GOD'S CHOSEN LEADERS
Moses Ordains Joshua
Leadership is dependent upon followers to lead. Hopefully, they carry out the plan God has developed for their care. Wise leaders embrace the temporal reality of leading, and they prepare the ministry for the future. Because the assignment is fleeting, developing others for leadership is an essential responsibility of a leader.
This pattern of separating and repeating leadership began not long after the exodus from Egypt. Moses, exhaustively, led a group of millions literally by himself. During a visitation, Jethro, Moses’ father-in-law, inquired, “What is this thing you’re doing for the people? Why are you alone sitting as judge, while all the people stand around you from morning until evening?” (Ex. 18:14).
Moses gave an incoherent response. Jethro, retorted “What you’re doing is not good…You will certainly wear out both yourself and these people who are with you, because the task is too heavy for you. You can’t do it alone” (Ex. 18:17–18).
Jethro reinvigorated Moses to select renowned, reputable, godly men who could be molded to God’s. Creating a support system designed to lessen tension immediately from Moses but also to sustain the fledgling nation for the duration. Moses listened to Jethro, leaders emerged, his stress lessened and his father-in-law went home.
Moses right hand man was Joshua.
According to the biblical book named after him, Joshua was the personally appointed successor to Moses (Deuteronomy 31:1–8; 34:9) and a charismatic warrior who led Israel in the conquest of Canaan after the Exodus from Egypt.
Joshua is first mentioned in the Scripture when Moses commanded him to lead the Israelite army in battle against the Amalekites (Ex. 17:8–16). After a solid defeat, Moses purposely began the development of Joshua as a leader fro Israel.
Joshua’s development by Moses continued when:
· Moses brought Joshua up the mountain to receive the Ten Commandments from God (Ex. 24:13).
· Joshua observed Moses’ righteous indignation when Moses smashed the two tablets (Ex. 32:17-19), and
· Joshua was witness to the holy communion Moses shared with the Lord as he guarded the tent of meeting (Ex. 33:11).
Through all these critical moments in the life of God’s people, Joshua was there with Moses. Moses helped ensure the following generation would love and fear God. He served his people by pouring his life into another. And immediately after Moses’ death, Joshua was ready to lead Israel.
Moses’ comportment is a model for today’s leadership styles. We can see the priority he placed on the future by how he empowered younger leaders like Joshua. Basically, quality leaders are accountable for imminent leadership.
However, Joshua, was not able to find a successor.
God had to set up a litany of leaders found in the Book of Judges. After Joshua’s death, Israel drifted from the Lord and lived in chaos:
“Joshua son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of 110…. That whole generation was also gathered to their ancestors. After them another generation rose up who did not know the Lord or the works He had done for Israel” (Judges 2:8, 10).
But in spite of Joshua’s success we begin to detect problems in the nation he will leave behind. Late in Joshua’s life we read: “The Lord told him, ‘You are very old, and a great deal of land remains to be conquered” (Josh 13:1).
After exhorting the people to take possession of the land, we see Joshua ask the people a few chapters later, “How long are you going to wait before taking possession of the remaining land the Lord, the God of your ancestors, has given to you?” (Josh 18:3). The people seem reluctant, preferring instead to settle for the land already taken under Joshua. But now, upon Joshua’s death, we see the crucial difference between the book of Joshua and the book of Judges. Notice a careful comparison of the first verse of each of these two books:
(Joshua 1:1) After Moses the LORD’s servant died, the LORD said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ assistant…
(Judges 1:1) After Joshua died, the Israelites asked the LORD, “Who should lead the invasion against the Canaanites and launch the attack?”
Both books begin with the death of a major leader. But in the first case, both God and Moses have arranged for a successor; in the latter case there is no one to step forward to lead the people. Instead, the Israelites approach the Lord to ask him who should lead. God responds, not with an individual, but with a tribe: “The men of Judah should take the lead” (Josh 1:2).
But we must remember that god calls many to arms. Alas, few answer the call. Matthew 22:14 notes
Jeremiah 9:23,24 "Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast about this: that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight," declares the Lord.
Psalms 145:18 "The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth."
Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you."
Psalm 111:4 He has caused his wonders to be remembered; the LORD is gracious and compassionate.
Micah 6:8 8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?
1 Tim 3:15 1This is a true saying, if a man desires the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. 2A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
Here are 10 Characteristics of God Leadership: • Seeks God’s will before his or her own… • Humble… • Servant… • Walks by faith… • Patient… • Considers the interest of others better than his or herself… • Submits to authority… • Teachable…seeks wisdom from others… • Believes the impossible can happen… • Empowers others to do what he or she could do…
Romans 10:14…and how shall they hear without a preacher? 15 And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
Bishop George L. Lockhart, Ed. D Pastor
The Church of the Living God, the Pillar and Ground of the Truth, Inc. Lake Park Mission
Bishop Meharry H. Lewis, PhD, Chief Overseer Tuskegee, AL
Bishop Luke D. Lewis, District Bishop Riviera Beach, FL
Please visit our General Church website at: www.clgpgt.org