Summary: In God Choosing Nehemiah and leading Nehemiah to choose Hanani and Hananiah we see a portrait of what a church leader should look like.
Portrait Of A Church Leader
Intro: A small-town prosecuting attorney called his first witness
to the stand in a trial -- a grand-motherly, elderly woman.
He approached her and asked, "Mrs. Jones, do you know me?"
She responded, "Why, yes, I do know you, Mr. Williams. I’ve
known you since you were a young boy. And frankly, you’ve been a big disappointment to me. You lie, you cheat on your wife, you manipulate people and talk about them behind their backs. You think you’re a rising big shot when you haven’t the brains to realize you will never amount to anything more than a
two-bit paper pusher. Yes, I know you."
The lawyer was stunned. Not knowing what else to do, he
pointed across the room and asked, "Mrs. Williams, do you know the defense attorney?"
She replied, "Why, yes I do. I’ve known Mr. Bradley since he
was a youngster, too. I used to baby-sit him for his parents. And
he, too, has been a real disappointment to me. He’s lazy,
bigoted, and he has a drinking problem. The man can’t build a normal relationship with anyone, and his law practice is one of the shoddiest in the entire state. Yes, I know him."
At this point, the judge rapped the courtroom to silence
and called both counselors to the bench.
In a very quiet voice, he said with menace, "If either of
you asks her if she knows me, you’ll be jailed for contempt!"
. Many times the people we think are great leaders are not what we think they are.
. We place people in areas of responsibility and leadership but we really don’t know who they are.
. Just what are the qualifications for leadership and specifically what are the qualifications for Christian leadership.
. Many times we appoint or elect leaders by the world’s standards and not God’s.
. I found an illustration that really highlights this concept.
. In my research for today’s sermon I ran across a fictitious letter that was written to Jesus about choosing leaders.
. Let me share this with you.
. Jesus, Son of Joseph
Woodcrafter Carpenter Shop
Thank you for submitting the resumes of the 12 men you have picked for managerial positions in your new organization.
All of them have now taken the battery of tests and we have run them through our computers. It is the staffs’ opinion that most of your nominees are lacking in background, educational and vocational aptitude for the type of enterprise you are undertaking.
They do not have the team concept. We would suggest that you continue your search for persons with experience and proven capability.
Simon Peter is emotionally unstable and given to fits of temper.
Andrew has no leadership skills at all.
The 2 brothers, James and John, place personal interest above company loyalty.
Thomas demonstrates a questioning attitude that would tend to undermine morale.
We feel that it is our duty to inform you that Matthew has been blacklisted by the Greater Jerusalem Better Business Bureau.
James the son of Alphaeus and Thaddaeus have radical leanings and registered high manic-depressive scores.
Only one of the candidates shows great potential. He is a man of ability and resourcefulness who meets people well and has a keen business mind.
He has contacts in high places and is highly motivated, ambitious and responsible. We recommend Judas Iscariot as your controller and right-hand man.
We wish you every success in your new venture.
Jordan Management Consultants
. It seems that the twelve that Jesus chose would have a hard time qualifying for leadership positions in society wouldn’t they?
. That’s because the world looks at leaders differently than the church should look at leaders.
. Our scripture this morning is out of Nehemiah chapter 7 as we work our way through this amazing book.
. Let me refresh your memory about what’s going on. Nehemiah has come back to Jerusalem and rebuilt the walls around the city. The last time we were in the book we saw that the walls had been completed and all that was left to do in this project was to place the doors and gates on their hinges and make them operable.
. 1After the wall was finished and I had set up the doors in the gates, the gatekeepers, singers, and Levites were appointed.
2I gave the responsibility of governing Jerusalem to my brother Hanani, along with Hananiah, the commander of the fortress, for he was a faithful man who feared God more than most.
. If you read on through the chapter you will see Nehemiah’s management style of getting everyone involved in doing the work but I want to focus this morning on the three men that were leaders in Jerusalem.