1 Corinthians 16:13 says “Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.” ESV
Real Manhood Crisis
In his book, ‘Andrizo Man’, James Demelo says there is a manhood crisis in our world today and men need a blueprint for real manhood.
Satan is trying his hardest to replace God’s version of manhood with a counterfeit. We need to return to the source of true manhood. What is the source of true manhood, you might ask? Let’s find out. . .
In Genesis, God created Adam and we see Adam walking with God in the garden. Satan hates what God creates and tempts Eve to eat the forbidden fruit. Sin entered the world and caused Adam to get off track. As men, we need to stay on the road with God, the true path and not get lost in the world. Men, God has a destiny for us but satan wants to derail us.
Demelo is right. There is a fatherless pandemic and it is getting worse. We have a problem with dysfunctional fathers. The problem with dysfunctional fathers is they end up raising dysfunctional children. Don’t believe me, listen to these stats from the U.S. Census Bureau on the negative effects of fatherlessness from US Dept. of Health & Human Services.
*About 50% of all children in US end up fatherless. It’s 80-90% in Urban areas.
*63% of teen suicides are fatherless.
*71% of high school dropouts are fatherless.
*85% behavioral problems are fatherless.
*85% those sitting in prison are fatherless.
*90% of all homeless & runaway children are fatherless.
Did you know children from fatherless homes are. . .
*5 times more likely to commit suicide.
*7 times more likely to get pregnant.
*15 times more likely to have behavioral disorders.
*15 times more likely to end up in prison as a teen.
*24 times more likely to run away from home.
*and 73 times more likely to end up killed.
Demelo says our boys don’t learn masculinity by looking in the mirror or from their moms. They need a strong fatherly figure in their lives to help guide and direct them. We have lost our sons in a maze of worldly paths. Our sons become lost when the road is unclear.
From Zero to Hero
Every man wants to be a hero but how? How do we unleash the hero, warrior, champion, mighty man of valor inside every man? We need to get around other passionate men whose hearts God has touched and who are willing to lay down their life for the cause of Christ.
One of the greatest attributes of a hero is sacrifice. We need disciplined, determined and passionate men willing to sacrifice for others. To be the best, we need to be around the best and sacrifice for the rest.
Demelo states that ‘andrizo’ is the Greek word Paul used in his first letter to the Corinthian men. (1 Cor 16:13) He was telling them to "act like men." Paul was raising the standard for men to live by. Demelo says ‘andrizo’ was an ancient battle cry dating back to the days of King David. It’s to awaken men to a higher standard and transcends manhood of today.
There is a movement among men today in the body of Christ that has taken hold of ‘andrizo’ and is making it a modern-day war cry for men who want to live a life of freedom in Christ! They say manhood and Christlikeness are synonymous.
Most men don’t realize we are at war. We are called to be warriors of light in the darkness. What men don’t realize is that when we were born, we were not dropped into a maternity ward but a war zone.
This war is not against flesh and blood but satan himself. Andrizo means to prepare to pound satan. The bible says that we are more than conquers and that we can do all things through Christ.
Did you know the average age for exposure to porn was 11years old in 2003. In 2012 the average age was 8. Today, the average age is 6 years old. Men, we are in a battle and the battle with porn must be won.
Media portrays men today as idiots, racists, and sex maniacs. Satan hates what God creates because we were created in God’s image. Satan makes the world laugh at men so they will laugh at God. The devil has emasculated, shamed and ridiculed men and manhood.
Men are confused about how to act as men. We were made in the image of God. That means we have a warrior spirit of power, honor, courage, and compassion. God is not trying to get something from you men! He is trying to get true manhood to you.
Because of the feminist movement, men are often treated like women. The belief is that men will show less toxic masculinity if feminized, but in reality they become more toxic. Bad men don’t become good when they stop being a man or feminized. They become good men when they stop being bad. Men, we need to walk with God in order to become good men.
The answer to toxic masculinity isn’t less masculinity, it’s better masculinity. Aggression, violence and ambition can’t be eliminated from males. It needs to be harnessed. We need to harness our masculinity and use it for good, for example, like opening the car door, providing for our family and defending our country. The problem isn’t that men are too masculine, it’s that men aren’t masculine enough.
Feminists have rejected masculine virtues as courage, tenacity, military prowess for more socially gentle habits. When men embrace masculinity that is healthy and productive, they become warriors, leaders, and heroes. The secret about women is that they want real men like this.
