2 Samuel 23:3
“The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.”
The lessons I am about to give you didn’t come from a young man who thinks he knows how to lead, but they are lessons given from an old man who experienced life and understood many of the situations a leader would face. These lessons are not coming from an inexperienced leader; instead, they are coming from an old leader who is arguably one of the greatest leaders of all time. These lessons are coming from King David who, from a young man, learned many invaluable lessons on leadership, and as he was handing over the throne to Solomon, he gave his final leadership lessons to the young king so that he could continue to lead Israel in the proper direction. Let me show you the leadership lessons David taught.
First, a leader must rule. David Said, “He that ruleth over men…” To rule means to make decisions, set regulations, have requirements, and give direction. A leader cannot be passive in what they do. Whether you lead a home, your children, a church, or a business, leaders must make black and white decisions so that those who follow have a clear direction of what is expected. Leaders cannot be indecisive; rather, they must make scriptural decisions that will be hard and sometimes unpopular, but that is what makes them a leader.
Second, a leader must be just. To be “just” means that what you do for one, you must do for all. Poor leaders base decisions on feelings and how it benefits those they like, but a just and great leader bases decisions on past decisions, and on rules and regulations.
Third, a leader must lead in righteousness. David said that a leader rules “in the fear of God.” Righteousness is a result of fearing God. Leaders cannot have separate rules for themselves and followers; instead, a ruler must live by the same rules by which they expect their followers to obey. You cannot be a good leader and break the rules that you expect others to follow.
Fourth, a leader must lead by accountability. Ruling in the “fear of God” is not just living a righteous life, but it is realizing that you must answer to God for every decision you make and every action you perform. The leader who fears God bases every decision on what God wants them to do and not on how it benefits them or their family. If you are a leader, you will answer to God for every decision you made and how you directed those who followed you.
Fifth, a leader must be able to refresh those whom they lead. David said that the ruler “shall be as the light of the morning.” In other words, part of the responsibility of leading is to reinvigorate and energize those who you lead. Leadership cannot be up and down emotionally; rather, great leadership is on topside all the time. Followers don’t need an emotional leader who they don’t know what mood they will be in each day, but they need a leader who refreshes them because they are always on topside.
Sixth, a leader must be able to give vision and hope. David talked about the leader being as the “light of the morning” and as the “tender grass springing out of the earth.” The godly leader always gives hope to those who have no hope by giving them a vision to see what they cannot see for their life. Your followers will love you if you give them hope that God can do something through them.