We live in a culture, in a generation, where the gender lines are becoming more and more blurred, and it recently got to the point of absolute absurdity.
I mean, I thought it would get bad, but I never envisioned the day when the Federal Government of the United States, the Federal Government, taking cues from the president, would sue a state for passing a law requiring men to use men's restrooms and women to use women's restrooms.
I never envisioned seeing such a day and probably one day it would be against the law for a business to forbid men from entering women's restrooms and showers as long as they choose to self-identify as women. And society's emphasis on equality for men and women, I think, has kind of come with a cost.
I believe inherently both men and women have equal standing before Yahweh. No question whatsoever. But it is also true that we have different gender roles, and blurring the gender lines does not really create equality.
Those who seek to do that actually expose themselves because they are exposing a bias in their heart that we are inherently unequal to begin with and that our roles that were given to us by our Creator are based on prejudice rather than our created purpose.
But we each need to be appreciated for the inherent differences that make each of us unique and special, because every man and every woman is equally a glorious testimony of our Father in heaven's handiwork.
Just as each individual-- as we shared here in recent segments, as we went over Romans chapter 12-- each person is given gifts and qualities and visions for ministry that makes every person special and unique. And this is something to be celebrated, that both men and women have unique capabilities that make each special and unique.
This is something to be celebrated, not minimized. But in the context of masculinity, we have an entire generation of young men who don't know how to be men and young women actually are outperforming young men in almost every important statistical category.
More of them are graduating from college, getting better grades, having less behavioral problems and staying out of trouble. Meanwhile boys are growing up spending ridiculous amounts of time in front of a video game machine, feeding addictions, you know. And the thing about video games is they are so incredibly realistic. I mean, especially nowadays.
You can pretend to enter this fantasy world where you are a world class sports figure or a warrior that goes and saves the world or an Olympian, or whatever. And none of it is even true. It is all fake. It brings pseudo goals into the hearts of young people and the realism is so good, these goals come to be a substitute for the real goals in life.
We are built to be goal oriented: "Go forth and take dominion. Subdue the earth." And these things are coming in and they are filling that hunger that is supposed to be in young men to drive and succeed and be all they can be for Yahweh.
And so they grow up. They have no desire to take on real responsibility, because in real life you don't get a do over. Not always. I mean, sometimes you do. But you don't get, "Oh, well, the thing died, and so I'll try again." You don't get multiple lives. The risks are real rather than fantasy.
And partly for this reason we have a generation of young men who have arisen, who are afraid, and they are lazy and they are weak-- afraid to take on a commitment, too lazy and weak to keep it. They want to have lots of fornication, but they are not interested in marriage, not interested in a real commitment.
And so, they shack up with any woman who is desperate enough to take them and they won't marry them. They are too afraid to take the commitment, too afraid to take the risk, too weak-kneed and effeminate to take charge and commit to it.
And if they are not doing that, many are just content to stay home and be a mama's boy rather than bothering to go out and pursue goals, pursue careers, so they can provide a home for themselves and for their future families.
And young men are looking for a spouse. They are looking for someone to marry, someone to hook up to. And they are still at home, have no income, no real goals, no real... How can you provide for your family?
And so, men are supposed to be leaders of tomorrow, but instead, more and more are becoming a major burden on society. And some figure out a way, actually, to get on, you know... find some way and see, "How can I get on SSI?" so they can sit back, collect a check, and sit at home and do nothing.
And even secular observers are calling this the "Peter Pan" generation, boys who never grow up to be men. They call them "adultolescents." And it is an epidemic in the United States.
Many young men have no or little understanding of what manhood is and our society has taught them they can be women. They can just sit back... I'm not saying women should sit back... but they have taught them to take on feminine characteristics. Stick around the house. Take care of the house. Don't go out and do anything worthwhile. Don't accomplish.
And so, what I'm saying is... and please understand, I'm going to talk about femininity next week. I don't mean to say that femininity is anything to do with not working. It's actually the exact opposite. But men, listen, television, movies, they are all portraying young men as fornication obsessed slackers. Just want to party all the time.
And so, that's what our young men in today's culture have become. They have no role model other than what they see on television because sometimes even their parents chose to fornicate rather than marry and the father is not a good role model. And there is no committed father in the home at all in some cases to teach them how to be a man.
And women are told, "Go out. Be assertive. Take a leadership role." And that's all praised in society, while in some circles the idea of men doing the same has become synonymous with oppression and old fashioned values, outdated thinking.
And so, I'm concerned that society has not taught men to appreciate manhood at all. Instead it's taught men to be ashamed of it. And in 1 out of 4 families with children, women are better educated and earn more than the men.
And to me it's a tragedy because men don't feel motivated to lead, to be productive, and they go around fathering children and they don't provide for them. They are not there for them. And those that do provide financially forsake them spiritually and emotionally in other areas.
But men need to be men, grow up from adolescence... from adultolescence... and realize Peter Pan is just a fantasy. Like it or not, somebody has to go out and work for a living. And a lot of the gender confusion nowadays has its roots in the women's liberation movement.
There was a time in America that men were allowed to mistreat and even commit domestic violence against their wives and it often went unpunished. The women's liberation movement was birthed partly because of this.
And when women won their right to vote, they had a major part in passing the amendment to the U.S. Constitution that outlawed the sale of alcohol. That's because when men got drunk they were mean and they were abusive and there were enough votes now with the women voting this in to make it a constitutional amendment.
But with this liberation movement came this desire for women to be more and more like the men in other areas.
They want to wear the pants like men, go to work, make money like men, become pastors and teachers like men, go out and be a man, just like the men, in almost every role that had typically been assigned to male genders and are better suited for male gender.
And so, today the natural result of this gender confusion is gender confusion. What does it mean to be a man? What does it mean to be a woman? It's no wonder that homosexuality and lesbianism are the result. Here we are.
Gender confusion has now gotten to the point of ridiculousness. Now they are teaching, in government schools, they are teaching little boys and little girls that as they grow up you can choose, regardless of the reproductive part you are born with, you can choose to be a boy or a girl depending on how you feel inside.
I mean, it's the height of absurdity and foolishness. The Creator already chose whether you are male or female obviously. And so, what does Scripture say in all this madness? What does it actually say? What are the expectations for men and are there different expectations for women?
Obviously, he made us men different physically. Men have 30% more muscle mass on average, and of the muscle mass we do have, it's 10-15% stronger than that of females. Women were given a uterus and breasts for nurturing children. Inherently, the signal is pretty clear.
He has some ideas of what He wants men and women to do, some of which men can't do and some of which women can't do. Now Scripture says that men who act like women are effeminate. Effeminate.
In 1 Corinthians chapter 6, verse 9, it says:
1Corinthians 6:9 - Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of Elohim? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites,
10 - nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of Elohim.
It's a serious matter. Now the word translated "homosexuals" actually doesn't quite mean that. The word "sodomite" is what actually would refer to the homosexual act. But the word "homosexuals," translated from the Greek, comes from "malakos," meaning "soft," "soft to the touch," "in a bad sense," "effeminate," "a catamite."
