Most high school syllabi reveal to students three types of leadership styles. The autocratic, democratic and laissez-faire leadership styles are the most prominent categories of leadership. The autocratic style is dictatorial, democratic leadership gives the decision making power directly to its people or indirectly through representatives. The laissez-faire leadership is hands-off with occasional checks from the leader. Which type of these does God subscribe to? In order to make an informed judgment on what God’s type of leadership may be, we would analyze biblical texts that embody God’s leadership.

Firm But Flexible

The words firm and flexible may sound contradictory but a good leader should be both. God is firm with things that are core to His holiness. Propositions like; “the wages of sin is death”, “Jesus Christ is the only way”, “love thy neighbor”, “God loves you” in God’s terms are non-negotiable. However, just as God is firm, He is flexible in other aspects. In 1Kings 20 it can be observed that God changes His mind on the fate of King Hezekiah. Hezekiah’s prayer changed God’s original pronouncement of death upon his life.

 Another instance is the story of the daughters of Zelophehad in Numbers 27. The Jewish law at the time only gave family inheritance to males but Zelophehad had no sons and it meant that there would be no inheritance to his family because it only consisted of women. The daughters of Zelophehad petitioned God through Moses for there to be an exception to the law. Consequently, the daughters of Zelophehad received their inheritance even though it wouldn’t have been possible in the past. A leader tracing God’s path would be open to the concerns of his followers pertaining to rules he has made.

The Attitude Of Service

Joh 13:14 KJV If I then, your Lord and Master, have washed your feet; ye also ought to wash one another’s feet.

When Jesus Christ who was God in human flesh walked the earth, He epitomized the idea of “servant leadership”. Jesus’ act of washing his disciples’ feet was a show of his humility even as the creator of the world. Often times the word ‘leader’ invokes the notion of one who is high, mighty and above his followers. Jesus showed us that leadership isn’t just about lording over people but its more about serving them and seeking their best interests while influencing them positively.

Luk 22:25-26 NET So Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those in authority over them are called ‘benefactors.’Not so with you; instead the one who is greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like the one who serves.

He Rewards The Faithful

One thing you would learn in a business management class is the importance of having an award system in your business organization because of its motivational effects. Rewards keep workers happy and fuels their ambition to succeed. God outlines a lot of promises for those who live according to His will and commandments. God is faithful to those who are faithful to Him and He sticks out for them. In Matthew 6:33 He promises that material possessions would be a bonus if you seek His kingdom. Successful leaders have motivated followers.

Leadership By Example

God leads by example. One of the reasons why Jesus came to the earth was to show us how to properly live life. Jesus Christ loved His neighbours, He was truthful, merciful, kind, humble and patient. All the virtues in the Bible God commands us to have, were exhibited by Jesus hear on earth. Jesus would not have had the right to require of us these virtues if he had failed to portray them himself. This shows us that if leaders require traits like diligence, attention to detail, punctuality etc from their workers, they ought to embody them.

In light of this article, would you categorize God’s leadership as democratic, autocratic, or laissez-faire? Do you think He subscribes to any of them at all