“Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the LORD God had made.
“He said to the woman, ‘Did God actually say, “You shall not eat of any tree in the garden?”’ And the woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, “You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.”’ But the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’ So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths.” 
Tradition seems to have always taught, and I had always assumed, that Eve was alone when the serpent approached her. This scenario, embraced by many Bible teachers, assumes that after she was deceived and had eaten some of the fruit she then went in search of Adam to induce him to share in her sin by eating some of the fruit. Larry Crabb has pointed out in the opening pages of a book published a few years ago that Adam was right there with Eve during the conversation with the serpent.  I doubted his assertion, and so I went looking for the original language.
The Word of God is quite precise in stating the case that Adam was present. “When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate” [GENESIS 3:6]. What is not apparent in various English translations, but is obvious in the original account, is that the serpent employed the plural throughout his seduction indicating that Adam was both present and silently permitting this seduction to proceed.
Think of that! Adam was with Eve when she was tempted by the serpent! That blows away my categories. Paul asserts that the woman was deceived [1 TIMOTHY 2:14]; and we draw conclusions which may be unwarranted from that knowledge. We tend to blame Eve for getting us all into this present mess, even though we know that technically Adam was responsible. But what if Adam was standing right there the whole time that Eve was talking to the serpent? This knowledge sheds new light on just how responsible Adam was for what happened. It gives us insight into the responsibility men bear before God. This puts a whole new twist on ROMANS 5:12. What does this say to us about not doing anything when we are not sure exactly what we should do or say? It sure makes inactivity look more sinful to me.
If Adam was there, then why didn’t he say something? Why didn’t he tell the serpent to get lost? Why didn’t he correct Eve when she misquoted the command not to eat of the tree? Why didn’t he suggest they go somewhere else to talk about the situation? Why didn’t he stop Eve when she reached for the fruit? Why was Adam silent? Though I’m not going to answer that right now, I think the answer will become obvious as we work through several concepts.
MAN’S MODEL—MAN IS CREATED IN GOD’S IMAGE. What is your image of a “real” man? Perhaps you think of a real man as someone who reflects the image of, say Chuck Norris. Hollywood has done much to form our image of what a man should be. By the criterion of the silver screen a man is tall, dark and invulnerable. Above all else a real man is silent, never saying much, but maintaining a brooding silence in the face of every challenge. The modern image appears to be moving to an opposite extreme presenting a soft, vulnerable, almost effeminate image much like Billy Crystal. Either image is distorted, even warped. Many people today are confused about what a man should be.
Christians haven’t fared any better, as the churches are increasingly feminised. Family Life Seminars, Promise Keepers and hundreds of self-help books haven’t yet resolved the issue of what a man should be. We have a multitude of experts telling men how to be “good” fathers, “good” husbands or “good” whatever’s… There is obviously a problem and we Christians are relentlessly searching for answers.
When we believe we are facing a problem we will read a book written by a “professional counsellor” or we will attend a conference. Having read the book or sat through the conference we are motivated to apply the principles which were taught for a few weeks or even for a few months. However, have you ever noticed there seems always to be an updated version of last year’s latest self-help book on the book rack? There is always need for another Promise Keepers conference? This is because we slip back into the old routine and need the next edition or yet another conference. Frankly, we are acting in our own energy and not in God’s power.
I suggest that the churches haven’t yet dealt with the problem. Had the churches done what was required by God there would be no need for experts, nor would we need to seek out the latest conference with motivational speakers telling us how to act. I am humbled by the fact that the men we consider great in the eyes of God, those stalwarts of the past such as D. L. Moody, Billy Sunday, Hudson Taylor, Charles Spurgeon, etc. were men of God. They spent hours in prayer and in the Word of God. They were first godly, and then they were manly. Consequently, they are remembered as great men. We turn matters around and try to be manly first and then imagine that we can be godly. Underscore this truth in your mind: the only way to be manly is to be godly.
How do we become godly? By reflecting the image of God. In order to reflect God’s image we must know what God is like. We need to study God! And that, for your information, is theology. Instead of being boring, theology is the exciting study of God. Studying the first two chapters of Genesis you will note that one aspect of God stands out above all others. Whenever God encountered chaos He spoke and brought about order. God spoke into nothing and created the heaves and the earth [GENESIS 1:1]. The SECOND VERSE states that “the earth was without form and void” [GENESIS 1:2]. Into the chaos God spoke to bring about order. Here is what we should understand about those first two verses. God moved about in darkness and chaos in order to create order and life.
