Don’t Be Like This Guy

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A warning to young men idolizing UFC fighters, boxers, or certain musical artists: Self-exaltation is not good manhood. It is wicked and suicidal. Manhood done well, done honorably, done to save one’s soul and live life well, is strength spent for the good of another.

The most powerfully, virtuously masculine man who ever walked the Earth surrendered Himself to the violence of those who came against Him. And He could’ve killed them, could’ve killed you, could’ve undone me, with a word. So why didn’t He? When being spit on, mocked, slapped, and whipped by humans whose molecular structure He could’ve unwound with a whisper, why did the Lion of Judah who knew what true manhood was submit Himself to murder and defeat?

To bring God glory and bring the weak great good.

Good manhood doesn’t brag about its exploits. It doesn’t pound its own chest and shout about its abilities. It doesn’t abuse others for self-gain, nor does it humiliate for self-glory.

True manhood, manhood that is actually worth something, spends itself on others. It uses its strength, whatever limited capacities it’s been given by God, to protect and serve and sanctify. It fights for holiness in its wife or the saving Gospel proclaimed to the lost who need it. Godly men of truly strong stuff want redeemed souls and a world in awe of God more than fast cars and fruitless lust.

Godly men live for the only wise God and for others. Childish, shrill men live for games, pleasure, and applause.

Godly men protect women, devote their muscle and energy and spiritual sweat to one woman alone, and honor the Christian sister as an adopted co-heir. Lazy or diabolical men use women or chase them. They are too slothful or spiritually dead to promise and protect, too idolatrous or timid to love and lead.

Godly men love children, as Jesus did. They teach, admonish, discipline, and shepherd. Brash and unteachable men act like children, unwilling to live for or love anyone other than themselves.

Godly men, men living in tribute to the only perfect Man, and living with Him in them to enable it, call evil evil, while forgiving quickly the wrongs committed against them. They are unafraid to say what is sin, but they hold no grudges. The fights these men choose are for the glory of God and the protection of the weak. But small men fight battles for their own fame and glory.

Godly men control their anger, but spiritually weak ones surrender to it.

Godly men speak and sing and work and play with the goodness and glory of God in mind. Stupid and sinful men seek shallow joys in deep graves.

I want to be like the Savior who rescued me and lives within me. I want to be the man He calls all men, shepherds and servants, fathers and friends, to be. I want to be less about myself and more about Him and others. I want to use the muscles and vocal cords and brain and heart, the tongue, testosterone, and tenacity He’s put in me for His fame, my wife’s good, my children’s upraising, the service of the saints, and the salvation of the lost. I want to shove the pictures of selfish sex, loud chest pounding, and smug self-glory far from my head and heart. For they are not manhood. God made the first man, and He decides what manhood is. No, those infantile screechings and idiotic, wicked prides are hollow shells, walking bodies with nothing to give and no desire to give it.

I rebuke them from my own heart, and I ask God to remind me to live and sweat and fight and pray for His glory and my neighbors’ good. Vainglory, lust, unbridled temper, and idolatry be, quite literally, damned.

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6 thoughts on “Don’t Be Like This Guy

  1. If the idea is Christlikeness, then true manhood and true womanhood can be found in Christ Jesus. Let’s not exalt all things male here – Jesus was above that, so should we be.

    • It’s simply that this single post was written to be specifically about manhood, and we have also written about Godly womanhood, Godly humanity, Godly church membership, etc. in the past.

      • I scrolled through every single entry in your blog, you usually refer to women in the context of their men. Women are to be protected by men from men, women are to be provided for by men, women are to be under the authority of men. That makes sense for a first century world where women were not the equal of men. Galatians 3:28 destroys gender barriers, class barriers, nationality barriers, and economic barriers. Much of what is true for manhood is also true for womanhood because they are both one in Christ.

      • We’ve tried our best to faithfully exposit Scripture, here, and do not believe that Ephesians 5, 1 Timothy 3, 1 Peter 3, etc. no longer apply. While one in Christ, we are told about different responsibilities repeatedly in the New Testament. though Galatians 3:28 is absolutely true and, as stated above, we are co-heirs like Peter tells us. If you disagree there are no hard feelings, and I certainly wish you well in Christ.

  2. I cannot tell you how many biblical manhood posts I have seen that elevate maleness and demote femaleness. Groups such as the Gospel Coalition and The Council for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood are constantly sending out the message that only men are worthy to be pastors and leaders and are preferable to women because God said so. It’s an easy line of reasoning to fall into, but it leads to men and women fighting among themselves rather than share the message that Jesus loves us all as we are. People teach some really strange things these days and some of the language you were using was similar to theirs, next time I’ll read more carefully and remember that using the same language doesn’t always have the same meaning.

    • Just to clarify, Jamie, I (Wade, pastor and writer here) do believe that the New Testament teaches that husbands are to be the sacrificial heads of their wives, women should not teach over or have authority over men, etc. And I want to mercifully but boldly obey those teachings. But I don’t want you to be unduly discouraged, and I do genuinely wish you all the best in our Christ Jesus.

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