In some cases we see "a boy kept for homosexual relations with a man," "a male who submits his body to unnatural lewdness," "a male prostitute." And actually, I don't believe it means male prostitution, because this word "soft" is also found here in Matthew 11:8.
Matthew 11:8 - "But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft [clothing] are in kings' houses.
That's talking about John the Baptist.
Matthew 11:9 - "But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet.
10 - "For this is [he] of whom it is written: `Behold, I send My messenger before Your face, Who will prepare Your way before You.'
John the Baptist was a man's man. He lived out there in the desert eating locusts and wild honey. He was serious about his calling. Very serious. He was not a softy. He was not an effeminate man. He was not a male taking on effeminate characteristics.
And so, those who speak out against effeminate men today are often labeled "homophobic" and "bigots." But Scripture wants the gender lines to not be blurred, but to be distinct.
But again, the gender lines are blurred partly because men fail to be righteous men, and women, seeking to challenge male authority in society and male roles, sought to usurp those roles and be like men. And those who disagreed with their ambitions were labeled "sexist."
Men failed to be righteous men. Women followed the example of unrighteousness and failed to be righteous women. I'm not trying to offend anybody. I don't believe it's necessarily a sin for a single women to provide for her children. I mean, what else are you going to do?
But as men, we need to understand what Yahweh expects of us. I am totally against oppressive leadership. Don't get me wrong. And you are going to see very clearly as I go on and continue this study topic today how strong I am against that.
But we need to understand Yahweh has certain things He is expecting of men and certain things He is expecting of women and we need to listen to His Word. There are gender specific roles that are seen since the very beginning. Since the very beginning.
Yahushua, when He was asked about the divorce question, He told the Pharisees:
Matthew 19:3 - The Pharisees also came to Him, testing Him, and saying to Him, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for [just] any reason?"
4 - And He answered and said to them, "Have you not read that He who made [them] at the beginning `made them male and female,'
Have you not read? Do you have a reading problem? Haven't you read that He who made them at the beginning made them male and female?
Haven't we read? I mean, that's a good question for us in society today. I guess they are not reading Scriptures and so that explains why they can't get it. But He made us male and female. And we can celebrate the differences that we have, not minimize them. He said:
Matthew 19:5 - "and said, `For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh'?
6 - "So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what Elohim has joined together, let not man separate."
He says you have no business separating what Yahweh has put together. That was His answer to the question. And I'm not going to get into the divorce/remarriage question, but I'm pointing out here that we can get our doctrines for what Yahweh expects of us just directly from the first few chapters of Genesis.
Yahweh made us male and female. He caused the two to become one flesh. Now it seems to me that when you look at how Yahweh cursed both the man and the woman for their disobedience, we see gender distinction even between the curses.
Genesis 3:17 - Then to Adam He said, "Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, `You shall not eat of it': "Cursed [is] the ground for your sake; In toil you shall eat [of] it All the days of your life.
18 - Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, And you shall eat the herb of the field.
19 - In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread Till you return to the ground, For out of it you were taken; For dust you [are], And to dust you shall return."
I mean, based on what Yahweh is saying here, I mean, it's evident Yahweh had already given the male the role of provider. And so, now getting any food out of the ground was going to be difficult and require hard labor.
Now work itself was not a curse, but now that the ground was cursed, work was going to become more laborious. Instead of having access to the garden, he now had to eat the herbs of the field and he would eat bread by the sweat of his face until he died. And so, that all has to do with provision and providing.
With the woman He focused on childbearing and her relationship with her husband. But in the terms of male, He focused on the work aspect of it. True masculinity has to do with humbly accepting and walking out this responsibility to work.
Genesis 2:15 - Then YAHWEH Elohim took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.
The breadwinner role is confirmed here also.
1Timothy 5:8 - But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
"He." Men are given the role of provider. Men who are slack in that role are often ridiculed in Scripture.
Proverbs 19:24 - A lazy [man] buries his hand in the bowl, And will not so much as bring it to his mouth again.
That's pretty bad. Can't even lift your hand up to eat.
Proverbs 12:27 - The lazy [man] does not roast what he took in hunting, But diligence [is] man's precious possession.
Ecclesiastes 10:18 - Because of laziness the building decays, And through idleness of hands the house leaks.
Now women, don't be elbowing your men here. I'm talking to the men. Let me talk to them, please. Anyway...
Proverbs 20:4 - The lazy [man] will not plow because of winter; He will beg during harvest and [have] nothing.
Proverbs 19:15 - Laziness casts [one] into a deep sleep, And an idle person will suffer hunger.
Proverbs 6:6 - Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise,
7 - Which, having no captain, Overseer or ruler,
8 - Provides her supplies in the summer, [And] gathers her food in the harvest.
Proverbs 6:9 - How long will you slumber, O sluggard? When will you rise from your sleep?
10 - A little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to sleep --
11 - So shall your poverty come on you like a prowler, And your need like an armed man.
Proverbs 24:30 - I went by the field of the lazy [man], And by the vineyard of the man devoid of understanding;
31 - And there it was, all overgrown with thorns; Its surface was covered with nettles; Its stone wall was broken down.
32 - When I saw [it], I considered [it] well; I looked on [it and] received instruction:
Proverbs 24:33 - A little sleep, a little slumber, A little folding of the hands to rest;
34 - So shall your poverty come [like] a prowler, And your need like an armed man.
So clearly, some strong admonitions against laziness.
Proverbs 26:12 - Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? [There is] more hope for a fool than for him.
13 - The lazy [man] says, "[There is] a lion in the road! A fierce lion [is] in the streets!"
14 - [As] a door turns on its hinges, So [does] the lazy [man] on his bed.
Proverbs 26:15 - The lazy [man] buries his hand in the bowl; It wearies him to bring it back to his mouth.
16 - The lazy [man is] wiser in his own eyes Than seven men who can answer sensibly.
Now what did he say about those who are wise in their own eyes? There was more hope for a fool than for them. In all the things the Scriptures say about foolishness and the fool and what an awful state the fool is in, and one who is lazy is in worse condition.
They tend to be wise in their own eyes. And look, this is, you know, strong words. I mean, we don't think of it maybe as being all that big of a deal, but scripturally speaking, some of the strongest possible words are against laziness. If you don't provide for your family, you have already denied the faith. Worse than an unbeliever it says.
So very strong words. Now I understand why some men struggle with this, because it seems to be a serious lack of motivation happening among us. There are video games I mentioned earlier. Left unchecked, those things become a substitute for real goals.
Following sports can have the same impression, the same thing. One's goals get wrapped up in the team. They follow that, you know, team getting the championship, kind of like being their own goal, and it becomes a substitutionary goal.
Following politics can do the same thing. So we have to be aware of parasites like these things that can suck the life out of us and get our goals oriented, the thing that we have built in us, directed to the wrong things that have no real value... you know, fishing and golf and toys, whatever.
