Who is a “real” man

8 01 2019

 

Several years ago a good friend gave me a t-shirt printed with the graphic “Man up”. The inference is that men need to be confident, tough, courageous, true warriors for good. Efforts are made through Christian teaching to help “weak” men become who they should be using Christ as the model.

But in his letter to the believers in Corinth Paul gives us another understanding of what makes a real man. In addressing the issues that had developed in this fellowship he makes the interesting claim that he “could not speak to them as spiritual people”… Instead, he calls them “carnal”, “babes in Christ”(1 Cor. 3:1). Rather than acting like the “sanctified”, “saints” “enriched”, gifted, Christ associates they really were (1:2-7) they were displaying “envy, strife”, and divisiveness. They were acting like “mere men”.

Who is a “mere” man? Read the rest of this entry »





Don’t try to live on one-half of the facts!

2 03 2017

One of the most common issues I run into these days with Christian men is that they know they are forgiven for their sins but they still think they are sinners. As a result, they are living defeated, discouraged lives even though they believe they are going to heaven. They just hope they don’t do something “big” that will ultimately invalidate their ticket. The struggle with sin is still very much a part of their lives. shark

Apparently, having the revelation of forgiveness through the cross is not enough to help men live the Christian life and bring them victory. What is even more discouraging is that few Bible teachers are offering men anything else that will encourage them other than to tell them to keep up their faith or remain faithful to their sin management plan. One author even claims that most of men’s issues can be solved if they are just faithful to a men’s group and Bible study.

The good news is that there is more. Read the rest of this entry »





The Total Truth

13 11 2016

bible-truthIn January of 2015, we realized here at NWMC that there is a significant void in the spiritual life of Christian men.  Ironically,  many do not authentically know Jesus. Yes, they believe they are “saved” but they have yet to discover the reality of the living Christ within them. Much of what we were doing as a regional ministry was only helping men be better men and not leading them to better know this  Christ inside. Our aim now is to teach the “total” or the rest of the truth that Christ now lives in us, is our life, and that we can fully manifest the person that God has intended us to be through Him.  (Col. 1:27-29; Col. 3:4; Gal. 2:20)

Here are ten examples of how many believing men (and women) miss the total truth of their lives in and as Christ. Most of them know: Read the rest of this entry »





The Problem with trying to be Christlike

2 11 2016

men's ministrySince its beginning, the central theme of the Christian men’s ministry movement has been to spur men to become more like Christ. Countless curricula have been written as  guidelines for this process in which men are taught to move through sequential steps or spiritual disciplines in order to achieve this goal.

One of the primary scriptures that form the basis of this teaching is Romans 8:29 where Paul writes that God “predestined (man) to be conformed to the image of His Son..” The English Revised Version states it as to “be like Christ”. So men are challenged to demonstrate a resemblance to Christ in everything that they are and do.  Men’s accountability groups, discipleship studies and conferences are the usual  environments provided to enable this process.

But there are a couple of problems (among several) with this thinking and teaching. Read the rest of this entry »





Failed Resolutions or Fulfilled Replacement?

18 01 2016

pic-beach-arms-raised1By now many Christian men are disappointed that the resolutions they had made for the new year have already been broken. Hopes for a better prayer life, quitting porn, reading the Bible more or not getting angry with the kids and wife have all been given up. Only a few have had the steely resolve to make good on promises but the effort has not been cheap. They may have made some gains but there still remains the fear that at any moment they may slip back into old ways.

It’s for this reason that most men have given up on making promises to God, themselves or others. They don’t want any further shame from the reminder that they don’t have what it takes to become a better person. Even more shaming is the message from his church or men’s program that he could change if he joins the right “steps” group or was just more committed. But many have done that and have still not seen the expected results.

Read the rest of this entry »





The Seven Needs of Man #7 – To Know the Love of God.

29 10 2015

The 23rd Psalm is perhaps the most commonly recited Biblical passage by people in and outside of the Christian community. It is a comforting picture of the providence of God, but it is also a description of man’s essential needs. Here are those needs expressed in the context of ministering to men.

Need No. 7 – Men need to know they are loved and pursued by God   v. 6

dad-pursuing-son-494x328One of the great misunderstandings today is the truth about God’s nature. God is love and is always other-loving. He is total love even though man’s mistrust has lead to the opposite perception. The Psalmist affirmed this truth in declaring that God would never stop “pursuing” him and that he always had a place in God’s house. It was this depiction that led Francis Thompson in his famous 1893 poem to call God the “Hound of heaven”, always chasing after man wherever he tries to go or hide. This is God’s true nature.

Read the rest of this entry »





The Seven Needs of Man No. 6

4 10 2015

The 23rd Psalm is perhaps the most commonly recited Biblical passage by people in andoutside of the Christian community. It is a comforting picture of the providence of God, but it is also a description of man’s essential needs. Here are those needs expressed in the context of ministering to men.

Seven Needs of a Man #6 – Men need a “Cheers”.  v. 5

CheersOne of the most popular, long running TV sitcoms of the late 80’s and early 90’s was called “Cheers”. It’s setting was a local pub in the heart of Boston and each week it’s cast of characters entertained the audience with dialogues on life, relationships and current issues of the day in a comedic fashion. But more than the hilarity what captured viewers was the show’s portrayal of what real acceptance and trusted community can be like. It’s theme song expressed it well in the phrase, “I just want to go where everyone knows my name.”

Because of shame, guilt and an uncertain identity many men today live with a mask of self protection, not wanting to experience any additional condemnation. They long to be accepted for who they really are. As a result, they are drawn to environments where they think they can find that acceptance such as a local “Cheers”. They want a “place” that they feel is safe, welcoming, and encouraging. Read the rest of this entry »








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