Imagine my surprise when I received a text from a brother inviting me to speak to the men of his church at a retreat. Imagine my joy at standing in front of those men and seeking to challenge them with the help of God’s Spirit. Twenty-four hours is such a brief time but such an important window of opportunity to challenge men to be grounded, Biblical churchmen, husbands, fathers, and single young men. When about thirty men of various ages and backgrounds get together for a church mens’ retreat, it is a God-given opportunity to touch the next generation for Christ. When a pastor has a vision for leading his men to be men of God and to have a vision for Christ and His church, you want to do all you can with the help of God to compliment that vision and to impart to those men a Biblical basis for committing their lives to it.
Our theme was “The Need of the Hour”, and that was the title of the second message fixed between two bookends for the retreat. Our goal was to help each man see the part he must play in building a legacy of male leadership for the church of Jesus Christ and building a spiritual pedigree to pass on to the next generation. As Ezra was motivated by a Biblical vision and built the Word into his life and the lives of others, so must men of God be in the church today.
But we must begin with a clear understanding of “The Essentials of Biblical Manhood”. The most concise expression of these essentials is found in ICor. 16:13,14, where men are exhorted to be vigilant, valiant, and virtuous in their pursuit of Biblical manhood. This was our starting point for the weekend. Each session was followed by an opportunity for Q&A, which helped to bring even more practical application to the weekend. It was so good to have Daniel with me and to have him interact with the man and add his valuable insight and perspective to the topics and questions. The mealtimes were valuable times of fellowship, and though I was beat up pretty badly on the basketball court Friday evening, it was worth it to let some of the men think they had the upper hand on the speaker,:). We closed Saturday morning with breakfast and the final session on a “Vision for Living”. Vision is not merely a good thing. It is an indispensable element of Biblical manhood and building a lasting legacy of male leadership in the body of Christ. We encouraged the men to see that vision is not something we create out our own ideas, but comes from the Word of God itself and, when absent, leaves devastating short-term and long- term consequences.
My brother Pastor Eric Coher was a gracious host but, more importantly, a man with a Biblical vision for the people of Cape Bible Chapel where he serves. Pray for him and the body of Christ there that the ministry of God’s Word will bear fruit for future generations and for eternity.