Sunday, September 22, 2013
#8 Death of Manhood
By Dr. Stephen Phinney
Great patriarchs do not strive to live, they purpose to die! Jesus obviously mastered this principle: “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it” (Luke 9:24-25). Self-dying--not promoting self-life--is the key to living as a principled patriarch.
Is it not true that Jesus came to give His life in order to save ours? Why wouldn’t it be true for patriarchs to give their lives in order to save, or help, those to whom they are responsible? Nothing turns a follower off more than a leader doing things that profit himself. Self-denial is very attractive. It communicates safe leadership. A man, or patriarch, who has to “put his foot down” and prove his authority is confessing he has already lost it. When Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane and said, “Not My will, but Yours be done” (Luke 22:42). He was revealing that He, too, was under a Supreme Commander. So it is with a patriarch. When followers see him pushing his will aside for that of Christ’s, he reveals headship even in his own life. People in general enjoy submitting to those who submit. It reveals the principle of a level playing field.
Unless a man yields his patriarchy to the headship of Christ, he will rule his family, or followers, with a harsh and demanding mind-set. Servant leadership will be far from him. A man who seeks to lead in this manner is stating that he expects others to die daily for their agenda. That makes the patriarch out to be “a god.”
Angry men act as if they have an ownership over their own lives and the lives of their followers. Any authority a man has was given him to steward—it was delegated. Anger reveals a secret sin of ownership. Ownership provokes the hand of God to be jealous. When a man is jealous, he is reacting to someone attempting to steal what he believes is his. Since jealousy is the emotion that provokes anger, understanding “ownership” is critical.
Yes, it is true that a patriarch’s home, business, or position of authority is symbolic of his kingdom. But, he must always remember that it belongs to God and he is to serve those who reside within it by dying to his own will.
NEXT: Patriarch Authority
Death of Manhood Copyright © 2013 IOM America. Permission to reproduce for educational purposes. Please keep author’s name intact.
All Scriptures, unless otherwise stated, are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © Copyright 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.