Act Like Men
Sent by King David to exact revenge upon Israel’s enemies, Commander Joab took some “special forces” for a mop up operation. Instead of an easy victory, Joab found himself and his crack troops virtually surrounded by Ammonites and Syrians in what appeared to be an almost impossible situation. Joab was a shrewd military leader and quickly took the best of the best to fight the Syrians, while sending his brother Abishai with the rest to face the Ammonites. Then Joab sent them all into the battle with these challenging words.
Be of good courage, and let us play the men for our people, and for the cities of our God: and the LORD do that which seems good to Him.
Hundreds of years later, the Apostle Paul issued a similar challenge in a different context. The Corinthian Church faced challenges from within and without. Divisions over personalities, sexual temptation and failures, idolatry, and misunderstanding and misuse of God-given gifts had put the church at risk. As he brought his challenging letter to a close, Paul drew the lines of battle in much the same way Joab did, though the battle was of a different nature.
Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love. (1 Cor.16:13,14)
Our churches and our families face challenges as great as any the people of God have ever faced. In a day of emasculated men and powerful women, we are apt to forget the place of strong male leadership among the people of God. But the words of Joab and Paul are as crucial as ever. We must “play the men”. We must “act like men”. We must be aware of and alert to the spiritual dangers that our families face. We must know the faith and stand firm in the truth as it is in Christ. We must be strong in the faith and live it before our wives and children. And the coup de grace; we must do everything we do in the love of Christ. We must lay our lives on the line and live with the next generation and eternity in view. Our children and children’s children may face challenges we have never imagined. Let us do all we can to prepare them, by God’s grace being men of God: “…and the LORD do that which seems good to Him.”
In the love of Christ,