Leadership Spotlight - Abraham

A blog series highlighting biblical leaders Abraham was a visionary leader that began a foundation of faith upon God no matter the risk. God’s plan was made evident through the passion and desire for His descendants to know and love the only true God. Abraham left Ur and became "the father of a multitude of nations."[1] The plan that God has mapped out for him was going to take faith that had not been seen in his time. Abraham was a leader by conviction and led with undying devotion to God and his future generation.

Abraham’s ability to cast vision to his family was His desire to obey God and know Him. He was willing to surrender His plans for the greater cause of making His life impact those around Him for eternity. Abraham was able to see beyond all of the details of leaving his home in Ur and heading into the Promised Land. Not only was he willing to leave His home, but he left his family to pursue God’s direction. [2] Abraham was willing to take a risk by leaving all that he knew and went ahead as God’s will unfolded for him and his family.

Abraham’s most powerful moment was when he was about to sacrifice his son Isaac on the altar. His steadfast faith in God is mind-blowing to the reality that his own son could have died if God would not have intervened and replaced the altar with a ram. Abraham lived out his faith in the promises of God and it left a powerful legacy for generations. Leadership is being able to influence others to follow the vision that one has been given by God. Abraham was able to lead his generation to follow God and the domino effect was that many continued to seek Yahweh because of Abraham’s leadership.

Abraham’s strength at times became his greatest weakness. Abraham’s plan to take his family to the Promised Land was not without obstacles. Abraham’s entrepreneurial leading style left his family having a difficult time understanding his vision. His relationship with his wife, Sarah, was not without struggles of living out their faith.

The opportunity that Abraham had was to establish a centralized group of people that believed in the one true God, Yahweh.[3] Abraham’s vision was not looked upon as a negative, but He looked with optimism towards the higher calling of God to lead and begin the Israelite nation. Abraham’s legacy started a wave of generations that sought after God.

Abraham lied and pretended to Abimelech that his wife, Sarah, was his sister. The threat that hurt his integrity was a scar he would live with for the rest of his life. One of the threats to Abraham’s leadership was his quick decision-making that was, at times, ahead of God’s timing. Abraham made a quick decision concerning the future of his people by taking Hagar to produce his next heir. Although Sarah was in agreement to the decision, Abraham’s risk became a problem in the children that he bore between Isaac and Ishmael.[4] Due to the issue between Ishmael and Isaac because of Abraham’s decision, the Jews and Arabs have been at odds all the way up to current times. Due to Abraham’s quick decision to sleep with another woman, it led to resentment between his two sons. God’s plan to use imperfect people reveals His desire to complete His redemptive plan since the Garden of Eden. Abraham’s faithful life led to the establishment of the Jewish nation and ultimately led to the growth of Christianity.

[1] “No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations.” Genesis 17:5

[2] “And said to him, 'Go out from your land and from your kindred and go into the land that I will show you.” Acts 7:3

[3] From there he moved to the hill country on the east of Bethel and pitched his tent, with Bethel on the west and Ai on the east. And there he built an altar to the LORD and called upon the name of the LORD.” – Genesis 12:8

[4] But Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, laughing.” Genesis 21;9