Summary: Paul sets before us a worthy goal-which most of us will work on for a lifetime
Now, we will discuss the qualities of spiritual leadership in 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1. Don’t be discouraged as you work through this list. No one meets these qualifications 100%! We’re not looking for perfection, but rather solid evidence of growth in each area.
The Leader’s Temperament
1. Temperate 1 Timothy 3:2
The Greek word for temperate originally meant "wineless." When Paul uses the word, he means something like "even-tempered," "clear-headed," or
"balanced." It refers to a man who has nothing that muddies or muddles his senses. In that sense it certainly touches the use of alcohol, but
also goes far beyond it. A temperate person is "cool, calm and collected," especially in a moment of crisis. He’s not credulous, not easily deceived, not carried away by every wind of doctrine (Ephesians
4:14). He’s old enough and experienced enough not to be rattled under pressure. You discover this quality in a person’s life as you watch them
in a crisis situation. A temperate man doesn’t fall apart when his world falls apart. He doesn’t lose his emotional equilibrium when the rug is suddenly pulled out from under him.
The Greek word describes a person who has a "safe mind." The NIV translates the Greek with two different English words-"Self-controlled"
and "sensible." Both describe a certain pattern of thinking, a way of approaching the problems of life. The sensible person is balanced, reasonable and discerning-not given to extremes. He is experienced enough to keep his balance when life throws him a curve ball. The word also implies a sober and serious attitude. He’s not a goof or a light-weight
flake. He’s a great man to have around when a tough decision needs to be made because he doesn’t jump to conclusions or act solely on the basis of
his emotions. Again, this quality comes from long experience with life. Few young men or women will have this quality in abundance, but it is often seen in older people.
3. Disciplined Titus 1:8
The word describes a person who has "his strength under control." He eats, but he is not a glutton. He sleeps, but he does not sleep forever. He loves, but he does not love indiscriminately. He loves a bargain, but he knows how to say no. He has a credit card, but he knows when not to use it. He gets angry, but he never "loses his cool." He is strong physically, but he doesn’t intimidate others.
Proverbs 25:28 warns of what happens when this quality is not present: "Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control." Such a man is easy prey to sexual temptation, financial temptation, uncontrolled anger, arrogance, envy, sloth and a critical spirit.
Seneca said, "Most powerful is he who has himself in his own control." Many gifted men and women fail at precisely this point. Great promise is squandered by a failure of self-discipline. This is the difference
between Mike Ditka and Tom Landry.