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God Will Raise Up for You a Prophet
Dr. Tony Chute, Lead Pastor
Overview: Moses was a leader who learned to become a delegator once he realized that there were more people with more needs than he could handle. He established three offices in the Promised Land—judges, priests, and kings— to ensure Israel would remain faithful to the Lord and to resolve conflict among the people. Leaders in each category were thus called to be godly in their character, impartial in their assessment, and unwavering in their commitment to the Lord. Their presence would not bring an end to dissension among the people of God, but their faithful living and formal application of God’s Word would point Israel to a better world with a better Leader. This pattern of godly leadership for the sake of God’s people provides relevant application for the church today.
01. Pray the Lord will raise up leaders in our midst who will serve the church and engage the world; better yet, pray that the Lord will use you to lead others to the Lord.
02. Pray that leaders in the church will earn the trust of the congregation by remaining faithful to God’s Word, making wise decisions, and genuinely caring for all members.
03. Pray that we will follow our leaders as they follow Christ, care for them as they carry out their ministries, and encourage them as they handle conflict.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION & DISCOVERY
1. How were the leaders of Israel instructed to guard true worship, according to Deuteronomy 17:1-7 and 18:9-14? What was the role of the congregation in supporting its leadership in Deuteronomy 17:8-13? How does this text anticipate divisions within Israel over the decisions made by its leaders? What can you do to support godly leaders when there are divisions in the body?
2. Note the warnings provided and responsibilities given to the king in Deuteronomy 17:14-20. What unique privileges come with leadership positions that need to be guarded against? What does this passage imply about the moral character of those in leadership? How are these qualities evident or absent in leaders today? See 1 Timothy 3:1-13 for a list of moral requirements for leadership today.
3. In what ways were Levitical priests supported directly by the people of Israel according to Deuteronomy 18:1-8? Why were they prohibited from receiving an inheritance of land, just like the rest of Israel? In what ways, tangible and intangible, can churches provide for their leaders?
4. When Moses announced that the Lord would raise up a prophet, he gave several characteristics that would identify him as a true successor. What were these characteristics, according to Deuteronomy 18:15-22? What simple warnings accompanied this announcement that would reveal the person as a false prophet? Why do you think false prophets find such a willing following today?
5. What examples of leadership succession can you find in the Bible (such as Joshua after Moses and Timothy after Paul)? How did these leaders prepare their successors to assume their new roles? In what ways did their successor live up to the task? In what ways did the successors fail to live up to the task? How are you preparing for the next generation to assume the role of leadership in the church and the world?
For Further Reading: John MacArthur, The Book on Leadership (Thomas Nelson, 2006)