Biblically Based Management From The Life Of Moses

During Israel’s trek across the desert, Moses’ father-in-law, Jethro, paid him a visit, observed his style of operation, and offered some sage advice on management principles:


1. Allow mentors into your life: We need people around us who respect us but are not overpowered or impressed by us; people who are not afraid to tell us what we need to hear, rather than what we want to hear. “When his father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, he said, What is this you are doing for the people?What you are doing is not goodListen now to me and I will give you some advice, and may God be with you… ‘” (Exodus 18:14a, 17b, 19a) (See 1 Kings 12:1-19; Proverbs 11:14; 15:22; 24:6; 20:18; Isaiah 19:11-14)


2. Recognize your own limitations: Divest yourself of visions of grandeur, Lone Rangerism, the Napoleonic or Messianic complexes. President Eisenhower likened the indispensable man to a person who, after pulling his thumb out of a bucket of water left its impression. “Moses took his seat to serve as judge for the people, and they stood around him from morning till eveningHis father-in-law saw all that Moses was doing for the people, [and] said, What is this you are doing for the people? Why do you alone sit as judge, while all these people stand around you from morning till evening.‘” (Exodus 18:13b,14b) (See 1 Chronicles 29:11-14; Proverbs 16:18, 19; 26:12; John 3:27; 1 Corinthians 4:7; Galatians 6:3)


3. Model spiritual leadership: “You [Moses] must be the peoples representative before Godand show them the way to live… ” (Exodus 18:19b, 20b) (See John 13:15; 1 Corinthians 4:15, 16; 11:1; Philippians 3:17; 1 Thessalonians 1:6; 2 Thessalonians 2:14; 3:9)


4. Define responsibilities and supply appropriate training for them to do their job: “Teach them the decrees and lawsand the duties they are to perform.” (Exodus 18:20a,c) (See Deuteronomy 4:1; 5:1)


5. Select quality people for leadership positions. Jethro specified three characteristics:

  • Capable“: (Literally, virtue, valor and strength) (Exodus 18:21a) (See Joshua 6:2; Judges 6:12; 18:21)
  • Fear God” (Literally, fear and revere God) (Exodus 18:21a) (See Genesis 22:12; 42:18; Nehemiah 7:2; Ecclesiastes 12:13)
  • Trustworthy” (Literally, hate bribes ) (Exodus 18:21a) (See Jeremiah 5:1; Ezekiel 18:8; Zechariah 7:9; 8:16)

6. Delegate levels of responsibility: “Appoint [men] as officials over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tensHave them serve as judges for the peoplebut have them bring every difficult case to you; the simple cases they can decide themselves. That will make your load lighter, because they will share it with you.” (Exodus 18:21, 22a,c) (See Acts 6:1-6)


7. Provide stability: “Have them serve as judges for the people at all times… ” (Exodus 18:22a) (See Exodus 18:26; 1 Corinthians 15:58)



4 thoughts on “Biblically Based Management From The Life Of Moses

  1. Pingback: Today’s thought “That my name might be proclaimed” (January 31) – Belgian Ecclesia Brussel – Leuven

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