Encouraging Bible Verses for Leaders

Are you a church leader looking for inspiration? These Encouraging Bible Verses for Leaders will help you face the responsibilities and obstacles of ministry with grace.


What does the Bible say about leadership?

Church leaders face great responsibility.

We come up against obstacles in our ministry and face the scrutiny of both the church and the outside world every day.

But true leaders face the work of ministry with grace and dignity.

There’s a quote about leadership that always puts me in the right frame of mind…

Ministry is persecution.

I don’t remember where I first heard this quote. But it has stuck with me over the years. It speaks to the leadership qualities we must possess as Christian leaders. The ability to pursue the ministry God has given us, even under pressure.

Because the truth is, if we’re living our lives for Jesus, we will face persecution.

So, how do we do it?

With the truth of God’s Word on our side!

Whatever church leadership position you hold, you’ll find encouragement in these scriptures for strong leaders.



Bible Verses on Leadership and Service

Serving in God’s Kingdom is a privilege. And good leadership means learning to be a servant.

Jesus had a servant’s heart. He came to serve those who needed Him and give His life for ours.

With practice, we can learn to have a servant’s heart like Jesus and be of service to those God puts in our path each day.

Do you see someone skilled in their work? They will serve before kings; they will not serve before officials of low rank.

                        Proverbs 22:29


“It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” 

                          Matthew 20:26-28 ESV


With upright heart he shepherded them
and guided them with his skillful hand.

                          Psalm 78:72 ESV


Where there is no guidance, a people falls,
but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.

                         Proverbs 11:14 ESV

Bible Verses about Servant Leadership

Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood.

                        Acts 20:28 ESV


And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

                        Romans 8:28

Be sure you know the condition of your flocks, give careful attention to your herds; for riches do not endure forever, and a crown is not secure for all generations.

                       Proverbs 27:23-24


Receive him therefore in the Lord with all gladness, and hold such men in esteem;

                      Philippians 2:29 NKJV

 Read More: What is the Purpose of Life? Matthew 28:18-20

Best Bible Verses about Leadership Qualities

The Holy Bible is clear… spiritual leaders must have certain qualities in order to lead God’s people.

That doesn’t mean that they are without sin but instead chose to live for Jesus and follow His teachings with integrity of heart. Leaders uphold what is holy and reject what isn’t.

The scriptures below layout the requirements of Biblical leadership and help us become a better leader.

Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.

                       1 Timothy 3:2-3 NIV

Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.

                       1 Timothy 5:8 NIV


Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.

                         Philippians 2:3 NKJV


Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

                         2 Timothy 2:15


Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this:

                        Psalm 37:5


For an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.

                         Titus 1:7-9 ESV


For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness.

                         Romans 12:3-8 ESV


Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.

                         Philippians 2:3-4 ESV


But select capable men from all the people—men who fear God, trustworthy men who hate dishonest gain—and appoint them as officials over thousands, hundreds, fifties and tens.

                         Exodus 18:21 NIV


Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,

                        Philippians 2:14-15 ESV


Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and depart from evil.

                       Proverbs 3:7


For those who have served well as deacons obtain for themselves a good standing and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.

                      1 Timothy 3:13 NKJV



Bible Study and Prayer Journals for Church Leaders

Be Strong Bible Study and Prayer Journal
God Is WithIn Me Bible Study and Prayer Journal
Take Courage Bible Study and Prayer Journal

Bible Verses about Leading Under Persecution

As we discovered in the quote above… ministry is persecution. And a Christian leader, I’m sure you’ve seen this firsthand.

Leading under persecution can be hard. But the following verses will give you strength for the ministry and help you live out the will of God in your life.

being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

                        Philippians 1:6 NIV


Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

                                 Galatians 6:9


So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

                                Isaiah 41:10


Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.

                              James 1:12


Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.

                             James 4:10


I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

                         Philippians 4:13



Free Devotional 7 Simple Ways to See God's Hand in Your Life

Bible Verses about Training Leaders

Great leaders teach others to step up and lead. And our common goal should be to train future church leaders to continue the ministry.

These scriptures about training leaders are a great resource for teaching the next generation to follow the Word of God and become the minister God wants them to be.

Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.

                                Hebrews 13:7


Here is a trustworthy saying: Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task.

                              1 Timothy 3:1 NIV


“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

                            Jeremiah 1:5


He must become greater; I must become less.”

                           John 3:30


For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.

                       1 Timothy 4:8


Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.

                       1 Timothy 4:12


The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching.

                       1 Timothy 5:17 NIV


Do not speak in the hearing of a fool, For he will despise the wisdom of your words.

                        Proverbs 23:9 NKJV


but he said to them, “I must preach the good news of the kingdom of God to the other towns as well; for I was sent for this purpose.”

                        Luke 4:43 ESV

Be encouraged by this Bible Study about Perseverance!

Bible Verses about Leading by Example

Our biggest job is to be a good leader and set an example of how to live for Jesus.

And the greatest example of leadership we will ever find is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself! He is not only our Savior but also our Teacher.

In scripture, Jesus is called, the Good Shepherd. And this description of Him as a shepherd gently guiding the flock is the perfect example to us as Christian leaders.

We look to Jesus Christ, our Good Shepherd, in all circumstances. And these Bible verses about leadership will teach us a new way of guiding His church and make us strong leaders within it.

 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

                            John 10:11-13 NIV

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.

                          Matthew 7:12


Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

                       Mark 10:42-45


When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments and resumed his place, he said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you?

                         John 13:12 ESV


“You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

                          John 13:13-17


And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,  for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; 

that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,  but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ—  from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.

                           Ephesians 4:11-16 NKJV


shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.

                         1 Peter 5:2-3 ESV


The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed,

                          Luke 4:18 ESV

This Devotional will help you Stand Firm in the Faith!


Top Bible Verses about Responsibility of Leaders

Being a church leader holds a great deal of responsibility.

When we think of this responsibility, naturally the people we shepherd come to mind. They have life and death decisions weighing on them. We hold their problems close as they lean on us. And we do our absolute best to guide them through it with God’s help.

But these scriptures are a warning to us. The influence we have as leaders means we are held to a higher standard. When we stand at the judgment seat of Christ, we’ll not only answer for the way we conduct ourselves, but also for what we teach other believers.

God has called us to this position in the church. And it’s a wonderful place to be! So, these scriptures about the responsibility of leaders are not meant to turn us away from serving, but instead to offer us an understanding of what God expects from us.

Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.

                             James 3:1


Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.

                         Luke 12:48 ESV


Old Testament Bible Verses about Leadership

The Old Testament gives us great advice about leading God’s chosen people.

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.

                        Proverbs 4:23


Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.

                        Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV

Prayer for Leaders Bible Verses

Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men,  for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.

                        1 Timothy 2:1-2 NKJV

In your majesty ride forth victoriously
    in the cause of truth, humility and justice;
    let your right hand achieve awesome deeds.

                         Psalm 45:4 NIV

Being an effective leader is easy when you put God’s Word into practice. And no matter where you serve in the church, I pray these Encouraging Bible Verses for Leaders have given you a new perspective on leadership and the role you play in leading God’s flock.

Bible Verse Art from Master’s Hand Collection

Love Black and White Bible Verse Art

Love Black and White Bible Verse Art

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Rock That is Higher Bible Verse Art

Victory Black and White Bible Verse Art

Victory Black and White Bible Verse Art

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