Summary: The Church has a leadership problem. It mirrors the world. Theologically, Christ is the Head. But not functionally. Until She gets back to organic Kingdom leadership principles, She will be largely ineffective in Her mission.
In the last post, we learned that current Christian preaching and practice focuses almost exclusively on the individual. But the gospel is more than that. It’s the creation of one new man. For the church to be effective, it must reverse the dominant cultural mindset and behave like one new man.
But if it’s going to do so, it must address and correct its problem with how it handles and executes leadership. Currently, it’s in a passionate love affair with the world’s top-down hierarchical leadership model that undermines everything the Church was created to be about. As Joseph Hellerman points out in When the Church Was a Family…
…the problem rests with both the number of leaders and the nature of leadership…the two principles God has given for leadership in His surrogate family are plurality leadership and servant leadership…these provide safeguards against functional, spiritual and relational disaster… (paraphrased)
There are no human heads
Christians concede that Christ is the Head of the Church, but only theoretically. He is also meant to be the Head practically or functionally. This means there’s no humans between us and Him on the authority ladder. What’s that you say? Weren’t there leaders in the early church? Aren’t there supposed to be pastors, elders, etc.? Why yes, but not in the way that you’ve become accustomed to where they’re stacked on top of each other in a hierarchical manner. That’s the world’s way of doing things, not the Kingdoms.
In a righteous Kingdom, there are no special classes of citizens. There’s the King and there are citizens. Every citizen has the same access and standing with the King as any other. A good King does not show favoritism, but makes Himself and His resources available to all. Christ is a good King.