Man is created in the image of God [GENESIS 1:26]. No doubt you remember that one of the first responsibilities Adam assumed was naming the animals [GENESIS 2:19, 20]. God used this as a means to teach the man that he had no complement among the animals, preparing the man for the creation of woman; but other truths are revealed in man’s action. He demonstrated his superiority over the animals, fulfilling the command to rule over them. There is this further insight, however, which lays an important foundation for this present message. Man demonstrated how he was in the image of God by naming the animals, for he brought order out of chaos.
Like God, man spoke into disorder, for he spoke into a world in which no life form had yet been named. By naming the animals Adam imposed order on creation. In GENESIS 1:3 God spoke, and in GENESIS 2:20 man spoke. In speaking—giving names to the animals—man revealed that he was in the image of God.
God spoke into chaos and created order and life. Adam spoke into disorder and brought about order. It is a demonstration that man, created in God’s image, is responsible to speak into disorder so that order and life may result. This means that when life becomes chaotic, man is responsible to speak. Men are responsible, not to maintain silence in the face of chaos, but rather men are responsible to speak so that order will result. Should a man remain silent in the face of chaos, he sins and ceases to be like God. Having said this, I hasten to admit that man’s natural tendency is to be silent.
MAN’S NATURAL TENDENCY—TO BE SILENT. Confronted with chaotic conditions, the natural tendency of man is to be silent. We have already seen the example of Adam who was silent when his wife was confronted with the choice to defy God’s command. His silence resulted in the ruin of the race and necessitated the sacrifice of God’s Only Son.
The next well-known example of manhood presented in the BOOK OF GENESIS is Abraham. God had promised Abraham that he would have a son and that from that son would come descendants as numerous as the stars [GENESIS 15:4, 5]. GENESIS 15:6 presents the great text, “He believed God.” Perhaps it was the passage of time or simply a lapse of faith, but the day came when Abraham’s wife Sarai grew restless. Ten years had passed and Sarai wanted a family now! She urged Abraham to father a child by her maidservant Hagar. Abraham listened to Sarai, slept with Hagar and sired Ishmael [GENESIS 16:2]. The result of Abraham’s silence was the Arab/Israeli conflict that rages to this day.
Peter informs us that Lot was a righteous man [2 PETER 2:7], but we would never guess that he was righteous from the account of his life given in Genesis. He separated from his Uncle Abraham, settled in Sodom and was silent in the face of the evil in that city. My impression is that he made every effort to appease his wife. His silence in the face of her desire for social acceptability would cost him his family. His weakness is revealed in a misguided effort to protect the angels who had come under his roof by offering his daughters to the sex-crazed crowd. The true longing of his wife and the probable cause of Lot’s slide into mediocrity is seen when Mrs. Lot turned for a last look at the city. The lawless deeds he saw and heard tormented his soul [2 PETER 2:8]. Why didn’t he leave? The answer seems to be that his wife didn’t want to leave and he was silent before her desires. His later incestuous relationship with his daughters gives evidence that they absorbed more of their mother’s strong will than they did their father’s righteousness. Lot was silent and passive and the result was the Ammonites and the Moabites who opposed the people of God for long years after.
Isaac is the next of the patriarchs whose history is related in the BOOK OF GENESIS. It is hard to like Isaac; he was such a passive man. In fact, it seems that virtually the only thing he ever did right was to let his father almost offer him up as a sacrifice. Otherwise, despite a long life he seems to make a mess of matters.
Perhaps you recall the account of how Isaac got a wife? Abraham sent Eliezer back to the homeland of Mesopotamia to find a wife for his son. The servant met Rebekah as she watered her father’s flocks at a well. He was invited to her home; there he proceeds to bargain with her brother Laban for her hand in marriage. What is interesting is that Bethuel, Rebekah’s father, was present during the negotiations for Rebekah. Nevertheless it is Laban who appears in charge of the family and not Bethuel. Bethuel is silent throughout indicating rather strongly that he was a silent father.
