Men, Be Men

I was listening to a sermon by the ever inflammatory, but often very right Mark Driscoll about biblical masculinity. In his straightforward way he explained what a godly men should look like. Matt Chandler, the pastor of The Village Church in Dallas, TX has preached a very similar sermon, though he is a little less abrasive. In both of these sermons they talk about the purpose that God gave man at after creation.
The setting is something like this…God creates the world full of plants and animals. In the midst of this God puts a well trimmed and beautiful garden. God puts man in the garden and says: “Make the rest of the world look like this.” No surprise that God said he was going to need a helper and a whole lot of kids.
What I think is interesting about this idea is that many young men today want things to be easy. Yet easy is the last thing that Man was created for. Even prior to the Fall man is given work, work that will take him from his first breath to his last. He will work 6 days a week.
Sadly, Adam fails to act as the head of his wife, his wife eats of the fruit and he takes it from her…seriously Adam, control your woman! After the Fall the work is not only long, it is harder than ever. Now, no matter how hard Adam works, and no matter how rightly he acts, the world will literally war against him.
It is the same for men today. None of us do everything right, but even if we did our lives would be full of warring. Creation fights against us, all of our projects will be marked with difficulty at some time or another. Even our own bodies will fight us with exhaustion, sickness, and pain.
Men today tend to look at this and say that it simply isn’t worth the effort. Why work so hard for so long for no reward?
The answer is that working so hard for so long is the reward. The work in itself is the reward when we realize that it is what God has made us for. In the words of Thomas Hobbes, human life is “nasty, brutish, and short”, and then we die. And in many ways Hobbes is exactly right. Life is at best an extremely difficult journey. And while there is joy in the journey, there is also no end of heartache. The romantic idea of happily ever after does not exist. We move from one battle in life to another without end and often without any rest in between.
Life for a Christian man is, and should be, exhausting. When men live life according the Scripture, there should be no energy left to sin! Of course, none of us can do that. That is why Christ had to come and live it for us. That’s why He had to die for us. That’s why He had to rise again for us. So that in the end we can receive the reward even though we fail all the time. Our rest and “happily ever after” comes after we die! For real men this is not something to run from, it is something to embrace. Think of the challenge! It is greater than any challenge any man, real or fictional, has ever faced! It is greater than slaying giants and winning wars. Greater than scaling mountains and crossing oceans. It is greater than reaching the stars.
It is loving the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and loving your neighbor as yourself.

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