Leadership by Power and Control?
Worldly leadership emphasizes power and control. God does not think like that. Just the opposite – God tells us that our ways are not His ways, and we need to make His ways our ways (Isaiah 55:8)! In 1 Corinthians 1:26-29, Paul writes that God chose “foolish,” “weak,” and “low” things that no person should glory in His Presence. Consider David’s statement in Psalm 51:17, “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” Isaiah 57:15 states, “For thus says the One who is high and lifted up, who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy: ‘I dwell in the high and holy place, and also with him who is of a contrite and lowly spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly, and to revive the heart of the contrite.’”
It should not surprise us that God became the Son of a carpenter’s wife, and lived a relatively ordinary life (for the most part). He truly humbled Himself (Philippians 2:7-8). He rebuked His disciples for having the attitude of a world that desired power above all (Mark 10:35-45) concluding that, “the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.” The image of Jesus as a lamb that has been slain comes from the first Passover in Exodus 12:1-13. John uses this image repeatedly in the book of Revelation. It is most striking, however, when he draws upon it in Revelation 7:17 to highlight the fact that Jesus is our Shepherd and fulfilled prophecy in Isaiah 49:9-10. Only God could make a Lamb the Shepherd! This is the leadership that describes who God is—the kind we must practice as His people.