Traits of a True Leader :: By Mike Taylor

“This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcasses of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel” (1 Samuel 17:46).

Who is the epitome of the natural born leader, apart from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, that is found in your Bible? Of all the heroes of the Bible, and there are many, there stands no greater man who was a leader of men, than David. You don’t need to say, King David, because any reader and researcher of the truths of the Bible will instantly know who you are talking about, when you say the name “David.” The name David is found over 1000 times in the Bible and from my research, there is no other person in the Bible called David. So his name is unique in that sense. Why was David a natural born leader? In this message, I want to take a brief look, for lack of space and time, at this leader of Israel and what it takes to be a leader as personified by this historical legend found in God’s Word.

I want to examine and compare what David was gifted with and compare it to our modern time of “leaders” that have been given the authority by mutual consent to lead us in these last days. Are they leaders, or just straw men? (That we have to decide.)

David and Goliath

You will find the account of being introduced to a young shepherd boy called, David in 1st Samuel. As you read, the Bible speaks of Samuel seeking out a replacement for King Saul as commanded by God. You read of his anointing to be king, as God had chosen him and led Samuel to him. But in the 17th chapter of 1st Samuel, we are given a riveting story that all have heard of, a small boy against a giant of a man, David against Goliath─the champion of the warring nation of Philistia. David had gone to take food to his older brothers who were following King Saul in his army, and on that day they were being challenged by this warrior of the Philistines, called Goliath and had been for 40 straight days. The Bible describes him and his armor and obviously the man was huge in appearance and fear fell upon the army of Israel because of him (1 Samuel 17:3-1).

Now David heard the blasphemy coming from this giant of a man when he entered the camp of Israel:

“And David left his carriage in the hand of the keeper of the carriage, and ran into the army, and came and saluted his brethren. And as he talked with them, behold, there came up the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, out of the armies of the Philistines, and spake according to the same words: and David heard them” (1 Samuel 17:22-23).

David inquired of what was to be done about this uncircumcised Philistine that dared to challenge the army of the Living God by blaspheming His name and His army with threats. This made David’s brothers angry with him, as they considered David haughty and prideful. How dare he come into the camp of Israel and make statements of why he has not anyone come up against this pagan warrior and not taken him out? What would be the reward of one doing so, he asked? His eldest brother chided and rebuked him because of perceived arrogance. After all he was just a boy, and who was he to question the King’s army over the matter? When asked by Saul when presented to him as being only a youth, David proclaimed:

“Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God” (1 Samuel 17:36).

David was an uncomplicated man even at this young age. Men of reason, men of common sense, or men of an analytical mind would analyze this situation to death, instead of taking action. David was not arrogant or prideful, but was single minded…not simple minded. He knew who he was. David knew God had been with him when a lion and a bear had attacked his father’s sheep and David caught them and slew them. If you have ever wrestled with even with your dog, you know how strong a large dog is. How much more would it be to chase down a bear or a lion with a knife and kill them barehanded?

Difficult? Yes, but that term never entered David’s mind, I’m sure, as he relayed how God had delivered him from the paws of the lion and the bear, so who was this Philistine by comparison? What David was not, was double-minded. Men who are single minded, being sure of themselves, and know who they are, these men are seen as arrogant, prideful, or cock sure of themselves. To many they appear reckless. But James speaks of this in James chapter 1.5-8:

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.”

David was not double minded. He knew who he was, as mentioned, and he was a man of action. To some, this is misunderstood, as this type of single mindedness, this audacity, this perceived recklessness, required something David possessed. That possession that formed him into a great leader…was namely FAITH. David had faith in God. Faith in God provides strength to take on challenges that other men would turn away from. Faith produces a sense of audacity, assuming authority and envisions victory. Read on in this 1st book of Samuel and the interaction that David and Goliath had. Here Goliath railed against David for being just a youth:

“And the Philistine said unto David, Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves? And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And the Philistine said to David, Come to me, and I will give thy flesh unto the fowls of the air, and to the beasts of the field” (1 Samuel 17:43-44).

Notice David did not shrink from these threats, but ran to meet the army of this giant, to do battle with him. On the way, he stopped to pick up five smooth stones for his sling. I have often wondered if he was sure of himself, why did he pick up five stones, instead of just one? Even David knew his limitations, as he could miss with the first stone. Why be unprepared for battle? So he picked up five stones, instead of just one. One thing a leader does is that which is required of him and in doing so, a leader is prepared.

