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Desiring Leadership Alignment in the Marketplace

January 05, 2017

One of the last great frontiers of progressive sanctification for contemporary Christian leadership stems from the need to bring alignment between the marketplace (workplace), family life, and the local body of believers. Our commitment to being the same Christian standard bearer in each of these respective spheres of influence must be elevated to new spiritual heights. There is currently a wide gulf between the way that we “put on” and exude a Christ-like character in the workplace compared to our responsibilities in the other spiritual domains.


We see evidences of this misalignment from professing Christians every day in the workplace. The demands, pressure for results, and the intense spiritual warfare taking place in the marketplace has created a duplicitous crop of evangelical Christian leaders who look just like the world. The thoughts, desires, motivations, and actions of these Christian leaders have morphed into unrecognizable leadership characteristics. Christian leaders are being bombarded in the marketplace with secular humanist philosophies and propaganda that infringes on and encroaches the holy and righteous nature of our Lord.  Charles H. Spurgeon expresses concern for the workplace in his book titled Spiritual Leadership stating, “We begin our day with prayer, and we hear the voice of holy song full often in our houses. But many good people have scarcely risen from their knees in the morning before they are saluted with blasphemy. They go out to work, and all day long they are vexed with filthy conversation like righteous Lot in Sodom.”


The entrepreneurial, corporate, and nonprofit worlds (along with many others) are also demanding that we accept their social agendas (sin) or be held hostage to a form of what I will call “financial terrorism.” In other words, if you don’t conform we will bring our business elsewhere or at the very least your upward career mobility will come to a grinding halt. The aggregate exposure from the sin we experience in the workplace has created such a compounding spiritual impact that we have become tolerant and accepting, unaware of who we have become. In Ephesians 6:12 we read, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”


Fortunately, we have great hope and a desire that God (who has ordered our steps here on earth – Psalm 37:23) will give men and woman the needed discernment and leadership skills necessary to close the alignment gap. We also have great confidence that God will raise up leaders who are passionate about marketplace Christianity and are willing to shout the alarm of disparity and take action. Leaders who understand the needed balance in the relational, conceptual, and vocational leadership realms.  The way that we care, think, and labor in the workplace must conform to the holy and righteous nature of Jesus Christ our Lord. Yes, we must shroud the heart, mind, and soul of our Christian testimonies around our workplace endeavors. Christ deemed the workplace/marketplace as a vital ingredient to establishing His church and fulfilling His will here on earth. In their book Integrity at Work, Norman Geisler and Randy Douglass list a variety of compelling descriptions of why they feel the workplace is highly relevant for the Christian of today:  


“One hundred twenty-two of Jesus’s 132 public appearances were in the workplace.”

“Forty-five of Jesus’s fifty-two recorded parables had a workplace context.”


“The church was founded by business people.”  


We must strive to bring a level of workplace understanding to Christian leadership circles through biblical training and application. Pastors, businessmen (blue and white collar), and community leaders must desire to ring the bell of progressive Christian sanctification in the marketplace.  Philippians 4:13 states, “I can do all things through Christ that strengtheneth me.” May the Lord bless those willing to take action and lead in the workplace. 


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