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Spiritual Leadership: Principles of Excellence For Every Believer (Commitment To Spiritual Growth) Paperback – May 1, 2007

4.7 out of 5 stars 251 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Spiritual Leadership should be the constant companion of every undershepherd in the Savior's service. Most helpful is the fact that its emphasis is not on methods, but on character, passion, and godliness. I read it often to regrip the basic perspectives of my task, and have given it to the entire leadership team in our church." -- John MacArthur, Jr. Pastor-Teacher Grace Community Church --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

Review

Spiritual Leadership is the best book I've read on Christian leadership.  I give copies to every key associate.
-Charles Colson, Chairman, Prison Fellowship

As a young pastor, J. Oswald Sanders’ book Spiritual Leadership was the first book I read that awakened me to the subject of leadership. It started me on a 30-plus year journey of teaching leadership to pastors and laypeople. No other book has influenced my life the way this one has.
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John C. Maxwell, Author, speaker and founder—the INJOY Group

Spiritual Leadership by J. Oswald Sanders is a classic among the classics. I read it as a young Christian, later as a leader, and needed what's been taught in this book. I highly recommend it!
-Chip Ingram, President, Walk Thru the Bible

Spiritual Leadership should be the constant companion of every undershepherd in the Savior’s service. Most helpful is the fact that its emphasis is not on methods, but on character, passion, and godliness. I read it often to regrip the basic perspectives of my task, and have given it to the entire leadership team in our church.
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John MacArthur, Pastor-teacher, Grace Community Church

I first read Oswald Sanders’ Spiritual Leadership as a young woman heading into ministry. It helped to shape my perspective, priorities, and passion and to ground my heart and mind in the timeless truths of Scripture. Anyone who desires to serve the Lord would do well to digest and internalize this classic.
Many Christian workers today are enamored of the latest trends, marketing models, and bestselling books by leadership gurus; they aspire to a sense of greatness and success that exalts human giftedness and rests on shifting sand.  By contrast, the kingdom of God will always and only be advanced by humble servants of God who lead out of a clear sense of divine calling, personal integrity, spiritual depth, and dependence on Christ--men and women of prayer, full of the Word and wisdom, and anointed with the power of the Spirit.  These are the ingredients Sanders urges us to prize and pursue.
-Nancy Leigh DeMoss, Author, Host of Revive Our Hearts Radio

The accelerated change in both the church and larger society compels the revision of the language of a classic like Spiritual Leadership.  The ideas of Oswald Sanders are of too great value to risk losing any of their power to the ever-changing idiom of the present century.
-D. James Kennedy, Ph.D., Author and Senior Minister, Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church

J. Oswald Sanders' book Spiritual Leadership came to my hand shortly after it was published and was a great help to me as a young minister.  I recommend it highly, not only to pastors and Christian workers, but to all Christians who want to know something about God's leadership in their own lives.
-Warren W. Wiersbe, Author, Conference Speaker

This book proves that a godly attitude lies at the heart of Christian leadership.  It does not borrow principles of leadership from the world and apply them to the church, but rather derives priniciples of leadership directly from the Scriptures.  It ought to be read by all of us at least once a year.
-Erwin W. Lutzer, Senior Pastor, Moody Memorial Church



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Product Details

  • Series: Commitment To Spiritual Growth
  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Moody Publishers; New edition (May 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802482279
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802482273
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (251 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,653 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I make it a habit to read several books on leadership or ministry skills every year. This is the best one I have ever read on the former subject.
J. Oswald Sanders left us with a true spiritual classic on what it means to embody the Biblical qualities of true godliness. I found this to be a very FULL book, with incredible insights packed into short epigrammatic sentences which are pregnant with meaning. It demands to be re-read.
Spiritual issues are examined from several different angles as Sanders unfolds the Biblical criterion for leaders chapter by chapter. It seemed to me like the book gets better and better as it goes. The two chapters dealing with "Qualities Essential to Leadership" (discipline, vision, wisdom, decision, courage, humility, integrity/sincerity, humor, anger, patience, friendship, tact/diplomacy, inspirational power, executive ability, the therapy of listening, and the art of letter writing - quite an interesting list!) are worth their weight in gold.
Several chapters that immediately attacted my attention were "The Leader and His Praying," "The Leader and His Time," and "The Leader and His Reading" - all three instructive and inspiring. Other beneficial chapters deal with the fullness of the Spirit, the cost of leadership, delegation, tests of true leadership, replacement and reproduction of leaders, and perils of the leader (a powerful chapter with a dynamic little section called "Prophet or Leader?").
Get this book and devour it - especially those of you who are pastors, elders, teachers, and deacons. Any one involved in roles of spiritual leadership should read this book.
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Format: Paperback
Godly leadership is more than being the most qualified to lead. Leaders in Christian ministry must understand and practice servanthood as taught by Jesus. Sanders compares the characteristics of "natural" leadership to spiritual leadership. In "natural" leadership, the emphasis is on power- specifically the ability to get subordinates to do things "they don't want to do" and forcing people to act (27). Spiritual leadership is "influencing others spiritually" (28). Spiritual leaders must not only possess leadership skills, but be ready and prepared to fight a spiritual battle (53). Sanders reminds readers that "God prepares leaders with a specific place and task in mind" (51). Even though many Christians are not called to a full-time ministry, all Christians are leaders since they influence people (109). Sanders insists on a leadership model in which leadership is "from the top down"-"never" from the "bottom up" (113). This philosophy is consistent with his other statement, "no cross, no leadership" (116). His description of spiritual leadership seems bleak by "natural" standards: a leader "lives with loneliness" (117), "fatigue is the price of leadership" (119), and "no leader lives a day without criticism" (119). Sanders' leadership model is very biblical in that it reflects the principle of leadership under God's guidance-" Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid of them! The LORD your God will go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor forsake you" (Deu. 31:6 NLT). Leadership "from the top down" starts with God at the top. God is the Lord over creation, man, and the Sabbath and all is consecrated to Him. Ezekiel 37:23-24 explains, "They will truly be my people, and I will be their God. My servant David will be their king, and they will have only one shepherd. They will obey my regulations and keep my laws." In the same way, leaders should think of themselves as a vessel that is accountable to God.

Review by M. Teresa Trascritti
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Format: Paperback
Over half a million copies of this book have been sold over the past thirty-seven years, and many ministers and Church leaders have made it their touchstone for ministry. An Updated Edition has been published by Moody Press - modernising the text, and enlarging the format. However, while the book has much to recommend it, it represents an outlook which is unlikely to find universal accord among Church leaders.

Sanders introduces the subject of spiritual leadership with a quote from 1 Timothy 3:1 (NEB). "To aspire to leadership is an honorable ambition." It is a telling choice of translation, and sets the tone for all that is to come. By way of comparison, a Greek transliteration puts it as follows: "If anyone aspires to oversight, he desires a good work." Since "ambition" is a word which describes personal motivation, Sanders thus throws the focus back onto the leader. The transliteration, on the other hand, refers to "a work" (Gk. ergos), which is task-oriented. Far from being a question of semantics, this defines the content of the entire book. Sanders focuses heavily on personal character, influence, and motivation, rather than on the task at hand, or on the empowerment of God. In keeping with this, when he deals at length with "essential qualities of leadership", he chooses qualities of character, rather than what one might call core spiritual qualities, such as trust in God, or an understanding of the Holy Spirit's anointing. The consequences of this are a heavy obligation on self - "God, harden me against myself" - and the book is characterised by demanding "the utmost" of oneself.

This approach does find a rapport in many Churches. The book is required reading in a number of Bible seminaries and Churches.
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