Not that all those things are necessarily bad in and of themselves, but left unchecked, they can become substitutionary goals that undermine our ability to be affective in providing for our family.
I'm not against someone playing a game, whether it's on a video machine or a board game with their family. But these things have to be controlled. They can take over a person's life. Yahweh created men and women to have vision and drive. And they can take over a person's life. And a lot of the worldly video games and stuff are just demonic.
Television, the same thing. You sit around and watch a show where some goal is not being met and then at the end of the show the goal is being met. Almost every time, you know, there is a problem in someone's life, a situation, and then the problem gets overcome and we all feel great. And those things, over and over and over again.
And it all fits with our created purpose, because when Yahweh created Adam and Eve, He said:
Genesis 1:28 - Then Elohim blessed them, and Elohim said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth."
Subdue the earth! Have dominion! He has a goal sitting in front of you. That's why we are so goal oriented. So He created us to do something, not just sit around and watch T.V. and surf the Internet and play games.
Too many young people today, young men especially, are lacking that drive. Why do men like sports and video games so much more than women most of the time? Because it's really fitting with our created purpose. We have these goals and we are driven to pursue them, to fulfill them.
But effeminate men are content to stay at home and be a mama's boy, sit back and have their wife do everything while they do little to nothing to contribute to the household. And they will figure out some way to get on SSI even though they don't really need it. They could work if they wanted to.
And some of them are really in the Hebrew Roots movement. I've seen way too much of it.
You know, whenever someone gets on SSI because of some physical problem they've got, something going on with their body, I always wonder, you know... I've had several office jobs over the years that didn't require me to lift anything or do any hard labor. I mean, why can't these men go out and work in an office somewhere?
There are tons of jobs out there that require very little physical strength. I know some people have back issues. They can't sit for long periods of time. I'm not talking about those who, I mean, really legitimately can't work for some reason.
But I'm talking about those who take an SSI check, when in reality they could work if they wanted to, but instead, content to sit back and collect a check. And to me, that's sad.
Not just sad for everybody else who has to work so these men can sit back and get paid, but sad for the men who collect the money because that's not what we are created to do, to sit back.
I mean, you can fall into depression doing that. Really! You can fall into depression doing that, because you don't feel like you are doing anything worthwhile. And so, you start to feel like you are worthless.
You could provide for yourself or your household, but in your heart you just can't bring yourself to do it. Effeminate men who are unwilling to provide for their household. So sit back, collect the check. You know full well you could find work. It's sad. It really is.
You know, Paul had no patience for slackers. He said in 2 Thessalonians 3:10:
2Thessalonians 3:10 - For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat.
As simple as that. If you don't want to work, okay. No food for you.
2Thessalonians 3:11 - For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies.
They become busybodies.
2Thessalonians 3:12 - Now those who are such we command and exhort through our Master Yahushua Messiah that they work in quietness and eat their own bread.
It's not an option. It's a command.
2Thessalonians 3:13 - But [as for] you, brethren, do not grow weary [in] doing good.
"We command and exhort through our Master Yahushua." And those that didn't... I mean, he was pretty serious about it.
2Thessalonians 3:14 - And if anyone does not obey our word in this epistle, note that person and do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed.
The same epistle. Verse 14. This is verse 13 here. This is verse 14. If you don't obey our word in this epistle, don't keep company with them, that he may be ashamed.
2Thessalonians 3:15 - Yet do not count [him] as an enemy, but admonish [him] as a brother.
Get up off your hind end and start working for your family. He was serious about it. Remember, these are the inspired words of our Creator. They are inspired words coming from the throne. Eat your own bread.
Now if you can't for some reason, that's where the brothers come in and help. Yeah, we are called to bear one another's burdens and not grow weary in doing it. And there's plenty of people out there who need help. And I am all for helping them. I'm not against it at all. But there are some who are willingly idle.
Ezekiel 16:49 - "Look, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughter had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.
That's one of her sins-- an abundance if idleness. Sit around, doing nothing worthwhile.
1Thessalonians 4:10 - and indeed you do so toward all the brethren who are in all Macedonia. But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more;
11 - that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you,
12 - that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and [that] you may lack nothing.
You know, if we are believers, it's a terrible witness when men refuse to work and sit around. Just a terrible witness. You've got to walk properly toward those who are outside.
And so, the desire of the lazy man results in his destruction. It kills him.
Proverbs 21:15 - [It is] a joy for the just to do justice, But destruction [will come] to the workers of iniquity.
And so, men, I admonish you, if you are able... and Yahweh knows if you are... go out and provide for your family. Over and over again, Yahweh talks about the fatherless and the widow. The fatherless and the widow. He is so concerned that men of various cities and congregations are not providing for the fatherless and the widow.
In fact, He says in Isaiah 1:13, He says:
Isaiah 1:13 - Bring no more futile sacrifices; Incense is an abomination to Me. The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies -- I cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting.
Now, He commanded the sacrifices and incense. "The New Moons, the Sabbaths, and the calling of assemblies-- I cannot endure (these things) and the sacred meeting."
Isaiah 1:14 - Your New Moons and your appointed feasts My soul hates; They are a trouble to Me, I am weary of bearing [them].
15 - When you spread out your hands, I will hide My eyes from you; Even though you make many prayers, I will not hear. Your hands are full of blood.
Isaiah 1:16 - "Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil,
17 - Learn to do good; Seek justice, Rebuke the oppressor; Defend the fatherless, Plead for the widow.
18 - "Come now, and let us reason together," Says YAHWEH, "Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.
Yahweh is so upset. Israel is not providing for another man's wife and children. The man died or something happened to him. He is so upset... children who are left fatherless and the women who are left without a husband. How much more so would He be upset if you are not providing for your own wife and children?
Some men need to get on their face and repent, ask Yahweh for forgiveness, ask their wife and family for forgiveness for refusing to work. And I'm not talking about those who are unable to work for one reason or another.
Some of you might be unemployed. You can't find a job, but you are really trying to find something, anything, even if that means taking a minimum wage job somewhere. I'm not talking about you. Yahweh knows the hearts. He sees you. He sees all of us.
I mean, in Hebrew, the word for "laziness" and the word for "deception" are actually related to one another. And men can be experts at making deceitful excuses.
Proverbs 26:13 - The lazy [man] says, "[There is] a lion in the road! A fierce lion [is] in the streets!"
There is always a reason. But we are called to work and work diligently.
Colossians 3:23 - And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to YAHWEH and not to men,
24 - knowing that from YAHWEH you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve YAHWEH Messiah.
That is who you are working for. That is why Yahushua said, "To whoever has done this to the least of these, my brethren, has done it unto Me." He is not making this up.
Now when I am talking about work, I'm not just talking about the physical needs. As a provider of our households, we are also responsible as men. True masculinity will seek to also fulfill the responsibility of spiritual leadership as well.
1Corinthians 11:3 - But I want you to know that the head of every man is Messiah, the head of woman [is] man, and the head of Messiah [is] Elohim.
