Eugene Cho

ultimate fighting jesus

I get it.

Men and women are different. In fact, I embrace it.

And I also get it that there’s an issue with men in the church.  Statistically, only 40% of folks in the church are men and there is also the issue of fewer men actively serving and leading within the church.  Some even see the “emasculation” of Christian men as one of the largest threats to the evangelical church.  Really?

Emasculation as one of the greatest threats?  We’re focusing on genitalia here and not the heart?

Christianity Today has a worthwhile read entitled, A Jesus for Real Men [What the new masculinity movement gets right and wrong].  I’m not trying to pick on Mark Driscoll because he’ll beat the crap out of me and I also have a level of respect for him and the ministry at Mars Hill [Seattle] but it’s the classic quote in the article that captures this movement:

Mark Driscoll, pastor of Seattle’s Mars Hill Church, desires greater testosterone in contemporary Christianity. In Driscoll’s opinion, the church has produced “a bunch of nice, soft, tender, chickified church boys. … Sixty percent of Christians are chicks,” he explains, “and the forty percent that are dudes are still sort of chicks.”

The aspect of church that men find least appealing is its conception of Jesus. Driscoll put this bluntly in his sermon “Death by Love” at the 2006 Resurgence theology conference.  According to Driscoll, “real men” avoid the church because it projects a “Richard Simmons, hippie, queer Christ” that “is no one to live for [and] is no one to die for.” Driscoll explains, “Jesus was not a long-haired … effeminate-looking dude”; rather, he had “callused hands and big biceps.” This is the sort of Christ men are drawn to—what Driscoll calls “Ultimate Fighting Jesus.”

There is an issue but aren’t we overreacting and going to the other extreme – and consequently, further away from  Jesus.  We do need to address the absence and silence of Christian men in their marriages, families, churches, and society.  But here’s my question: Who exactly are we listening to as role models to shape our identity as MEN?  While important aspects such as pleasure, protection, and provision are alluded to by the larger pop culture, it is often distorted.  In addition, what it will NEVER do is speak to the spiritual aspect of those responsibities and privileges.

So, what does it mean to be a Christian man?  If we’re not careful, we’ll end up just being dudes who are rude and crude.

We drink beer, eat red meat, smoke cigars, swear like Christian sailors, insult boy bands, watch Ultimate Fight Club, drive Hummers and four wheel trucks, be obsessed with Jack Bauer, hunt bears, etc.  I do all of these things – with the exception of hunting bears.  But are we reducing the definition of following Jesus to these external stereotypes?

Seriously, I personally don’t care what you eat, drink, hunt, or watch as long as it isn’t porn. I know Jesus wasn’t a pushover but to reduce Christ into our pop culture images of manhood seems wacky.  Rather than focusing on external appearance, shouldn’t we focus on our “heart, soul, body, and mind”?

Brandon O’ Brien, the author of the article, writes:

Fortunately for women and men alike, the Bible never speaks of Christians as reformed men and women, but as altogether new creations (2 Cor. 5:17). The Fall has done more damage to the human heart than the masculinity movement seems willing to admit. For instance, a man’s natural inclinations may prompt him to be “Boss, Bold, Brash, Bully, and Blunt,” as one of GodMen’s sayings suggests. But most of these are qualities of the old self that are destroyed when one is transformed into the image of Christ. A man’s urge for battle—with fist or pen—may well be natural, but that doesn’t automatically make it godly. In other words, conversion does not sanctify our instincts; rather, it demands that we submit all our instincts to the lordship of Christ and crucify the sinful ones, what Paul calls “the flesh” (Eph. 2).

While there are clearly stories about Jesus’ “toughness” [Jesus topples tables and whips moneychangers in Mark 11, Matthew 21, and Luke 19/20], I also seem to remember that Jesus washes the feet of his disciples, demonstrates amazing grace to the prostitute woman in John 8, enters Jerusalem riding on a donkey to the shouts of Hosanna, and eventually goes to the Cross to die for humanity.

I live for this Jesus!

But then again, maybe I need to grow some balls…I do drive a Jetta and a Miata.  Crap.

  • What do you think?
  • What’s the problem?
  • What does it mean to christian dude?

Share/Save/Bookmark

Filed under: , religion

88 Responses

  1. DK says:

    Good post Eugene. But dude, you really enjoy receiving hate mail, huh?

