Saturday, January 5
In Acts 28, we see Paul making a fire after he and others were shipwrecked at Malta. As he is gathering brush, a viper bites his hand. Rather than dying from the venom, he shakes the snake off of his hand and goes about his business. What a manly thing to do? But then again, what is biblical manhood anymore? Is it just strength, stature, and stubbornness? There has to be more.
Paul wrote in his letter to the Corinthians to be alert, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. The ESV translation of this verse actually says act like men.
Acts 6-7, we meet a man named Stephen, accused of blasphemy and put on trial that would eventually cost him his life. Rather than crumbling under persecution, Stephen stood strong and courageous. Stephen was a man of God. And in the final moments of his life, Luke accounts his actions:
SCRIPTURE: (Acts 7:54-60)
when they heard these things (these bold things declared by Stephen), they were enraged and gnashed their teeth at him. Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven. He saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. He said “Look, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!”….
(it continues) while they were stoning Stephen, he called out: “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!” He knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” And after saying this, he died.
Alert. Firm. Courageous. Strong.
As a Father, as a son, as a man… do these qualities define you? Are you a man who is alert of the adversaries around you? Are you firm in your faith, defined by the finished work of the cross? Are you courageous and strong because of the spirit that now lives in you?
Are you showing qualities of biblical manhood? Not the stuff that this world feeds to us as manhood, but genuine manhood? Do the people around you see these qualities in your life? We want to be known as godly men.
Lord, forgive us as men for pursuing the worldly standard of manhood. We pray that your spirit empowers us with the qualities of true biblical manhood. We pray for alertness against the enemy. We pray for a steadfast faith anchored in the cross of Christ. We pray for courage and strength that can only be found in you. Help us to be godly men. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Pick Four More Activities
Listen and Worship.
Pray a Psalm.
Read a Book.
Retell the Gospel to Yourself.
Take Some Notes on Today's Devotional.
Pray for Yourself, Your Family, Your Church, and the Lost.
Memorize a Verse.
List Five Things You're Thankful For.