75. What is servant leadership?

Jesus was the epitome of servant leadership. He taught that in His Kingdom the first shall be last and last shall be first. He taught His disciples to be compassionate to the poor and needy, and He focussed His ministry not on the rich and powerful but on the poor and needy. He chose fishermen and tax collectors to be among His disciples. He healed the lepers who were regarded as outcasts. He cast a legion of demons out of a mad man chained to the grave stones on a hill overlooking Lake Galilee. Jesus did extraordinary miracles for those people society regarded as unworthy of such grace and favour from God. Jesus did not assert Himself. He patiently waited for people to receive spiritual insight as to who He was.

Islâm as a religion is based on submission to Islâm as an authority. Muslims respect their religious leaders, such as a Sheik, Imam, Mullah or Mufti. They have also political leaders to take care of the people and government for the things not directly related to their religion. But the political leader must seek advice and guidance from the religious leaders in all matters. At some periods in Islâmic history the religious leaders also became the political leaders. Islâmic leaders must submit to Allâh and the people must submit to the leaders. This is the way leadership works in Islâm. Muslims are required to serve Allâh and the religious and political leaders. In the Hadith number 175 by Abu Huraira it is reported that Allâh’s messenger quoted this saying of Moses’ son Imran: ‘My Lord, who is the greatest of Thy servants in Thy estimation?’ and he received a reply, ‘The one who forgives when he is in a position of power.’