I Timothy 3:1-7
Key Verse: 6– "Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil."
Key Words: Not a novice
Spiritual maturity is an absolute to good leadership. A novice or new convert should never be pushed into leadership. Just as a plant needs time to develop a good root system so it can bear fruit, so does a young convert. So Paul warns us that those in leadership should not be a novice.
In verse 6 Paul also tells us why we should not thrust a novice into the position of a leader “lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.” A new convert does not yet possess the spiritual stability essential to leading people wisely.
The story of the church and its mission is filled with examples of failed leaders who were appointed to lead. A novice suddenly placed in authority over others faces the danger of an inflated ego. Instead, the promising convert should be given a wider opportunity to serve under wise leadership and develop both their natural and spiritual gifts. He should not be advanced too fast, lest he become puffed up; neither should he be repressed, lest he become discouraged.
Speaking of experienced leadership, I read the following in regard to Winston Churchill.
“During World War II, Winston Churchill was forced to make a painful choice. The British secret service had broken the Nazi code and informed Churchill that the Germans were going to bomb Coventry. He had two alternatives: (1) evacuate the citizens and save hundreds of lives at the expense of indicating to the Germans that the code was broken; or (2) take no action, which would kill hundreds but keep the information from flowing and possibly save many more lives. Churchill had to choose and followed the second course.”
What to do:
✞ Remember, maturity is needed in leadership in order that the tough decisions be the right decisions.
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