Yes, the head of woman is man. Yahweh put you in that position. You don't get to decide whether you are there. You are already there and you are living in it. The question is whether you are fulfilling it and whether you are choosing also to make sure that you are accountable to your head as well-- Messiah.
There are a lot of men out there who are not choosing to be accountable to Messiah in how they lead their families and whether they lead their families. And it's not just the physical provision Yahweh is concerned about. The spiritual provision is actually more important.
Why is Yahweh so concerned about the fatherless and the widow? Is it only because their physical needs must be met? Are not the spiritual needs just as important if not more important?
Considering all the Scriptures where Yahweh is angry because the fatherless and the widow are neglected, woe to the fathers and husbands who neglect the spiritual needs of their wife and children as well.
I mean, all the Sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, Feast Days, they can be a burden to Him (Isaiah chapter 1), because He cannot endure the neglect. He cannot endure iniquity and the sacred meeting. And Yahweh is very concerned about the wives and the children. Shouldn't we be?
He is concerned about another man's wife and children. He died and so they are left there needing provision. And how much more our own wives, our own children?
1Timothy 5:8 - But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.
And it's not just the physical provision I'm talking about here. The spiritual is far more important because the first, the physical, would lead to physical death, but the latter can lead to spiritual death. So are we worse that an unbeliever? Let it not be!
No outreach ministry, no Feast and Sabbath keeping, no calling on the right name is going to save you if you fail to address and neglect in these areas.
If Yahushua returns tomorrow and we find out we didn't keep the Feast at the right time or made a mistake in the pronunciation or observances somewhere, you might be able to say, "You know, I desired the truth, but I was wrong. Have mercy on me." And then observe it correctly under the direction of Messiah and correct yourself.
But you know what? If Yahushua returned and says, "Look, you didn't even provide for your own," there won't be any correcting. The damage is done. You already knew that. That's obvious. It can't be so among us.
And too often the women are the driving force behind the family spiritually, sometimes because women choose to be the dominant and other times it might be a lack of spiritual drive on the part of the man. Sometimes the man lacks the spiritual drive because the wife doesn't really want him to be the head, unless she is the neck turning the head.
But it doesn't matter men, you are still the head of the household. You have to act as the one in charge. Yahweh put you in that position. You have to lead your family. It doesn't matter if your wife doesn't want to follow your lead. That's on her.
But you are responsible to lead and you should be saying something even if it means you will be paying for it. I'm not saying get into carnal arguments with your wife. I'm saying you need to lead regardless if anybody follows or not.
You know, Yahushua acted as one in charge. He didn't just go around and decide whether or not someone was going to accept Him. And He did. He decided... let me put it this way... He compelled other people to follow Him and by that, compelling others to follow Him, He already acted in that position of leadership.
He assumed that for Himself because Yahweh had given it to Him. And so, He would say, "Follow Me," because Yahweh put Him in that position. But notice... notice... He didn't force anyone to follow Him.
Mark 8:34 - When He had called the people to [Himself], with His disciples also, He said to them, "Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.
If you desire it. You see, there is a difference between leadership and control. Yahushua never forced anyone to follow Him. He never grabbed them by the scruff of the neck and said, "Come with Me." No! He compelled them to. He warned those who did not, but He did not harp on people who didn't. He warned them.
Talking to the rich young ruler, He says:
Luke 18:22 - So when Yahushua heard these things, He said to him, "You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me."
23 - But when he heard this, he became very sorrowful, for he was very rich.
The rich young ruler, he couldn't bear that. He didn't want to give up his riches.
Luke 18:24 - And when Yahushua saw that he became very sorrowful, He said, "How hard it is for those who have riches to enter the kingdom of Elohim!
Notice He did not take a shepherd's crook and grab the guy by the neck on the end of the shepherd's rod, and say, "No, you are not going anywhere. Sell everything you got and you follow Me." He never did that. He never stopped him and jammed a thousand Scriptures down his throat. He warned him and that was the end of it.
Then it was Yahweh's job that His Word would bear fruit in the man's heart to make it grow.
So when I speak of a man providing for his family spiritually, I'm not talking about being how I used to be-- overbearing. And yet, I'm a zealous man. I have a lot of zeal for the things of Yahweh. And I practically dragged my family for a lot of years and I didn't know I had to pace things.
I'm talking about leadership... the difference between leadership and control. Control is: "Come follow me," and "Come on," and drag you along. Leadership is: Set the example, compel people to follow you, inspire people by your example.
It's a whole lot better to, rather than telling somebody they are supposed to do this or supposed to do that, it's a whole lot better to inspire them to follow your lead by your awesome example.
Now whether those in the household follow that leadership-- we are talking about the wife-- it is completely your choice. Now with children, yes, we do exert a certain level of control to help them establish good habits in their life. And that's fine, but as they get older, less and less control and more and more teaching.
So as Yahushua warned those who didn't follow Him, women who don't follow the Yahweh ordained leader of the family will have consequences in the spiritual realm. And so, don't feel pressure, brothers, if you wife doesn't follow your lead, but you must lead. I say you MUST lead.
There are too many hen-pecked men who fear their wife's response if they act as the one in charge. And sometimes that's because whenever the man has taken charge they have been controlling and they have been oppressive.
Change your leadership style, because Yahweh has given us the rules for spiritually providing for our families and we have to take that seriously.
And men, that means just as you are required to physically provide food for your household, Yahweh requires you to labor in the Word and provide spiritual food for your household... and it's not an option. You must provide for your own.
And the spiritual is much more important than the physical. Don't delegate that responsibility to your wife or some Bible teacher somewhere or some local congregation. Yahweh has charged you to provide for your family. Do not neglect it or you will pay the price.
Take the time in the morning at breakfast. Read the Scriptures together with your family. You may feel inadequate at first, but the question is not whether you feel up to the task. You are required to lead. Yahweh made you-- created you-- to lead. He has already seen to it that you have the tools within you to do it. He built you for leadership.
It's just that this world has been stomping men down for so long it's deceived us into thinking that we are wrong for taking the lead. But, you know, every successful endeavor-- everything-- has leadership. Every business has leadership. Every organization, every charity, every anything... every nation in the world... has leadership.
There are always people in charge and responsible for the success of whatever is underneath them. If no one is in charge of anything, the business will fail, the organization will fail, the nation will fail. And I say, also, a family will fail if there is not clearly defined leadership.
And the ideal situation is you have a husband and a wife who are so in tune with Yahweh's leadership in their lives there is hardly any conflict at all. No conflict. Because they are both so sensitive to Yahweh's direction in the family they hear His Word. They hear His Voice. And they walk it out. That's the standard. That's the goal.
Now in order to be effective leaders, we have to have our own relationship right with Yahweh, men. We need to be men after Yahweh's own heart. We have to be willing to let Messiah live in us. We have to be men who love others as ourselves, being thankful for the Messiah's work of love and His life flowing through us.
We need to be men of compassion and mercy and understanding, yet without failing to stand for what is right. And give honor to the wife. Dwell with them with understanding. They are the weaker vessel... not weaker in the sense of weaker spiritually, necessarily, but more fragile, a more fragile vessel.
