Calvary Road Baptist Church

“A MASCULINE RELATIONSHIP WITH WOMEN” Part 1

Proverbs 31.3 

Please turn to Proverbs 31 and stand for the reading of God’s Word. We begin reading at verse 1: 

1  The words of king Lemuel, the prophecy that his mother taught him.

2  What, my son? and what, the son of my womb? and what, the son of my vows?

3  Give not thy strength unto women, nor thy ways to that which destroyeth kings.

 

Verse 3 speaks to a severe problem in Christendom. By Christendom, I refer to the world of people who consider themselves Christians, regardless of their actual beliefs and whether or not they are converted. One serious problem with Christendom is that it is increasingly effeminate. I do not think this is a serious problem among all our Church members, though we see evidence of this among some of the unsaved who have attended here.

That said, a noticeable lack of masculinity is a problem that has reached the crisis stage in most denominations, Churches, and throughout Western civilization. Wokeness could not exist without the absence of masculinity in so many men. More and more and more of those men who claim to be Christians and who attend Church at least from time to time are exhibiting fewer and fewer behavioral characteristics that are distinctively masculine while displaying more and more behavioral characteristics that are distinctively feminine. This reality is powerfully driven home on my mission trips to Nepal, India, and Eastern Europe.

Rather than attempt to explain these characteristics to you in detail, let me refer you to four sources that have reached the same conclusions that I did when I first delivered a version of this message twenty-four years ago.

First, the Barna Report. Based in Oxnard, California, the annual Barna Report is the result of a poll conducted every year. The report written in 2000 predicted that within the next twenty-five years, Christianity will become so feminized, if present measurable trends continue, that the Gospel ministry will be as much a female profession as nursing is today. Their words, not mine.

Next, Credenda Agenda. A conservative Presbyterian periodical that was first introduced to me by Gary Isenberger, Credenda Agenda devoted an entire issue in 1999 to one facet of this problem, with one article decrying the lack of distinctive masculinity among pastors. That magazine issue went so far as to describe ministers as resembling neither men nor women in their conduct and deportment but behaving like some third gender, halfway between the two. And, sad to say, I agree with that complaint. It has come to be called the metrosexual male. It is a bigger problem now than it was then.

Third, there are books I have mentioned on several occasions titled The Church Impotent: The Feminization of Christianity,[1] The Church Effeminate,[2] and Why Men Hate Going To Church.[3] Those well-researched books document the ever-increasing tendency of Church attendance to be lopsided, with a greater and greater percentage of women attending and performing key leadership roles.

The authors also cite evidence showing that, increasingly, the men who do attend Church are less masculine and more feminine than in past years. That is not the case in our Church. But it does explain the departure of couples from masculine congregations. Many such couples, comprised of timid husbands and loud, obnoxious women, abandon assemblies that are appropriately led by men and consisting of men who are not effeminate. The sissy boys and their brassy wives hate such congregations.

Finally, if those sources do not convince you, let me read to you just a few of the workshop titles I was once invited to attend in Dallas: “Father-Hunger Among The Lost Generation,” “What To Do When A Husband Won’t Lead,” “Mentoring Strategies For Turning Boys Into Men,” “How To Raise Feminine Daughters,” “Teaching Manhood To Men,” “What To Do When A Wife Won’t Follow,” “Rediscovering Femininity And Modesty,” “Cultivating A Man-Friendly Church,” and “How To Raise Masculine Sons.”

That is just a partial listing of the titles. But from those titles and the number of people who attended the workshops, it is clear that some pastors were very, very concerned about this issue of masculinity in men, its effect on femininity in women, and how it impacts raising children in their Churches.

Those of you who have sat under my ministry for some time are somewhat familiar with my conversion testimony. You have heard me voice my fears as a young, unsaved man. As an unsaved fellow, I was not at all impressed with Christianity. My estimation of Christian men, especially, was that they were all a bunch of hen-pecked sissies.

