FEBRUARY 5 – Show thyself a Man
1Ki 2:2 I go the way of all the earth: be thou strong therefore, and shew thyself a man;
3 And keep the charge of the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, that thou mayest prosper in all that thou doest, and whithersoever thou turnest thyself:
David is about to die. He has his son Solomon before him and is giving him instructions. His first statement was, “shew thyself a man.” There are certain distinctions that reveal that a male is a true man. He guides the home based on Gods Word. He is a comfort for the family during times of sadness, loss, or trial. He follows God and the Word of God.
The Old Testament often relates that God tells a man to be strong. The names that come to mind immediately are Joshua who was told to be strong and of a good courage. Three times he was admonished to be strong and of good courage in Joshua 1:6,7,9; and Solomon is here charged by David to be strong; Asa was charged to be strong in II Chronicles 15:7. time after time the admonition is to be strong.
Long ago when I was a teenager, my father had a record he played for all the teenagers of the Church he pastored. It was by Don Lonie. He gave three things that if one would incorporate these into their life, they would live a wonderful life. Those three things are respect, responsibility, and religion. I have used these three things in messages a few times.
Respect – A lack of respect brings snarky, spiteful, and hateful responses to others. Here is where we have failed. It is with our children. A strong father will demand a respectful yes sir/ma’am or no sir/ma’am from their children. I have heard, don’t call me sir, that is my father. We have just harmed the children with such a response. We are teaching, not only God’s Word but also respect in our Sunday school. I love the term brother or sister as we address each other. It tells of a relationship. My closest preacher friends I will call Bro. Last Name when Church members are present. When others are not around I refer to them as Bro. First name. I have given them respect as a person, respect as a relationship, and respect as to holding a God called position as preacher or pastor. Be Strong in showing respect. Be strong for the family.
Responsibility – We live in a day and age where if someone does something wrong, it is never their fault but someone else is at fault. This is truly a pathetic situation. We must take responsibility for what we have done that is wrong. It is natural for a child to shun responsibility but we are to train children to take responsibility for what they do wrong. We must learn to step up to the plate, so to speak, and say I did it, it is my fault and I accept responsibility. We have become blame shifters. As a pastor, there are times I take responsibility for a mistake that someone else has made. I may have been negligent in instructing someone. I am responsible for what I teach the Church I pastor. I have been known to teach something I believed and after further study come back and apologize to the Church for teaching them something wrong. We must be strong in taking responsibility.
Religion – There are those that give religion a bad name. They say; I do not do religion, I do relationship. Everyone does religion. Some religiously lie. Some religiously steal. That is a use of the word religion. Religion and Spiritual have definitions that are very close, Yet there are those that claim they are spiritual and not religious. That raises a question in my mind, are you spiritually a Buddhist, a Hindu, maybe New Age? We sure fumble through words to establish our superiority. Here is what I am. I am religious because I have established a relationship with Jesus Christ by trusting in His death, burial, and resurrection. I religiously go to Church when there is a service. I religiously read and study Gods Word. I am a religious person spiritually identified with Jesus Christ and a fellow heir of my Savior. If we are not religiously taking our family to each and every worship service we can, we are failing our family responsibility to raise our family in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.
It is time we showed ourselves a man before God, our community and our family by being Strong in respect, responsibility, and religion.