward. You will not be alone. Even in times of apocalyptic stress, you will have an illusion that someone is there with you. So, these bible verses about leadership qualities are appropriate if you are really looking forward to some guidance in your times of stress.
Remember how the famous rock band articulated this? Here it goes, “When I find myself in times of trouble Mother Mary comes to me, singing songs of whisper, let it be.”
Bible verses about leaders of nations
The world outside us is falling apart. The leaders are failing to lead their nations and failing to be accountable for their faults.
Let’s look at some Biblical verses that might help leaders of the nations in this grave crisis engulfing the whole world. The coronavirus pandemic has exposed how faulty our entire system is and how superficial it is.
Timothy 2:1 Verse directs us, the citizens, to be faithful towards the government. Pray for those in power, for they are our guide, and they are leading us through messed-up situations.
Romans 13:1 verse is an important note for those in power. It says that we should obey our government. As the rightful subjects of the omnipotent, we should respect God’s decision in choosing whoever is there in positions of power.
Also, Bible gives paramount power over the election of rulers. While on the one hand, it states that a leader should listen to all patiently; on the other hand also states that God chooses a leader.
We are completely powerless in selecting our leader. We are ignorant beings and are not really capable of selecting our leader. It’s not terrestrial conflicts but rather God’s play due to which kingdoms fall.
These leaders cannot go out of track because their judgment day should also come, and we shouldn’t take God’s law in our hands, and we shouldn’t stage any coup even if the rulers are corrupt, for God will take action as and when required.
We as citizens shouldn’t hesitate to bestow upon them the honor that they deserve. We should be righteous in our own lives and follow the duty of being rightful citizens. If the ruler or the government isn’t performing their own duty, God is there to give them their due justice.
Bible Verses about wise leadership
Bible has adequate verses relating to the wisdom of a leader.
Solomon was a great leader, and he possessed a very clear mind. He had “interpretations” that were solutions to every problem.
If a leader is wise, they will be cheerful. The wisdom illuminates the face.
A very discreet mouth is a must for great leaders. While we should be loyal to our kings, the kings earn their respect with this virtue. Otherwise, the dynamics will shatter between the ruler and the ruled, which is not desirable.
Verse 5a is all about how keen a king’s judgment should be. Otherwise, his kingdom will fall apart. They should have a clear judgment guiding their decision-making. That is why they are the leaders. His disciples do not really have this foresight which a leader possesses.
Also, there are times when the greatest of great leaders cannot figure out what’s happening, and there Bible says that that shroud is only revealed with God’s revelation.
Scriptures on leadership accountability
While the Bible says that God chooses leaders on the other, the Bible also holds them accountable. Because every leader should stand in front of God on his judgment day and is accountable to God.
Thus, you see, if becoming a good leader is your aim, go and give Bible a read. Formulate your own opinion. You might disagree at many places, but then you will get a strong light leading you through the darkness at others. Cheers to that!