"It seems that the way in which the leadership in a church or other Christian organization behaves and treats others reflects their view of God and of the gospel.
If the leadership is behaving in a way that is not consistent with the God of the Bible, then are they really worshiping the one true God?
If the leadership is behaving in a way that is inconsistent with the gospel of Jesus Christ, then are they really preaching the true gospel?
On the one hand, the leadership can view God as someone who tolerates sin. In that case, they do not take sin seriously and do not take measures to bring discipline. They fail to realize that according to the Bible, those who live in sin will not be accepted by God and, thus, will enter the kingdom of God (Rev. 21:8; 22:15; 1 Cor. 6:9-10).
On the other hand, the leadership can view God as someone who is rather on the unforgiving, unmerciful side and nearly impossible to please. This view will most likely lead to sheep abuse. Furthermore, even God 'does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities' (Ps. 103:10 NIV), when we walk with Him with Him in contrition.
Leadership in this category need to be reminded that God is love. Love is patient and kind. It's not easily angered. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres (1 Cor. 13). Leadership that is not behaving in a manner consistent with this description is not representing God."
I agree with her, and she said it well. I would add that the people in any church or Christian organization tend to reflect the views of the leadership, which shapes the culture within that group. So it can have a beneficial effect or a damaging one.
Author's note: If you enjoyed this post, you may also like the other posts in this blog available through the Home page, such as A Tale of Two Kings, The Servant of the Lord, The Shepherding Role of Elders, Success in God's Eyes, Accountable, correctable, and teachable, A Personality Profile of the Apostle Paul, Persecuted or Popular?, The Nature of False Prophets, Are We Really Little Gods?, Testing the Spirits of False Prophets, and Having a Servant's Heart. You may also access my complete blog directory at "Writing for the Master."
Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International. He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission. www.dmiworld.org.