Custom «Old Testament Leadership Principles» Essay Paper Sample

Old Testament Leadership Principles

Key Verse: Gen. 14: 21-22, ‘the king of Sodom said to Abram, ‘give me the people and keep the goods for yourself’. But Abram said to the king of Sodom, ‘I have raised my hand to the lord, god most high, creator of heaven and earth, and have taken oath of that, I will take nothing belonging to you, not even a thread or a throng  of sandal so that you will never be able to say, ‘I made Abram rich’ I will accept nothing but what my men have eaten and the share that belongs to the men who went with me to ……let them have their share.’

Explanation/Illustration of the Principle

Sometimes leaders face tough times in their attempt to provide incredible leadership. Despite of the fact that situations might go out of control, great leaders must always stand by and for his subjects without compromise.As illustrated in the verse above, a leader should not sacrifice his subjects for his personal gains; a great leader should always be guided by the biblical doctrine/ teachings and be able to uphold the morals of the teaching. It also shows a scenario where a good leader should be able to advocate for the rights of his servants or the subjects and ensure that justice is done where necessary. To be able to undertake this, a leader must posses the qualities of being selfless, ethically moral and recognizes human dignity.

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Principle: great leaders are chosen by god and neither by themselves nor their tribes

Key verse: Deuteronomy: 1:9-13, ‘you are too heavy a burden for me to carry alone. The lord your god has increased your numbers so that today you are as many as the stars in the sky. May lord the god of your fathers increase you a thousand times and bless you as he has promised. But how can I bear your problems and your burdens and your disputes all by myself? Choose some wise, understanding and respected men from each of your tribes, and I will set them over you’

Explanation/illustration of the Principle

This verse gives us the morals of authority especially in governance over your people. According to the biblical teachings, a great leader is that which is chosen by God. Leaders are charged with the responsibility to judge others and therefore need to listen to people sentiments and be able to bear their greatest burdens and problems. A leader is supposed to listen to the dispute between his/her subjects and be able to judge fairly. A leader must not show partiality in judging others and should be able to hear from both the small and great alike without any fear of contradiction from any man since judgment belongs to the lord God. In this case the quality of a leader entails being responsible, integrity and accountability.

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Principle: A great leader must be strong, be able to face challenges and obeys God’s command

Key verse: Joshua: 1:6-9 and 23:6-10, the lord said to Joshua, ‘be strong and courageous because you will lead this people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. Be strong and be very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you…….do not let this book of the law depart from your mouth; mediate on it day and night….’

Explanation/illustration of the Principle

Old Testament teaches us that leaders must obey the commands of leaders greater than themselves. A great leader must be able to make fast decisions and must always lead from the front and not behind. Leaders must also be guided by the teachings of the bible and the Law of Moses whenever they take up the responsibility of leading others. Leaders must always rise up and take the responsibility when they are ordered to do so. Leaders on the other side must also be strong and courageous whenever they perform their duties without being terrified by others or what others do. They must be able to confront the situation as it appears without any fear.

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Principle: leaders must be able to fight for themselves and others as well

Key verse: Judges 1:3, ‘then the men of Judah said to the Simeonites their brothers, ‘come up with us into the territory allotted to us, to fight against the Canaanites, we in turn will go with you into yours.


The moral of this scripture in terms of biblical leadership and its principles, it depicts the qualities of a good leader as that who must be able to be a brother keeper, a leader is one who is able to stand up for his/her people in the times of turmoil and confront those who stage up the war to its subjects. Leaders must also do whatever it takes to defend the rights of his subjects and their properties against illegal alienation; and must also stage up to guard its subjects against any attack by the feuding societies or communities or any form of coercion by the harsh rulers. Great leaders suffer on behalf of others and relentlessly fight for the people that he/she leads; and is defined by qualities such as upholding the responsibility of others. Leaders also acknowledge any form of assistance allotted to them by others and if necessary reciprocate at the hour of need.

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Principle: Great leaders must be able to stand with others in times of temptations and hardship

Key verse: Ruth, 1:16, but Ruth replied, ‘don t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your god my god. May the lord deal with me be it ever so severely, if anything but death separates you from me.


Regardless of how situations may sometimes fail to favor our needs, we must always stand with the ones we love and not relent to any temptation that works to separate us. Great leaders are those who are self determined to pursue what they set forth and stand to support others without any benevolence act. Leadership principle is guided by pure sense of altruism. They must have the drive to assist others even from the little things that the do and comfort those who are in problem by giving them pieces of advice and word of encouragement whenever they need. A leader must always listen to others’ ambition and help them achieve the ambitions to the best of their reach. To uphold this principle one must be kind to others

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1 Samuel

Principle:  leaders must sacrifice on behalf of others

Key verse: 1 Samuel, 17:32, 34, David said to soul, ‘let no one lose life on account of this philistine; your servant will go and fight him’.

Leadership is confronted with various situations, sometimes those that require one to rise up and defend the subjects. For a leader to stand up for the challenge, he needs to sacrifice him/herself to the circumstances. Leaders must be selfless, determined and brave in order to overcome various situations. Good leaders must not despise other human beings however how small they may be. It is important that god’s work can defy all obstacles and odds and sanctify leadership to the insignificant people in the society, those who are ready to sacrifice for their fellow human beings. Leaders need to abide by the bible teachings and lead through utmost dignity and they would be able to overcome all odds.

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2 Samuel

Principle: great leaders must conquer

Key verse: 2 Samuel, 5:2 ‘you shall shepherd my people Israel and you must become their ruler’.


Great leaders are defined by their abilities to conquer what defeated others from conquering; they must be able to portray the standards of leadership that was not displayed before by the previous leaders. For example, in the scripture, David is described as a young man who arose to be a great leader of the Israelites and was able conquer Jerusalem, became the king over Israel and defeated the philistines. This defines true leadership principles that require to effectively conquering territory under your jurisdiction and defies all odds and any form of impediment.

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Principle: leaders who aspire to be great must be guided by the lord’s wisdom in their judgment and in conquering the world values

Key verse: 1 Kings, 3:27, then the king gave his ruling, ‘give the living baby to the first woman. Do not kill him; she is his mother’.

Illustration of the principle

Leaders are those who are guided by wisdom according to the biblical principles and teachings. Due to the fact that leaders are confronted by various situations in their reign as leaders, they are supposed to make wise decisions regarding their judgment. Leaders must always work to unite people and not to separate them. They should be able to bring peace whenever there is a war. They should always act in the best ways to mediate and build peace whenever there are conflicting ideas. It is also appropriate for the kings or leaders to ask for wisdom from the lord whenever they are confronted with situations beyond their scope.

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