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What it means to be a man

Clint Decker | Hope for Today

What is a man?  It could be confusing answering that question because our society is changing quickly on this.

Little boys should have their fathers to show them what a man is.  They also have other men in their household, family, neighborhood and others like teachers and coaches.  And culturally they also are impacted by their favorite athletes, actors and musicians.  In some cases, the examples might be good, in other cases, not so much.

Is there a singular standard that describes what a man is and how he should live?  Yes.  God has provided that standard because He created man.  The story of man’s origin is found in the Bible in its opening pages, in the book of Genesis.  Read the first two chapters and you will find these eight descriptions about what it means to be a man.

  1. A man (if the Lord will’s) receives the woman God has provided to be his wife (Gen. 2:18-25).
  2. A man serves and cherishes his wife.  (Gen. 2:24)
  3. A man and his wife raise children.  (Gen. 1:28)
  4. A man works and provides for himself and his family.  (Gen. 2:15)
  5. A man leads.  (Gen. 2:15)
  6. A man protects and takes care of what he has been given by God.  (Gen. 2:15)
  7. A man exercises self-control.  (Gen. 2:17)
  8. A man walks with God.  (Gen. 1:7-8)

The majority of men do not live this way though.  Why?  Because of this . . . “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate.  Then the eyes of both were opened . . .” (Genesis 3:6-7).

READ: Forgive and be Forgiven

This account lays out how the first disease entered our world and affected the human race, which was the disease of sin.  It totally altered men causing them to reject God, act on selfish impulses, destroy what God has given, become passive followers, become absent in helping to raise their children, become unemployed and not provide for their family, serve their own interests and only remain with his wife until he chooses to divorce.  Sin completely corrupted God’s original purpose for men, flipping upside down everything God intended him to be.

How can a man live differently, like he was created to do?  How can he redeem what sin is destroying?  To live as God wants is impossible.  We cannot do it on our own.  We need help outside ourselves to change us into the men we must be.  That help comes from Jesus.  He alone is our hope.  Jesus died and rose again to save us from ourselves.  He came to rescue us.  Call out to Jesus to make you the man you were created to be.

A prayer for you – “Lord God, I pray you will deliver men from the sin within them.  Lift their eyes toward you Jesus.  May they call upon you to change them into the men you destine them to be.  In Jesus name. Amen.” 

–Clint Decker is President of Great Awakenings. Hope for Today is a nationally syndicated column. Please share your comment or question with Clint at cdecker@greatawakenings.org.   

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