Moses is about to pick people to help him with the responsibilities of leading the Children of Israel. The first requirement was that these leaders have some natural ability, they are to “be able”. The second attribute was a spiritual attribute, they were to be “such as fear God”, (Exodus 18:21). For a qualifying spiritual principle many would think that leaders should be good at praying, be able to sense God, be a good communicator, know the Word of God or live a life of purity. All of these are great attributes but the attributes given was one of fearing God.
In 2 Samuel 23:3, David talks about leadership qualifications when he says, “The God of Israel said, The Rock of Israel spoke to me: ‘He who rules over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God’.” This fear of God does not mean that one quivers in their shoes, afraid to do anything because God will get them, but it does mean a healthy respect for God, His Word, His character, His ways, and His people.
These leaders are to have such a reverence, respect and awe for God; they dare not take advantage of God’s people. They would see individuals as precious people whom The Lord cares for and consequently would not misuse them. They see the Word as precious so they would never want to misinterpret it or misapply it. Part of walking in the fear of The Lord, is realizing that God is watching over His people, His word, and His promises and so they are cautious about doing anything which might deter another person from being close to God. Situations are viewed not in the light of what is best for me, but what is in the heart of God for the people and the situation.
If only more of us lead with the fear of God in our hearts, this would overthrow the selfishness that easily dictates how we live our lives. We are all called to be leaders in some capacity, whether in our homes, with our children, our marriages or at work. The fear of The Lord is essential for all of us.
Lord, may we have a healthy fear of You that would then positively affect how we live with those around us.
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