A word to men...
by Pastor Thomas Balzamo
Just take responsibility! If you’re wanting to learn about genuine manhood, this might just be the first step. Men often don’t like to admit their inadequacies and we don’t like changing our minds. And yet these steps could be the manliest things of all. Taking extreme ownership regarding faults, failures, inability, and sin (yes, sin!) is manhood as God intended. Why? Here are three reasons:
Becoming a Christian man requires admitting I’ve over-estimated myself. Many men tend to have inflated views of their own abilities. No matter how selfish, deceptive, lazy, or immoral men can be in this world, we still convince ourselves that when we stand before God that He’ll be impressed. And yet we’ve missed a crucial point- we’ve compared ourselves with people we believe are worse than us. God will not compare you to them. He will compare you to the ultimate man, the perfect man- Jesus Christ. Frankly, you don’t stack up to him and neither do I. God is not going to count your sins and weigh them against your good deeds. He will only know you as what you are at your very nature- a sinner like everyone else. Consider Romans 3:12, Romans 3:23, and Romans 5:12 below.
Romans 3:12 “They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.”
Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God”
Romans 5:12 “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned”
Becoming a Christian man requires admitting there is something I cannot do for myself. Most men insist that they’re good men and that they can accomplish anything they put their minds to. But consider Romans 6:23, Titus 3:5-6, and Ephesians 2:8-9 below. According to those verses, there is one major thing NO man can do for himself- put his own soul into a right standing before a holy God. So, listen up men. I’ll give it to you straight. Do the hard thing. Change your mind. Admit you’re a sinner and you deserve God’s judgment, and believe upon his grace toward you. There is NOTHING ELSE you can do to become a Christian man, like it or not. Jesus did the hard thing we could not do. He died in our place (1 Peter 3:18a below). He was our substitute. And He can place you into right standing with God if you put your trust in Him to do so, not in yourself.
Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Titus 3:5-6 “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost; Which he shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour”
Ephesians 2:8-9 “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”
1 Peter 3:18 “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God…”
Romans 3:24 “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus”
Romans 10:13 “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Becoming a Christian man will lead to me bringing myself under the command of the Lord. Changing your mind and putting your trust in Jesus to place you in right standing with God is the best thing that can happen to you. But what about after that? The call to the Christian life, to Christian manhood, is not a call to nothing. It’s not like a flu shot where you get it and move on with life as usual. Christianity, in particular, Christian manhood, is a higher calling. Consider Ephesians 2:10 and Titus 2:11-12 below. Jesus is the perfect man and our substitute because of who He is- God in the flesh (see Colossians 2:9 below). This makes Him the rightful Lord over all, including our habits, choices, and everything else about us. Christian manhood then becomes a discipline we pursue under the command of a Lord who is better at leadership than any Coach, Instructor, or General among men. Men don’t often like to be under leadership because the leaders are always regular men like us with sins, inadequacies, and faults like everyone else. But not Jesus! Because He’s God, He’s the perfect Lord- the perfect Leader. It’s an honor like no other to be His servant, His soldier, and part of His family.
Ephesians 2:10 “For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”
Titus 2:11-12 “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world”
Colossians 2:9 “For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.”
1 Corinthians 16:13 “Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong.”
There you have it, men. Three mandatory things for beginning the Christian life and becoming a Christian man. According to the Bible, this is the path to Christian manhood. This means becoming a Disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ. I’m not going to mince words with you here. A man doesn’t come to God his own way. He must only come God’s way or no way at all. Consider what Jesus said in John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." Your journey into Christian manhood begins with how you respond to that statement. Choose well.