The Leadership We Need
Yael Eckstein | September 29, 2022
The LORD said to Moses, “Now the day of your death is near. Call Joshua and present yourselves at the tent of meeting, where I will commission him.” So Moses and Joshua came and presented themselves at the tent of meeting. —Deuteronomy 31:14
Each week in synagogue, Jews read through the Torah from Genesis to Deuteronomy. The Torah portion for this week is Vayelech, which means “and he went,” from Deuteronomy 31:1–30.
Both in Israel and in the U.S., we are in a season of choosing leadership. Israel is headed for yet another election, and in the U.S., midterm elections are right around the corner. At times like this, I find myself giving a lot of thought to what the Bible teaches us about leadership.
As someone who shoulders the responsibility of leading a large nonprofit organization, I am all too familiar with the challenges that come with being in a position to make big decisions and show the way for others. And I have to say, it’s not easy.
Whenever we are faced with the responsibility of choosing new leaders, we inevitably think back to the great leaders of the past we admired. This is natural.
But there is a danger in this. When we see our current leaders as inadequate in comparison to those who came before, we can lose confidence and only make it harder for those God has chosen to lead us.
The Leadership We Need
We see this important lesson in this week’s Torah portion: “The LORD said to Moses, ‘Now the day of your death is near. Call Joshua and present yourselves at the tent of meeting, where I will commission him.’ So Moses and Joshua came and presented themselves at the tent of meeting.”
Imagine how Joshua must have felt. Here he was, taking over for Moses, the greatest leader in Israel’s history. We can imagine how many people among the children of Israel had difficulty giving the same respect to Joshua as they had given Moses. After all, who could possibly compare to Moses?
This is why God told Moses to present Joshua “at the tent of meeting,” in public, in front of the entire nation. A few verses later, in front of all of Israel, God told Joshua, “Be strong and courageous, for you will bring the Israelites into the land I promised them on oath, and I myself will be with you” (Deuteronomy 31:23). Joshua would lead the people into the Promised Land. He was the leader that God provided, the leader that the people needed.
God provides the leadership we need, in every time, in every place.
Set aside some prayer time to ask God to provide suitable leaders who will lead us closer to Him.