Todd R. Salzwedel M.Div. Perkins School of Theology
Degree Conferred: May 14, 2021 Completed: March 30, 2021
WHEN THE PAST MEETS THE PRESENT:
REFRAMING LEADERSHIP PARADIGMS
THROUGH THE LENS OF DISCIPLESHIP,
STEWARDSHIP AND COVENANT
The field of research concerning leadership has been undertaken in earnest for approximately one hundred years. More recently, sub-fields of leadership research have emerged focusing on specific aspects or perspectives of leadership. Understanding servant-leadership, the distinction between technical and adaptive leadership, and positional leadership have led to a more conscious awareness of the role leadership occupies in our everyday life. But the relatively recent focus on leadership and its development does not mean there has not existed both the presence of leaders and mechanisms by which such development might emerge.
While contemporary study might capture the zeitgeist of modern society, there remains potential to neglect methodologies that have existed throughout history. Further, the opportunity for competing values between an organization/leader and its constituents/follower threaten to either derail efforts or create a dualistic dynamic in the leader/follower relationship.
The focus of this work seeks to demonstrate the necessity of common purpose inherent in the leader/follower relationship. As a result, the expectations that the institution (in this case the church) lays out for the constituent (baptized followers of Jesus) apply then to the institution itself as they do to the individual disciple, thereby serving as an incubator of development that would be understood contemporarily as leadership development. Exploring some basic attributes of discipleship, coupled with an expanded vision of stewardship, a paradigm for leadership development becomes evident which has existed within the church for centuries if not longer. The practice of covenant helps to provide a means of both accountability for leader and follower as well as a vested interest in mutual discipleship development. Utilizing examples from the wealth of biblical material regarding shepherds, models emerge for the responsibilities and roles of leaders/institutions as well as followers/disciples. In the case of this work, the measure by which all efforts are tested lie within the mandate Jesus gave his disciples at the end of Matthew’s gospel, the Great Commission.
Similar to the dynamic nature of contemporary leadership research, this study seeks to provide a platform by which adaptations might be made specific to a particular context. Rather than simply subscribe to a one-size-fits-all model, discipleship needs to encounter the community in which it seeks to impact. By fully recognizing and appreciating such contextual uniqueness, while adhering to the divine instruction of making disciples of all nations, the church has the opportunity to reassert itself as a primary influence in its community rather than the other way around.
Dr. William Abraham
Dr. James Lee
Theology/Religious Education, Religion
Number of Pages
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
Salzwedel, Todd, "When The Past Meets The Present: Reframing Leadership Paradigms Through The Lens Of Discipleship, Stewardship And Covenant" (2021). Doctor of Ministry Projects and Theses. 3.