There is a trend in many churches these days of putting younger people into leadership. I recently visited a fellowship run by young people in their 20’s and early 30’s. Most of them are also new believers.
There is a very good reason the Bible says:
“A bishop [elder/pastor-teacher] then must be … apt to teach; Not a novice, [new plant] lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.-1 Timothy 3:2, 6 KJV
Even though the “young plant” may have knowledge–be a quick learner; They lack one essential ingredient all God-appointed Biblical leaders have: EXPERIENTIAL KNOWLEDGE.
You can teach what you’ve learned, or you can teach what you know to be fact.
In God’s kingdom this required EXPERIENTIAL knowledge is
- Of God. (1Jhn. 1-2)
- The Christian journey, battlefield. (Rom. 5)
- The enemy the devil. (1Tim.3,
- The path to victory/Overcoming.
It is IMPOSSIBLE for a young plant to possess this knowledge. This is why all of the prophets and disciples were trained over long periods by God before given responsibility to lead his flock. It’s also why we don’t reach maturity until we have been tried in the furnace of trails, and have endured like gold.
Objection! But wasn’t Timothy young? Yes, but he wasn’t a young plant. He was trained in the faith/scriptures since a child.
These churches who covert young leaders also SHAME the elders in their midst as they dismiss their wisdom and experience in favor of “young talent”.
Many of these churches have spiritually dried up, and hope to survive by recruiting youthful leaders. It’s a misguided business strategy, mixed with LACK OF KNOWLEDGE.
*the pic is from Unconscious: Unlocking the Zone book.