By: Dale Partridge
I want to feel useful. More importantly, I want to feel useful for the kingdom. As a man in 2022, it can be difficult to see where I can be of service in the church using the gifts and talents the Lord blessed me with.
The modern church has clung to the image of the soft, rosy-cheeked, effeminate Jesus. But is that accurate to what scripture describes?
This book would argue that it is not. It would argue that Jesus is the most masculine man to ever live.
When Jesus said in Matthew 20:18, “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem.”
What he really meant was, “I am going to die for you, suffer the wrath of God for you, and be separated from my Father for you.”
Jesus was on a mission. He was marching. He was leading. He was bold. He was fearless. He was sacrificial. He was resolved. He was, at that moment, the manliest male who ever lived.
Chapter 1 – Marks of Courage
“Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.” 1 Corinthians 16:13-14
There are no more courageous than the words in Matthew 20:18 where Jesus says, “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem.”
Jesus knew exactly what was about to happen but he saddled up anyways.
Chapter 2 – The Delicate Deity
Both the culture and the modern church have done an excellent job at misrepresenting the biblical Jesus.
As a culture, we have largely produced a caricature of Christ based on the anemic and soft-smiled Roman Catholic paintings. Add the rise of feminism, the deconstructionist movement, and the progressive church and you end up with a delicate Jesus who’s “knocking gently on the door of your heart.”
We are left with a Christology where Jesus is portrayed as some divine doormat who passively submits to the cross and begs people to “accept Him” as their Savior.
Christ is not passive but active. He is not in distress, He is predominant. He is not subject, but King! Christ is not begging people to believe, He is sovereignly and mercifully saving those who are His and leaving the rest to justice (Eph. 1:4-5; Rom. 8:28-30, 9:11, 9:22; 1 Pet. 2:7-8).
Chapter 3 – The Maleness of Christ
Jesus was a man – conceived by a virgin, born biologically male, raised by a carpenter, a boy wise beyond his years (Luke 2:41-52), fully divine (John 1:1), and potently masculine.
He wasn’t interested in “getting to know His feminine side” nor was He the macho chauvinistic domineer that some failing men have become. Jesus was the epitome of manhood – a stalwart in mission, bold, obedient to the point of death, fearless in His proclamation of truth, sacrificial in His acts of love, and resolved to do His Father’s will.
Chapter 4 – The Masculinity of Christ
What do men do?
They protect and provide.
Who is the only perfect man?
He provides salvation at the expense of His own life and He protects His Church from the attacks of the enemy and the grip of sin.
- The Boldness of Jesus
The opposite of boldness is ambiguity.
“If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. So, therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14: 26-27, 33)
- The Fearlessness of Christ
Hebrews 5:7 says, “In the days of His flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to Him who was able to save him from death, and He was heard because of His reverence.”
- The Sacrificial Love of Christ
John 10:11 says, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” At the core of love, we see sacrifice.
Ephesians 5:25 Paul instructs: “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her…”
Shepherds are to guard the flock that has been entrusted to them (Acts 20:28). Men are to protect and provide for their families (1 Tim. 5:8).
- The Resolve of Christ
Resolve is defined as deciding firmly on a course of action.
“And they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them. And they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. And taking the twelve again, he began to tell them what was to happen to him, saying, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles. And they will mock him and spit on him, and flog him and kill him.”
Chapter 5 – The Effeminate Church
Churches are ordaining women as pastors which is a direct attempt to flip the biblical order of feminine submission to husbands, fathers, and biblical elders upside down.
The gender-role distortion and infatuation with egalitarianism have contributed to great confusion in the church of what it means to be a biblical man or woman. It has left women fighting for leadership and left men without direction in their role in marriage, church, and family.
Yes, men and women are equal in value before the cross, but we are not equal in our roles or our duty.
This patriarchy as God intended it to be (1 Pet. 3:6; 1 Cor. 11:9).
All of that said, we must not reject femininity in the church, either.
God is pleased with His daughters and their essential role in His Kingdom. However, we must aim to set the gender culture of the church to be in alignment with the gender-culture of Scripture. Namely, it must be gentle, safe, and encouraging while at the same time strong, bold, and resolved to maintain biblical order and mission. When this balance is achieved we see the whole person of Christ manifested in the church and His people can march on in step with their conquering Lord.
Chapter 6 – The Masculine Church
This generation has selected their preferred qualities for Jesus – the gentle and lowly lamb, the suffering servant, and loving Shepherd.
1 Peter 3:9 instructs women to adorn themselves with a “gentle and meek spirit, which is very precious in God’s sight.”
The “loving-shepherd-only” Jesus has nurtured a culture of sin tolerance leading to the acceptance of behavior that Scripture condemns.
Jesus says in Matt. 28:18-20, “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
We must, by God’s grace, advance the cause of Christ. Namely, we must saturate cities with the Good News of Jesus and the more Law of God. We must, as men, approach the world system by engaging society with biblical ethics. We must find God-honoring wives and raise God-glorifying children. We must start businesses and buy land and plant trees. We must infiltrate and ascertain political and civil influence. We must build ministries and print Bibles.
Chapter 7 – The Call to Reform
The most courageous words ever spoken: “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem. (Matthew 20:18)”
“We are going up to Jerusalem” really meant, “I am going to die for you, suffer the wrath of God for you, and be separated from my Father for you.”
Jesus was on a mission. He was marching. He was leading. He was bold. He was fearless. He was sacrificial. He was resolved. He was, at this moment, the manliest male who ever lived.
Without reservation, we must be able to agree that the narrative of Christianity is not predominantly feminine. It includes women. But from the patriarchs and the prophets to the Messiah and the Apostles, biblical Christianity is predominantly masculine. It is robust and rugged. It has heart and it has hope. What it does not have is a sense of effeminate character.
We must push against the feminization of church culture that ignores His masculinity, His judgments, and His rule and authority.