In the old covenant (OC), priviledged anointing of Holy Spirit rested on selected males like – prophet, priest, king and so on. Leaders were set apart, they were special from the people. There was hierarchical structure.
The good news is that on Pentecost day, when the Holy Spirit was poured on common people, the hierachical structure evaporated.
Joel 2:28-32 The Message
"And that's just the beginning: After that—
"I will pour out my Spirit on every kind of people:Your sons will prophesy, also your daughters.Your old men will dream, your young men will see visions.I'll even pour out my Spirit on the servants, men and women both…….
In old covenant (OC), only Spirit-anointed prophets prophesy; in new covenant (NC) all can prophesy.
OC -only special people can lead, NC – ordinary old and young can lead.
OC-male lead, NC –female and male can lead.
Old covenant leadership was given to special class of people but in New Covenant, leadership is assigned by Holy Spirit whom He chooses
Leadership structure in NC emphasises on functions through Holy Spirit (giftings) and is not based on offices or selected few or managerial styles or rankings or titles or qualifications.
Paul's letters to christians were addressed to the body of Christ, never to a leader or leaders, surprisingly though– most likely because responsibility of variety of ministry functions was already taken upon by ordinary christians, not on selected few or ranks. Please check it out for Paul's addresses to the Galatians, Thessalonians, Romans, Colossians, Ephesians, Philippians.
e.g. the Corinthian church was a messy church, but Paul's letters to the Corinthian christians were to the community, not to leaders – he expected the community to settle their issues. However,we expect Paul to address the letters to the leaders.
1 Corinthians 1 The Message
1-2I, Paul, have been called and sent by Jesus, the Messiah, according to God's plan, along with my friend Sosthenes. I send this letter to you in God's church at Corinth, believers cleaned up by Jesus and set apart for a God-filled life. I include in my greeting all who call out to Jesus, wherever they live. He's their Master as well as ours
2 Corinthians 1 The Messagee
1-2I, Paul, have been sent on a special mission by the Messiah, Jesus, planned by God himself. I write this to God's congregation in Corinth, and to believers all over Achaia province. May all the gifts and benefits that come from God our Father and the Master, Jesus Christ, be yours! Timothy, someone you know and trust, joins me in this greeting.
Pentecost has changed everything after Jesus' death and resurrection - His Holy Spirit is upon all of us and not for priviledged few. He has called all of us into a variety of giftings so that we can function in the body of Christ - so that the church can manifest the manifold wisdom of God - this is the New Covenant church, you and me included.
The priviledge of hearing from God for selected few in the OC is now given to you and me in the New Covenant. The mediator role performed by the OC leadership is transferred to Jesus in New Covenant, for He is the only mediator between man and God and not to leaders. Praise God.
Cult leadership, abusive leadership arise because some christians unknowingly empower them due to misunderstanding about change of leadership in New Covenant after the finished work of Jesus on the cross. Do not be shortchanged! :)). Lack of knowledge of God will bring us into captivity at our own peril in our christian walk. Nobody can walk your christian walk! You have a choice to choose which direction to go :))