The result of Bethuel’s silence was two manipulative children. Laban later made life miserable for Jacob. He gave him Leah when Jacob tried to marry Rachel, and later he would change his wages repeatedly to gain advantage over his son-in-law. Rebekah was instrumental in the deception of Isaac when Jacob stole his brother’s birthright. Bethuel’s children were controlling and manipulative as result of their father’s silence.
Isaac assuredly knew the prophecy of God that his elder son, Esau, would serve the younger son, Jacob [cf. GENESIS 25:23-26]. In spite of this prophecy he preferred the strong, manly Esau to the weak mama’s boy, Jacob. At the end of his life he decided that he would bless Esau instead of obeying God and blessing Jacob. We cannot know what went through his mind at that time. Perhaps he decided that it was easier to go with tradition than it was to trust God by blessing Jacob. Perhaps he feared Esau’s reaction. Perhaps he worried what others might think. Perhaps he was tired of confronting Rebekah. Whatever his reason he tried to circumvent the revealed will of God.
Because he was silent and refused to act in order to do what was right, his wife took matters into her own hands and handled the problem. Her intervention backfired and as a result the family was split up. Isaac and Rebekah never saw Jacob again and Esau was estranged from his parents. Take special note that Isaac and Rebekah never speak. Rebekah never speaks to Esau and Esau never speaks to Jacob and Jacob never speaks to Isaac except to deceive him. This is a dysfunctional family; they have no relationship with one another. Rebekah is the strong one in the family and Isaac is silent.
God spoke into chaos and brought forth order. When man fails to confront the darkness the result is increasing chaos. Man’s failure to speak ensures ruptured relationships. My silence as a man will affect relationship of others for whom I am responsible. The Bible clearly seems to indicate that my silence will surely destroy relationships—Adam’s silence destroyed his relationship with God and with his wife; Abraham’s silence resulted in the Arab/Israeli conflict; Lot’s silence caused the destruction of his family and forever sullied his name; Isaac’s silence resulted in a weak relationship with his wife and destroyed his relationship with his sons. In each of these situations the man was silent in the face of a chaotic or messy situation. When the man was silent the woman stepped in and took control. This was what God warned would be woman’s natural tendency [cf. GENESIS 3:16]. Confronted with chaotic or messy situations men tend to shut down emotionally and women tend to step in to take control because “someone has to.” Men try to avoid messy situations and women justify their intervention because someone needed to act. Women’s rule over the home is material for jokes, but the result of women’s actions is anything but a joke!
Unfortunately, even within the church women tend to take control justifying their actions with the need to maintain the work and to keep things moving. There is an old saying from the American South which applies in this situation. Learn it, ladies. Gentlemen, learn it. It is never right to do wrong in order to get a chance to do right. You cannot justify your disregard for the laws of God on an exigency basis. A necessity defence does not work when trying to explain our actions before the Lord God Almighty. Right is right; and wrong is wrong.
MAN’S RESPONSIBILITY—TO WALK IN GOD’S IMAGE. Let’s pause for a moment so we can firm up what has been said to this point. The popular caricature of the ideal man is the strong, silent type. In fact we can see that this image should be thought of as the weak, silent type if we apply a biblical criterion to the situation. Man is responsible to confront chaos so that he may bring order to the situation. Man is responsible to be godly, and that means assuming responsibility for imparting order and light in every darkened situation.
When I use the term “speaking” to describe the responsibility toward a given situation, I must be careful to define what I mean. The Word Faith movement occupies the fringes of evangelicalism. This movement teaches that man is really a little god exercising dominion through his words. Though you are in the image of God, and while you look to God as the model of what you should aspire to be, you are neither God nor are you a god. Your words have power, but they do not have divine power.
You can talk a lot and never touch real issues. Maybe you talk about sports or about computers all the time and yet you never have any meaningful conversations. I mention sports and computers because these constitute weaknesses on my part. Though we talk about the activities we enjoy, we may nevertheless be silent about the important issues even though our mouths are wide open. Obviously, then, by “speaking” I don’t mean simply moving our lips and making sounds.