A true leader knows when it is time to stop talking, stop negotiating, and knows when it is time to draw blood. A national leader knows when to fight and draw blood.

“So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but there was no sword in the hand of David. Therefore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled” (1 Samuel 17:50-51).

No one wants to take another person’s life, but in a battle of nations that leads to war and freedom is at stake, then a true leader knows when to shut up, and take decisive action. David was that leader. Another trait of a true leader is a person who handles himself wisely. 1st Samuel chapter 18, records of David behaving wisely before the people when Saul made him captain over part of his army and this trait proved to unsettle King Saul and the king feared him:

“And Saul was afraid of David, because the LORD was with him, and was departed from Saul.

Therefore Saul removed him from him, and made him his captain over a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people. And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the LORD was with him. Wherefore when Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he was afraid of him. But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and came in before them” (1 Samuel 18:12-16).

So far we have listed the attributes of a true leader. So let’s recap up to this point. A leader is

-Single minded, not double minded:

-A man of faith.




-Assumes victory.

-Acts decisively and quickly.

-Knows when to shed blood or to kill.

-Manages behavior wisely.

-Attains wisdom.

-He is a fighter.


There is an old Texas law on the books, (I’m not from Texas, but there is the law) that if a person is drawn into court from killing a man, then a defense for his action would be to prove that the person was so evil and wicked, that the person “just needed killing.” In my opinion, there are some that are unredeemable because Satan is so prevalent in their minds and spirits. A national leader knows when it is time to stop talking and take action, even if it leads to the shedding of blood. In WW II during the invasion of Normandy the German’s were unprepared for such a maneuver, as it was deemed reckless, audacious, and dangerous to anyone who would try.

General Eisenhower was that man who was like David; single minded, sure of himself, and a man of faith that saw victory. A man like this, like David or like Eisenhower can be seen as intimidating, because of their perceived recklessness, but men like these have something else that goes along with faith, perceived recklessness, single mindedness, and that is they are realistic in their actions with being prepared for battle. One other thing that a true leader has and has not been mentioned is:


I wondered about what the Hebrew name of David meant, so I looked it up. The meaning of the name of David in Hebrew is “beloved, friend”. To be beloved and a friend, you have to love and be a friend. David was full of love for his countrymen. It is written that Jonathan and David loved one another. Not in the modern term that men love other men in a homosexual way, but a male bonding of friends can be as strong as any relationship of humankind. It is written in 1st Samuel of this bond that David had with Jonathan, King Saul’s son.

“And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father’s house. Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul” (1 Samuel 18:1-3).

To love another person, as you love yourself, is a trait of a true leader. This is exemplified when David was running from Saul, that he wished for a drink of water from the well at Bethlehem.

“And David said with longing, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate!” So the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless he would not drink it, but poured it out to the LORD. And he said, “Far be it from me, O LORD, that I should do this! Is this not the blood of the men who went in jeopardy of their lives?” Therefore he would not drink it. These things were done by the three mighty men” (2 Samuel 23:15-17).

These men loved David so much, that they battled their way through the Philistine line and fetched David a drink of the well water at Bethlehem. David would not drink it. Why? Because he loved these men so much, that he did not want them to risk their lives for him this way. So he poured it out, as a gesture of wanting them to keep themselves safe, instead of risking their very lives for him like this. To David, he loved these men, as he did Jonathan. A leader has this, the greatest trait of leadership. A leader loves his men, his countrymen, and his nation of citizens.


I said above that we need another David in these the end of days on this earth. Can we find another David to lead us, or is the concept lost due to wickedness in high places? In the last fifty years we have had weak leaders, and we have had strong leaders. The former, I would say would fit Jimmy Carter. Although raised Baptist, and spoke of Christianity, I feel he was not a strong leader in the embodiment of a King David. After him, was a perceived strong leader in the presidency of Ronald Reagan. Many times, I heard the man mentioning the God of our Bible, and make personal statements of personal faith of a nation under God is a strong nation. Remember the statement he made? “If we ever forget to be a nation under God, then I fear we will be a nation gone under”. My friends, no truer words were ever spoken. Our nation has politically and spiritually, through our leaders that we have so haphazardly elected, have thrown God under the bus, so to speak. Since President Reagan, we have been on a downhill slide, either Democrat or Republican, it makes no difference, as our leaders are a reflection of our national character. Can we say that we have a leader today that loves his countrymen, or just assumes power over the rest of us?

Some call the present resident of the White House, “Liar in Chief”. When I look at the debauchery that forms this man’s leadership, do I see a leader in the form of David, king of Israel with all the attributes listed above or do I see other traits that spell trouble for our country?