  2. Nic says:

    Well, I agree with the heart of the masculinity movement. I do believe it’s a big problem within the church. There’s too many adult men acting like young boys who aren’t willing to step up in maturity, manhood, and leadership. Consequences will be far and deep in my opinion.

    • Bill Steinman says:

      I don’t know where you go to chuch, bro. But in the Episcopal church the men and women are the equal to any christians on the planet. We think, therefore, we are actively leaders of each parish. I move around a lot for work. I been in senior leadership positions and have yet to meet anyone that is not willing to step up, take responsibility and lead.

  3. russ says:

    I remember one popular book for Christian men encouraging men to let others “feel the full weight of who you are”. How is it that we equate being manly with the overt use of power?

    Maybe, we are at our best as men when we know when and how – and how sparingly – to use our power. As you said, Jesus did flip over tables, but more often than not, we see him use his power in acts of mercy and justice, and see him hold back his power in conflict.

  4. mihee says:

    i guess i always invariably go back to the question “then, what is manhood”? and because i think the two are related, “what is womanhood?” there’s a part of me that takes a pseudo-essentialist route with the openness to the possilibities of exceptions to the rule. my husband is a “good man”…meaning he definitely posseses the “manly” qualities of protection, “bringing home the bacon,” strength, integrity, responsibility, as well as an insane love of sports, a need for his cave time, and in interest in powerful machines. at the same time, he is a big softie in the way he loves animals and cooking. is he any less of a man with these more effeminiate qualities? and then, what about me? being a woman pastor in a traditionally male-dominated vocation, and as someone who possesses, i think a fair amount of “bringing-home-the-bacon”-ness, strength, integrity, responsibility, etc., does that make me less of a woman? for him, i don’t think so, in fact i think he’s more of a man, and for myself, i feel like it makes me more whole.

    so, i think it should just be an issue of producing human beings that are whole, in good relationship with God and each other, and passionate about life…but i realize that invariably that issue can’t avoid the gender-ed context. so i vacillate between seeing how useless it is to uphold these masculine or feminine standards and wanting to emphasize the unique and wonderful qualities of each gender.

    maybe i’m being too idealistic.

  5. gaius says:

    i think the individuals (i.e. driscoll) who address valid concerns such as this issue do not fully analyze the issue and choose their words or examples wisely. while i don’t think that christian men should be less than who they were created to be, i don’t think that being like the ultimate fighting jesus works either. toughness and compassion are great qualities to simultaneously develop.

  6. gaius says:

    i also think that the real issue here is the potential absence of qualities like courage, boldness, integrity, honesty, ability to stand up for the powerless, etc. (which as correctly pointed out by some other readers, is not limited only to males)… these qualities manifest themselves in different forms… while performing acts of daring and machismo can demonstrate these qualities, those are not the only forms… unfortunately, those can seem like the most “obvious” forms due to their nature… those who serve, seek justice, work thankless but meaningful jobs, etc without recognition can also demonstrate these qualities…

  7. ubuntucat says:

    Galatians 3:28.

    I don’t really see anything in the New Testament that supports the idea that Christian men need to be masculine. Maybe the people acting like “boys” instead of “men” are the ones clinging to old paradigms. I Corinthians 13:11.

  8. This is a great post. This is very thought provoking, what should real Christian men be like. I am not sure whether it should be a hardcore masculine guy, or a java drinking metrosexual. What I do know, is that men need to be men. I have read the bumper sticker time and time again that says, “real men love Jesus.” That statement cant be more true. It takes alot, and I do mean alot to stand for the cause of Christ. Not only to stand for Jesus, but how about standing for the real issues in the world today like being a real father and taking time with your kids, or how about being a one woman man. Loving your wife and giving all of your affection to her. To take a stand and stop looking at porn. Its time to stop with all the character flaws that strike us down as men. Living for Jesus is being a real man. Whether your a 90lb wuss or an actual ultimate fighter. Non the less, stand for Jesus. Dont get me wrong, your reading from a man who struggled greatly with sin before I became a youth pastor, but it was only through God’s grace that carried me and made me the man that I am today. Soli Deo Gloria.(to the glory of God alone)

  9. Jennifer says:

    Gosh, I think the scripture we read on Sunday was one pretty good example of what Christian men can be. They were not doing “macho” things – they were caring for old women with very practical needs (the calling of the first deacons). Im not saying that is the only thing for a Christian man to do, but it sure serves as a contrast for the fight-club, beer-drinking Christian man.

