When Jesus ascended into heaven, he left his disciples with a command: to go and make disciples (Mt. 28:19). This directive to his disciples, then and through the rest of time, was to influence others into a relationship with him; in other words, it was a calling to lead in this world. Through the many definitions of leadership (Northouse 2013), knowingly or not, leadership is a reflection of the Creator. Because of this, the work leaders put their hands to is equally a reflection of the Creator, which makes a biblical understanding of work a highly necessary part of a leader’s perspective.
Throughout Christ’s teachings, as well as Paul’s letters, there is a consistent call for Christ’s disciples to be moral individuals who uphold a higher sense of living in accordance to the way Christ lived. Through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and as a reflection of Christ, a disciple of Christ under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit should approach work with an ethical perspective (Witherington, 2011). This ethical perspective serves as the foundation for leadership theory, primarily servant leadership, authentic leadership, and transformational leadership to name a few (Northouse, 2013).
For Christ followers, work should not merely live out of the old creation and its applicable rules, it should be a medium for leading others into relationship with Christ and an eternal existence in the Kingdom (Witherington, 2011). The way leadership is exercised with an eternal perspective is a vital part of working with a biblical understanding.
Northouse, P. G. (2013). Leadership: theory and practice (6th ed). Thousand Oaks: SAGE.
Witherington III, B. (2011). Work: A Kingdom Perspective on Labor. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing.