More Than Just A Few Good Men

For Sunday, June 19 (Father's Day) - Sermon Summary

I remember several years ago being in a local department store with my wife while she was shopping for lingerie. As she was in the fitting room, I found myself not knowing quite what to do with myself. You guys know what that is like. There is no way you can stand by the fitting room, and you certainly don't want to "browse" by yourself. I suppose I could have gone and looked at tools (grunt, grunt) or something more "male," but Laura was not going to be long, so I found a chair by the aisle of the store and sat down to wait. Unfortunately I was surrounded by all kinds of women's undergarments, sitting there looking like I was on display. Three older teenagers walked by and the one muttered (loud enough for me to hear) "Talk about getting your cheap thrills!" The problem is that I was not in a guy place.

More and more it seems that church it is not regarded as a "guy place." I was reading a Barna survey from 2000 which showed that women were far more likely to be involved in spiritual pursuits than were men. There are a lot of reasons why that is probably true. But the reality is that if the church is to be strong now - and pass on strength to the next generation - we need our men to understand that following Christ is not something unmasculine. We need our men to be men. But what kind of men?

In 2 Timothy 2:2, Paul tells us that the church needs faithful men. Men need to be faithful to two things, according to this text: the message (what you have heard from me) and the mission (entrust to faithful men).

First, men need to understand that there is a body of truth that needs to be learned and then lived. Come on guys! We can quote baseball and football statistics, we can rip apart engines, we can work computers, fix things around the house, handle investments - all things that require information. Is it that hard for us to learn what God's Word says? I'm not asking you to be a biblical scholar. But I am calling you to the responsibility of being biblically literate. If we were as thick as TV often portays us, we might have an excuse. But we're not.

Second, men need to understand that they are involved in a mission. In our self-absorbed society, it is rare that people think about leaving a legacy. But the biblical pattern is for men to pass on to other men. There are several times throughout his letters that Paul tells his readers to imitate him. Can you imagine the arrogance? No, it's not arrogance at all. Paul said that because he knew the power of a godly life lived deliberately for the glory of God and the well-being of other believers.

While verbal communication is essential for the church to grow, don't underestimate the power of example. How would Timothy be able to find faithful men? Certainly not by what they profess only! Faithfulness is lived. We need our men to rise to the challenge of being examples of how a follower of Christ lives in this world. Our younger men need the example and encouragement of older men. Our sons need the example of a godly father. In reality, we are all examples - the issue is what we are examples of.

Jesus asked a question that is recorded in Luke 18:8. "When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?" From a strictly human standpoint, He will only find faith on the earth if the church is alive and well. And if the church is not alive and well, the answer is no, he won't find faith on the earth. The church will not be alive and it will not be well without the example of faithful men to set the pace for the next generation. Will you be one of those faithful men?

4 comments:

pete porter said...

Peter,
I can see how it may appear that woman are more involved. They are more communial than men in general. But we have the adiminition to do good works, and that our works will show what manner of men we are, and result in the glory of God. The roles of men and women are different, and both vital. I agree we men need to step up to the plate and take our turn and knock some over the wall.
Be Blessed,
Pete

Peter Bogert said...

The particular survey was here:http://www.barna.org/FlexPage.aspx?Page=BarnaUpdate&BarnaUpdateID=47

Thanks for your comments.

Bud Brown said...

Check out David Murrow's book, Why Men Hate Going to Church.

You are right on target. He's got the data to prove it.

Peter Bogert said...

Thanks for the recommendation, Bud. I've seen the book listed here and there - may check it out.