    I remember reading (though I cant recall where now…) that the early church was about 70% women…and that there has never been a time in history when the church had a greater majority of men than women.

  10. danielktaylor says:

    I don’t think that advocating greater strength, perserverence, and committment from men automatically means that one is removing those characteristics from women. It’s not helpful.

    I don’t think it’s sexist to recognize the fact that men and women are different. Not unequal in any way, but yes, different. The problem is that men (and women as well, but we’re talking about men) have been reduced to caricature.

    What if rather than knuckle dragging ultimate fighters, we were to instead advocate the return of the Gentleman. A man marked by strength couched in gentleness and self control. A human who, when confronted by problems and adversity, does not resort to the cowardly actions of fleeing or fighting, has the courage to stand. One who does let people feel the weight of who he is, not to exert power, but because anything less would be lacking in integrity.

    As a pastor, I don’t want a church of men who hide in their basements playing video games, or who prowl the earth looking for someone to measure themselves against. I would like a church of gentlemen and women who stand, confident in the God who made and saves them.

  11. Tyler says:

    When you get over the shock value of what Driscoll was saying I think there is a lot of merit. Often church is trying to smooth out rough men when we see that most often Jesus was one that was both smooth and rough. It is a balance and impossible to get down correctly, but a true man for God is both smooth and rough, not just smooth……wow that was cheesy.

  12. James says:

    What? You don’t hunt bears? You are not a real man.

  13. brandonsneed says:

    Reminds me of “Legends of the Fall.” 1) because Tristan hunts bears and 2) one line in there about Tristan says “He was a rock they broke themselves against,” talking about everybody in his life.

    If something breaks against a rock, there is still a piece of the rock that chips off with the broken object. The broken object, though broken, maintains a piece of what broke it.

    With Jesus, when we break ourselves against him, we take with us a piece of him. And he’s a rock that also repairs what he breaks.

    Random thought, didn’t proofread or spend much time on it.

    By the way, yes, I am new to your blog. ‘Tis … “interesting.” :)

  14. Jake says:

    I absolutely agree with Mark Driscoll, who I also have quite a bit of respect for, that the statistical gap between men and women in the church is a pretty large problem, and I agree that Jesus has been misrepresented within the Church. The Jesus I think that we see more often in the minds of Christians (myself definitely included) is significantly wussier and less bad ass than the one in the Bible, but I would not call that being “chickified.” Most women I know are not docile, wussy people, so I think Mark is tapping into a stereotype there too much.
    As far as masculinity and Jesus goes lets not forget that he wept, let friends rest their heads on his bosom and chased the money lenders out of the Temple. Masculinity is extremely complex if you read Jesus as being the ultimate “man.” These gender stereotypes I think only serve to distract us from figuring out what Christian masculinity (femininity as well) looks like.

  15. daniel so says:

    Eugene — The only way I’ll discuss this with you is if you get into the octagon with Driscoll and make him tap out :)

    Seriously, I can’t get over Mark calling the Son of God, “Ultimate Fighting Jesus.” Wow. You can’t make this stuff up.

    It worries me when people try to superimpose Western ideals of manhood onto Jesus, as if Ward Cleaver teaching lil’ Beaver to box so that he can give the schoolyard bully a taste of his own medicine is a “biblical” notion. If we’re just going to pick cultural stereotypes, I’m going with ninjas — I think Jesus could be pretty stealthy (surprising His disciples in the upper room by entering without opening the door) and agile (walking on water). I can see it now: “Jesus Was A Ninja — And You Can Be Too.”

    I think it takes a lot more courage and strength to be faithful in a culture of instant gratification, to model humility and servanthood in a “winner takes all” society and to embody the good news in a sinful, broken world. But enough sissy-talk… let’s fight!

