The Leadership We Deserve (3-24-13)

In II Samuel 24:1 it says “The anger of the LORD burned against Israel, and it incited David against them to say, ‘Go, number Israel and Judah.'” This decision by King David led to punishment by God upon the people. There are many questions, perhaps rightly so, about this episode, but what should be instructive to us presently is that this verse attributes the cause of David’s decision to GOD, who incited him to do what he did regarding the census. God was angry with the people, so He sought an occasion for David to make a poor decision, which would bring punishment upon them.

Among other things, this reflects again upon the concept that people generally get the kind of leadership they deserve. (See previous devotions on Psalm 125:3 here, and I Samuel 12:14 here)

This passage shows us that when God is angry with a people, He leads/allows their leadership to make decisions which impact them negatively. The ultimate blame is not in the leader, though he is indeed responsible for what he does, but in the people themselves.

This is yet another reason why we should look to ourselves in times of leadership problems and crisis. The problem is not just “him”; it is US!

— it is not merely the ungodly pastor who is the problem, but the people of the church who deserve the kind of shepherd they have been given.
— it is not just the dictatorial college president or denominational leader who is the problem, but the constituency to whom he is responsible which perpetuates his behavior.
— it is not just the President who is the problem, but the people of the country who have purposefully chosen the kind of leadership he is giving.

Scripture demonstrates it once again: we get the kind of leadership we deserve! If there is a crisis in leadership, we need to make sure that the change we seek begins in ourselves.

About Shawn Thomas

My blog,, provides brief devotions from own personal daily Bible reading, as well as some of my sermons, book reviews, and family life experiences.
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