The New Testament concept of overseership moves beyond human leadership: Leadership says: “I need your attention!” Overseership says: “Behold the Lamb of God!”
Leadership is a human being organizing and/or directing other human beings.
Overseership is a human being lovingly watching over a group of people being led by the living Christ, so that no individual (including himself) usurps Christ’s authority among them.
Leadership directs people. Overseership helps people be directed by the promptings of the Holy Spirit in their heart. Leadership exercises authority from center stage. Overseership guides from the side as people focus on, follow, and obey the living, resurrected Jesus Christ.
Leadership makes decisions. Overseership monitors with spiritual discernment. A basketball coach is an example of leadership. A basketball official is an example of overseership.
Overseership sees over and beyond religion, ritual, sermons, and human effort and creates an atmosphere where Jesus is free to actively work among and direct His people. The goal of overseership is to not quench the Spirit. When the Holy Spirit is quenched, God’s power is shut down. And we are left to rely on human religion, human effort, human programs, and human presentations. That’s why the New Testament commands us to: “Quench not the Spirit.”
Human organizations need human leadership. The Body of Christ desperately needs overseership that facilitates the direct leadership of the living, resurrected Jesus Christ.
(The word for overseers is translated bishops in some New Testament translations.)