  16. chad says:

    i frequently struggle with how i measure up to others’ standards, be they standards of masculinity or youth or Christianity or race or educational status or really any other label one could use to describe me – it is easy to judge yourself (and subsequently adjust your life) to please others and to fit nicely into everyone else’s convenient little label box but i think that it is wrong.

    i do think it is right to be honest with ourselves. as much as we possibly can. and i do think it is right to be honest with God. as much as we possibly can. i’m not really sure if i’m putting this into words that make any sense, but we should hold ourselves accountable to God and when we, in all honesty and sincerity, seek a healthy relationship with God, the rest follows. So that’s pretty vague, i’ll admit. what do i mean specifically? lots and lots of honest prayer, for one. lots and lots of time in devotions for two. lots and lots of time spent being honest and vulnerable with close friends (and spouse if you have one) for three. and there’s definitely more that could be done, but i think those three are a good place to start.

    there is another approach to our humanity that i have been introduced to lately and it comes from the tradition of the Eastern Orthodox Church. It is essentially this: we were (and are) created perfect, our fallen state is the condition of lacking something (as opposed to gaining the Curse), namely a good solid relationship with our Creator and that lack of relationship results in our brokenness and sin. Therefore, we are never more true to our perfect created selves (in all our masculinity/femininity) than when we are in a healthy relationship with our Creator.

    hope this doesn’t sound preachy or high and mighty, i guess i just have a lot to say. i welcome any thoughts/criticism/whatever
    -chad

  17. gaius says:

    i would also like to add that many times, we tend to sanitize Jesus… although he’s kind and merciful at times in the Bible, he’s also quite sarcastic, biting, impatient, and harsh at times… there are many things in this world that require a harder response (crime, abusers, for example)… you would not want a “nice” or “gentle” soldier or police officer to deal with a dangerous or difficult situation… a problem occurs when the traits needed to address these issues are devalued or scorned by “Christians”…

  18. justin says:

    “to reduce Christ into our pop culture images of manhood seems wacky. Rather than focusing on external appearance, shouldn’t we focus on our “heart, soul, body, and mind”?”

    in college, i took a class called “the masculine mystique” (there’s an east coast liberal arts education for you)… which examined masculinity (and femininity) across different cultures. i don’t remember alot of the details of the class, but the big message i took away from that quarter is that gender roles are almost entirely social constructs– WE (in america) choose to give our sons GI Joes and our daughters Barbies… WE choose to wrestle with the boys and play nice with the girls… WE tell them that pink is for girls and blue is for boys. (advertisers, of course, do their fair share of reinforcing those gender assignments). then our boys and girls grow up thinking that muscular, gi joe warriors are masculine and made-up, pink-wearing, curvy blondes are feminine. (the “pop culture images” that PE referred to).

    driscoll et al. are probably right. there is a disproportionately low number of UFC-watchers at church. i suppose one way to address the issue would be to market jesus differently to attract more bear-hunting dudes… OR… we ask our society to reexamine what it means to be a man and what it means to be a woman. we encourage them to shed the stereotypes and look/think/act deeply. i firmly believe that they will discover that whether they are male or female, Christ is for them.

    (easier said than done, i know…)

  19. eugenecho says:

    @michael jones: dude, thanks for sharing a little of your story. very cool.

    @everyone else: i want everyone to call me by my UFC name: Ragin’ Asian.

  20. Nancy says:

    In an earlier comment, Michael Jones asks “I am not sure whether it [a real Christian man] should be a hardcore masculine guy, or a java drinking metrosexual…”

    Does it need to be one or the other? Is one of those somehow more “male” than the other? Both of those types of men can be image-bearers of Christ.

    I think we may do men an injustice by attempting to define what is “manly” and thereby deciding who is in and who is out in our view of masculinity. The Bible calls you to do justly, love mercy and walk humbly with your God. “Real men” strive for that. Regardless of whether they prefer sipping lattes or chugging a beer.

  21. Su says:

    Could the issue be that leadership in church just doesn’t appeal to ‘manly’ men? Leadership and service in church is not very WWF/UFC… Maybe we should have a title belt for the best servant leader each year….or not…=]

    If qualities such as ‘courage, boldness, integrity, honesty, ability to stand up for the powerless, etc.’ are believed to be maculine, then Mother Theresa out manned us all….

    If qualities such as ‘callused hands and big biceps’ make a man or any of the other testosterone-driven stereotypes society throws at us, then I’d say we need to stop listening to society/media.

  22. Baron Miller says:

    I’m pretty sure Jesus doesn’t call men and women to measure their gender based on societies expectations of said gender. UFC Jesus is not more attractive to me than Promise Keeper weepy Jesus. There’s ample room for both. Big biceps are fine, but only accompanied by a big heart.

