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Effective church leadership is so important.  It can be the difference between a thriving church and one that slowly fades away.  When we see a strong leader, we may wonder what makes them so effective.  The first step to effective church leadership is learning to hear the voice of God.  You can read about hearing the voice of God in the article, “Christian Leadership Concepts: Which is Best?

Not Just One
In addition to hearing and following the voice of God, effective church leadership is actually not about having one great leader who can do it all.  It’s about having several leaders who are gifted in different areas.  Ephesians 4:7-11 gives us a fivefold leadership model that we feel strongly is the model to create effective church leadership.

The Fivefold Model
In Ephesians 4:7-11 Paul talks about the fivefold approach to ministry.

But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.  Therefore it says, ‘When he ascended on high he led a host of captives, and he gave gifts to men.’ (In saying, ‘He ascended,’ what does it mean but that he had also descended into the lower regions, the earth?  He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.)  And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers,” – Eph 4:7-11 (ESV)

In these verses, we find one of three lists of gifts found in the New Testament, and interestingly, this is the only list that comes with a promise attached to the end.  We are told that when we create a ministry that should include each of the following:

  • Apostle
  • Evangelist
  • Teacher
  • Pastor
  • Prophet

With these five gifts we will come to maturity. That is what effective church leadership is.  It means coming to maturity so that we can make our church thrive.  It can also, incidentally, be used in Christian entrepreneurship to make a business thrive.

Why Five?
How this works is by allowing God to speak to all five individuals and allowing all five individuals the ability to be heard, listened to, considered and included in decisions. Then the five leaders act on the combined approach.  Each of the five members have different heart motivations.

  • The pastor’s heart is to care for people
  • The apostle sees the whole picture
  • The evangelist is concerned with creating excitement
  • The teacher wants to lay out the truth in an organized and clear way
  • And the prophet is concerned with the inspirational creative flow by questioning if what you are doing is something people are interested in.

By using this fivefold leadership model, we end up with a well balanced church (or business) that is primed to succeed.  Without the fivefold model, the church ends up being off kilter.  It is strong in one or two areas and weak in the rest.  That is one of the struggles many churches face when they have one pastor who they expect to lead in all areas.

If you would like to learn to become a more effective church leader, please contact us in the form to the right.