Series: Elders SHOPNOTES: A Collection of Essays

Elders SHOPNOTES: A Collection of Essays: Volume 3: Leadership Principles

Chuck Gianotti Jack Spender


This particular volume which you have in your hands, “Leadership Principles”, is comprised of essays on the leadership in the local church. Not meant to be exhaustive in covering everything on the subject, we have sought here to address some of the issues we have come across in our travels among God’s people and elders in various places.

Shepherding in the local church is a large task and requires skill. And skill needs to be learned. Skill, though, needs a solid foundation undergirding it to ensure the skill is used with the right goal and methods in view. Volume One in this series laid out the Biblical Foundations for God’s plan for leadership in the local church—shepherding by a plurality of biblically qualified elders. Without this solid framework, church leadership becomes just a spiritualized reflection of secular leadership–it may build large organizations that people call “church”, but does that bring about the spiritual church as God perceives it? The second volume in this series considered the Biblical Qualifications of leadership. Leadership principles or skills ring hollow without leaders of spiritual substance. The Scripture clearly outlines the qualifications for godly elders. Volume two also provides a selective commentary on Paul’s instructions to a young leader, Timothy, in his first letter addressing leadership issues.

The present volume, third in this series, builds on the first two. We are now turning our attention to Principles of Leadership. Leadership is important for any and all organizations, whether church, para-church, non-profit, government or business. While many principles found in Scripture are helpful in all these arenas, we are particularly interested in how leadership works in the local church. The local body of Christ is a unique organization because it is also a living organism. A common analogy in the New Testament for the church is that of a body, the body of Christ. We are all members of Christ, and are brothers and sisters in Him, with God as our father. We are connected in the local church not along earthly bloodlines, but along the spiritual bloodline of our Lord Jesus Christ. So the principles of leadership that concern us here must take into consideration the family nature of the church.

The chapters each deal with a distinct aspect of leadership, and don’t need to be read necessarily in order. They are designed, for the most part, as stand alone essays (with the exception of a few short series of essays).

This volume in your hands is the third in a series of essay collections based on the bi-monthly ministry of Elders’ ShopNotes (ESN). This ministry began as an effort to help busy elders become better equipped in shepherding the people of God under their care. ESN is a bi-monthly ministry letter written in both English and Spanish and distributed upon request to elders in North and South American as well as in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand, and other locations. Each issue is designed to strengthen and equip elders so they can more effectively do the work of shepherding God’s people.

Chuck Gianotti

Chuck Gianotti, Th.M. (Dallas Theological Seminary), elder, teacher, team member of Biblical Eldership Resources, author, itinerate preacher, husband of the love of his life–Mary, a father of two grown children, grandfather, canoeing aficionado, outdoor enthusiast, woodworker.

Jack Spender

Jack came to know the Lord Jesus at age 7 at Camp Berea (NH); He and his wife Ruth have been Serving full time in the Lord’s work since 1972. Jack’s main efforts have been in planting new assemblies, Bible teaching, discipleship and leadership training. They live in Bethany Conneticut.

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