    I don’t know if Jesus had big biceps, but I know he had a big heart, and just ’cause you have a big heart doesn’t mean your a pussy.

    Also, the church has primarily been attended by women over men and I’m not thinking it’s because all pastors are made in the image of Bernard of Clairvaux. I’m thinking that many, not all, but many men are lazy and have wacked out priorities. “Oh, it’s footbal season”, “Oh, it’s hunting season”, “Oh, I’m snowboarding”–none of these reflect valuing participation in the body of Christ but only once a week.

    Anyway, enough of the soap box.
    hugs not drugs

  23. Brad says:

    This is a great article, and brings out an awesome point.

    I’m one of those red-meat-eating UFC-loving dudes that are rejoicing that this aspect of God’s Image is being restored in value within the church. As a Chaplain Candidate in the Army, I’ve seen soldiers laugh at Christianity because of it’s perceived impotence and irrelevancy. I’ve listened to Driscoll for a few years now (off and on), and I can see how just a few of the quotes could communicate that aspect narrowly.

    The goal is not to restore a stereotype, but to redeem it. I think the emphasis on the “outward” manifestations of masculinity (a la Eldredge or David Murrow) are important to bring attention to, but it is absolutely internal change that must happen. These outward manifestations (perseverance in conflict, embracing “dude stuff”) CAN BE reflections of an inward renewal (leadership, assertiveness, pride in bearing God’s image as warrior). I think Driscoll and Co. would agree with that as well.

    One of my favorite books on the topic is “The Church Impotent” by Leon J. Podles. Chapter three gives an amazing definition of Biblical Masculinity that transcends cultural stereotypes yet also a great job at incorporating biological, sociological/anthropological, and psychological research.

    Again, thanks for the post, I’ll be linking to it for one I’m working on entitled “Towards a Theory of Biblical Masculinity.” Excellent points…

  24. When I hear the Driscolls and Eldredges speak about reclaiming manhood I hear two things: 1) they believe that their native white culture forged in the American West is mandated from God for all male-kind and 2) they feel threatened and believe it is right for men to regain control.

    I fully reject both of these beliefs.

    I reject the first because it’s just a confusion of culture and religion and this has been well-covered by the other commends. This is half of the manhood movement that I can more easily forgive.

    As for the second half, the belief that men should regain control, this is a damnable sin.
    If you listen closely to the way this movement encourages men you’ll notice that it’s almost an exact mirror of the feminist movement that started well over a century ago. Women have fought patiently and hard for many years to be allowed to have some power and control over their lives. This manhood movement not only shows no regard for feminism but seems to actively counter it. The message I hear is that men should be the caretakers and leaders of women. That men, despite no biological advantage other than confidence and the inability to multitask, should regain control over educated, wise, women.

    I could fill your blog comments up for days ranting on the anti-feminist movement and its cruelty but I’d rather just end with a quote from Sojourner Truth’s legendary speech “Ain’t I a woman?” delivered in 1851:

    “I have plowed, I have planted and I have gathered into barns. And no man could head me. And ain’t I a woman?

    I could work as much, and eat as much as man – when I could get it – and bear the lash as well! And ain’t I a woman? I have borne children and seen most of them sold into slavery, and when I cried out with a mother’s grief, none but Jesus heard me. And ain’t I a woman?

    That little man in black there! He says women can’t have as much rights as men. ‘Cause Christ wasn’t a woman. Where did your Christ come from?
    Where did your Christ come from?! From God and a Woman! Man had nothing to do with him!”

  25. Jason Douros says:

    Great post Eugene. I have to pipe in on this one.

    Personally I think the whole question is a load of crap, if you can excuse my bluntness, as is the idea that men wouldn’t be attracted to a Jesus that isn’t Larry the Cable Guy, Ken Shamrock, Tyler Durden or some amalgam of the three, and there are no men in churches.

    I probably have considerably less respect for Driscoll and the ministry of Mars Hill (Seattle) then Eugene…and I tend to be less diplomatic too…though I do have a some. This is one of the main areas that bugs the snot out of me about them to no end, and I have no respect for his voice on the subject. Having extensive experience with a denomination that is male dominated, male populated, and preaches the gospel of Complementarianism at every opportunity, I can tell you that the overall Western Church isn’t hurting for men. I’ve heard from several people over the years about the struggle to get men involved in the church experience, and have never understood it.

