A WORD FOR THE LED AND THE LEADERS
TEXT : NUMBERS 11:4-15
Introduction : Leadership in the church of Christ is a very sensitive and challenging
position because that position can ruin one’s vision, call, marriage, etc, and even his own
life if care is not taken. One of the greatest challenges of leaders are the led (followers), the
very people they are representing. And since in life, everyone is a leader at one point and the
led (follower) at the other, in this lesson, we will be considering certain counsels for the led
and the leaders.
1. Have you ever found yourself in a leadership position (at home, church, work place,
organisation, etc) ?
2. As a leader, how do you feel when your subordinates disobey, criticize, and sabotage your
3. Do you always criticize the people at the leadership position of any organisation you
belong to ?
4. Do you consider yourself a good leader/ follower ? Why ?
TO THE LED (FOLLOWERS).
A follower’s comportment and attitude can go a long way in helping his leader achieve and
accomplish his assigned duties successfully. On the other hand, the follower’s attitude may
not just only cripple the leader’s efforts, but also ruin his personal life, if care is not taken. A
christian follower is therefore expected to do the following :
1. Be Considerate
– Put youself in the shoes of your leader each time you are tempted to blame him/her.
-Always ask these questions « Is it really my leader’s fault that things are not going the way
I want it ? How can I help make things work ?….»
– In Moses’ case, was it his fault that there were no meat, melons, onions, and whatever they
were demanding for in that desert ?
– Remember, the position of your leader has given him extra loads to carry, so be
* Moses alone was carrying the burden meant for 70 people !
*Why make life unbearable for your leader when you can even help alleviate it?
2. Beware Of Mixed Multitudes.
– The mixed multitudes are the rabble, the mob, the disorderly crowd.
– As a follower, you must beware of this set of people because in our text, the mixed
multitude originally weren’t Israelites, rather they were a set of people who joined in the
exodus from Egypt for some personal reasons.
– And because they had their personal interest at heart, any slight discomfort would certainly
provoke revolt and complaints from them.
– Don’t join them in their ruthless character, because you don’t have the same convinction as
– They may be in church but they are not born-again, thus they can afford to be ruthless.
3. Don’t Be The One That Will Hype evil Rumours Concerning Your Leader.
– Even though you may not be the source of any evil rumour against your leader, don’t help
* If the majority of the Israelites never hyped the complaints against Moses and the wild
appetite for meat, may be the whole murmuring would have died down as soon as it came.
– Don’t spread negative news.
4 . Don’t Join Unreasonable Evil Demonstration Fuelled By Selfish Agenda.
– In verse 10, they all came in front of their tents in families, weeping, to give Moses their
leader a mental torture.
– Sometimes some people criticize their leader because of some personal grudges, so don’t
allow yourself to be coaxed into joining their team as to increase their number.
– Don’t be cajoled by people to use you to meet their selfish agenda.
5. Don’t Be The Undoing Of Your Leader.
– Don’t make life / leadership unbearable for your leader due to your obstinacy and difficult
– Don’t be the one that will make him feel suicidal (as in the case of Moses).
* Rather be the one that will make leading easier for him. Let him always count on your
6. Be Humble.
– No matter who you are or your qualifications, stay humble before your leader because two
captains cannot drive the same both.
– It takes a humble heart to be a good follower.
7. Remember You Will Reap What You Sow
– Remember the position of leadership/follower changes in place and time, so be careful
how you treat your leader anytime you find yourself in the followership position, because in
life, we reap what we sow.
– Romans 13:1-2 states that God is the one who put your leader in his position, so opposing
him means opposing God, and there is a repercussion for that.
– If you make leadership unbearable for someone, if you frustrate him to the point of
resigning, if you make exercising his leadership right a nightmare, be sure that sooner or
later when you climb to such a position, people will loathe you.
– You cannot enjoy the fruit you didn’t sow.
TO THE LEADERS.
There are some things you need to know to keep you focused and on track as you carry on
your duties as a leader.
1. Be On The Look Out For The Mixed Multitudes.
– A leader must beware of this set of people because in our text, the mixed multitude
originally weren’t Israelites, rather they were a set of people who joined in the exodus from
Egypt for some personal reasons.
