Be A Man Of God
June 21, 2015 (Father’s Day)
Today is Father’s Day, and while I realize that I am not a father, I also realize that God blessed me with a wonderful example of what it means to be a faithful, devoted, Christian man, a faithful, devoted, Christian husband and father. Dad was a great example for me and my sisters of what it means to be a Christian husband, a Christian father, and a Christian leader in the Church and the community. I also know that I see in many of you examples of what it means to be Christian fathers, husbands, and leaders in the Church and the community.
So, as we honor our fathers today, I want us to look at the qualities that might be needed for a Christian father, but I want to expand that idea, much as I do on Mother’s Day, and consider what it means to be a man of God, a man who has faith in God and who is a leader in the Church and the community. Now, ladies. don’t just turn me off here and think I’ll have nothing to say to you today, because I believe that, when we look at these qualities, we’ll see what it can mean to be a woman of God also.
What qualities does it take to be a man of God?
Our passage in Romans 5 and the other passages I will refer to today do not speak specifically to men, but they give us some qualities that we can apply to all Christians, but today I want to look at these qualities and how they can produce men that we can call men of God.
I want to look at three qualities:
Faith – character – and conviction are three qualities needed to be a man of God.
It takes a man of faith to be a man of God.
Paul writes in Romans 5:1:
“Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through Jesus Christ”
To be a man of God, you have to understand that you are justified by faith. In the world you might try to justify yourself through what you do, what you accomplish, how much money you make, how big a house you have, what kind of car you drive, and so on. Ever since the cave man men have felt the need to provide for their families and themselves. Now guys this “drive to provide” is a good thing and there is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to provide for your family. In fact, it is indeed one of your responsibilities, but you can take that too far. You can easily get into the rut and fall into the trap of thinking that what you do, how well you provide for yourself and your family, how much you accomplish or the size of your bank account, house, car, or whatever, is the most important thing in your life. You can get into the rut and fall into the trap of believing that these are the things that truly define who you are. You can begin to believe that these are the things that justify your existence. You can begin to believe that if you have these things you are a success and you are living a life that is truly pleases you, and you can fool yourself into thinking that you are also living a life that is pleasing to God.
God has blessed you with these things, so you must be pleasing Him – right?
That’s the way a lot of people think and a lot of men spend their lives chasing material things, sometimes justifying it by the fact that they are providing for their families.
But is that what really identifies who you are and is that really what justifies you? Maybe in the eyes of other men, but what about in God’s eyes?
Does Paul say in Romans 5:1: “Therefore, since we have been justified through our hard work, we have peace with God through what we have accomplished?” Nope. That’s not what Paul says at all, is it? Instead, Paul writes: “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through Jesus Christ”
Again, don’t get me wrong, guys. You need to do what you can to provide for your families and for yourself, but don’t get into the rut or fall into the trap of believing that you are defined by or justified in God’s eyes by these things.
There is only one thing that justifies you in God’s eyes, and that is your faith. Your faith in Jesus Christ. Your faith in Christ and what Christ has done for you by dying on the cross for your sins. It’s only your faith in Christ that justifies you before God. So the first step in being a man of God, the first quality needed to be a man of God, is faith. If you have faith in Christ, it doesn’t matter what else you have. Everything else in life is well and good but it won’t justify you. Only your faith will do that.
Looking over this congregation today I see so many men who have a faith in God that will not waver. We need more of you.
So the first quality God expects in His men, the first quality it takes to be a man of God, is faith.
A second quality God expects in His men, a second quality it takes to be a man of God, is character. Guys, once you have your faith in Christ worked out and have that faith as the foundation for your life, you need to work on your character.
In the last part of verse 3 and the first part of verse 4 in Romans 5 Paul is describing some of the blessings that faith in Christ brings. He writes: “… suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope”
Character is one of the byproducts of faith and is one of the qualities needed in a a man of God. This quality of character does not come easily or automatically. It comes through what Paul refers to as “suffering” and “perseverance”. In life you are going to have sufferings. Things will go wrong. Sometimes terribly wrong. God does not promise to save you from suffering. What God does promise you is that He is with you in your suffering and will help you persevere, and if you let it the experience will build your character.
We need men of character. God calls you to be a man of God, and that means you will be a man of character, a character that is built on your faith and developed through your perseverance in suffering.