Paul says in 1 CORINTHIANS 13:1 that when we speak without love, then we are a “noisy gong” and a “clanging cymbal.” The ultimate impact of our study to this point is really leading us to think about how to have better relationships; it is about how to love. Thus, Paul's statement in 1 CORINTHIANS 13 is very appropriate, as is his teaching in EPHESIANS 4:15 ff. where he talks about “speaking the truth in love.” For the purpose of our study, speaking involves actions, too; it involves both words and deeds. If you just say you are going to do something and never do it, then that is worthless. James talks about that in JAMES 2. Speaking means getting involved; and I should stress that speaking means getting emotionally involved.
Speaking is not controlling a situation through shouting the loudest or shaming the other person into submission or obedience. That sort of action just turns a person inward and away from God. If you win through controlling the situation you will either numb others into conformity or incite them to self-preserving rebellion. You can see this in children. In a family that relates in this manner, one child might be complacent and compliant and the other one always in trouble at school.
I am not saying that men should dominate every situation and relationship; nor am I saying that men need to be dogmatic, telling wives to shut up when they disagree with us. When we do that, we are not being strong men; we are just trying to take control (through your flesh), forcing order on the situation and getting others to back off so we don't have to deal with the issue. We are hiding again as Adam did in the Garden.
All of these things are examples of what speaking is not. So what is speaking? Speaking is saying or doing whatever is necessary to move myself toward another person and moving that other person and myself toward trusting God in the midst of the life, in the midst of chaos. Speaking is resisting evil at every level, protecting those we love through standing firm against that which displeases God, and providing for the welfare of those for whom God has made us responsible.
Witnessing is a good example of chaos. When you are conversing with someone and the topic turns towards something that you could easily use to ask the person about his or her personal beliefs, what do you do? Do you speak? Do you ask them about their faith? Or do you ignore the prompting of the Holy Spirit because you fear their response might be to reject you? You need to ask them the question and trust God for the results; you need to face the chaos and speak. Too often we are afraid and we are silent.
Within a family, a husband and wife will often have different opinions about an issue. What does that mean? It means each has a different opinion; it doesn't mean one is wrong and one is right. If a man is married to a woman who holds strong opinions, then she may come across with the attitude that the husband is wrong whenever his opinion differs from hers. An increasing number of men today grew up in a shame-based relationship; they were raised in a family in which they were censured for acting like a male. In such instances the husband may feel that his opinion is wrong when it differs from his wife's. If he follows his natural inclination to be silent he will just shut up and let his wife's opinion dictate family policies—that is not leadership. I'm not saying that the husband always needs to go with his opinion because he's the leader. I'm saying he needs to evaluate both honestly and openly the options presented and then go with what he believes to be the best one for his family. This means that he must be on speaking terms with the Lord, knowing what pleases Him and knowing what dishonours Him.
You might wonder what will happen if the husband stands up to his wife and says, “Honey, I don't think we should do that. I think we should do this instead.” She might follow his lead. She might also argue with him, or get mad, or act hurt and avoid him. What if his decision turns out to be a bad one? Then she might say, “I told you so.” Even if she doesn't say it, she will certainly think it. That is real life and it is chaotic. That might describe why Lot went along with his wife's wishes to live in Sodom and Gomorrah. What is important is to realise that the man ultimately bears responsibility for the direction of the family and he is the one who must give an answer to God.
What do you say or do when your kid's school teacher or Sunday school teacher comes to you and says your child was bullying another kid or cheating on a test? The easy path is to give him the spanking of his life when he gets home or ground him for a month? Instead, you may choose to talk with him to try to determine what is going on in that immature brain of his that makes him want to disappoint you? Maybe he is searching for attention that he isn't getting at home. He may need to be disciplined, but only doing the discipline is often simply an effort to control the situation and the child as long as he is under your roof. You can discipline and never really be involved. If you never work on the relationship and find out why he misbehaved, then when he leaves home, he is going to do what his heart wants—that is chaos. Those kinds of situations make many men freeze up, remain silent and run away to something they are good at, or they may lash out in anger and try to force others to get with the program.
I can't give you any steps to follow. As men, you are responsible to understand your tendencies and recognise when you are slipping into the altogether too human mode of silence, choosing instead to turn to God so you can move forward. The solution is to trust God and to move others towards order and away from the chaos.
