Leadership in Christian Perspective brings the best of leadership theory and research together with biblical reflection and examples of leadership in action. Combining expertise in leadership studies and biblical studies, Justin Irving and Mark Strauss explore how leadership models have moved from autocratic and paternalistic leader-centered models toward an increased focus on followers. They show how contemporary theories such as transformational leadership, authentic leadership, and servant leadership take an important step toward prioritizing and empowering followers who work with leaders to accomplish organizational goals.
Organized around “nine empowering practices,” this practical guide is accessible to all Christian students of leadership. It integrates solid research in leadership studies with biblical and theological reflection on the leadership ideas that are most compatible with Christian faith, making it an important resource for professors and students in leadership and pastoral theology courses, pastors and church leaders, and Christian business leaders.
“The purpose of distinct leadership gifts (prophet, evangelist, pastor, teacher) is for equipping and edification. Equipping means providing those you lead with the resources necessary to be successful. Edification means that as a result of this equipping, the church as a whole thrives and reaches its potential. The ultimate goal is threefold: ‘unity in the faith,’ ‘knowledge of the Son of God,’ and spiritual maturity—‘attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.’” (Page 104)
“Leaders who truly want to serve and empower followers are those who take time to understand themselves. Such honest self-reflection and evaluation promote a pathway for leaders to become authentic and purposeful, surfacing potential blind spots and refocusing their leadership practice in a manner that brings health rather than dysfunction to the individuals and communities they lead and serve.” (Page 36)
“Leaders who value people look beyond external differences of gender, ethnicity, and cultural heritage, valuing people for their inherent worth as human beings created in the image of God.” (Page 82)
“At its core, emotional intelligence is about recognizing emotion and then responding to emotion in ways that limit its negative effects and maximize its positive effects.” (Page 44)
“He is rather reminding them that to serve others effectively, leaders must first take care of themselves. Unless you maintain your own spiritual, physical, and emotional health, you will be unable to serve others effectively. Self-care and honest self-evaluation are essential for success in leadership.” (Page 37)
In Leadership in Christian Perspective, Irving and Strauss intentionally set out on a daunting task to deliver a fully integrated and biblically rooted perspective on Christian leadership. They are thorough and effective in their examination of leadership constructs and carefully highlight the biblical case for each of them. The genius of their work is found in the integration of models and what then emerges. Empowerment becomes the thread that connects them all. Jesus Christ remains the greatest leadership role model, and without question their mission for this work is accomplished. I highly recommend this book to all Christian leaders!
—Tami Heim, president and CEO, Christian Leadership Alliance
Justin Irving and Mark Strauss have provided a solid academic textbook on leadership, based on principles that have stood the test of time and on relevant biblical truths. Their combined expertise has produced a book that will inform those wanting a clear and comprehensive overview of Christian leadership.
—Marshall Shelley, director of the Doctor of Ministry program, Denver Seminary; contributing editor to CTPastors.com
In this age, leaders strive to lead well but not always biblically. This world tells us to seek our own, and yet we know this only leads to ill-gotten gains. Irving and Strauss deliver a book that is robust from a biblical and scholarly perspective, and the message resonates—to seek not our own but seek to serve. Only when we strive to be servant leaders can we truly find the ultimate meaning in our lives and make people our priority. And while many believe this, it is not always easy to live it out in our daily leadership. Readers will find the solace of serving in this book, they will see themselves and find purpose beyond who they are.
—Kathleen Patterson, director, Doctorate of Strategic Leadership Program, School of Business and Leadership, Regent University
In the Logos edition, this volume is enhanced by amazing functionality. Important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.
Justin A. Irving (PhD, Regent University) is professor of ministry leadership and director of the DMin Program at Bethel Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota. He has authored numerous journal articles and has contributed to leadership books, including Servant Leadership: Developments in Theory and Research and Practicing Servant Leadership: Developments in Implementation.
Mark L. Strauss (PhD, University of Aberdeen) has a passion for teaching the Bible and has taught principles for reading and applying the Bible to students in undergraduate, graduate, and church settings. He is University Professor of New Testament at Bethel Seminary San Diego and the author of several books, including How to Read the Bible in Changing Times: Understanding and Applying God’s Word Today and Four Portraits, One Jesus: An Introduction to Jesus and the Gospels.