Divine Empowerment of Leaders

Divine Empowerment of Leaders, Study of Luke(Page 21)

By Allen Quist 

Biblical Illustrations of Divine Empowerment

The Bible provides a number of illustrations of divine-empowerment of leadership. The following are examples from the lives of Peter, Paul and Priscilla demonstrating various aspects of Spirit-empowered leadership and its results in the lives of others.

Peter, a Divinely Empowered Leader

From the first of Acts, there was a change in Peter to a bold spokesperson for Christ. In Acts 2, his empowered speech explains the events of Pentecost to touch the hearts of the hearers and to turn many Jews to believers in Christ. This powerful speech was an example of Spirit-empowered clear communication. Peter pulled from Old Testament text and recontextualized it for the benefit of the hearers.

Peter’s next demonstration of a Spirit-led and empowered leader was in Acts 3:1-10 as he and John were on their way to the temple for prayer. As they passed a lame man by one of the entrances to the temple, the man asked for money. Peter got the man’s attention and told him, though they (Peter and John) had no money, they did have something they could give him. Then in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, they told him to rise and walk, and the man did. They gave the man the power of God flowing through them, the power in Christ to heal. When approached about how they did the healing, Peter said, “…why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?” Peter pointed the source of the power back to Christ. In this situation, Peter was an example of a Spirit-empowered leader expecting God’s power.

In Acts 4:8, Peter again gave a powerful Spirit-empowered speech to a group of Jewish leaders when, according to the text, Peter was “filled with the Holy Spirit” (Acts 4:8). Peter said to them:

“Rulers of the people and elders of Israel: If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well, let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’ Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4: 8-12).

Peter, consistent with the power of the Spirit in him, testified about Jesus in such a manner, the leaders were impressed. When the leaders told Peter and John to speak no more about Jesus, Peter and John told them with boldness, they had no choice but to speak about Christ (Acts 4:19). This is another example of a Spirit-empowered leader using clear communication for the benefit of the hearers.

Peter’s life continued to demonstrate the outpouring of the Spirit described in his recontextualization of Joel during Pentecost. Peter saw a series of visions foreseeing the preaching to the Gentiles and their conversions (Acts 10-11). He was open to the leading of the Holy Spirit in the confrontation with Ananias and Sapphira. The Spirit worked through Peter for healing (Acts 5:12-15; 9:33-34) and to raise Tabitha from the dead Next Page(9:36-41). Peter preached the Gospel to Jews (2:14-41), to religious authorities (5: 29-32), to Judeans (9:32-43), to Samaritans (8:14-25), and to Gentiles (10:34-48). This vision is an example of a Spirit-empowered leader expecting God’s power and having a Spirit-led concern for all people including the disenfranchised Gentiles.

Contact Allen with any questions or comments
Download full paper The Divine Empowerment of Leaders (pdf) includes works cited.
Scholarly Articles for Spirit Driven Leadership
Enduring Values for Leadership DevelopmentLeadership for the Next GenertationLeading with a Creative and Innovative DesignThe Pig Pen PrincipleDesigning for the UnknownStrategic Thinking – Seeing the Unexpected ComingModel for an Emerging World - Systemic Organizational DesignThe God-Equipped Magnificent ObsessionLeadership Succession from Matthew's GospelGod. Whose Very Name is JealousIce SkatingDivine Empowerment of LeadersRegency Leadership TheoryJesus' Divine DesignChristian Model of Foresight