I had good reason to come to such conclusions. My grandfathers, who I idolized as a little boy, were big, strong, loud, profane men. I never saw one of them read the Bible, pray, go to Church, or ever talk about God in my hearing. So, I never associated Christian manhood with the big, strong, courageous, tough man I wanted to be when I grew up. On the other hand, and in contrast to my grandfathers, I had two uncles, one who had been a lifelong preacher and one who served as a pastor very briefly, who were both portrayed to me by my unsaved father as weak and effeminate men.

Only after reaching adulthood did I realize my dad’s manipulation of my feelings caused me to want nothing to do with those uncles or other Christian members of our extended family or have any interest in being like them. I have since learned that my perceptions of those uncles were distorted, but they affected my desires as a child.

As well, on those few occasions when our family did to go Church, when I was a teen, we attended a Church whose pastor I knew to be cheating on his wife. So, all in all, I imagined Christianity to be the surest way of divesting oneself of manliness and integrity that I could imagine. After coming under conviction and turning to Christ in March of 1974, the most significant problem that confronted me as a newborn babe in Christ was the dilemma of becoming obedient in my newfound faith without becoming like the effeminate sissies I knew at work who attended and conducted the Bible studies I thought I should go to.

So, I was very perplexed. Being an assertive and aggressive male who loved and was faithful to his wife, was the ideal of manhood I sought to emulate in my grandfathers. It was not until I attended a preacher’s meeting, where I heard two Tabasco sauce Texas preachers some months after being baptized and joining my Church, that I could sigh a sigh of relief. Realizing, by observing those two pastors, that it was possible to be a Christian and be masculine in the way I had imagined a man ought to be, was a great relief to me. Christianity was beginning to look like something fulfilling to me.

It took a great deal longer for me to discern the problem with so many wives in many Churches who were terrified and adamantly opposed to their husbands being godly leaders in their marriages. Imagine the perverse view of God’s nature behind the fear of your husband being godly, manly, Christlike, and providing the leadership in marriage and in the home that God calls him to.

Do you suppose I was the only fellow who thought that way? Was I the only young fellow who felt like that in Church on those rare occasions our family attended? Was I the only young man who could not reconcile masculinity with what I thought was Christianity? I don’t think so. I didn’t think so then. The literature published these days convinces others as much as I have always been convinced.

But has anyone yet addressed why so many women are opposed to their husbands being godly men and imagining that they will be less fulfilled and blessed in their lives with a timid and fearful coward of a husband than with a spiritual man to husband them and father their children? Let me tell you something. There is a reason why more women attend Church than men. There is a reason why teenage boys stop going to Church as soon as they can. It is a reason, in addition to the natural tendency of sinners, to turn away from the things of God.

Somehow and in some way, those boys and men have been convinced that they cannot be men, not real men anyway, and be religious. Many perceive an interest in religion to be a threat to their masculinity. However, how is this notion reconciled with the fact that more men are involved in Islam than women, more men are involved in conservative Judaism than women, and an equal number of men and women are involved in eastern Christendom, such as the Russian Orthodox, Greek Orthodox, and Armenian Apostolic Churches?

Something has convinced men in the Western world that the Christian religion is a danger and a threat to their masculinity or has convinced the women in their lives. I am here to tell you that they are wrong. They are as wrong as wrong can be.

Most men in our auditorium long ago realized that most men and the vast percentage of teenage boys are mistaken. While religion in the Western world may very well be a threat to masculinity, such is not true of the Christian faith as it is found in the Bible or this Church. It is a fact that the vast majority of Churches are increasingly effeminate. However, this is not the result of authentic Christianity. This is due to the encroachments of feminism into Christendom.

The feminization of Christendom and the feminization of more and more Churches that bow to the pressure of political correctness and move away from Biblical norms for manhood and womanhood does not mean Christianity, authentic Christianity, Bible Christianity, is actually a threat to any man’s masculinity. The real problem, in my opinion, is twofold: First and foremost, this decisionism leaves so many who have professed Christ to be unregenerate.[4] So, many are lost even after they have been baptized and have become Church members.

