Shifting styles of church leadership : Paul's pragmatic leadership style in 1 and 2 Corinthians during the organization of the collection for Jerusalem : words on leadership

02 Jul 2009

This essay focuses on Paul's shifting leadership styles in his relationship with the church in Corinth during the organization of an ecumenical collection for the believers in Jerusalem (cf 1 Cor 16:1-4; 2 Cor 8-9). Paul's basic textual strategy in 2 Corinthians 8-9, which involves the assignment of new roles to the interlocutors, serves to anti-structurally bridge the hierarchical gap between him (as the mild patriarchal figure) and the Corinthians (as his spiritually mature children) within the intratextual discourse. This pragmatic adjustment of the apostle's autocratic leadership role in 1 Corinthians 16, in order to salvage the collection project in Corinth, serves as an example to modern church leaders to take cognizance of the impact of social and ideological contexts on their own styles of leadership.