It is clear from scripture, if one is a disciple of Jesus Christ, there is an expectation of leadership. In Matthew 28:19 Jesus ascends leaving his disciples with final instructions to “go and make disciples”. His words left a mandate expected of every individual who would choose to follow Jesus.
Jesus was a clear transformational leader evidenced by the way he changed the world while he walked on it, and for the last two thousand years since his death and resurrection. One way that Jesus put in motion his continued discipleship even after his death was to mentor his own disciples, equipping them to carry out the final mandate he would leave them with. A characteristic of a transformational leader is treating each follower as an individual and providing coaching, mentoring, and opportunity to grow (Bass, 1985). Transformational leaders are focused on developing their followers into leaders themselves (Bass and Steidlmeier, 1999, p. 189), and over the course of three years of ministry Jesus developed twelve men to carry his message after he was gone.
Just as Jesus mentored his disciples, each disciple of his has the opportunity to follow in his steps and mentor other disciples. Mentoring is defined as a relationship where a more experienced individual works to advance the personal and professional growth of a less experienced protege (Sosik et al., 2005). In the context of mentoring disciples of Jesus Christ, it is vitally important that followers of his mentor others in virtuous living according to the example he set. Followers of Jesus are not just mentoring individuals to be effective members of an earthly society, they are mentoring others on the virtuous lifestyle as a member of the Kingdom of God (Wright, 2010, p. 36).
Bass, B. M. (1985). LEADERSHIP AND PERFORMANCE BEYOND EXPECTATIONS. New York : London: Free Press.
Bass, B. M., & Steidlmeier, P. (1999). Ethics, character, and authentic transformational leadership behavior. The Leadership Quarterly, 10(2), 181–217. http://doi.org/10.1016/S1048-9843(99)00016-8
Sosik, J. J., Lee, D., & Bouquillon, E. A. (2005). Context and Mentoring: Examining Formal and Informal Relationships in High Tech Firms and K-12 Schools. Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, 12(2), 94–108. http://doi.org/10.1177/107179190501200208
Wright, N. T. (2012). After You Believe: Why Christian Character Matters. New York, NY: HarperOne.