“Thus it is written, “The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit.” – 1 Corinthians 15:45
We believe God loves the world. He created it, and with it, us. But the world is far from His design and intention. It is full of sin and all its friends: death, destruction, and dysfunction, on personal, relational, and social levels.
The events of last week in Parkland, FL only go to show this to be true. Sadly, it seems that we are not even that shocked anymore that such a tragedy could happen, seeing as it hits our collective radars fairly frequently these days.
Comedian Michael Ian Black provided what I think is an insightful commentary on not just the horrible event in Florida, but one of the underlying issues that help make these tragedies reoccur.
In this thread of tweets, Michael Ian Black has identified that men generally speaking do not know what it means to be a man, what role or purpose we are to have in society, or how to express our masculinity in life-giving and affirming ways.
Not only do we have a problem that we all feel as men, but we can’t even have the conversation! What hope is there?
But it was this statement that grabbed my attention (and the attention of Twitterverse as a whole). He is absolutely correct in identifying the source of the problem.
“Boys are broken.” Yes.
But not just boys.
Everything is broken!
Death. Destruction. Dysfunction. These are normal ways of describing life as we experience it now. And not only is it killing us, we hate it.
We all experience life this way. But what happened? Why did things get this way for us, our relationships, and our world?
It is this way because of a man.
Adam, the first man, chose to reject living under God’s Word back in the Garden of Eden and in this way he rebelled against his Creator. All of creation was bound together with Adam, so as he fell from his position of grace, all things and everyone descending from him fell with him.
And yet, God’s heart, His love for His world never changed. He still loved the world He created, even though it fails to love and honor Him in return.
What does God do about this love for a world that is far from Him in every way?
He sends a man.
He sends His Son, Jesus Christ, to become a man, so that man can finally and fully be redeemed out of sin and into righteousness (the state of being right, approved).
He became a man, so that man can be restored out of brokenness and into the image and likeness of God Himself (the state of being who we were meant to be originally).
He became man, so that man can be renewed out of guilt, shame, and bondage to sin and all it’s friends (death, destruction, dysfunction), and walk instead in new life as new creations (the state of becoming more like Christ, living a resurrected life in all of life).
He became the man when God His Father vindicated His sacrificial death and perfect life by raising Him up from the dead and seating Him at His right hand, reigning and ruling over all things, and leading His people to be agents of His new creation world in the present.
And now that man, that perfect man who is redeeming, restoring, and renewing all things to Himself sends out men to live as redeemed people, restored sinners, and renewed saints for the sake of the world around them.
Men continue to be the method God uses to reach the world and make His blessings flow far as the curse is found.
The church will succeed in its mission when men are redeemed by Christ, restored to His fellowship, and renewed in His image, and live out His life for the sake of others – every man, woman, and child, starting at home and moving out to the rest of the world.
Men live in and out strength when they live for the sake of others.
It is true of Jesus.
And it’s no less true for men today.
“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” – Mark 10:45
Growing as Men at Christ Church
On Saturday, March 10, we will be launching our Men’s Leadership Training at Christ Church Mansfield for any and every man who wants and commits to growing in the gospel and live for the sake of others.
We will work through what it means to be children of God, loved by our Father, saved by His Son, and empowered by His Spirit to grow in grace and strength in service to others.
For details and to save your spot email me: firstname.lastname@example.org