So, what exactly makes a man manly? What does it mean to act like a man? Have you ever asked yourself this question? I hadn’t until one morning in my prayer time I thought that maybe the Lord was urging me to look up “masculinity” out of the blue. I thought “huh?” What on earth! So I looked it up online and my findings were interesting enough that I thought I would share with you.
First I checked out Wikipedia and found that two scholars had studied masculinity and found that there were three so-called stressors for men. They are:
1. The emphasis on prevailing in situations requiring body and fitness
2. Being perceived as emotional
3. The need for adequacy in sexual matters and financial status
I thought “wow, interesting.” So this must be what men perceive as what they need in order to be manly. At least some of them. But then I wondered, “I wonder if the Bible has anything to say about this.” Sure enough, I was pointed to two verses. In the first, David is talking to his son Solomon as he is putting the kingdom in his charge.
“Now the days of David drew nigh that he should die; and he charged Solomon his son, saying, I go the way of all the earth: be thou strong therefore, and shew thyself a man;
And keep the charge of the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, that thou mayest prosper in all that thou doest, and whithersoever thou turnest thyself:
That the Lord may continue his word which he spake concerning me, saying, If thy children take heed to their way, to walk before me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul, there shall not fail thee (said he) a man on the throne of Israel.”
- 2 Kings 2:1-4
Notice that David said “shew thyself a man; and…” and proceeded to tell what exactly (possibly) showing himself a man looked like? What did that look like?
Let’s see…from what it looks like, showing yourself a man probably looks like:
1. Keeping the charge of the Lord
2. Walking in God’s ways
3. Keeping God’s statutes (laws)
4. Keeping God’s commandments
5. Keeping God’s judgments
6. Keeping God’s testimonies
Wow! So cool! Here is a Biblical definition of what (I think) God thinks makes you a manly man right there in the Bible! The second verse is this charge from Paul to the church/churches:
“Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong. Let all your things be done with charity.”
- 1 Corinthians 16:13-14
The ESV version says:
“Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.”
Notice it says “act like men” followed by some instructions. Interesting!
So….to sum it all up I made you a nifty table. You can now compare what the world thinks makes a man manly and what possibly God thinks makes a man manly according to what I gathered from the two scriptures. (Not sure if being watchful, standing firm in the faith, being strong, and doing everything in love fall under the man category but they are in the same sentence as Paul urges them to act like men so I have included them in the table.)