    Anyways…I’m a man, husband of one and father of three. I hate pretty much all sports, love James Bond movies, have never watched 24, play First Person shooters, enjoy the occasional non-formulaic romantic comedy (Down With Love, LA Story), like building things out of wood….and yes I did shed a tear when the barracuda ate Nemo’s family. Who are we…or you Mr. Driscoll…to define what it means to be “man after God’s own heart”.

    Speaking of which…David was a depressive poet who tended to attack tall men threatening his country with stones. If we have such a myopic, in or out view of being a man (or woman) then I think we miss the beauty of the picture of humanity I see presented in Jesus. He displayed in equal quantities both the traditional masculine roles and traditional feminine roles. He had both male and female followers (an oddity I am sure for a 1st century Rabbi), and was constantly challenging cultural categories of gender relations.

    So Mr. Driscoll and the like…I’d like to with all humility and urgency…ask you to refrain from defining what it means to be a man or woman for all of us. Let us discover for ourselves.

    Ok, I’m done with my ranty two cents….did I mention I just got back from hanging with almost all men for a few days…so that may be coloring my attitude about the subject.

    Ah well back to work…thanks again for the post.

  26. Patrick Loyd says:

    Interesting post. Honestly, didn’t realize there was Feminine or Masculine Movement concern/issue/controversy in the church. I guess I was on a slow boat to Brazil and missed it.

    As a Christian MAN, I could care less how society or the Christian “community” defines me, and rates my manhood. I am only interested in becoming more like Christ and reaching lost souls. A part of that is reading and learning God’s Word, His commands and His principles and aligning our lives accordingly so that God can use us to reach and minister to the lost souls of this world. If that takes me wearing a pink shirt with matching purple tie, while wearing soft, leather loafers and carrying a man purse, then fine…so be it. If that takes me putting on should pads and participating in a little crash test dummy experimentation on a football field, then fine…I’ll do that too.

    The Bible is clear what the role of the male is in the home as well as the female. We, as males, have been set apart as the head of our households and as the spiritual leaders in the home and church. We accomplish that by emaluting Christ and by showing the type of love, compassion and giving that He gave to all He came into contact with. He respected and accepted all people and reached out to all and He did that by whatever means necessary. If he needed to get tough, he did. If he needed a more gentle or patient approach, he did it. You see, it really has nothing to with a “manly” or “womanly” trait or characteristic but is centered in a Christ-like trait or characteristic. Faith, love, hope, compassion, loyalty, servanthood, self-denial of one’s fleshy self, taking up our cross and following Jesus, reaching lost souls, obedience, and the ideals of Christ are not gender-specific but, as you stated in the article, are found in the heart, soul and spirit.

    Men are different from woman. You can’t argue that but as Christians, as followers of Christ we are all EQUAL. We may have different spiritual gifts (also not gender specific), and different ministries but our effectiveness in these areas have nothing to do with our masculinity or femininity but how our soul and spirit is aligned with Christ. We all are expected to fight on the frontlines in this battle for lost souls that is being waged between God and evil.

    Too often, satan causes Christians to get “side-tracked” and blown off course by these trivial issues so that we lose our effectiveness in reaching the lost souls that he desperately wants to spend eternity in hell with him. When we aren’t focused on reaching lost souls, then satan is overjoyed. The only statistic that is worth remembering or taking up our energy for is this: There are over 2 Billion people on THIS earth that has never heard the name of “Jesus”, and many more that are not disciples of Christ. Whether that’s 60% female or 40% male is completely irrelevant. We all have to get tougher and more serious about reaching these lost and need to be willing to accept whatever persecution or consequences that may come to us in this world. Who cares what the percentages of male to female is in the church. Just be stoked the people have come, period.

  27. Patrick Loyd says:

    If the church is ineffective in growing and reaching lost souls, then it’s soley because we have not placed Christ and his ideals at the center. The foundation has to be Christ and fulfilling his greatest command, The Great Commission has to be the goal. If we are not seeking Him and allowing Him to guide us then, I could be a hermaphroditic half horse, half person and my form of Christianity would be junk.

