And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
One of the prophecies of Christ was that He would be a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel. That fact that it says that Christ would rule His people can often turn off the modern-day snowflake softy. People in our day don't seem to like strong leadership. In fact, when you find a pastor who is a strong leader, people will often call him a dictator. However, if this is the case, is God a dictator because He will rule His people? To rule someone means they have established strict regulations and principles by which those who follow this leader are to obey. To rule means to direct, control, and mandate certain things of followers. These definitions are the keywords modern-day backsliders use to describe a preacher they call a dictator. However, they won’t call God a dictator who does the same thing.
My friend, just because someone is a strong leader does not mean they are a dictator. Strong leadership will often be called a dictator by the rebel who wants no authority over them. Just because someone leads as a leader ought to lead does not mean they are a dictator. God is not a dictator, but He does demand of His children to conduct their lives according to His standards, and He has every right to do this. However, God has placed man as His tool to lead people, which means these men who are leaders are to lead in the same way that God would lead. The lack of strong leadership is one of the greatest things hurting our churches today. Strong leaders will exhibit three characteristics.
First, strong leaders are decisive. If a leader is not making decisions, he is not leading. One of the difficulties as a leader is to make decisions that you know will cause some to get upset, but that is why you are to lead. If you are not decisive in what you do, then the follower will make a decision that is against God’s order of leadership. Whether you are a parent, business leader, or pastor, you must be decisive if you are to lead people successfully.
Second, strong leaders are strong. You cannot be weak and lead people. People will run over you if you allow them to. The reason you must be strong as a leader is because your position demands you to be strong. It was God who told Joshua to be strong. Was God making Joshua a dictator because He wanted him to be strong? No, God wanted Joshua to understand the demand of being a leader means you must be strong if you are to lead people. Leadership carries power, and you must use that power to help your people become what God wants them to be. Never use your power to abuse people, but you cannot be afraid of people calling you a dictator because you lead strongly. Followers desire someone strong to lead them, and strong leaders often build the greatest works.
Third, strong leaders must direct what they lead. You cannot lead if you are not pointing people where to go and what they are to do. There is no such thing as a good leader that is passive. Strong leaders must direct and point out what people are to do, and without strong leadership that directs people what to do, people will do their own thing to their destruction and to the destruction of the work that needs to be accomplished. Just because someone says you are being a dictator by directing people should not bother you because what we do for Christ is necessary to reach the lost.