Have you ever suffered in your life?
I am sure you have – we all do. It’s part of the human experience, part of what a friend of mine calls “this roller coaster we call life” with all of it’s steep highs and low lows and twists and turns. I would dare say that a person who has never suffered has not lived. But in that suffering, God can help you persevere and can help you build your Christian character.
Looking over this congregation today I see so many men who have a character that is built on faith in God and perseverance in suffering. We truly need more of you.
To be a man of God you start with faith then you let God work on your character.
A third quality God needs in His men, a third quality of a man of God, is conviction.
Guys, the world, the Church, your family, your community all need you to be a man of conviction. God needs you to be a man of conviction. You need to be a man who is willing to stand up for God’s things in a world where God’s things are too many times overlooked.
One great example of a man who had conviction and was willing to stand up for God’s things is the Biblical story of Daniel. You remember that Daniel was a young Hebrew living in Babylon when the Hebrew people were in captivity there. King Darius issued an order that for 30 days no one could pray to any god but him. Daniel, however, had conviction and continued to pray to God. He was threatened with the punishment of being thrown into a den of vicious lions, but he continued to pray to God and not listen to the King’s orders. The King finally made good on his threats and had Daniel thrown into the den of lions, but instead of being eaten alive Daniel was saved by God.
Daniel had conviction and knew what was the right thing to do, despite what the King said, and God spared Him. The book of Daniel also tells us the story of Shadrack, Meshack, and Abednigo, the 3 Hebrew young men who, under situations similar to that of Daniel, were thrown into fiery furnace, yet God saved them. They stood by their convictions, even to the point of what seemed to be certain death, and God saved them. The Bible and history is filled with stories of people who have stood by their convictions and been living testimonies of faith in God.
We desperately need men of conviction today. We desperately need men of conviction now. We desperately need men of conviction here. We desperately need men who have faith in God and a Godly character and who have a conviction for standing up for God’s things in a world where it is not popular to do so. The world, the Church, your family, your community, all need you to be a man of conviction. God needs you to be a man of conviction. You need to be a man who is willing to stand up for God’s things in a world where God’s things are too many times overlooked.
How about it, guys?
Are you a man of God?
Are you a man of faith, of character, and conviction? Are you willing to stand up for God’s things in the world, even when it seems no one else is? You need to make a stand for God’s things, especially when it seems that no one else is willing to do so.
Remember the old saying – if you don’t stand for something you will fall for anything.
Guys, I implore you to have conviction. Have a conviction for the things of God. Stand up for the things of God and don’t let your families or your Church or your community or the world fall to the things that are not of God.
Looking over this congregation today I see so many men who have conviction, a conviction that is built on faith in God and Godly character. We need more of you.
We need Godly men in todays’ world. Men who have faith, character, and conviction.
So how about it, guys? Are you man of God? Is your life built around the qualities of faith, character, and conviction?
Yes – we have men of God here at Edgewood. Are you one of them?
In 1 Corinthians 16:3-4 Paul pretty much sums up what it takes to be a man of God. Paul writes: 13 Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. 14 Do everything in love.
To be a faith filled man of God an you have to be on your guard. You have to be on your guard because the devil is trying to pull you away from being the man God wants you to be, so you need to be on your guard and remain faithful to God in all situations of your life. You also have to stand firm in your faith, and not let anything tempt you away from doing God’s will. You need to stand for and do God’s will all the time. You also need to be courageous and strong, then let God’s love shine through everything you do.
Looking out at this congregation I see many men of God. You can tell who the men of God men here at Edgewood are. They are the ones who continually work on their faith. They are the ones who come to Sunday School and Worship on a regular basis, not so they will be seen by others but because they know they need times to learn more about God and be strengthened in their faith. The men of God here at Edgewood are also the ones who seek out fellowship with other men because they know that God did not put them in this place to try be men of God on their own but God has put them here with others who they can learn from and be encouraged by. They know that other men need them and they need others. The men of God here at Edgewood are the men who serve God, the community, and the Church in any way they can.
I give praise for the men of God here at Edgewood, but I assure that we need more men and women of God here at Edgewood, here in this community, and in the world. We need more men and women who have a strong faith, who have a strong Christian character, and who have a strong Christian conviction.
Will you be a man of God and make a difference for God’s glory? Amen.