|Men| of God

Posted on March 12, 2010 by

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I want to talk about something that may be counter-cultural, but it is something that is crippling lives. I wish I could sit down with every man, look you in the eye and tell you that “You are the Glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 11:7). Ok that may seem weird, and if we were having coffee, beer, or some common meeting place drink, I would unpack that for you personally. In lieu of that I will relate to you something I read today.

In Mark Driscoll’s e-book “P-rn again Christian”, he tells us that as “God’s Man” we are “ the image and glory of God.”

“You are not an animal. You are the glory of God.

You are not a pervert. You are the glory of God.

You are not an addict. You are the glory of God.

You are not a victim. You are the glory of God.

You are not a fool. You are the glory of God.

Jesus, the god-man who radiated the Father’s glory perfectly, has made it possible

for you to be the glory of God. Jesus your King, Warrior, and Lord hung upon his cross

in your place to atone for all of your sins, including sexual perversion (Col. 2:13–15). If

you repent of your sin, Jesus will forgive you for it and cleanse you from it, thereby taking

away your guilt, shame, defeat, and filth (1 John 1:9; Zech. 3:1–9).”

This hit me hard, because these are things that have been drilled into our heads from an early age and it robs us of truth, and undermines a fair amount of drive and ambition. Most of the time we don’t even realize that these lies are affecting how we live and view ourselves. To be clear, I am not talking about self-esteem, which has caused a plague of self-worship and an ego-centric culture. I am talking about a biblical view of Self.

One of the glaring lies that we overcome is that we are perverts, in Jesus we are men of God and not perverts any longer. It’s because He has sent the Holy Spirit to empower us that we can overcome the flesh and the world and stand as pure. Sometimes we see this as a far off goal to be obtained someday, or at some Milestone in our faith, especially we younger men. But we have encouragement in 1 Timothy 4:12 “Don’t let anyone look down on you because of your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe.”

One reason that this is a far off goal for so many is because we believe another lie, that we are fools. We see it all over the media and we have bought the lie hook line and sinker. One of the major ways that men are depicted is an incompetent moron. The other depiction that has become mainstream, and one that I think falls into this category, is the eternal adolescent. As young men, or even boys, we begin to believe that this is what we are. Our thoughts and opinions are stupid, and at best we can be mediocre at a job and hope to ride “the boys club” to a managerial position. Our personal lives are abandoned to finding an independent woman who will settle for us and then we coast through marriage and fatherhood disconnected and serving only the most base of functions. JUNK!! Utter crap!

Through Jesus “We have not a spirit of timidity but one of power and love and discipline.” (2 Tim. 1:7)

This is not to belittle women at all; rather it is to help men realize that they are more than an ATM or a source of manual labor.

In a previous post I talked about some podcasts I listen to, see specifically

–          Matt Chandler – The Role of Men Pts 1-3 (8/12 -8/26/05)

–          Mark Driscoll – Men in Marriage – The Trial series.

Some men may be offended by the way they address us at times. Recognize that they are trying to motivate a very stubborn group of people who are predisposed to not listen and to be complacent in… well almost everything.

This level of apathy that we have reached can be because we have been emasculated by the church, or see the church as a “women’s place” where everything is girly and doesn’t connect at any level. Some Men respond to this by withdrawing and be a seat warmer; others comply and become effeminate and, practically, are not fulfilling the masculine role God has given them.

I apologize to those of you who have been at a church that caters to women and neglects that men exist beyond cooking us bacon one Saturday a month.

Those men who have decided to conquer everything they encounter, and tear down everything and everyone around them until they are the biggest thing in their lives, have bought a different lie. We are not just animals that are slaves to impulses and the need to dominate. We are the image and glory of God. And we need to respect God’s creation and treat others as the scriptures direct, and not take one passage out of context and demand that women submit to your sinful need to be their God.

As a side to churches; in a lecture from Acts 29 one researcher said that when a youth come to Christ the chances that the rest of the family will be saved is about 15%, when the woman of the family comes to Christ it jumps to more that 50%, but when the man of the house is saved close to 90% of the time the entire family comes to faith. Not to reduce people to numbers, but when we are talking about saving souls shouldn’t we be focusing on the Heads of families, so that entire households may come to salvation?

What is a Man?

Is it all about sports, cars, building things, killing things, and red meat? No.

I am a musician with an artistic temperament, I don’t care much for conventional sports, I know about cars but don’t want to spend every weekend working on one, I don’t like killing things that have eyelashes (birds and fish are fine), I do enjoy building things, and red meat.

So what should a man be like? Jesus. The real Jesus, not the one that looks like an Anglo-Saxon with feathered hair and a dove on his shoulder, and preached only peace and love. The Jesus that grew up a carpenter’s son, studied the word of God with a veracity, who “spoke with authority”, and who exercised righteous anger (the temple, the fig tree, etc…), who had deep relationships with others (John called himself “the one whom [Jesus] loved”), who sang to God (In the upper room Jesus led the disciples in “a hymn”),  had emotional depth ( when his friend Lazarus died, “Jesus Wept”, even though He knew He was going to raise him). This short list doesn’t even begin to relate the character of Jesus. But He is the physical image of the invisible God, and we follow Him and His example.

Paul tells the people of Corinth to follow him as he follows Christ. That may seem a bit pretentious, but it’s not. It’s modeling for us a practical way to walk in the way of Christ. Find those that are further along than you and emulate them. More accurately, those of us that are more mature in the faith need to be pouring ourselves into those that are less mature. The people of Corinth  didn’t approach Paul saying “we need someone to follow that can direct us in how to follow Christ.” Paul comes to them and says “Ok. You aren’t getting it. Follow ME as I follow Christ.” Also, the disciples didn’t find Jesus and beg Him to let them come along and forfeit their jobs, and birthrights. He came to them and called them to follow.

This is another reason that men don’t rise up to their full potential. They don’t have someone who they respect looking at them across the table and saying “You are NOT a fool. You are the glory of God.” They have no one to tell them when they have done something immature, and when they need to find the courage to press on. We need someone to tell us the hard things in a forceful way, because we brush things off far too easily.

Women –

Men need you to find what biblical womanhood is, and stick to it. One of the biggest mistakes that I think a woman can make is to step in where there man is ignoring/failing his biblical calling, instead of encouraging faithfulness in her man and trusting in God.

Looking at scriptures we can see how this works out; Adam and Eve, Abraham and Sarah, David and Michal.

Be an agent of encouragement, and a faithful example of what a Believer should be.

“He who finds a wife finds a good thing, and obtains favor from the Lord” (Proverbs 18:22)

In conclusion

Men, we need to be casting aside all that hinders and racing after Christ. Attack the Lies that shape your life, don’t just address the symptoms (sins). This is a fight, a battle, a race. Don’t let yourself be beaten down, fight to win.

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Posted in: Praxis, Theology