Being unsaved, so very many men and a large number of pastors should be included among their number, they cannot understand the spiritual realities of manhood and masculinity because, being natural men, being unsaved, they cannot grasp the things of the Spirit of God.[5] However, that is not the whole problem. Even under the ministries of truly converted pastors, there is a general absence of pointed and focused instruction from God’s Word on how to be a Christian man, how to be masculine, how to be manly, and how not to be a feminine, effeminate, and womanly man.

Such instruction becomes more and more needed with each passing year, what with the number of fatherless homes children are being raised in and with the increasing number of effeminate men who are passing on to their sons the passive befuddlement that they exhibit as men who do not know how to be masculine, especially as they relate to women. Add to the mix the increasing number of selfish and self-centered women whose fathers were either wicked or missing altogether, and it is no wonder they have been convinced by demonic feminism that it is only fitting that they boss their husbands around.

Of course, they berate their men in front of their children. Why not manipulate them into missing Church services where good men have gathered? Their adamant opposition to the men in their lives becoming more manly as spiritual growth develops is entirely wrong but understandable.

Don’t you see? Who else would such women marry than men they can manage? Even with a Christian dad in the home, some girls and younger women are completely turned off by a Christianity that features mothers they imagine to be suppressed and downtrodden by husbands who feel threatened by wives who are not under their thumbs.

It is a complex issue. Yet so few pastors address these issues, with even fewer husbands displaying the humility to seek instruction from God’s Word that might add to their success in marriage success, as well as in parenting. Sadly, advice not sought is usually advice not heeded.

Here is the key to dealing with the problem of masculinity in men after the course has been set adequately regarding decisionism. Once a Church knows how to deal with people about their salvation, which includes men, then that Church must teach those men how to be masculine men. That is where discipleship enters in.

By masculinity, I am not talking about foolishly resorting to violence or adolescent demonstrations of bravado. I am referring to genuine manhood as it is portrayed in God’s Word. But do not think there will not be opposition to seeking and implementing God’s plan. There will be, I assure you, from both fearful men terrorized by the unfamiliar and also wives who are fearful about what they perceive to be a loss of control over their increasingly less manageable man.

Preaching, teaching, and discipleship is so needful, even in the lives of men and women who grew up with godly dads in the home. I say this because the assault on manliness and the feminization of Churches has gone on for so long in our country that authentic Christian masculinity has been missing even from many families with a rich Christian heritage.

So, where do we start? We started a long time ago here at Calvary Road Baptist Church. When I arrived as your pastor and announced to the congregation that this was going to be a man’s Church, and when I saw that most of the women of this congregation eagerly backed me (for which I commend you ladies and pay tribute to our late sister, Shirley French), I knew that we were well on our way to re-establishing this New Testament Church as a place for growing men who were really men and women who were really women.

That said, the Holy Spirit has provided a real key to showing our newer and younger men and our boys how to be masculine, particularly in their dealings with the women in their lives. The Men’s Advance we wrapped up Saturday morning was yet another significant step in developing our congregation’s grasp of manliness and spirituality.

I am excited about the future of those men and boys. I expect great strides to be made in their lives as they exercise spiritual leadership in the lives of other men and boys by demonstrating to them and before them genuine Biblical masculinity. Understand that masculinity is something other than climbing mountains or going hunting, something other than shooting pool and fighting, something other than drinking and being a womanizer, and something other than holding grudges and vendettas against those who have wronged you.

Key to being a masculine Christian man is dying to self, casting off bitterness and grudges and the unwillingness to forgive, and an eagerness to embrace humility and a love that covers a mulitude of sins. We read our text once more, Proverbs 31.3: 

“Give not thy strength unto women, nor thy ways to that which destroyeth kings.” 