Lists and steps may well contain pertinent truth; but if we rely on lists, we are putting the cart before the horse. Lists and steps are actually a description of what a good relationship looks like more than they are a means of getting there. The godly, manly man in the face of chaotic situations says, “I don't know what to do God, but I think this is best for my family and I'm going to do it and trust you for the results.”
I have spoken of the responsibility of the man in the home, but I am also compelled to speak of man as shepherd of God’s flock. This is the reason women are not to be shepherds of the flock—the assumption of responsibility by women within a church violates the will of God and ensures that men sink into silent mediocrity. I recognise that even the call to ministry, however, does not make a man willing to be godly. The great responsibility imposed upon pastors is to speak in order that light may shine into the darkness. Pastors are charged by God to confront chaos so that order may result.
Should a pastor be silent in the face of rebellion, of necessity, greater chaos must result. When a pastor refuses to confront strong-willed individuals with a word of confident submission to the mind of Christ, the entire church suffers and relationships disintegrate. Unfortunately, the state of the churches today is one in which pastors are neutered and the silence of men is enforced through censure and through political means. Consequently, the people of God are weakened and far too few within the Faith recognise what love is. In order to rectify the chaos, denominations hire a growing number of experts to list twelve steps to spiritual sobriety. I find that instead of making matters better, the experts complicate matters. I am hard-pressed to support such a world and I certainly cannot encourage the creation of more such churches.
I envision a world where we have real elders and disciples living in community, not segregation into sets of experts and everybody else which has become common today. If ordinary men are to develop into fathers, and if experts are to be transformed into biblical elders, we must develop some idea of what godly manhood looks like. We must get a picture of true masculinity that will first drive us to brokenness by making obvious our masculine failures and then ignite a relentless passion to realise the staggering potential of becoming real men.
The root cause of masculine failure is Adam's silence in the garden. This silence, chronically repeated in the lives of millions of men is an indication of the passivity of Adam, who was with Eve in the garden. He silently abdicated his responsibility for his wife, bringing chaotic disaster upon the whole race.
If we will honour God, men must conquer their tendency toward silence and become men who speak, men who take initiative and action. In this way, a man will fulfil his calling as a man, contributing richly and intentionally to his relationship with God, with his wife and with his children.
For the sake of completeness I should speak about the responsibility of women. The subject is fraught with danger in our world. However, as I read in the Old Testament for my morning devotions this week past, I became aware—aware in a manner that had somehow eluded me heretofore—that this struggle by women to assert their rights and the acquiescence of men, was not something new.
The Babylonians had just completed the conquest of Judah. The nobles and all the titled people together with all the chief people of the nation had been deported to Babylon. All that remained in the land were the poorest people and a few individuals appointed by the Babylonians to administer the land. Israel had been reduced to an impoverished nation that existed at the sufferance of the Babylonian conquerors.
The remnant came to Jeremiah, asking that he pray to the LORD, seeking guidance for the people. They questioned whether they should go to Egypt or remain in the land. They were insistent that whatever the LORD directed, they would do. “Let our plea for mercy come before you, and pray to the LORD your God for us, for all this remnant—because we are left with but a few, as your eyes see us— that the LORD your God may show us the way we should go, and the thing that we should do” [JEREMIAH 42:2, 3]
Jeremiah did pray; but the answer he brought from the LORD was displeasing to those asking for God’s will. They were not so terribly different from people in this day. We are prepared to declare publicly our willingness to do whatever the Lord directs—until He gives us direction. Then, we will reject what we learn of the divine will because it doesn’t fit our preconceived notion of what should be done.
Listen to Jeremiah’s pointed statement demonstrating God’s awareness that despite their avowals of willingness to do whatever He directed them to do, they were determined to do their own will. “The LORD has said to you, O remnant of Judah, ‘Do not go to Egypt.’ Know for a certainty that I have warned you this day that you have gone astray at the cost of your lives. For you sent me to the LORD your God, saying, ‘Pray for us to the LORD our God, and whatever the LORD our God says declare to us and we will do it.’ And I have this day declared it to you, but you have not obeyed the voice of the LORD your God in anything that he sent me to tell you. Now therefore know for a certainty that you shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence in the place where you desire to go to live” [JEREMIAH 42:19-22].