“And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer” (Revelation 6:2).

Now I hesitate to call this man in our White House, the opening of the 1st seal…but the man pictured here conquers by a bow without arrows…meaning he conquers by deceit and pleasant words. Has Barry resorted to falsehoods and outright lies to attain rulership over us? I listen to B.O. (I hate to mention his name), and I hear eloquent words that have no substance. They speak of one thing, but do another, as lying lips create a false sense of security and cunningly hide the reality of a deception that will bring loss and pain. Though his voice sounds gracious, the liar is full of countless wickedness. He is particularly wicked by selling himself as a benefactor while intending to do evil. I think that describes this “Liar in Chief” so the title fits.

I point to the deception of recent reports of a president who borders on treason with high crimes and misdemeanors, lying to the citizens of the United States of America. Cases in point, and will list only the most grievous of his lying words:

-Murder of four Americans in Benghazi (they all knew).

-Wire tapping of Americans through the NSA.

-IRS targeting of Americans for political purposes.

-Failing to enforce laws that he does not like.

-Executive edicts that circumvent the legislative branch and the separation of powers.

-Unelected czars in the administration, violating the rule of law.

-Giving aid and comfort to our national enemies.

-Failing to support our allies and giving foreign aid to our adversaries.

-Full knowledge of Americans loosing their health coverage over Obamacare.

-Attempted destruction of the 2nd Amendment.

-Murder of our border agent in Fast and Furious scandal.

-Gun running through Libya to rebels in Syria (Al-Qaeda).

I know I could go on and on and list even more, but you get the idea.

I get many e-mails asking me my take on if this president is the coming Antichrist. My answer is, “I don’t know,” but I know that he is anti-God, no matter if he mouths the words “Christian” as it means nothing to him. He does have some of the attributes of the man of lawlessness. Evidence points that this man is a closet Muslim sympathizer, as he was brought up in that environment, and a bi-sexual at best, a homosexual at worst, with a family as a front. I know the man came out of no where, no background, except as a community organizer and a senator that voted present more than he voted and made wild claims for “hope and change”. My question, how is that “hope and change” working out for ya, when you got your bill for insurance on the government health exchange? Talk about sticker shock! Or maybe you lost your health coverage. You know, “The one if you like it, you can keep it” lie?

Now take a look at my list of attributes of a great leader when applied to David and ask yourself, does this man have any of those attributes? Let’s look.

-Single minded, not double minded? (Speaks out he both sides of his mouth.)

-A man of faith (which faith, which God)?

-Realistic, (depends on your point of view).

-Prepared, (for the next lie that misleads the population).

-Authoritative (assumes powers not delegated to him by the constitution).

-Assumes victory (by deceit and half truths).

-Acts decisively and quickly, (depends on which way the wind blows.)

-Knows when to shed blood or to kill, (stand up to Iran, or Syria…? (A waffler worse than Clinton.)

-Manages behavior wisely, (so many stories of impropriety, I’ve lost count).

-Attains wisdom (I wonder who is pulling his strings)?

-Is a fighter…(Oh, they say they will fight for you, but what they mean, they will argue for you, placate you, slight of hand behind your back. Does that describe just about every politician in office in DC today? I believe it does.)

Pardon me if this sounds like a hit piece on the present administration. Biblically, this POTUS fails the test of a true leader. Is it a sign of the debauchery of our national character? Since we have not stood up enmasse and called for his impeachment, then we get what we deserve. When our country was faced with fascism and Nazi-ism, we had a leader, President Eisenhower that stood up for American principles and did what was necessary to preserve our posterity. No, he was not perfect, but neither was David, as he made many mistakes, but judging from the attributes of this man of the biblical account, it is no wonder that he was described as a “man after God’s own heart”. Oh, how I wish for a man like that to rule and reign.

I believe in the near future, on the course we are now headed for at breakneck speed, I believe I will get my heart’s desire in the not so distant future.

“And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (Revelation 19:11,14,15-16).

Then and only then, will we have a True and Righteous Leader, that will embody all the attributes of a leader…so come Lord Jesus…we await your Kingdom…


This is Pastor Mike Taylor, praying for your salvation and the redemption of your soul through Jesus Christ. If there is anything I can pray with you about, counsel you with, or give you more information about this King of Kings which I profess, then drop me a line even if just to listen to your concerns, to or visit me online at God bless you, till we meet at Jesus’ feet.