Friday, September 9, 2011
I am getting rather frustrated at the fact a wife has to call our office crying out that they are wanting their husband to take the lead, carry their home unit as they talked about pre-marriage and when they said their vows one day in their past…uh! ….“That would be their Wedding Day!”…..
Can you remember yours? Maybe you stood at an altar in a church, in some judge’s chambers, or outdoors somewhere of your choosing that was your romantic place. Ours was in a Methodist Ministers living room when we eloped 50 years ago this year. It was there we began this journey of marriage where the husband is the head/president and the wife is the second in command/vice president blending to become one and which NOT one….
My Gateway verse came in my email today, it caught my attention on this subject looming around in my head. I forwarded it to Phil for maybe one of his future blog entries because he and I have discussed this often and want to get this message out somewhere, somehow. After thinking it over I thought, well maybe I will write something about it too and vent it right here….
This is the verse: Titus 2:2 “Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance.”
My observation of many men in our society causes me to feel they are not doing what this verse says. Now don’t get mad at me and say,“ well you should not say all men are like that ”. I know, but give me a break and realize when we get calls; it is people needing help with something going on in their lives. I think our culture is hurting, men are getting away from God and women are rising up saying “if you don’t do it I will and even better!”. And sorry to say, in my observation, that could be true. I have been around long enough to see the evolving results of the women’s movement of the 70’s doing just what it set out to do rule over men in the name of having “their rights”.
This verse today, if exercised in our churches, would cure most of this problem. I can hear Paul’s heart I think they must have had this same problem in his day.
Paul was telling Titus to complete his job in teaching the older men to be three things mentioned here.
1. The older men are to be TEMPERATE – I like what the Amplified Bible says
”Urge the older men to be temperate, venerable (serious), sensible”
2. The older men are to be WORTHY OF RESPECT - to be dignified, it refers to the character that evokes special respect.
3. The older men are to have SELF-CONTROL - I love what Matthew Henry says about this:
Sensible (4998) (sophron Vine says derives from a combination of sozo = save + phren = mind, means acting like one with a "saved mind" curbing one’s desires and impulses and so describes the man who is self-controlled, self restrained and discreet. This man's mind has everything under control (of the Holy Spirit). Sophron taken back to its root means a "saved mindset" coming right out of a person's salvation, so that his thinking has been flipped over from the "AM" band of the World to the "FM" band of the Spirit and he now has the ability to think the way God wants him to think and can act the way God wants him to act. He controls his physical passions, rejects worldly standards and resists worldly attractions because like Paul, by God’s grace he has learned to “think so as to have sound judgment” Romans 12:3 / He has come to learn that to be "in control" he has to be "under control" of the Holy Spirit Gal 5:23 and Eph 5:18.
4. The older men are to be SOUND in FAITH, LOVE AND IN ENDURANCE – "sound" here means uncorrupt, healthy and wholesome and so is that which protects and preserves life and gives good health (in this case spiritual health). Though they may be unhealthy in body and decrepit because of age, they should still remain sound in mind.
SOUND IN FAITH - has the definite article, here, not “faith” as exercised, but “the Faith,” the body of Christian doctrine. Older men have learned that the doctrine of God can be trusted in every way. They do not question His wisdom or power or love, and they do not lose trust in His goodness and grace or lose confidence in His divine plan and divine wisdom. They do not doubt the truth or sufficiency of His Word or waver in their divinely assured hope that His sovereign plan will be fulfilled.
SOUND IN LOVE – he is to have Agape Love it is unconditional, sacrificial love and a love that God is (1Jn 4:8,16), that God shows (Jn 3:16, 1Jn 4:9) Agape may involve emotion, but it must always involve action. Agape is unrestricted, unrestrained, and unconditional.
SOUND IN ENDURANCE - PERSERVANCE Gr word meaning hupomone from hupo = under + meno = abide) which literally means “remaining under” trials and afflictions in a way that honors God. The root idea of hupomone is that of remaining under some discipline, subjecting one’s self to something that demands the acquiescence of the will to something against which one naturally would rebel. It portrays a picture of steadfastly and unflinchingly bearing up under a heavy load and describes that quality of character that does not allow one to surrender to circumstances or succumb under trial. The picture is that of steadfastness, constancy and endurance.
Hupomone is patience in the sense of meekness. Hupomone is the ability to endure when circumstances are difficult - not a passive sitting down and bearing things but a triumphant facing of them so that even out of evil there can come good, a bearing up in a way that honors and glorifies our heavenly Father.
I enjoyed studying this and I hope I didn’t overwhelm you with so much to read. I so hope you stayed with me and share my burden. The fact is we need more men. Men with “back bone” who will stand for what is right and lead the way. Phil and I both agree there are more women leading in churches than males. I am sorry but that is just wrong! It begins in our homes where men are men and women or women accepting their gender and getting in the their skin so to speak joining together finding out what God has to say about a Biblical Marriage and practicing it which actually makes a picture of Christ and His Church. We are making some pretty weak pictures folks oh I don’t need to get started here I could keep you all day.
In closing, the above characteristics of this elder man is exactly how we are to be living and it is their life examples that can lead us in that way. Then there would be less conflict in our Homes and Churches and Country. Coming from this would give a clear message that God the creator of this universe and HE I THE I AM the One and Only God and we bow to Him unashamedly! Pray with me that this will be a message that will reach many and set them on fire for change….REAL CHANGE!
A Real Man reminds me of B2 STEALTH BOMBER, it’s a mean machine under control. It protects, it provides safety, it fights the enemy and says don’t worry I am here!
I have one right here for you to watch and see for your self …… it makes a statement!!!