Feminine passive men don’t stop evil, defend, protect, provide or lead. Weak men end up enabling weak men. When bad men rape, murder or wage war, weak men won’t stop them. Masculinity is not what’s toxic, it’s the lack of it that is. Real men are not egotistical, chauvinistic or macho. They are like TNT - no, not explosive like dynamite, but rather tender and tough.
Men have lost their direction. They need a compass to guide their way. That compass is God’s Word. As 1 Corinthians 13:16 says, we need to “act like men”, and that means to be respectful, thoughtful and gentlemanly, with confidence, strength and certainty. The spirit of the warrior should not be stifled, and our young men need models of well rounded men.
Demelo shares 5 virtues to act like men. They are circumspection, conviction, courage, character, and compassion.
Virtue #1: Circumspection
Circumspection means to be watchful, alert, vigilant, and aware of our spouses and families. We are to be watchmen on the walls and to keep an eye on what’s going on around us and our family.
Unfortunately, passivity has been the greatest sin among men these days. It’s called the sin of omission. Many men have fallen asleep at the wheel and have steered off the road.
The key is personal inspection - to look and examine what’s inside. It’s the internal self-awareness of the Holy Spirit at work inside of us. We need to be vigilant and abstain from places, events, and people that are detrimental to us.
It starts with a healthy heart. Proverbs 4:23 says ‘Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.’ We aren’t responsible for what others say or do to us, but we are responsible for what goes on inside of us. We need to decide when wrong settles in our heart and starts to take root and then do something about it.
We also need to protect our minds. Our mind is the primary battle zone of the enemy. 95% of mental and physical health issues usually begin in the mind. 2 Corinthians 10:5 says our formula is to take down any toxic thoughts as soon as they come and replace them with non-toxic thoughts. We need to say aloud what we want, not what we feel.
There are 2 ways to live as men; in survival mode or in prayer mode. Prayer diffuses the enemies plan.
In other words, we need to be a Psalm 128 man. Psalm 128 tells men to create an atmosphere in their homes where the wife can flourish and children can grow. We are called to honor God in our work, church and community. Our purpose as men is to seek and draw near to God and help others do the same. You can check out my post “Be a Psalm 128 Man” by clicking ‘here’.
Virtue #2: Conviction
As men, we need to have an unmovable faith. Conviction gives men purpose and purpose keeps men out of trouble. The story of King David and Bathsheba is a story of a man without a purpose. David was a warrior without a war. When we exchange our armor for our pajamas like King David did, we get into trouble.
Men, we are wired for war - not necessarily fighting, but ready to protect. We need to re-fire when we retire. Conviction turns our enemy’s attacks into snacks. The truth about battle, you are either in one or you’ve been taken captive.
When we don’t fight for our family, they will suffer. David’s compromise with Bathsheba caused more pain than any battle that he’d won. Sin always delivers the opposite of what it promises. Be men of conviction.
Virtue #3: Courage
God mentions ‘courage’ 638 times in the Bible. God commands us to be courageous. True courage is taking action despite our fears. When you see the word ‘courage’ in the Bible, you often see the word ‘strong’ attached to it. We need strength in order to take action.
Fear is satan’s greatest weapon. Almost all of a man’s fear comes from “Am I enough?” or “Will you reject me?” Both are lies from the enemy himself, the father of lies who comes to steal, kill and destroy. If a lie holds you captive, only the truth from God can set you free.
The answer to lust and porn is to go to war for your thoughts. Real warriors don’t fight for themselves but also for others. The rooftop is where men settle. The battlefield is where men fight.
Virtue #4: Character
God needs strong men for strong times, and we are in strong times. Biblical strength is needed more than physical strength. Men need moral and inner strength in the world that we live today. Inner strength is the ability to withstand temptations, accusations and persecutions. Strength is proven by resistance. We can’t let our sin go unchecked. We need to kill it as soon as we recognize it.
True masculinity imparts true masculinity. The greatest thing for men is to mentor others and to be mentored. Your manhood fulfillment is to pour into the lives of other men. The key is to be unwilling to put on a show and willing to take off your mask.
Virtue #5: Compassion
Compassion means to esteem others above yourself. We need to be on the lookout for burdens others are carrying. True love is to respond to human needs out of compassion. The Greatest Commandment tells us to love God and love others. That means we are to first love God in our vertical relationship and he will help us love others and show compassion in our horizontal relationships.
Love is more than what we say and do, it’s who we are. Men, we need to be secure in God’s unconditional love.
May God bless you as you “Act Like Men”! ANDRIZO!!