In this day and age, a “REAL” man is defined physically as one who is muscular, tough, and comely in appearance. Spiritually, a “REAL” man is defined as one who loves everyone, is gentle, goes to Church, but doesn’t get fanatical in his leadership role within the family or at Church. In other words, this “REAL” man wouldn’t say “Boo!” to the devil. Some of these above named attributes may be good, but men who strive to serve God in spirit and in truth know that being a real man can be a tough job. The man is to serve God to the fullest and in priority. He then must love his wife as Christ loved the Church. He must be a leader in the home and at Church. He must be a Godly example to the world. He must aid in the instruction and nurturing of his children. He is in the position to be the breadwinner of the family. If he is called to preach, pastor, be a deacon, or a teacher, he is thrust into even more responsibilities and higher service. This is a lot of pressure but the Bible is clear – the man and only the man can be in these roles. He was MADE to carry out these duties. And not only that, he has been given instructions in the word on the exact manner in which he is to complete these tasks.
I. Corinthians 9: 24-27 says, “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” In other words, men (and women) must serve God as if we are running a race. A runner doesn’t enter a race and jog slowly up the track. No, he runs to win! A real man brings his lusts and earthly desires into subjection to the Word of God. This doesn’t mean he is perfect. We live in the flesh. But, a man who strives to serve God will display an intense desire and action toward the ‘goal’ of being the best Christian he can be. He will grow in the Lord.
He must love his wife as Christ loved the Church. Ephesians 5:25 reads, “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;” How did Christ love the Church? He loved it so much that he started it, gave it authority here on earth to carry out his commandments, and then died for it. He promised that the Church would be protected until his soon return. A biblically minded man loves his wife enough to die for her. He also must guide his wife in the way she should go with love. Choosing a mate (we prefer betrothals and courtships to dating) is a blessed thing and must be done with care, prayer, and love.
The man must be a leader in the home and at Church. I. Corinthians 11:3 tells us that,”…the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man.” The man is the leader of the woman. I. Peter 3:1 backs this up and is a mandate of the Word of God. In the Church, the woman is to remain silent (I. Corinthians 14:34-35) and learn from her husband at home. The man must be a willing listener in the Church and able to be a teacher at home. He also must be able to teach others with whatever ability God has bestowed upon him. I. Timothy 2:2 reads, “And the things that thou hast heard of me amoung many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.
A “REAL” man is a Godly example to the world in and through the Church. Matthew 5:14-16 states, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house . Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.” This man will serve God through the Church by setting his light on a candlestick, namely a true Church who preaches and practices the precepts of the scriptures to the best of his knowledge and ability. (Rev. 1:20) On the work place this man will pray over his meals despite ridicule, he will not participate in crude or immoral jokes/behavior, he will cover his body in a modest way, he will invite others to Church, he will be temperate in his manner, and he will take opportunities the Lord gives him to praise his name and witness to his fellow workers. The “REAL” man will show his love for Christ in the home by conducting himself in a Christian manner. The man who loses his temper when a child accidentally spills milk at the table needs to get himself under control. On the other hand, the man who frequents unholy places and feasts his eyes upon ungodly things is not a Godly example to the world. How many people have seen men who go to Church without fail every time the door opens but then act immorally the rest of the week? This is NOT a a “REAL” man.
The father who desires to follow the scriptures needs to assist his wife in the nurturing and instruction of his children. (See our homeschooling link). Ephesians 6:4 shows us this principle. “And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.” Fathers, you ARE to help in the nurturing of your children. The woman is most suited to this but you are instructed by God to bring them up with YOUR nurturing also. Notice that nurturing and admonition are here together. This tells us that correcting a child is important but many fathers think this is their only role. Loving, teaching, showing respect, reading a book, playing, assisting in their daily care, etc are all ways that fathers can help nurture their children. This doesn’t mean that the father must do these things 24 hours per day to be a good father. No, nurturing and admonition should become a daily routine that is NATURALLY and WILLINGLY incorporated into their children’s lives. Sure, work, Church, up keep of the home and vehicles, Bible study, etc. must be done also. Wives should not expect a syrupy, wimpy husband who just sits around doing romantic things for them and playing with the children all the time. Men are men and women are women. We each have our roles but the man is commanded to do some nurturing of his children. Proverbs 1:8 says, “My son, hear the instruction of thy father, and forsake not the law of thy mother.” Fathers must be ready to instruct in all areas of life. Spiritual, academic, correction, and personal areas are all included. Men or boys who aren’t fathers must be trained to be this type of man for the day may come when they will become a father.
Biblical manhood includes working. Oh, the hated word, work! The Lord put Adam to work when he fell and said he would work all the days of his life. He didn’t say, “Okay, you’ve had a rough hand dealt to you so here is a food stamp card and a disability check.” No, quite the opposite. We are not against a truly disabled person receiving a check but MOST people on government subsidies are able to do some type of work. Good stewardship of the money and tangible things we own as well as in our spiritual lives is mentioned in several places in the Bible. Luke 12:34-48, Luke 16:1-13, Matthew 20:1-16 are all good places to read what the Lord says about stewardship in the fleshly and spiritual realms. I. Timothy 5:8 “But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” Here in America the average man is too good to work at so-called “unmanly” places. If the wage is not just right or if the workplace isn’t 1/2 mile or less from his home then he just can’t do that job. Many men want high paying jobs, sitting behind a big desk, ordering people around with less than a high school diploma. Guess what folks….that just doesn’t work. Boys should be encouraged to get their schooling so that they can get jobs that will support a wife and children someday. It doesn’t matter if men are ditch diggers or doctors. Live within your means and be honorable in all your work.
Some men are called to be teachers, deacons, or preachers. This is an awesome responsibility. Read I. Timothy 3:1-13. The wives and children of deacons and pastors must conduct themselves in a prescribed behavior. The man with the calling must live in strict, blameless obedience to the Word. In addition, he must be a teacher as well as a pastor/deacon. He must be able to rule his home while being patient and grave. Lots of study time must be devoted to the Word so that as the spiritual leader the pastor/deacon(s) can rightly divide the Word of truth. So, these men must have all the attributes and actions of every biblical man but also carry the weight of others that are under their authority. Pray for these men daily. Help them and their families whenever possible. Their calling is a blessed one and worthy of all acceptation but it carries many burdens with it too.
From these simple points we can see that a “REAL” man is nothing like the man splashed across the TV and magazines today. He isn’t a sappy, love-sick, muscle man who can be manipulated by a woman by the flash of her leg. No, he has struggles between the flesh and spirit and desires to be the man God wants him to be. He is masculine. He does love. He is gentle. But he is also strong in the Word, a leader of his family and possibly Church, a worker, a prayer warrior, and a contender of the faith.