1Peter 3:7 - Husbands, likewise, dwell with [them] with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as [being] heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.
And her fragility, in the sense of the weaker vessel, is a blessing. She's more sensitive to the things going on and we need to hear her voice where we may be just numb to things. We are tough. We are tougher, generally speaking. And they have the sensitivity sometimes to tell us things we are not seeing.
You know, it's a lot of times spoken that a wife needs to respect her husband, but we also have to give honor to our wife. Don't dishonor your wife in front of your friends. Don't speak negatively about her in front of your buddies. Love them.
Ephesians 5:25 - Husbands, love your wives, just as Messiah also loved the church and gave Himself for her,
And we have to show respect to our children as well. Ephesians 6:4 says:
Ephesians 6:4 - And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of Yahweh.
To provoke... this word "provoke"... how do you provoke your children to wrath? It says a soft answer turns away wrath, right? But a grievous word stirs up anger, right? That's what the Proverbs teach.
The word "grievous words" has to do with wounding. Wounding the heart of a child to bring them into compliance is not how we do it. It only provokes anger inside them.
And so, throughout the Scriptures, men are expected actually to be the disciplinarian for children. It talks often about the father being the one to apply the rod of discipline. But we need to do so with respect, not provoking their carnal nature, but provoking spiritual nature. And when we correct them, we must also lead them by example.
A lot of times more is caught than taught. They tend to emulate what they see. And so, our goal is that our children are highly in love with the heavenly Father because they see Yahweh in their earthly father.
Our goal is that our wife lovingly submits to our authority because they are confident that we love them and they are secure in doing that because they know we have their best interest at heart. And as spiritual providers, we must have the kind of speech that inspires others to walk before Yahweh blamelessly.
Our goal is that every thought, every word, every deed manifests the fruit of Yahweh's Spirit, the example of the Messiah. That's a real man.
Real men are men who take captive every thought and bring it under subjection to the Messiah, who are spiritual warriors for their family in the prayer closet and in life, praying with their family, for their family. Real men serve their wife and children and are always willing to be the one to do without.
So biblical manhood is not just a "large and be in charge" mindset. It's really not sitting back and firing off orders like a king on a throne.
Yahushua called His disciples to Himself and said:
Matthew 20:25 - But Yahushua called them to [Himself] and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them.
26 - "Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant.
27 - "And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave --
Matthew 20:28 - "just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."
Matthew 20:29 - Now as they went out of Jericho, a great multitude followed Him.
They still followed. Didn't lord it over. He set the example. He taught truth, service, love and solid teaching. That's what compelled people to follow. And Yahushua is the ultimate example of leadership. Now He is not behind us with a staff in the air driving us forward. He is ahead of us, leading us, calling us forward to follow His example.
You know, I raised sheep for a number of years. And I'm down to one now, but I had a flock at one time. I'd say about 40 or 50 sheep. And one of the things I learned was in order to direct sheep to the place you want them to go, scaring them with my shepherd's rod was very rarely ever effective. They would see me as the enemy.
But, you know, if I had food, they would follow me anywhere. They would go out of the fence, you know. All I have to do is call them. They would come running to me. They see me as a friend. They knew I had food waiting for 'em. They saw it as beneficial to follow my lead.
Isn't that why we follow Messiah? We know His leadership is ultimately for our benefit?
We love the spiritual food He provides. We know that following Him leads to life. We know that we can trust His sacrificial love and concern for us. There is no better path to take. It's the enemy that usually tries to drive you from behind. It's the enemy behind you trying to pick off the weak. In Psalm 23, it says:
Psalms 23:1 - <> YAHWEH [is] my shepherd; I shall not want.
What does that mean? That "want" means to be in need. You know, when Yahweh's our Shepherd, all of our needs are met. Not necessarily everything we want or desire, but everything we need is met.
When we need to be loved and valued and heard, He's there. This is our example, brothers. When we need encouragement, He's there. When we need spiritual and physical provision, He's there.
When we need someone to understand us, to guide us, to rescue us from trouble, He's there. When we need eternal life and a trustworthy and gentle teacher to lead us there, He's there. And are we, as spiritual providers, following that example of leadership and provision?
Too many men, and at one time I was one of them, have a militaristic view of leadership, a strong-armed view of leadership. And men, in the sense of physical presence, physical strength, some other manly attributes, have a tendency to want to lord it over.
You know, the worldly view of masculinity is about who is the strongest, the fittest, the "tough guy" in the sense of physical strength, who can intimidate, who is the tallest, who is the biggest. It's not what Yahweh is looking for when it comes to masculinity.
Notice what David said to Solomon:
1Kings 2:1 - Now the days of David drew near that he should die, and he charged Solomon his son, saying:
2 - "I go the way of all the earth; be strong, therefore, and prove yourself a man.
Go lift weights? No.
1Kings 2:3 - "And keep the charge of YAHWEH your Elohim: to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the Law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do and wherever you turn;
That's a wise man. That's a man's man.
Biblical masculinity is about keeping the Torah of Yahweh, walking in His ways, His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, His testimonies and standing up against the enemy who would try to stop you and becoming victorious. Be strong and prove yourself a man. Prove it!
Until you have done verse 3, you are not a man at all. Until you have done verse 3, you are nothing but an effeminate man. Until you have done verse 3... you can set it on your heart to do what's in verse 3, at least... you are nothing but an effeminate man, a softy. I didn't write the mail. It's what it says. Prove yourself a man.
This is how you prove yourself a man. Keep the Torah. Stand up against the enemy. And don't let people walk all over you.
You know, if you let your wife walk all over you and use her as an excuse to not walk in Yahweh's ways, His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, His testimonies, let yourself be a pliable pushover in these areas, you need to man up. That was the problem with King Ahab.
Ahab was willing to disobey Yahweh. He seemed to have a tender heart toward Yahweh, but he was willing to disobey Yahweh to accommodate his immoral, bloodthirsty, and yet spiritually intense wife... spiritually intense in the wrong direction. And Yahweh said in Scripture:
1Kings 21:25 - But there was no one like Ahab who sold himself to do wickedness in the sight of YAHWEH, because Jezebel his wife stirred him up.
He sold himself. He became her slave, offered himself up for sale and just let her walk all over him as if she was the master. And being a softy and refusing to, as David told Solomon, prove himself a man and keep the commandments of Yahweh, he would not stand up to his morally repugnant wife Jezebel.
And so, men, we need to embrace the way Yahweh really did create us. It's obvious He has given us the role of bread winners for our families. And on average He has made us stronger than women for a reason-- so we would work. And the end result is that we are the bread winner. We toil by the sweat of our brow.
He made each of us differently and we need to accept and embrace the way He made us. And the world with its absurdity is going to tell us we can choose whether you want to be a man or not? No, come on. Be a man. Be a man.
