The Faithful Pacesetters

Learning leadership from those who led in the Bible

Why are Charismatic Leaders so Inspirational?

Bible Character: David

David was small in stature, just a boy, but he possessed more courage than any other man in Saul’s army. His actions and words inspired those around him.

Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell face down on the ground. 1 Samuel 17:49 NIV

Confidence

A charismatic leader has little room for doubt. Confidence in themselves and in the goals of the organization takes precedence. David displayed no uncertainty when he faced Goliath.

Vision

An essential characteristic of creating change is having vision. Charismatic leaders have a way creating eagerness towards accomplishing long term organizational goals. David’s vision went well beyond his lifetime, with one of his greatest dreams being fulfilled by his son Solomon when he built the temple.

Communication

Charismatic leaders are generally considered great communicators.   Using a sports analogy – would you prefer a coach that is really mellow before a game, or do you prefer a coach whose pre-game speech is so passionate that it fuels your inner fire and desire?

Results

David got results! Some of his contributions included many military victories, great economic growth, and widespread building development. He accomplished this all with God’s blessing.

So what can go wrong?

In the spring of the year, the time when kings normally go out to do battle, David sent Joab with his officers and all Israel. They devastated the Ammonites and besieged Rabbah. But David remained in Jerusalem. 2 Samuel 11:1 NIV

Even though the Israelites won this particular battle, they began to miss David’s enthusiasm. A leader that depends purely on charisma runs the risk of the organization depending too much on their personality.  

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4 thoughts on “Why are Charismatic Leaders so Inspirational?

  1. Thanks McDaniel.

  2. The problem with charismatic leaders can be because it becomes all about them and not about God. Their personalities become the obstacle rather than the vehicle and God doesn’t get a look in. God’s vision becomes interpreted in their narrow framework and worldview and that in turn becomes more important than the original vision. Pitfalls all those of us who minister would be wise to pay attention to. Thanks for your post.

    • Jane, I agree. I tried not to talk about the negatives in the post, but ended up touching a little bit on them at the end. They depended on David’s charisma to win the “battles”, as a consequence, once he stopped coming they soon began to lose.

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