This post was originally published Sept. 22, 2009.
Matthew 11:12 (AMP)
12 And from the days of John the Baptist until the present time, the kingdom of heaven has endured violent assault, and violent men seize it by force [as a precious prize—a share in the heavenly kingdom is sought with most ardent zeal and intense exertion].
We live in a day that has attempted to blur if not erase gender differences. Our society is teaching us today that there should not be any noticeable distinctions between men and women, except maybe the obvious physical ones and even those are now being blurred. We are being taught that the violence in our society is caused by little boys playing war games and fighting or “shooting” one another. Parents are encouraged to help their boys be gentler and not so rough. Have you ever noticed that boys are drawn to guns, swords, knives, bombs and the like? Do you think they were taught that or is it something that is inherently given to them? I remember as a small child, I loved to dress up like a cowboy with my six-shooter on my hip. My mom would try to keep me out of the trees with my holster on, most of the time with no avail. The other boys in the neighborhood would come over and we would throw those green china berries at each other or at any girl that would walk past. At elementary school the boys would always gain up together and harass the girls in whatever they were doing. Were we just mean? Maybe. We were just being boys and doing what boys did.
Think with me for a few moments. Who are some of the movie heroes? How about John Wayne, James Dean, Sean Connery or Clint Eastwood? What made James Arness as Matt Dillon in Gunsmoke so popular? OK, now I am showing my age. New actors would have to include Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones, or Bruce Willis in Die Hard. How about Mel Gibson in BraveHeart or Vin Diesel in Fast and Furious? Even Tom Hanks has played in roles that would qualify as being a hero (Saving Private Ryan and Castaway). What made these roles and men qualify as heroes? Some of these men have been considered to be very attractive to women, even deemed sexy. Why? They were MEN!!! They were not pansies or momma’s boys. They loved adventure. They loved to fight. And they always got the girl. Every boy growing up has those same desires. Getting the girl comes later than the other two.
What happens to those characteristics in men? Our jobs take the adventure from us. Corporate etiquette takes the fight from us. Therefore we get lazy and lose our masculinity. Maybe not all of us, but many of us do. Look at the American church today, it is filled with men who feel out of place or they are completely bored. We are teaching men how to be sensitive, how to get in touch with their inner feelings or their feminine sides. Did God give Adam a feminine side? What about the heroes of the Bible? Name some… Noah, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Joshua, Caleb, Elijah, David, and Daniel from the Old Testament, just to name a few. The New Testament heroes would have to include John the Baptist, Peter, John, James and Paul and of course you have to name Jesus as He is the hero of all heroes. Do you see any femininity in these men? I don’t think so. I see adventure, the desire to fight, and many wilderness experiences. Moses spent 40 years in the palace, 40 years in the wilderness, and then 40 years being the leader God created him to be. Jacob fought with the angel of the Lord, where? In the wilderness. Caleb at the age of 80 wanted to take his hill that was promised to him years prior. Elijah looked like a mountain man as did John the Baptist. John and his older brother James were called the Sons of Thunder. One author said they would have had on leather jackets and racing stripes on their camels. Today they would be in a motorcycle gang, according to the same author. These men that are noted were true men of God. They had their sense of adventure and willing to fight for the kingdom of God.
Are we willing to fight for the kingdom of God? Is our relationship with God an adventure? Or is it dull and boring? The Christian man needs to learn to live his life for God with all the adventure that is in his heart. Men need to stand up and be men.
Thoughts are generated from reading Wild at Heart.
Bradley D. Watson, BCBT Directed Path Ministries
After spending more than 25 years on church staffs, God has allowed me to take the experiences and knowledge that I gained to develop a Biblical Counseling ministry. The basis of this ministry is to allow God’s Word to shine on the main issues in peoples’ lives in order to bring His resolutions to problems.