Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you – Hebrews 13:17 ESV.
God has given church leaders a responsibility in the body of Christ to oversee Jesus’ flock. They are watchmen whose charge is to protect the flock whether it be from false doctrine, wolves in sheep’s clothing or to help point them in the right direction. Church leaders are wonderful assets to the body of Christ. God has given them the authority in Christ to rebuke, exhort, teach, encourage and lead the body of Christ in many areas.
Hebrews 13:17 reminds us that our leaders will have to give an account. Do we want them to have to bring to the Lord in prayer our selfish neediness, our unwilling submission, constant criticisms, and questions? Or do we want them to go to the Lord in great thanksgiving out of the joy of being our leaders? I want those in authority over me to be able to say, “Oh, Lord, thank you for the gift of Sanele! What a great joy it is to lead her,” rather than “Oh, Lord, help me with this person. She’s so difficult.”
It is true to say that not all church leaders are truly from God and it is easy to notice the difference. I believe in context Hebrews 13:17 tells us to submit to the words of God which the leader speaks. This means that a true leader will lead you only through and by the word of God, anything other than that is dictatorship and not leadership. If you have been blessed with a true leader, one truly from God, show your gratitude to God by just being a delight to lead. People are misled out there and it is truly a rare blessing to get a true leader nowadays, so be grateful and embrace leadership.
A true leader will lead you only through and by the word of God, anything other than that is dictatorship and not leadership