  28. warren says:

    this one thing has been true throughout most of my life… a lack of a male role model actively involved, showing me the way to be a Godly man. as a result, i think i am often irresponsible, less active, and more scared to make mistakes than i would have otherwise been.

    growing up in church, i believe this has come from the wrong set of values creeping in…

    some messed up views of discipleship (raising our kids to think memorizing verses and behaving well in Sunday school = getting close to Jesus), not enabling/encouraging mentors, avoiding controversy and thinking we are more righteous because of it, and just compromising the image of God for a safe, controlled, and inch-deep Christian identity.

  29. eugenecho says:

    I agree with the spirit behind the movement. In short: Men must Grow Up!

    But what scares me is this movement’s idea of the Physical Appearance and Cultural Behavior of a Christian Man.

    Seriously, one of the scariest images of Jesus is the white, blonde, blue eyed Jesus and so I wonder if decades or centuries from now, if the most popular artistic image of Jesus will be the testosterone laden image of Jesus.

    @nancy: lattes or beer? doesnt’ matter but one thing i know is that your husband is not a ufc man. he drinks pots of tea. :)

    a man after God: son of God; servant of God; love mercy, seek justice, walk humbly; honor parents; grow in friendship; commitment to integrity and purity; love, honor, and serve wife; lead and be led; protect and provide for your children; love neighbors; forgive enemies; speak, teach, and live out the Truth in season and out of season; demonstrate courage and fight for those without voice; contend for the Truth of the Gospel; live for Jesus.

    a few things that come to my mind.

  30. I am so sick of this conversation and these terms. The assumption is that to be a woman is bad. And that to not be a certain stereotype of man is bad. We let people like Mark set the definitions for us that are unbiblical, offensive, and just plain stupid and then push the conversation forward. Having the conversation like this in the first place in seriously insulting to a lot of people. But I’m sure MD doesn’t care.

  31. jason says:

    I know ONE THING FOR SURE! Jesus would not have been found in an Octagonal Ring Bashing in someone’s head.

    Give me a break!

    Brian McLaren had a great quote a few weeks ago about this – something like, “But, Jesus did let us BEAT HIM UP!”

  32. ryanbd says:

    wow – what a great set of posts and topic. I think Daniel So deserves some sort of title belt for the “Jesus as Ninja” comment. I almost cried and peed my pants laughing. Yikes – what does Driscoll say about men who cry because they’re laughing at ninja jokes?

    Even if we set aside the issue of Mark continuing to use feminine imagery and pronouns along with demeaning terms for gay people as pejoratives (that in itself should cause men to be manly defenders of their women towards him), we should be disturbed by his and others’ bad theology on the issue. Eugene, I know you consider him a wonderful cultural exegete, and to some extent this is true, but the flip side of this is he and others in whatever movement to recover ‘manhood’ in the church this is, shape their theology around their culture instead of the other way around. It seems to me Driscoll begins withi his cultural ideas about manhood and the role of women and then goes in and finds biblical support for these beliefs. Of course he woul deny this, but there’s just no biblical excuse for his approach. “Chickified church”? What does that even mean? It’s too bad, because men do need to be called out for their whack priorities, selfish lifestyles and mistreatment of women. And I’ll bet there have been some marriages and men reshaped for the better through Mark’s influence. It’s just unneccessary to 1) Force one cultural idea of manhood through scripture on people; and 2) Be unable to separate the ‘rude and crude’ side from the strong ‘throw yourself on the grenade’ mentality men are called to – seems counter productive. Finally, I was thinking of the custom in some Middle-Eastern / Central-Asian countries for men who are friends to hold hands while walking down the street. If we’re trying to get back to a more accurate understanding of Jesus’ manhood, maybe we should start practicing that. :)

  33. rexhamilton says:

    When I hear Driscoll’s words I can’t help but think of the women sitting in the audience. Does his comments on the need for “kick ass” men make women feel less valued and important to the ministry of the church? There’s a very good chance that he’s hurting more people than we may ever know about. Yes, we have a social problem with extended-adolescence, but I tend to worry that promoting a tough guy image in the church will only extend their adolescence even more since many of the tough guys I know sometimes tend to be the least thoughtful about justice, compassion and the Kingdom message.

  34. Mark identifies the problem (men who are immature boys at heart) yet shames them in the process. I doubt shame really ever produced the likeness of Jesus.