The so called Christian sodomites will tell you, oh, they are created to be sodomites and they do not have a choice. It's the reprobate mind that embraces that. Science is not on their side. Don't let anybody tell you it is. It's a huge lie just like evolution is a lie.
So let's embrace our roles as father and husband that Yahweh has given us. With our superior physical strength comes a responsibility to use that for protecting our families rather than using it to abuse and rule over our families with intimidation and anger.
I've heard too many cases of men abusing their wives physically and justifying themselves for it. Yahushua could have come and use His position of power to force this world into submission. Instead He came, He served us, He loved us, He died for us so we would be compelled to serve Him in return with a willing heart.
He gave us the role of leadership. We need to lead like He does.
Now another area of responsibility for men is the masculine role of protecting our families and keeping them safe. I mean, I don't even know if I have to speak of the physical part of it. Most men understand that. It is already kind of built in us to protect the weak. I mean, it's practically automatic.
But in Scripture it was the men who went out to war so that their cities and their families were protected. And if an intruder came into the home, it's men who needed to take up the role of defender and protector of the family. And we should do whatever is necessary to defend and protect our families from evil men who may seek to do us harm.
Yahweh has charged us to be like Messiah and lay down our lives for those under our care.
John 10:10 - "The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have [it] more abundantly.
11 - "I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep.
12 - "But a hireling, [he who is] not the shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees; and the wolf catches the sheep and scatters them.
John 10:13 - "The hireling flees because he is a hireling and does not care about the sheep.
We are not supposed to be hireling shepherds of our family. We care about their physical needs. And also, not only providing physical protection, but spiritual protection as well, brothers. It is the spiritual well-being that men often neglect.
A lot of times men get a testosterone boost when they think of physical protection of their family-- a whole pile of guns in the gun cabinet, you know. But we're not heads of household because we are anything special or because we are better than our wives. We're heads of household because Yahweh is holding us responsible.
Yahweh holds us accountable for the way we've lead and provided for and protected our families. He will hold those under our care responsible for how they follow that leadership.
But part of our spiritual leadership is that we need to protect our family from those who would seek to come in and steal and kill and destroy spiritually. And that's actually what He is talking about here, is spiritual protection.
If you saw your wife or children about to walk out in front of a car, surely you would do something to protect them from physical danger. Maybe grab them, pull them back. Maybe even lay down your own life for them.
If you saw one of your children about to walk into an animal trap, you wouldn't just watch them. You would do whatever is needed to keep them from the trap. And your children should feel safe under your care.
Proverbs 14:26 - In the fear of YAHWEH [there is] strong confidence, And His children will have a place of refuge.
And so, our homes need to be a place of sanctuary, a place of refuge. You know, the ancient cities of renown always had walls? The good ones did. Within the walls one could find peace, protection, and there would always be an elder or a set of elders at the gates. And the elders would decide who is coming in the city and who is not coming in the city.
If there were ever a breach in the wall, it would be quickly repaired lest an enemy enter in. And so, our homes need to be a walled city, an area of protection from the enemy.
The father is the elder at the gate deciding who and what influences will enter the household, whether it be a person, or in today's world, mass media... a book, a magazine, anything that could potentially harm the household.
And spiritually, the father should be there to keep his wife and children protected from the subtle influences of sin. You know, television and the Internet and these little handheld phones can be one of the most destructive things a person could have in their household, like a huge breach in the wall.
It's almost impossible to guard your family from television ahead of time unless you know, okay, the creators of this program have a truly biblical worldview. The television actually thrusts scenes at you and words upon you and your family, and the damage sometimes is already done by the time you even determine how wicked it really was.
It's also a thief. It robs a man's time when time is so short.
Now in order for us to adequately protect our family from spiritual dangers, we need to be watchmen-- watchmen on the wall-- looking for dangers, looking out for things that may negatively affect our family.
But too often men are out of the home working long hours, chasing the American dollar, using their free time to play with the toys that they've amassed. Proverbs 27, verse 8, says:
Proverbs 27:8 - Like a bird that wanders from its nest [Is] a man who wanders from his place.
What happens when a bird wanders from its nest? Its young are unprotected. That's what happens. Subject to the enemy. As family men, we need to be home. We need to enjoy being home and spending time with our families rather than neglecting that and spending all or most of our off time with our buddies and friends.
Be a shepherd...
Proverbs 27:23 - Be diligent to know the state of your flocks, [And] attend to your herds;
24 - For riches [are] not forever, Nor does a crown [endure] to all generations.
Too often the elder is not even at the gate of his walled city.
He is out there working and playing all hours of the day and night, shipping his children off to the world, the government schools where they will learn from worldly teachers and influences and curriculums eight hours or more a day, where they are a companion of fools in government schools and taught the ways of the world.
Proverbs 13, verse 20, says:
Proverbs 13:20 - He who walks with wise [men] will be wise, But the companion of fools will be destroyed.
Proverbs 22:15 - Foolishness [is] bound up in the heart of a child; The rod of correction will drive it far from him.
Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child, right? What are you going to find at the schools? You are going to find foolishness, because in all likelihood the rod of correction has not driven it out from them.
Your children need to be your companions more so than the people of their own age. I do see tremendous benefit if our children have friends that are spiritually minded. I'm not saying they shouldn't have friends, but you need to be their companion, the primary influence in their lives. That's spiritual leadership.
And there are too many foolish children out there. I mean, surely you would not let a little child play in the street. You know about the risk to their physical danger, right? You know that. So why would you send them off to the dangerous playground of this unbelieving generation when it's such a great risk of their spiritual destruction?
No, we need to protect our children within the walled city and train their hands and minds for war until they are ready to go out and do battle. And, yes, that's why I believe in homeschooling.
You are delegating your responsibility to somebody else, taking a huge risk with the lives of your children. It's not the responsibility of the government or the church or anybody else to raise and teach your children. Men, it is your responsibility.
Deuteronomy 6:7 - "You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.
How can you do that when you are hardly ever home? If you want to fulfill that calling and you are finding it difficult because you can hardly keep up with your bills, or whatever, you may have to lower your standard of living a little bit. Take a less intensive job.
Because if we want to raise up a righteous generation in the midst of a crooked and a perverse one, we need to be together when we sit in our house and walk by the way and rise up and lie down. And really the best arrangement is mom and dad and the children are all together in the same house throughout the day.
I mean, that's the way it used to be until the industrial revolution came around. It's the way it used to be.
So if you want to fulfill the vision and heed the call, then spend time with your family as much as possible, because this practice of children... I mean, it's terrible.
A family in the 1800s, this is what it looked like: Mom and Dad and children are all together in the same house. This is what it looked like. Dad would take his son to work with him and teach him a trade or work in the fields together. Mom would teach her daughter how to take care of the household duties. And it worked great.
It worked like this for thousands of years. Then came the industrial revolution. After this time when moms and daughters were all together and fathers and children were all together, their sons, the industrial revolution came and now dad is off to work for some corporation out there working.
The children, soon after that, started going to school every day. Where's mom? Bored and alone with nothing to do. Might as well go find a job. I mean, that's where we're at. That's where we're at. And so, this is the society we live in.
