As I have prepared my notes to share the amazing message of Good Friday and Easter, I’m always amazed by the men throughout the Gospel and how they remind me of so many men I encounter in the local church. In my eyes, there are four types of men:
Many roman soldiers mentioned in scripture would certainly fall into this category. In the crucifixion story, soldiers are very prominent, whether they were beating Jesus, nailing him to the cross, or accepting the bribe to lie about where his body went. They had no need for another God, many where Pagans, and others rejected the very existence of God. Each of them, like most men today, needed personal encounter with Christ and an understanding of who he is!
Religious but Lost
The Pharisee were a very strange group of individuals. They spent hours searching the scripture, teaching about how to live religious lives, but failing to understand what they read. Sadly, we have men throughout within our churches today that are religious but Loss. While they acknowledge Jesus and even spend time studying his ministry, they do not commit to a personal relationship with him. Even some of our very own pastors see ministry and church as a means of obtaining influence. If anyone should have been able to recognize Christ as the Messiah, it should have been the Pharisee. However just like in our modern church culture, they rejected Jesus because he did not fit their thinking of what a savior should like.
Saved but not Active.
I see these men like the disciples during the events of the cross and resurrection. They watch the uncomfortable get done from a distance and when Jesus shows up like he said he would, this type of man forgets his promises and doubt him at every turn. They would much prefer to let the women do the heavy lifting when times get tough. After forty years of ministry, you would think I would be used to these passive Christian men. Yes, they know who Christ is, they believe he died on the Cross and arose again, and yes, they asked Him to save them. However, they honestly do not expect Jesus to ask for anything in return.
Saved and Souled Out
“Here I am” is the rallying cry of this type of man. The disciple who would soon be known as Apostle John was front and center at the Cross. As Jesus spoke, he was given the task of taking care of Jesus’ mother Mary. John stood ready for the task, just like he would stand ready to preach, pastor, and lead a church from its beginning. He would suffer at the hands of government officials and religious leaders. He was solid in his faith and it never wavered.
As you read these thoughts, where are you at today in your relationship with Christ? What are you going to do to move to the next level of commitment? I personally think it is time for all men to take an honest look and see how we need to change to grow in our relationship with Jesus, because he is not going to change, and we certainly cannot change him to suit our desires.