A study from Hartford Seminary found that the presence of involved men was statistically correlated with church growth, health, and harmony. Meanwhile, a lack of male participation is strongly associated with congregational decline.
This past week the SBC met in Phoenix. 26% had one or fewer Baptisms, about 50 % had 3 or fewer.
I believe the issue is Fathers forsaking their duties to the Church.
Most Churches are dominated by Godly women who step up.
Only about 1 in 6 Men who confess Christ actually attend.
You see it’s much easier to be every other kind of man than a Man who serves God.
Its easy to be other types of fathers!
Its easy to be an absent father! (1 in 3 children in America live without their father in the home)
Its easy to be an unengaged father! (That’s the father that allows the wife to handle all parenting issues)
Its easy to be the carefree father! (The father who plays with their children and entertains them)
Its easy to be the working father! (The father who always puts work before his family)
Its easy to be a lot of types of fathers but its a tough job to be a Christ lead, Christ centered, Jesus lifting up, dedicated follower of Jesus Spiritual Father. And most Churches are starving for men like this.
I think most men who believe in Christ believe when their Child is born that they are going to be the best Spiritual Father there has ever been but somewhere down the road it all falls apart.
Many people have started well but have not finished well. Solomon started well, king Saul started well, Lot started well, and Demas started well.
John Phillips says, “The Bible is strewn with the wreckage of people who started well but ended as castaways.”
Our message today is about a mans man, a faithful man, a man who was blessed. You want to be a tough guy…be a Caleb!
Then the children of Judah came to Joshua in Gilgal. And Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him: “You know the word which the Lord said to Moses the man of God concerning you and me in Kadesh Barnea. I was forty years old when Moses the servant of the Lord sent me from Kadesh Barnea to spy out the land, and I brought back word to him as it was in my heart. Nevertheless my brethren who went up with me made the heart of the people melt, but I wholly followed the Lord my God. So Moses swore on that day, saying, ‘Surely the land where your foot has trodden shall be your inheritance and your children’s forever, because you have wholly followed the Lord my God.’ And now, behold, the Lord has kept me alive, as He said, these forty-five years, ever since the Lord spoke this word to Moses while Israel wandered in the wilderness; and now, here I am this day, eighty-five years old. As yet I am as strong this day as on the day that Moses sent me; just as my strength was then, so now is my strength for war, both for going out and for coming in. Now therefore, give me this mountain of which the Lord spoke in that day; for you heard in that day how the Anakim were there, and that the cities were great and fortified. It may be that the Lord will be with me, and I shall be able to drive them out as the Lord said.” And Joshua blessed him, and gave Hebron to Caleb the son of Jephunneh as an inheritance. Hebron therefore became the inheritance of Caleb the son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite to this day, because he wholly followed the Lord God of Israel. And the name of Hebron formerly was Kirjath Arba (Arba was the greatest man among the Anakim). Then the land had rest from war.
Caleb and Joshua were the only two that trusted God.
They saw the land and claimed it.
They saw the giants and weren’t afraid.
They saw the bounty of the land and knew their God was generous.
Actually Caleb's faith had seen so much more before that.
Caleb was in Egypt when the hand of God brought the plagues.
Caleb was one who sacrificed a lamb and spread the blood on his doorpost
Caleb was there when the Pharaoh announced that the Children of Israel were free
Caleb was there when the Red Sea parted and they walked across on dry ground.
Caleb was there when the people complained of hunger and God sent manna and Quail
Caleb had been there when God was clearly present and when He seemed far away.
Yet in all those times Caleb was devoted to God.
Nevertheless my brethren who went up with me made the heart of the people melt, but I wholly followed the Lord my God. So Moses swore on that day, saying, ‘Surely the land where your foot has trodden shall be your inheritance and your children’s forever, because you have wholly followed the Lord my God.’
This is said about Caleb 6 times in the Old Testament. It is a phrase that means "To close the gap." It refers to the fact that Caleb was committed to keeping the distance between himself and the Lord at a minimum.
What has to happen for you to be wholeheartedly a follower of God
It didnt start when they got to the red sea
It didnt start mid way through the plagues
It started a long time before.
What was the conversation like as the ten returned.
Now therefore, give me this mountain of which the Lord spoke in that day; for you heard in that day how the Anakim were there, and that the cities were great and fortified. It may be that the Lord will be with me, and I shall be able to drive them out as the Lord said.”
And that belief hadn't wavered for 40 years.
“And the Lord heard the sound of your words, and was angry, and took an oath, saying, ‘Surely not one of these men of this evil generation shall see that good land of which I swore to give to your fathers, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh; he shall see it, and to him and his children I am giving the land on which he walked, because he wholly followed the Lord.’
When others saw giants, Caleb saw God
When others saw cities walled up to heaven, Caleb saw cities reduced to rubble.
When others saw a dreadful enemy, Caleb saw a defeated enemy.
When others saw only foe’s, Caleb saw fruit.
Some men will see the pressure of society… Spiritual Men will see the pleasure of service.
Some men are torn between priorities… Spiritual Men have God as their priority.
Some men see faithfulness as to costly… Spiritual men see faithfulness rewarding.
Some men see Church attendance as optional… Spiritual men see Church attendance as unconditional.
Oh and wives… Stop making excuses for your husbands when they aren’t Spiritual Fathers!
Well my husband would do more but....
Wives don’t take over his roll as the leader for your family.
Also...Wives don’t take over his roll as the leader for your family. Step back and let him struggle a little
Next meal right before you eat… get all the kids quiet and say… now before we eat your father is going to pray for our meal and for our family.
Men we need you. (I asked Sylvia and Tiffany how many men and women are working in VBS (31 women, 4 men)
Serving God rarely allows all our other issues to rest till we can get back to them .
He was 85 years old, fixing to start a military attack, and take up a new residence.
Rest is the end result we all seek but rest for the believer only comes after true service.
I believe God has great work for MMBC to do.
I believe that the death toll hasn't sounded for evangelical work in this community or in the world .
I believe the greatest days are ahead for MMBC.... BUT....
These will only happen if our men step up and become spiritual leaders.
We need men who plan all their schedules around the work of the Church.
We need men pushing to the front of the line to sign up for missions.
Every single mission trip men are drastically outnumbered by the women
The only one that has been close was the trip to Long Island for recovery and there it was about 50/50