I wonder, do you know HIM?
In the past, I never really thought there needed to be a big distinction between a leader and a manager. I had always held to the idea that a manager could and/or should still lead. That was, until I started reading the book “Tribes” by Seth Godin. He lays out the difference between the two on page 14, where he says:
Managers manage by using the authority the factory gives them. You listen to your manager or you lose your job. A manager can’t make change because that’s not his job. His job is to complete tasks assigned to him by someone else in the factory.
Leaders, on the other hand, don’t care very much for organizational structure or the official blessing of whatever factory they work for. They use passion and ideas to lead people, as opposed to using threats and bureaucracy to manage them.
This tension may be hard for many to understand unless they are a leader stuck in a manager’s job or a manager stuck in a leader’s job. Both are equally important, which is why it is so critical to have the right person in the right role. If not, then they will only be frustrated and frustrating to those they work with.
So, here are my questions. Do you have a passion for something other than what you find yourself actually doing day in and day out? Do you find yourself fulfilled at work or wish you were doing something different? Do you see a pattern in the types of books you buy or in the subject matter of articles you read and do they line up with your current profession? What subject really makes you scoot to the edge of your seat with excitement when discussing it?
Whether we are willing to admit it of not, we all submit to authority one way or another. It may be a parent, a spouse, a boss at work, the local police officer or some government official for example. My question is do we truly appreciate or even understand authority?
One definition of authority from the Compact Oxford English Dictionary is:
• noun (pl. authorities) 1 the power or right to give orders and enforce obedience. 2 a person or organization having official power. 3 recognized knowledge or expertise. 4 an authoritative person or book.
— ORIGIN Old French autorite, from Latin auctor ‘originator’.
I am still moving slowly through the book of Matthew and seeing unanticipated examples of authority. Right now I am contemplating chapter 8 verses 28 through 34:
Jesus Heals Two Men with Demons
“28 And when he came to the other side, to the country of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met him, coming out of the tombs, so fierce that no one could pass that way. 29 And behold, they cried out, “What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?” 30 Now a herd of many pigs was feeding at some distance from them. 31 And the demons begged him, saying, “If you cast us out, send us away into the herd of pigs.” 32 And he said to them, “Go.” So they came out and went into the pigs, and behold, the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the sea and drowned in the waters. 33 The herdsmen fled, and going into the city they told everything, especially what had happened to the demon-possessed men. 34 And behold, all the city came out to meet Jesus, and when they saw him, they begged him to leave their region.” ESV
One word really stands out to me and, if you reference a red letter edition there would only be one of that color in the passage above. All Jesus said was “GO” and part of me feels that the only reason He uttered that one word was for our benefit. Reflect on that and ask yourself if you truly understand the authority of Jesus. Be careful how you answer because there is another GO at the end of the same book
I have been stuck on Matthew 7: 28-29 for a couple of days.
28 And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, 29 for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes. ESV
When was the last time you walked out of a meeting astonished at the teaching? I fear it has been a while for most of us. Is it possible for a human expounder to astound us with Scripture, despite their sinful nature? If you currently sit under an amazing teacher on a regular basis, consider yourself blessed. Never take that for granted because there are many of us around the world who are not so privileged.
The internet has given many of us access to gifted teaching but most still don’t know where to look. Take some time today to recommend some good resources and specific messages in the comment box below. I want to start adding some links for others to benefit from.
Calvin’s Commentary on Mark 1:22; Luke 4:32 states:
And they were astonished at his doctrine. The meaning of the Evangelists is, that the power of the Spirit shone in the preaching (“En la facon d’enseigner de Jesus Christ;” — “in Jesus Christ’s manner of teaching.”) of Christ with such brightness, as to extort admiration even from irreligious and cold hearers. Luke says, that his discourse was accompanied with power, that is, full of majesty. Mark expresses it more fully, by adding a contrast, that it was unlike the manner of teaching of the Scribes. As they were false expounders of Scripture, their doctrine was literal and dead, breathed nothing of the power of the Spirit, and was utterly destitute of majesty… In short, the Evangelists mean that, while the manner of teaching, which then prevailed, was so greatly degenerated and so extremely corrupted, that it did not impress the minds of men with any reverence for God, the preaching of Christ was eminently distinguished by the divine power of the Spirit, which procured for him the respect of his hearers. This is the power, or rather the majesty and authority, at which the people were astonished.
Were you astonished today?