Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Choosing a leader

Apostles replace Judas
TODAY'S SPECIAL: Acts 1:12-26

TO CHEW ON: "'Therefore, of these men who have accompanied us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, beginning from the baptism of John to that day when He was taken up from us, one of these must become a witness with us of His resurrection.'" Acts 1:21-22

Appointing leaders is a weighty and important task. It's interesting to note all the steps these early Apostles went through to replace Judas Iscariot.
  • Their idea to do this came from Scripture. They quote words from Psalm 69:25 and 109:8 as grounds for replacing Judas.
  • They chose two from a group of Jesus' followers who had been with Him from baptism to ascension.
  • They prayed that God's will would be accomplished.
  • They cast lots between the two. A note in my Bible explains what we might think of as resorting to chance or gambling:
"Casting lots was a provision of the law (Leviticus 16:8). It may be significant that following the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost there is no more mention of the practice. Notice also that on this occasion the disciples first selected the two men they judged most worthy to fill the vacancy. The final decision was left to the Lord as they prayed" Gary Kinnaman, notes on Acts in the New Spirit-Filled Life Bible, p. 1490.

Casting lots is rarely done to make decisions about leadership in our day. But the other three: looking for scriptural direction, employing good judgment, and prayer are all things we can do as we seek to fill ministry and leadership vacancies.

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for the principles of selecting leaders demonstrated in this story. I pray for the leadership team in my church who are currently grappling with just this. Please equip them in every department to make wise decisions. Amen.

MORE: Feast of St. Matthias

Today is the Feast of St. Matthias, the Apostle chosen in our reading.

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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