There has been a fundamental shift in how Kingdom leaders lead. This change came at Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came to all believers, not just God’s chosen leaders.
In the Old Testament paradigm, God’s anointing and His Spirit rested upon specific leaders enabling them to know God’s will and communicate it to His people. In Moses’ recounting of God giving Israel the Law on Mt. Sinai, he illustrates this, “At that time I stood between the LORD and you to declare to you the word of the LORD, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain)… Deuteronomy 5:5 NIV God spoke to Moses and he delivered God’s message to the people.
But after the Holy Spirit came upon all believers in the New Testament we now have a different leadership paradigm. Yes, Kingdom leaders are still God’s anointed for their responsibilities. But these leaders are now leading God’s people who themselves have His Spirit within them. We are leading fellow members of God’s family, His children, who also have God living within them. “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” Romans 8:15-16 NIV
Thus, when leading others – our leadership team or our ‘flock’ that we shepherd – Kingdom leaders today must realize that the Spirit can also speak directly to those we lead. In our New Testament paradigm we don’t have the opportunity to say, “God told me that…” and assume that those we lead will automatically accept it as God’s will. Because they too have direct access to the Lord’s voice, we should listen carefully for confirmation from those we lead, especially the spiritually mature.
It may well be God’s direction was known by the leader, but if it is, we can assume it will be confirmed by the Spirit within many of those we lead. I’m not suggesting that decisions should be 100% consensus (this can be tyranny by the minority), but a wise leader will listen to the voices from those led, discerning what the Spirit is saying through them. Should there be a lack of agreement, wisdom and prudence would suggest to wait and rethink the direction, seeking more clarity.
Remember, “It is not good to have zeal without knowledge, nor to be hasty and miss the way.” Proverbs 19:2 NIV 1984