Fake Manliness and the Lost Generation

Fake Manliness and the Lost Generation

Your manliness does not come from these outward qualities or commitments. It comes from a deep love of the Savior who bought you with a price. Taking seriously the calling of Ephesians 6:1-4 to raise your children in the fear and admonition of the Lord, listening to Ephesians 5 and loving your wife as Christ loved the Church, by leading her and being a Man for once. All these things are a helpful way to start thinking about the way to get the young men interested in being the kind of person God has called them to be, not fake society, or domesticating them into women.

Our topic today is a little bit out of left field, and may seem a bit strange, especially since it may appear to only apply to half of you. Most of you know that my dissertation for my doctoral degree was on reaching white working-class men for Christ. The least “churched” people group in the United States are young white men without a college education. No one knows that because most people don’t care. They are not high on the list of agenda items at most church plant conferences nor is there really anything being written about them. When I was doing research the only resources I could find were all negative. In other words these men who don’t actually go to worship on the Lord’s Day were being blamed for all kinds of societal problems with their evangelicalism coming along for the ride. Outside of the white working-class not really having any actual political power the bigger issue, at least for me as a minister of the gospel, was trying to figure out why they weren’t going to church, and the reasons I found were not exactly groundbreaking. For our prayer and worship help we are going to think through this for a little bit, and try and find a solution, or at least just complain about it.

First of all the men I talked to who were under fortyish all had one thing in common: they do not have fathers, and in many cases even grandfathers, for which meeting with Jesus on the Sabbath was any kind of priority. Even if they did attend on the odd Sunday they looked and acted like a conscientious objector through the whole service. Didn’t sing, didn’t really pay attention, was quiet, but completely uninvolved in the happenings around them. They might as well have been Helen Keller for all the good it did them to be there. Why should a younger man put any effort into being at the Lord’s house if the men in his orbit didn’t? It’s a good question, and one I don’t really blame them for. They just acting how they was raised.

The second big reason given to me was the church was full of hypocrites. Imagine finding sinners at a church. But that wasn’t really what they was talking about. These men may not be Christians, but one doesn’t necessarily need to be to put two and two together. People acting one way on Sunday morning and then another the rest of the week has a habit of putting a damper on you thinking it makes any difference how dolled up you get for Sabbath School and morning service if you just going to go roll around in the mud when Monday comes.

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