A Biblical Style of Leadership
April 1, 1981
Gene Getz and Larry Richards are good friends who have sparked ideas off each other for more than a decade. Both men have taught in Christian colleges. When Gene was at Dallas Seminary in the early seventies, he used in his courses Larry's book, A New Face for the Church, a process that resulted in his own book, Sharpening the Focus of the Church.
But about eight years ago, the paths of these two men diverged. Gene's students kept challenging him to put his stimulating ideas into action. The small group he began blossomed into a home church, which has expanded into four congregations and eight branch churches. Through all that expansion, and now in his role as director of the Dallas Center for Church Renewal, Gene's ideas about how to run a church have modified as he has wrestled with the problems of growth.
Larry left his teaching position in the Wheaton Graduate School, and for the same eight years worked with churches of all types throughout the nation. He is the coordinator of the activities of the Dynamic Church Ministries team, and co-author of A Theology of Church Leadership (reviewed in LEADERSHIP, Volume 11 Number 1). In this book he states that authoritarian and managerial attitudes are not appropriate to leaders of the church.
Knowing Gene and Larry have come to a place of disagreement about certain points in Larry's book, we asked the men to dialogue with each other. Editors Terry Muck and Paul Robbins, with publisher Harold Myra, met with Gene and Larry at Chicago's O'Hare Airport. There were plenty of sharp disagreements between Gene and Larry, but seldom have we seen two people disagree so sharply yet still maintain an atmosphere of trusting camaraderie.
GENE GETZ: Larry, in my experience with growing churches, ...