I mean, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob didn't send their children out of the house to go be with somebody, go be with transgressors, while they went out and worked for whatever. We live in an evil time. Influences are EVERYWHERE! Everywhere.
So then came two World Wars. There was a need for female workers. Mom grew discontent sitting at home. They needed to work in the workforce and they got a taste of it. And it didn't want to go away. And so, now they are out in the workforce and the divorce rate has climbed ever since.
Then came the television. The 50s, 60s, and 70s, television started taking over family life in the evenings... Evening news, television shows that followed. I mean, rather than parents and children socializing and doing things together, everybody sits and watches T.V., being entertained and ultimately programmed by Hollywood.
They call it programming for a reason, because Hollywood introduced ever so slowly, bit by bit, ever so subtly, the lifestyles of the wicked, rich and famous, and glorified and did not show the consequences of sin. David says:
Psalms 101:3 - I will set nothing wicked before my eyes; I hate the work of those who fall away; It shall not cling to me.
"I hate it!" If you see something on television that's wicked, you have to hate it. If they keep shoving it in your face all the time, you are going to lose your hatred for it. It might even tempt you to do it yourself.
He knew the power it had. "It shall not cling to me," he said. "I don't want anything in front of my eyes that is wicked."
Psalms 101:4 - A perverse heart shall depart from me; I will not know wickedness.
People of this nation say, "Oh, well, what's that wickedness before my eyes? Oh, it won't hurt just to watch just a little. Besides, this is so entertaining. Yeah, that one thing is pretty bad, but, you know, the rest of the program is okay."
Do you know what a magician's wand is made out of? Holly wood. No joke. And Hollywood has used the airwaves, through the prince and power of the air, to send out its wicked doctrines of demons.
And those who want to "channel" those doctrines of demons through "channeling" through the T.V. channels, sit spellbound for hours while they infiltrate the house from within. It's a breach in the wall.
And too often the same man who would protect their family from intruders trying to break into their house and harm their family physically, will say nothing as the evil influences come into their home through various media and harm their family spiritually. We can't do that.
Now some of you have families that are just flat out hooked on these things. You might be tempted to come in, and, "Okay! Got my teaching from Tom Martincic today. I get it. I'm going to be a man! Errrgh! Everybody, toss out your cell phones. Hand them to me. I'm going to throw them in the garbage.
"I'm going to take the television. Going to toss it out of the house. Internet? You know, we're going to do this. We're going to do that."
A little word of caution here, brothers. A little word of caution. We are called to lead, but being a hard-nosed, controlling leader, a militaristic drill sergeant, is still leaving a void in masculinity... because that's not masculinity.
Because true biblical masculinity is not the man with the drill sergeant mentality. True biblical masculinity involves leading your family, step by step, into the paths of righteousness, knowing when to speak, knowing how to speak it. Even Yahushua told His disciples, "I've many things to say to you. You can't bear them now."
True biblical masculinity is speaking the truth in love, leading people to Yahushua, to the example of holiness that He lived, compelling our family members to walk uprightly and being patient with them just as Yahweh is with you and with me if they are not there yet.
Most importantly, our relationship with one another needs to be intact. It's only when the relationship with each other is where it needs to be that we can effectively even be a leader to begin with. So we have to establish the relationships first. And once the relationship is where it needs to be, okay, start from there.
Otherwise, you sound like a foreign ogre over here just trying to take away their freedoms. Set the example in your own life first, and then ask the necessary questions. Call out the conscience of those around you. Woo their hearts toward righteousness.
If we just go in and grab the television and throw it off the porch, yank the cell phones out of their hands, throw it all in the garbage, lock your family up in the house and keep them away from every possible influence, you are not doing it right, because actually, we live in the world, brothers.
We need to make sure our family is strong enough to bear whatever evil influence there may be. And like Yahushua, we lead gently. We teach. We instruct. We compel. We serve.
You know, I learned something at the Feast of Tabernacles this year. This past year... 2015. We all had our banners and we were marching around in tribes, just for fun and to learn something from it.
We actually divided our group into tribes. And we walked behind a banner-carrying man to take us toward the place where we were going to actually anoint the corners of the camp and set it apart for Yahweh's glory, for His spirit to be there to guide us and direct us.
And I had seen the men walking with the banners. They had the name of the tribe there on the banners. And they were on the way, man. They were ready to go, okay? And they were walking and they were walking pretty fast.
And I got to looking behind me at the first place we stopped and there was a whole line of people all the way back who were still, you know... one lady was pregnant and I think other people had children with them and just had less ability to walk fast for one reason or another.
And I almost started to say, "Well, let's go ahead and pray," before the other people caught up, but something in my spirit said, "No, Tom. Don't do that." And I thought it wouldn't be very nice and very kind and loving to just start. So I waited for them. It took patience as we waited for them to catch up.
But then I thought back and Yahweh instructed me at that moment that the children of Israel, when they were in the wilderness, they did march in camps. But there was a time when, you know, the stragglers that fell behind, you know, were attacked by Amalek, who was looking for the weak and the sick and the elderly and those with child. And why?
Why couldn't those in the lead walk at a pace that everybody could bear? I mean, I could picture, "We're going to the promised land! Here we go!" They didn't want to wait around. And it was a failure in leadership that caused the weak to be vulnerable to attack. You have to lead at a pace that everybody can bear.
And Yahushua, it is written of Him, in Isaiah chapter, I think, 40, and it says He will gather them, lambs, in His arms and gently lead those who are with young. He is a leader that is willing to walk at a pace we can bear. THAT is masculinity. THAT is true biblical masculinity.
You've got to be a man. This world needs real men... men who keep the commandments of Elohim, men who provide and protect their families, both spiritually and physically, men who know how to walk out leadership and the Savior's example of love and service.
I'm still a work in progress in this area. I'm not claiming to be anything. And we all are. I think we all need to see ourselves as that. But we've lost so much in this generation and we're losing more and more.
It's high time men stand up and be men and lift up the Biblical standard of masculinity and manhood and show them what a blessing it truly is, because there is no happier place than to be doing just what we were created to do.
And there is really so much more I could say on this topic, but I felt lead to address some very specific and very important areas I felt needed our attention in the body of Messiah. And some of this relates to the home life, but for those of you who are single, I've got a word for you as well.
There are a lot of fatherless children out there who need you, who need your help. Over and over again in the Scriptures, Yahweh speaks of the believer's responsibility to care for the fatherless and the widow. Those who afflict them are in a heap of trouble. Exodus 22:22-24 says:
Exodus 22:22 - "You shall not afflict any widow or fatherless child.
23 - "If you afflict them in any way, [and] they cry at all to Me, I will surely hear their cry;
24 - "and My wrath will become hot, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives shall be widows, and your children fatherless.
Whoa! Wow! Look how much He cares about you, ladies. Look how much He cares, children. He set forth provisions in Israelite culture to ensure the fatherless and the widow had their needs met.