I am speaking now only to converted men, who have direction and purpose in their lives (let me identify that as your agenda), who are indwelt by the Spirit of the living God, who are committed to finding God’s will and actually doing it.

This Father’s Day message to fathers and fathers-to-be is not directed to men who are pretenders or who have some insane notion that real Christian manhood is possible apart from God’s grace and a relationship with Jesus Christ. It is not.

Three main points I would like to develop, with the first point developed for you at this time, the second point presented to you this evening, and the final point reserved for Wednesday night. If ever there was a week you should attend every service, this is that week. 

First, LET US ADDRESS THE PROBLEM IN SOCIETY 

Up to now, I have only mentioned some of the symptoms found in our society to you fellows. What I would like to do now is define the problem, the real problem, which has always been a problem for men to deal with in their dealings with women. Sir, the women with whom you have to do, whether it be your wife, your sister, your mother, or the woman you are engaged to marry, have their own agendas. Presumably, you have your agenda. If you do not have an agenda for your life, you should. In any case, I promise you that each woman with whom you have to do has her agenda. That is not the problem. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a woman having her agenda. The problem comes when that woman, whoever she may be, begins to tug at you in a complex variety of ways to fulfill her agenda at the expense of you fulfilling your agenda.

Please do not ever become angry with that woman for seeking to fulfill her agenda by tugging at you in one way or another. Just understand that she will do that. So, rather than become angry with her, choose to be wise and dwell with her according to knowledge, giving honor to her, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered, First Peter 3.7.

I would remind you that this problem you are faced with is ancient.

It was a problem for Adam with his wife, Eve. He had an agenda that was given to him by God. Eve, on the other hand, had an agenda that was suggested to her by the serpent. The Fall occurred when Adam abandoned his agenda in favor of Eve’s agenda. I am not suggesting that Eve be blamed. Not at all. The responsibility was Adam’s because he abandoned his agenda, given to him by God, in favor of Eve’s, suggested to her by the serpent.

It was a problem for Abraham with his wife Sarah. He had an agenda set for him by God with a covenant and the promise of an heir. However, Sarah grew impatient with Abraham’s agenda and sought to advance her own agenda. How so? By suggesting to Abraham that he sire a child by Hagar. What did Abraham do? He abandoned his agenda in favor of Sarah’s agenda, and Ishmael was born, giving rise to the tension between the Arabs and the Jews that troubles the world to this day. However, do not blame Sarah, for Abraham decided to abandon his agenda in favor of hers, making it entirely his responsibility. She did not make him do what he did. She only urged him to do it, and he did as she urged.

It was a problem for Jacob and his mother, Rebekah. Displeased with her husband’s favoritism of Esau rather than Jacob, she conceived of a plan to thwart the outworking of her husband Isaac’s agenda in favor of her own. She convinced her son Jacob to lie to his father, with that lie leading to a set of events that estranged Jacob from his father Isaac and his brother Esau for decades and kept Jacob from his mother until her death. But do not be angry with Rebekah since Jacob decided to abandon his agenda to do his mother’s bidding, even though he was by that time seventy years old!

It was a problem for Jacob and his wife, Rachel. Already finding himself married to two women (sisters yet), Jacob was in a terrible fix. However, he abandoned his agenda again in favor of Rachel’s agenda when he took Rachel’s handmaid, Bilhah, and sired a son by her. Then he did as Rachel urged yet again. A vicious cycle was set up in his household, worse than before, because he abandoned his agenda, faulty as it already had become, in favor of his beloved Rachel’s agenda. One might speculate that Rachel’s death during the childbirth of Benjamin removed her influence from Jacob’s life and consideration.