– A leader therefore will do himself a world of good by identifying them, and applying
wisdom on how to handle them because they will corrupt innocent feeble minded ones, if
caution is not applied.
– They may be in church but they are not born-again, thus you cannot expect the best from
2. Don’t Allow The People You Are Called To Lead Be Your Undoing.
– The truth is that some people are sworn ungovernable folks and will never submit to rules,
so leave them !
* Ignore them, especially when you know that they are doing it intentionally.
– Don’t allow anyone take away your crown (Rev. 3:11).
* Remember, you must not stress yourself out of the promised land like Moses (despite all
his input and sacrifices).
3. Don’t Allow Toxic Followers Turn You Into A Toxic Leader.
– Toxic followers have the capability of stressing their leader into being toxic, don’t allow
– Moses became suicidal and preferred death to being their leader.
– At a time Moses became moody, melancholic, depressed, and frustrated, because of their
constant and organised nagging.
* Proverbs 4:23 (Guard your heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life)
exhorts us to be careful with the state of our heart because it reflects in our character.
– Because they consistently whinned and complained to Moses, Moses felt like a failure, and
he also whinned and complained to God.
– Don’t allow your followers do same to you, put your emotion under constant check, so that
it doesn’t get toxic and blow up because of the people you are called to lead.
4. Remember, Leadership Is Only A Means To An End, And Not The End Itself.
– Your leadership position is only a vehicle and a channel of achieveing your divinely
assigned responsibilities, and not your final destination.
– How you handle that position is more important than the title itself, because your failure or
success in the race of destiny is tied there.
– So do not allow any kind of distraction, criticism, or offence (stop counting who did what)
to cause you make a detour from you destination.
– Remember, no matter how much investiment and sacrifices you have made for the people
you are leading, it is only when you hold on to the end that those sacrifices will be
celebrated, but when you quit half-way, all will be counted as nothing.
5. Always Take Your Leadership Challenges To God In Prayer.
– Instead of taking it out on the people and venting your anger on them, take your stress to
God in prayer, for only Him has the solution.
– He provided the Israelites with more than enough meat (manna, water….) .
– Be careful not to confuse prayer with gripe, because the Bible says, « …with prayer and
thanksgiving let your request be made known unto God ».( Thes 4:6).
* Because the people were always against Moses, we notice that most times, he came before
God griping, instead of praying.
– As a leader, only God can handle your problems such as criticism, false accusations,
insults, unyielding people, etc. and replace them with joy, so go to Him with those questions
all the time.
* God alleviated Moses’ burden by sharing it among 70 elders.
6. God Will Always Give You Supportive People. (Romans 11:5, Isaiah 1:9)
– Because it is God’s work, He will always leave you with supportive people, no matter how
few- let this encourage you.
– Identify these supportive ones (through their availability, obedience, encouragement,
respect…) and be content to work with them, even if they are not the most talented or
– Be careful not to transfer any aggression from the unruly people to them, nor treat them
7. Your Labour Is Not In Vain (2 Cor. 4:17, Heb 6:10).
– As a leader, always remember that your labour in the Lord is not in vain. So whatever you
are doing, there is a reward for it.
– Do not allow any obstacles in life and a few negative people around deprive you of the
glorious reward which awaits you at the end of the tunnel.
TO BOTH THE LEADERS AND THE LED
i) Bad Followers Can Never Make Good Leaders.
– Don’t be surprised when you meet people who found it difficult obeying rules and taking
orders from their superiors if they mess things up when they find themselves in leadership
One who scores low in good followership, may likely fail woefully in good leadership !
This is because leadership lesson is naturally available right at the follower’s corridor.
ii) Both Leaders and Fo;;owers Need Discipline And Sacrifice.
Both good leadership and good followership demands a lot of discipline and sacrifice to be
able to function properly.
iii) Your Fulfillment In Life Is Directly Tied To Your Role As The Leader Or The Led.
How you play your rôle either as a leader or as a follower may determine how far you can
go in some certain spheres of life. One’s life may not experience a considerable level of
breakthrough because of lack of proper management of his rôle as a leader or a follower.
iv) Remember That You Are Answerable To God How You Live Your Position.
Whether you are a leader or a follower, remember God is watching your attitude. You will
be judged how played your rôle as a leader or and a led