Theme of the Week: Godly Masculinity
Bible Verse: “For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge.” 2 Peter 1:5
Scripture Reading: 2 Peter 1:3-11
Standing in front of the deodorant shelf, the myriad options causing a bit of an eye roll, the question inserted itself into my mind. What do I want to smell like? But that wasn’t really the question. It’s true that some scents and some personal aromas are not the most olfactorily pleasing mixtures. Not all the scents proffered seemed fitting. Several times I thought, that’s not really a man’s scent.
But what is a man supposed to smell like? Is there such a thing as a manly smell? This idea is just one small, but maybe not so innocent, way that cultural ideas of manhood, manliness, and masculinity have infiltrated my thinking.
This week I was supposed to write on godly masculinity. And I found that I really don’t have any idea what that is. There aren’t any explicit verses in Scripture that tell us how to be a man or what character traits are exclusively male. And I realized, it’s the adjective that’s important and not the noun. In other words, godliness is the controlling factor, not masculinity.
It’s true there are some instructions to men in Scripture, but the vast majority of those are life state conditioned—instructions to husbands or fathers. In the next days, we are going to zoom in on the instructions Paul explicitly writes for men, no matter your life situation, if you are a male, these apply to you.
Peter’s instruction in today’s passage isn’t exactly male-oriented. These traits serve men and women equally well. But he does give us a starting point. Peter’s list of value adds assumes faith as the starting point. That’s where all godliness starts. Faith. If you have faith in Jesus, you can become a godly man.
Prayer: Father, sometimes I focus on the wrong things. Sometimes I think that I have the godliness part down and am only looking at what it means to be a man. But all too often I discover that my images of manhood and my definitions of masculinity are tainted by cultural and social perceptions. Help me to focus on the right thing. Help me to put the adjective first.
Reflection: How would you define godly masculinity? Why is that your definition? Do any parts reflect societies negative influence? Ask God to show you where your definition, and therefore your direction, may be off.
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