Rooted Leadership

Seeking God’s Answers to the Eleven Core Questions Every Leader Faces

by John Johnson, Mark Buchanan

On Sale: 2022-06-14

Book Summary

In Rooted Leadership, John E. Johnson explores how Christian theology provides an overarching leadership framework and applies that theory to leadership practices for the sake of equipping credible leaders.

About the Book

Behind many of the challenges facing us today is a failure of leadership. This is not a new problem. Yearning for wise guidance and effective authority is a perennial human longing. We need leaders who are credible, competent and committed. But many leaders seem to be caught up, even consumed, with their own power and agendas. Some see the leadership crisis as an intellectual problem, believing we lack a clear theory of leadership. Others view the breakdown of leadership as a result of increasing deficiency in moral character.

Most leadership books today revolve around the concepts of motivation, inspiration, empowerment, and teamwork. Helpful as these themes might be, they miss something more fundamental. Leadership needs a theological foundation, that will be useful for shaping the undergirding principles, and evaluating current leadership theories and practices. We need to view leadership from the vantage point of God.

In Rooted Leadership, John E. Johnson explores how Christian theology provides an overarching leadership framework and applies that theory to leadership practices. Spiritual reflection, guided by scripture, points us to the very center of leadership--God--and the purpose of leadership--that we might display his glory. All the best forms of leading take their cues from who God is, his purposes, and his ways of working with people that he has progressively revealed.

Building on three decades of research, study, and experience as a global leader, Johnson surveys the landscape of contemporary leadership theory, unpacks the assumptions and beliefs that underly current trends, and responds by offering a robust approach to leadership, founded on the character, work, and words of God.


'John Johnson is one of the clearest, humblest, and most loving voices for shepherds, leaders, and pastors. In a world where so many have been run over by the big bus of the American church, Johnson offers us a more lamb-like way of leadership--through care, insight, humility, brokenness, and meekness. It is always a joy to endorse John as a human--to say nothing of his writing. Read this. Slowly. And hear the voice of our Great Shepherd, Jesus.'

'John Johnson develops a biblically informed theology of leadership. His central thesis is that authentic Christian leadership must be God-centered, finding its definition, priorities, and patterns in the nature, character, and purpose of God. Without ignoring secular theory (which often draws its ideas from biblical truth!), Johnson keeps his focus on this theocentric model of leadership. This book is highly recommended for those wishing to go beyond leadership fads and slogans to sound biblical principles.'

'Leadership and theology. Typically it is assumed these are two separate fields. However, into the storm of leadership material, Johnson offers a book that roots leadership in God himself. God defines leadership. I'm thankful for a leadership book that leans so heavily into the doctrine of God, Christ, and his Word.'

'At last, a book on Christian leadership built on a theological foundation buttressed by careful biblical interpretation. It is neither an exercise in theory nor a pragmatic how-to book. It is a serious book about a critical issue for the church. John Johnson's rich experience as a leader, pastor, and teacher enlivens his biblical thinking at every turn. This book should be shelved in every pastor's library and used in every Christian seminary.'

'When I was in my late twenties, I was put in a leadership position in a large nonprofit. I was in over my head. I took a leadership class at seminary from Dr. Johnson, and he (and the class) was a literal godsend. With warmth, wisdom, and kindness, Dr. Johnson helped me center myself in Christ and grow as a leader. Rooted Leadership is an amazing book that will help you--whenever you are in your leadership journey--to grow in character, competence, and wisdom as a leader. Highly recommended.'

'Einstein is reputed to have said that if he had only one hour to solve a problem on which his life depended, he would spend the first fifty-five minutes determining the proper question to ask. Why? Because if he could put his finger on the right question, he would be able to solve the problem itself in less than five minutes. If Einstein is correct, then author John Johnson has done a great service by posing eleven penetrating questions to the subject of leadership. More significantly, Johnson draws on the wisdom of Scripture to identify the most helpful answers. And the answers are surprising, turning conventional 'leadership wisdom' on its head. This book is a must-read for those who yearn for a deeper understanding of biblical leadership . . . and for all would-be skeptics who are tired of worn-out cliches and one-size-fits-all formulas.'

'Dr. John Johnson not only teaches leadership and writes on the subject but also has experience in global leadership in the church and in parachurch ministry. As a mentor to leaders, Johnson knows the questions that leaders are asking and the ones that they don't know to ask. He understands the challenges that leaders face in today's world. The book you are holding in your hands is a fresh spring of water in the dry desert. More than ever, our culture needs rooted, sound leadership that is grounded on a solid foundation, leadership that will inspire and give vision and hope. This book is a must-read for any student of leadership in the church who wishes to emulate Jesus as our leader par excellence.'

'A refreshing and fascinating book on leadership! Rooted Leadership is both profound and easy to read. John Johnson does an amazing job in giving his readers a balanced scriptural view compared and contrasted with world leaders' misunderstanding and misusing leadership for their own gain. For those of us living in the Middle East, what struck me most is the redefining of power in chapter 9: an eye-opening theology of power, where power is 'God-centered' and should be assumed for the good of the world. It is best described as such: the power of God is less about prideful achievements and more about acts of humility. This is a must-read for everyone assuming a leadership role and desires to advance the work of the kingdom!'

Product Details

  • Imprint: Zondervan
  • On Sale: 2022-06-14
  • Pages: 304
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Publication Date: 2022-06-14
  • Trim Size: 162.000mm x 238.000mm x 16.000mm
  • Weight: 584.000gr
  • Category 1 : RELIGION / Christian Church / Leadership
  • Category 2 : RELIGION / Christian Life / Professional Growth
  • Category 3 : RELIGION / Leadership
  • Category 4 : RELIGION / Christian Ministry / Pastoral Resources