This problem showed itself again with Judah, the son of Jacob, and his daughter-in-law Tamar. Remember that Judah had two sons, one of whom married Tamar. Tamar’s first husband died without issue when God killed him. As well, God killed Judah’s other son, Onan, who was Tamar’s second husband. Judah then promised Tamar his third son, who was very young, to appease her. However, over time, when she saw that Judah was not going to fulfill his promise to give her yet a third son to marry and have children, Tamar posed as a prostitute and sold herself to her unsuspecting father-in-law and became pregnant by him. No more clear case of a man abandoning his agenda in favor of a woman’s has ever been seen. She got what she wanted from him, with him suspecting absolutely nothing. It was a great sin and very clever.

The sixth example I bring to your attention has to do with Samson and Delilah. He had an agenda set for him by God. However inconsistently he was fulfilling his divinely appointed agenda, Delilah cleverly lured, enticed, and seduced him into abandoning his agenda in favor of hers. The result? The loss of God’s power in his life, the loss of his eyesight, enslavement by God’s enemies, and eventually, his death. Do not blame Delilah. To be sure, she was an evil and deceitful woman. However, it was Samson’s choice to abandon his agenda in favor of hers when he continued to go unto her and tell her things she ought to have never known. The blame for the tragedy of his life is his and his alone.

What about David and Bathsheba? Did he abandon his agenda in favor of hers? He did abandon his agenda. He destroyed his credibility. He certainly gave God’s enemies occasion to blaspheme when his adultery and the murder of Bathsheba’s husband to conceal his adultery became known.[6] Did the woman have an agenda? Oh, yes. The woman always has an agenda. “But David was the king, and his position and his power made it impossible for her to deny his desire.” Thank you, dear feminist. However, according to God’s Word she should have cried out, Deuteronomy 22.24. Thus, if she had been willing to die rather than be raped by David, the damage to God’s name would have been less than occurred by saving her own skin. She should have died rather than let David take her. However, I do not blame her. I only show that she had an agenda, even if she did not in any way initiate the encounter with David. Her agenda? To save her life. Again, I do not blame her for that. All of the blame is David’s. All of it.

My final example of this problem between a man’s and a woman’s agendas is the tragic example of Solomon and the many women in his life. Oh, how he succumbed to their wiles, to their charms, to their beauty, to their allure, to their enticements. It ruined him. How was Solomon ruined? By not adhering to the agenda that God had established for him but succumbing to the individual and private agendas of hundreds of beautiful women. 

I will stop at this point because of time considerations. This evening’s sermon will take up the matter of the conflict of agendas that turned out well in the Bible.

I will then address the insanity of couples who imagine they can function as a democratic family unit, with each being responsible for 50% of the leadership and decision-making of the marriage. That only reveals a couple that is not well-read.

We will then conclude this evening’s portion of the message by focusing our attention on the text, Proverbs 31.3.

__________

[1] Leon J. Podles, The Church Impotent: The Feminization of Christianity, (Dallas: Spence Publishing Company, 1999)

[2] John W. Robbins, editor, The Church Effeminate and Other Essays, (The Trinity Foundation, 2001)

[3] David Murrow, Why Men Hate Going To Church, (Nashville: Nelson Books, 2005)

[4] Decisionism is the belief that a person is saved by coming forward, raising the hand, saying a prayer, believing a doctrine, making a Lordship commitment, or some other external, human act, which is taken as the equivalent to, and proof of, the miracle of inward conversion; it is the belief that a person is saved through the agency of a merely external decision; the belief that performing one of these human actions shows that a person is saved.

Conversion is the result of that work of the Holy Spirit which draws a lost sinner to Jesus Christ for justification and regeneration, and changes the sinner’s standing before God from lost to saved, imparting divine life to the depraved soul, thus producing a new direction in the life of the convert. The objective side of salvation is justification. The subjective side of salvation is regeneration. The result is conversion.

[5] 1 Corinthians 2.14

[6] 2 Samuel 12.14

Would you like to contact Dr. Waldrip about this sermon? Please contact him by clicking on the link below. Please do not change the subject within your email message. Thank you.

Pastor@CalvaryRoadBaptist.Church