The Conviction to Lead

Mohler, Albert. The Conviction to Lead. Minneapolis, Minn.: Bethany House Publishers, 2012. 222 pp. $22.99.


In his new book, The Conviction to Lead, Dr. Albert Mohler – president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary – lays out twenty-five foundational principles of leadership. In doing so, he presents a new take on leadership, and he is well-aware that this is not the most common approach to leadership. In fact, he states his goal up front, “my goal is to change the way you think about leadership” (15).

And before one scoffs at this new perspective, one must take into consideration the massive imprint that Dr. Mohler has left on Southern Seminary during his tenure as president. His administration has returned the institution to its theologically conservative roots in the face of great upheaval and opposition. His track record speaks for itself, and when he chooses to speak on the subject of leadership, one will always find a willing listener in me.

Conviction, according to Dr. Mohler, is what is missing from the contemporary leadership discussion. He writes, “Leadership that really matters is convictional” (24). For far too long we have sought to draw a clear line of distinction between what a leader does and what a leader believes. This sharp, marked delineation (and one need not peruse modern history for very long to see this trend stand out), has weakened a generation. Instead, Dr. Mohler argues that beliefs are central to leadership.

“Leadership is all about putting the right beliefs into action, and knowing, on the basis of convictions, what those right beliefs and actions are” (26).

Copious amounts of books have been written on the subject of leadership. For decades, pastors and church leaders have bought into the discussion and have reorganized church models and structures to resemble those of the most successful businesses. In fact, for many pastors, Jim Collins’ Good to Great is required reading. What I appreciate about Dr. Mohler’s book is that it doesn’t attempt to press a synthetic grid upon leadership and force the reader through the mold. Rather, his vision for leadership is as applicable in the secular business world as it is in the context of ministry for the very reason that it starts at the very heart of the matter.

We would do well to take this new perspective on leadership to heart.

Albert Mohler, The Conviction to Lead

I received this book free from the publisher through the Bethany House Publishers book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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