Deuteronomy 14:28 - "At the end of [every] third year you shall bring out the tithe of your produce of that year and store [it] up within your gates.
29 - "And the Levite, because he has no portion nor inheritance with you, and the stranger and the fatherless and the widow who [are] within your gates, may come and eat and be satisfied, that YAHWEH your Elohim may bless you in all the work of your hand which you do.
(Sorry about that.)
Deuteronomy 16:13 - "You shall observe the Feast of Tabernacles seven days, when you have gathered from your threshing floor and from your winepress.
14 - "And you shall rejoice in your feast, you and your son and your daughter, your male servant and your female servant and the Levite, the stranger and the fatherless and the widow, who [are] within your gates.
He wanted everybody to come. And that's exactly why we invite everybody to come, whether you can afford it or not, to the Feast of Tabernacles in Steelville. He made sure they were treated just like everybody else, the fatherless and the widow, so they could come and enjoy the blessing of His festivals.
And He commanded: "Do not pervert justice due the stranger or the fatherless."
Deuteronomy 24:17 - "You shall not pervert justice due the stranger or the fatherless, nor take a widow's garment as a pledge.
And Job was considered to be a righteous man.
Job 31:16 - "If I have kept the poor from [their] desire, Or caused the eyes of the widow to fail,
17 - Or eaten my morsel by myself, So that the fatherless could not eat of it
18 - (But from my youth I reared him as a father, And from my mother's womb I guided [the widow] );
Job 31:22 - [Then] let my arm fall from my shoulder, Let my arm be torn from the socket.
That's how intense he was toward caring for the fatherless and the widow. No wonder Yahweh spoke so well of him.
Yahweh says He is:
Psalms 68:5 - A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows, [Is] Elohim in His holy habitation.
And so, what's our responsibility as believers in Messiah toward the fatherless? In light of the Scriptures, fatherlessness is not just something you look at, and say, "Oh, how sad that little boy doesn't have a father." That's the "be warmed and be filled" mindset. We are supposed to do something about it.
He says our Feast Days are an abomination to Him unless we do care for the needs of the fatherless. The book of James says that pure and undefiled religion is to visit the orphans and the widows in their trouble.
So every single one of us has a responsibility to do something. Part of walking in love is seeing the needs of children and seeking to fulfill those needs. If you know of a fatherless child, minister to them. If you live near or in a community with a high rate of fatherlessness, there's a huge ministry opportunity there for you.
Single men, especially, look, you can fill that void and be a father figure to the fatherless. All of us can point them to Yahweh. He promises to be that father to the fatherless.
The spiritual and emotional needs are even more than the physical. Don't just count on the government to send them a check. Be there for them physically, spiritually, emotionally.
We need to be the sheep of Matthew 25, who went out, out of love, looked to fulfill the needs of the people around them, rather than the goats with the "be warmed, be filled" mindset.
We have the solution. The solution is Yahushua the Messiah who has the power to supply a person's every need. And the government can only supply the financial part, but we can do so much more.
And that's why we have generation after generation of fatherless children who have not pulled out. Because believers in Messiah are not willing to go into those communities and be a father to those fatherless so they will choose to be a father to their children.
But beware, lest your own children be spiritually fatherless or your own wife be a spiritual widow. We cannot sit back, because Satan is working actively to destroy your wife and destroy your children, and we have to fulfill Yahweh's purpose for manhood.
Do the work. Die to self. Let Messiah live in us, doing the work in us, because the time has come and the time is now. Psalm 71, verses 18 through 19, says:
Psalms 71:18 - Now also when [I am] old and grayheaded, O Elohim, do not forsake me, Until I declare Your strength to [this] generation, Your power to everyone [who] is to come.
19 - Also Your righteousness, O Elohim, [is] very high, You who have done great things; O Elohim, who [is] like You?
Psalms 78:1 - <> Give ear, O my people, [to] my law; Incline your ears to the words of my mouth.
2 - I will open my mouth in a parable; I will utter dark sayings of old,
3 - Which we have heard and known, And our fathers have told us.
Psalms 78:4 - We will not hide [them] from their children, Telling to the generation to come the praises of YAHWEH, And His strength and His wonderful works that He has done.
Psalms 78:5 - For He established a testimony in Jacob, And appointed a law in Israel, Which He commanded our fathers, That they should make them known to their children;
6 - That the generation to come might know [them], The children [who] would be born, [That] they may arise and declare [them] to their children,
7 - That they may set their hope in Elohim, And not forget the works of Elohim, But keep His commandments;
You have a house to build. Show Yahweh's strength to the next generation. Take the time every day; have some worship; Scripture reading with your family. Pick a specific hour of the day where you refuse to let anything distract you.
Come together for family worship-- praise, Scripture lessons-- and throughout the day guide the conversation toward lessons in Yahweh's Word.
But we have to have the spirit of love and joy and peace as we build the house, one lesson at a time, one brick at a time, one experience at a time, that Yahweh might fashion in our children a beautiful home for His presence, and therefore sanctify ourselves...
Dedicate ourselves to building that house that will not be destroyed in the whirlwinds of adult life.
Proverbs 10:25 - When the whirlwind passes by, the wicked [is] no [more], But the righteous [has] an everlasting foundation.
Psalms 127:1 - <> Unless YAHWEH builds the house, They labor in vain who build it; Unless YAHWEH guards the city, The watchman stays awake in vain.
You need to work in concert with Yahweh and be a housebuilder.
1Chronicles 28:10 - "Consider now, for YAHWEH has chosen you to build a house for the sanctuary; be strong, and do it."
Take heed. Yahweh has charged us men to build our homes, a sanctuary for the Spirit of the Living Elohim. And so, we need to be strong, stand up as men and do it.
And as we do it, and as you do it, be strong and of good courage. And let Yahweh use you to lead your family to the promised land. Let's pray.
Thank You, Yahweh, for Your convicting Word. I stand in awe of Your awesome Word. And Father, I don't know if any of us, especially me, are meeting Your standards in this area. I just pray, Father, You would forgive us. For You are the truly awesome and great Elohim. There is nothing and no one like You.
No one is Your equal and Your standard is awesome and inspiring, and we praise You for it. And we thank You for it. We want to be real men. We want to be the kind of men You've created us to be.
Father, have mercy on us where we've failed You, strengthen us where we are weak and glorify Your great name where we are strong. Teach us and instruct us in the way. Show us what it means to be leaders, what it means to be a father, what it means to be a husband.
We want to embrace Your views of masculinity and stand in stark contrast to the wicked absurdities of the world, that Your ways and Your name might be glorified, that Your standards might be revealed and convict and instruct this world toward the way of righteousness and the way of truth.
In everything, Father Yahweh, we praise You. We can literally feel Your Word instructing us. And truly Yours is the Kingdom. Teach us to build the Kingdom with You. And the power... Let us show Your power to the whole world. And the Kingdom, establish Your Kingdom in our hearts, forever and ever.
In Yahushua's great name, we pray these things. Amein.
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