Imagery of Regent people and campus

Dissertation Abstract

Leadership Lessons of Jesus' use of conflict in the gospel of Matthew

Frank A. Wiggin
Regent University

Jesus' use of conflict in the Gospel of Matthew acts as an example and as a means of ascertaining the proper use of conflict by leaders of today. I propose that Jesus uses a form of preemptive conflict rather than acting as a conflict-avoider. While traditional conflict theory and conflict-resolution practitioners strive for mutuality in conflict resolution through "win-win" scenarios, a growing body of literature supports that conflict is healthy for organizations and individuals alike, and should be embraced as a positive influence for organizational effectiveness and personal growth. Jesus' use of conflict in the gospels is examined via biblical exegesis utilizing Robbins (1996a) hermeneutic structure (socio-rhetorical criticism). The exegesis of conflict stories involving Jesus is limited to those found in the Gospel of Matthew.