The people did go to Egypt, compelling Jeremiah to accompany them. They know that Jeremiah is God’s prophet and that he has spoken the truth. Yet, somehow they imagine that they can coerce the hand of God for their own benefit if they hold the man of God captive. In Egypt, however, God spoke through His prophet; and what Jeremiah said is instructive.
“Thus says the LORD God of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘Why do you commit this great evil against yourselves, to cut off from you man and woman, infant and child, from the midst of Judah, leaving you no remnant? Why do you provoke me to anger with the works of your hands, making offerings to other gods in the land of Egypt where you have come to live, so that you may be cut off and become a curse and a taunt among all the nations of the earth? Have you forgotten the evil of your fathers, the evil of the kings of Judah, the evil of their wives, your own evil, and the evil of your wives, which they committed in the land of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? They have not humbled themselves even to this day, nor have they feared, nor walked in my law and my statutes that I set before you and before your fathers’” [JEREMIAH 44:7-10].
The LORD, speaking through Jeremiah, emphasises that the wives of the nobles and even the wives of the commoners, were guilty of pressing for idolatry—and their husbands acquiesced to their unholy demands, bringing disaster on the land. It becomes evident that the wives led in promoting idolatry. Take special note of the paragraphs that follow in what Jeremiah has written.
“Then all the men who knew that their wives had made offerings to other gods, and all the women who stood by, a great assembly, all the people who lived in Pathros in the land of Egypt, answered Jeremiah…” [JEREMIAH 44:15]. What follows is open admission of idolatry and how the felt religion of the wives led the nation into gross sin [see JEREMIAH 44:16-19]! When Jeremiah responds to this open revolt against the God of Heaven, it is obvious that he assigns a major responsibility for the descent into unrighteousness to the silent acquiescence of the men to their wives demands and expectations. “Jeremiah said to all the people and all the women, ‘Hear the word of the LORD, all you of Judah who are in the land of Egypt. Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: You and your wives have declared with your mouths, and have fulfilled it with your hands, saying, “We will surely perform our vows that we have made, to make offerings to the queen of heaven and to pour out drink offerings to her.” Then confirm your vows and perform your vows’” [JEREMIAH 44:24, 25]!
Though Scripture offends contemporary views, it is nevertheless an axiom of the Faith that religion led by women inevitably brings divine censure. God cannot bless that which disobeys the divine will. Though the people of Judah appeared to prosper for a while as they worshipped the Queen of Heaven, their disobedience to the True and Living God eventually brought judgement. The silence of the men, the avoidance of speaking into chaos, ensured that greater chaos would ensue when God at last said, “Enough.” Though the religious and civic leaders attempted to defend the status quo, their tendency to go with the flow eventually brought judgement upon the land.
Godly women should understand the struggle men face—and their own struggles as well. Women should realise that it is the natural tendency of a man to be silent, but that his silence can only result in greater chaos. Perhaps a man will be silent through refusal to confront the darkness, perhaps he will try to control it without addressing the root cause, but his natural inclination is to be silent. His silence will only increase the pressure on the woman to take charge, to do something. She must understand her tendency and resist the temptation to help God. Failure can only result in greater tragedy in relationships.
Don’t try to take control, ladies. Neither in the home nor in the church can you violate the revealed will of God without paying an awesome price. Your efforts will seem to work for a short while; but in the end chaos will rule. In every instance where woman assumes responsibility to make things happen—whether in the home, in the church, or in the nation—disaster has resulted. You are no exception.
I urge you to trust God and wait. This is the opposite of man’s responsibility, which is to trust God and move. Man is to trust God and speak; woman is to trust God and be silent. I know that the task of a woman is awesome and requires great faith; but man’s task is no less awesome and requires no less faith. It is only together, as we each seek the place God has assigned that we can bring a measure of order to our fallen world. Though I cannot change the whole world about me, I can bring change to my home. As a man, I bear that responsibility and my wife is charged with the task of assisting me. Though I cannot change the whole world about me, I can bring change to my church. As a man, and as your pastor, I bear that responsibility; and each member is charged to share in that task. Let’s refuse to continue the silence of Adam and refuse to continue the rebellion so that God may be glorified among us. Amen.
 Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
 Larry, Crabb, Don Hudson and Al Andrews, The Silence of Adam: Becoming Men of Courage in a World of Chaos (Zondervan) 1999