“Culture or Scripture: How do we understand our roles as men and fathers?”

As I type these brief thoughts to men this Father’s Day weekend, know that I’m admonishing myself as well as those who will read this blog-post.

Today’s culture disparages men—making fun of them, attempting to sensitize them into femininity, and/or ridiculing them.  In contrast, the Bible articulates a view of manhood that is thrilling, adventurous, and challenging.

Here are my admonitions:

  • Be adventurous in your faith.  Men like Abraham and Moses faced daunting tasks where the path in front of them was dark and uncertain.  But they both were able to walk in the light because they were ordering their steps by the light of the One whom they followed.
  • Be a courageous warrior.  Men like Gideon and David fought and won glorious battles for their people.  They faced an enemy who appeared to be invincible, and yet they won because they were under orders from their Heavenly General.  There are too many weak-kneed, insecure men who claim the name of Christ.  The church needs men who are warriors for the truth and relentless in the face of culture, the devil, and sin in order to win the hearts of their families and stand strong in the gospel of Christ.
  • Be a true man—a grown up man.  Paul said in 1 Corinthians 13 that when he became a man, he put away childish things.  Too many men (in terms of age) in our culture are nothing more than little boys with their toys (video games, hobbies, sports) that they have not outgrown.  Now, I’m an advocate of outlets and believe that men should have healthy outlets that can include some of the above activities.  But true men take ownership, get a job, earn a paycheck, develop responsible habits, and set aside the games of their childhood.  Our homes and our churches are handicapped by the boyish tendencies of many of the males in their congregations.
  • Be a disciple and a leader of disciples.  The twelve men who followed Jesus could not help but pick up on Jesus’ character, habits, and nature.  Likewise, whenever we see Paul on his missionary journeys, he is always with others he is either teaching or learning from or both.  If you want to be a man who leaves a legacy, then find someone godly to emulate.  But don’t just learn from someone else, lead others to emulate your walk with Christ.  Not sure where to start?  Start by discipling your family. Lead in family devotions, pray together, even let your family catch you having your personal quiet time.
  • Be chivalrous, attentive, and helpful in your home.  Eve was given to Adam to be his helpmeet.  In other words Adam and Eve were partners in the task of multiplying and ruling the earth.  That means for us to be godly men and fathers we should partner with our spouses in the roles and responsibilities in our homes.  Godly, adventurous men can do housework, change diapers, and can serve their wife instead demand to be served.  Biblical dads put the needs of their wives and children ahead of their own.
  • Be a man known for the gospel.  Paul was indebted to preach the gospel.  His life’s mission was to take the gospel to the unbelievers across the Roman world.  There is no better legacy than an eternal one.  Great men, great husbands, great fathers are those who have won friends, co-workers, family members, sons, and daughters to Jesus Christ through the gospel.

Males tend to dream of challenges.  That’s just the way God made us.  To be a biblical man is a grand challenge—but a grand challenge that is eternally worthwhile.  Will you be a man in the image of our culture or a biblical man being transformed into the image of Christ?

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