Article in Stretton Focus, March 2019
After his baptism by John and feeling that he had God’s approval Jesus went into the wilderness to think about his mission and how he was to accomplish it. He was tempted by some comfortable options and one of the means he thought about but did not pursue was political leadership. He was tempted by the possibility of the kingdoms of the world being in his power but he rejected the idea as the work of the Devil! However, we need political leaders and it is interesting to set out what we require of them. Psalm 72, attributed to Solomon, gives us some clues about the characteristics of good leadership.
Verses 1 and 2 ‘Give the king your justice O God and your righteousness.‘
A leader should be honest and just
Verses 3 and 4 ‘ May the mountains yield prosperity for the people. May he defend the cause of the poor‘
Should share prosperity and take care of the poor
Verses 5 to 7 ‘In his days may righteousness flourish and peace abound‘
Should seek peace
Verses 10 and 11 ‘May all nations give him service‘
Should command respect
Verses 13 and 14 ‘He has pity on the weak … and precious are they in his sight‘ Should defend the weak and value those he/she leads.
A demanding list which our leaders may find it helpful to consult from time to time. Also one against which we might compare our current political and business leaders.