Mentoring by a godly man is the biblical pattern for training leaders.

Mentoring is the discipling relationship between a leader and a trainee. The biblical pattern is relational first, then academic. We see this with  Moses and Joshua, Elijah and Elisha, Christ and his disciples, Paul and Timothy. Yet these were intellectually astute for they produced literature that forms part of the Bible today.

This diagram illustrates: 


Notice the mentoring circle is first and larger than the academic. Though the academic is indispensable, it is secondary.

If a person is well-discipled but lacks knowledge, he will be motivated to learn. What if he has a dozen diplomas but his devotional life is poor, his family in disorder and disputes with his colleagues? He is useless for leadership despite his knowledge.

The mentor's method

Modeling and teaching are the mentor's tools. Modeling means, "Watch me do it and then copy me." Teaching means, "This is why we do it that way."

How the program works: The Mentoring Covenant

The mentor establishes a relationship with the trainee, evaluates and encourages him while helping him develop a ministry. The academic part follows along with this. The trainee is committed to openness with the mentor in all areas of development, personal as well as ministry.

The Mentoring Covenant is explained in Roger Smalling's book on Christian Leadership.


The trainee receives evaluations periodically in the four areas in the diagram, while taking one academic class per week.

The academic part is important, which is why we have a curriculum of studies. What we try to avoid, however, is making the academic primary.