After Jesus began his preaching ministry (Mark 1:15), one of the first tasks he engaged in was building a team of disciples (Mark 1:16-17). Calvin Miller stated, “In order to build a true team spirit, you must delegate accountability and glory as well as responsibility.” Jesus built a great team since he did all of those three items extremely well. He would rebuke or exhort the disciples when they were wrong (Matt 16:23), he would encourage them to celebrate in ministry successes (Luke 10:18), and he allowed them to exercise their gifts through service (Luke 10:3). While many leaders may desire to work independently, Jesus modeled a theology that prized relationships and team dynamics. His understanding of the process associated with building a team focused including his followers in his plan and the implementation of that specific plan.
While Christ did not need the disciples’ companionship, he understood that the disciples were going to need each other’s companionship once he was gone. Since most people’s weaknesses are best aided through the input and help of others, Jesus brought these men together to assist each other in their spiritual growth. Luke records this dynamic to be true in that the early church throughout the Book of Acts struggled with issues and disagreed with each other from time to time, but through their collective experiences, prayers, and discussions, the church thrived greatly due to this team dynamic initiated by Christ. Christ’s disciples were never intended to serve as a committee which control ministry efforts. He viewed them and assembled them as a team in order that each individual team member could serve the others by empowering them for service.
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.
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