Here is my rough summary and paraphrase of Dr. Stinson’s talk. I will post the audio when it is released so you can listen for yourself.
His message had two sections. In the beginning he explained the challenges facing men & boys in our culture. Then he offered some practical ways that churches can encourage biblical manhood and help fathers to raise the next generation of men.
For more coverage of the 2010 Connecting Church & Home Conference visit our summary page. You can listen to audio from this conference on the Southern Seminary website.
Watch it now: Randy Stinson, General Session 2
Randy Stinson is the Dean of the School of Church Ministries at Southern Seminary. Dr. Stinson also serves as the president of The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.
Calling Fathers to Raise Men (1 Kings 2:1-9)
Kids want to go where their dads are going. It’s an enormous responsibility for Fathers. You are passing something on to your children one way or the other. The Bible illustrates this over and over. It’s a pattern in scripture that begins with Adam and his sons and has many examples.
Sociologists have refereed to this current group of 20 somethings as “generation me.” They are often self absorbed and feel entitled to explanations. We live in a very therapeutic culture. Competition is eliminated and every sin is turned into a syndrome. Churches are also in a difficult theological position, some have called bridled mysticism. The language used in contemporary Christian music reflects this approach. “I want to touch you.” “I can’t stop falling in love with you Jesus.” “I want my life to be a love song to you.” We have undermined the expression of the Christian life by theological error. Men do not connect with this sensual language. So, our culture is increasingly anti-male.
This is in opposition to the Bible, which calls men to lead, protect, and provide for their families. A self absorbed man can not lead, except for their own comfort. He will provide for himself at the expense of others. He is not willing to suffer harm to protect others.
Obeying God for a man is often going to look very different from obeying God for a woman. Consider what David asked his sons to do in 1 Kings 2. We know intuitively that it’s the man’s job to check out that weird noise in the middle of the night for danger.
Men have this view of Jesus that comes from our Sunday School literature. These feminine depictions of Jesus have no connection with the real Jesus of history. We’re all in a battle here to reach men. It takes pastors who will continue to press the biblical model for manhood with courage.
Here are some ways to fight for biblical manhood for the next generation:
#1 We need to focus on ministry by men, not ministry for men. Relationships need to be forged not forced on men. This relationship building is very different. Men need to do something and sacrifice together.
#2 We need to raise the bar and challenge them to tasks that require manhood. Give them a God-sized task that required them to get things done.
#3 Bring back warfare language. Battle is a dominant theme in the Bible after Genesis 3. Let’s reclaim the language of the Bible. Remind them they’re in a battle and maybe they’ll start acting like a warrior.
What would we do if you knew someone was after your home? You would leave this place and we’d all come along to help you defend your loved ones. The truth is that Satan is seeking to destroy your family. Keep telling them it’s a war.
#4 Create an atmosphere where b manhood is prized, expected, and taught. If you protect boys from all pain and disappointment, they will be disabled for life. They will be weak and afraid. They will lack godly ambition and resilience. Raise men, not just boys.
#5 Wage a war against pornography. They are shells of men enslaved to sin. They do not feel adequate to spiritually lead their family. They are crippled and burdened by guild shame because they are trapped by this sin. It’s like high blood pressure, you don’t know who has this silent killer. Attack this problem with a no-hold-barred battle.
This vision needs to start with us. It must start in our own homes. Hypocrisy is a great spiritual danger and temptation. Keep watch over yourself. Satan loves a hypocrite.