  35. [...] Aside from goofing up UFC (Its Ultimate Fighting Championship, not Club, unless you mean this), Eugene Cho has a post that, from a Christian perspective, offers an alternative view of masculinity to that [...]

  36. Melissa says:

    Oh lord, Eugene! How many cans of worms do you intend to open?

    I love it. I especially love how you (and others who have commented) discuss the difference between God-given woman and manhood, and culturally based distortions of the same. We have done a fabulous job of distorting true masculinity and femininity, ever since the Garden of Eden. We still don’t really know what Godly sexuality looks like.

    Personally, I don’t want to be judged as a woman on whether I fit the church-cultural norm. (I don’t). I do not want any of my brothers to feel pressure to meet the church-testosterone norm either. I do think that we all need to grow up a bit, and stop being little boys and girls. But what we grow up into should be God-centered, rather than Rambo-centered.

  37. JB says:

    I think Driscoll can easily solve his own problem. With his belief that women are inherently unChristlike, he should be able to drive away 1/3 of his female congregants, easy, leaving the 50/50 ratio he craves.

    (1/3 * 60% = 40%)

    Only a girl but good at math,

    JB

  38. JB says:

    But bad at proofing.
    (2/3 * 60%) = 40%

  39. eugenecho says:

    @melissa,

    what? i feel comfortable opening up these cans of worms for discussion because my identity is anonymous and i can discuss all these hot topics.

  40. Joel says:

    Nice blog, post.

    Mark Driscoll makes me angry and want to kick his ass, praise Jesus.

    Real men sing, AMERICA!…you get the point.

  41. Janet says:

    What the hell is going on here? You are a bunch of wussies. Just kidding.

  42. Eugene,

    When you see MD next, tell him I hit a 335 yard drive today, hit the green on the par 5 with a 2 iron, smoked a cigar while doing so, then came home and read the Greek NT, said my prayers, and felt more like a man doing the latter than the former.

  43. aaron says:

    I have mixed feelings on this issue… but first let me say I do NOT think it is a “major” or primary issue for the Church… I think there are far more important things!

    My first thought is this… boys and girls are different… (not that one is better… but we are fundamentally different). To try to make little boys act like little girls is not a good thing… just as to try to make girls act like boys is not good either. I am not saying boys need to hunt and girls need to play with dolls… But, I think some “masculine” aspects have been discouraged by the church (at least in my personal experience)… For example, I think the church has discouraged boys from being aggressive… I am not saying let it run rampant, leave boys to beat the snot out of each other… but I think Jesus was an aggressive guy at times… for example, when he dealt with the money changers in the temple… I think the Church often encourages being “nice”…. not that being nice is bad, but to only be “nice” is leaves a lot out.

    I could have a lot of disclaimers in here, but I will try to minimize them… men (and women) have an inherent sin nature… so I am not by any means saying guys are to let their “masculinity” as defined by the world run rampant… I am not saying men should solve problems with violence or burp and fart whenever you feel like it and make sure its as loud as you can.

    I can say I am one who resonates a lot with the book “Wild at Heart”… I feel that it has some level of truth. At the same time I think its a great “marketing ploy”… A lot of guys (I wont say all) wish they could be tougher or stronger or more “manly”… just like guys are drawn towards super hero characters in some way… Point being, its easy to sell a book and a “movement” that points blame at someone else for why you are not the man you should be…

    One more disclaimer… I hope that this “movement” does not make women feel like we see their characteristics as inferior… Women have a lot of important characteristics and without them men would be lost and the world would be a mess… at the same time guys need to be as God designed them… and God designed men different then women.

    I am not defending Driscolls position on gender roles. I have different opinions then him… I wonder if Driscoll thought of the term “ultimate fighting jesus” while watching the prayer scene in Talladega Nights?

    So there you go, one big blurry haze on what I think.

  44. Jennifer says:

    aaron,

    As much as I want to say that if Driscoll or Wild at Heart helps men to grow up, then its a good thing…I just cant.

    Look at Wild at Heart – the whole idea is that the man is the one who gets to go out and do cool things, and rescuing a beauty is one of them. This REQUIRES women who want to wait around to be rescued. Thats fine, some women want to do that. They put all their energy into being “captivating” enough, and it works for them. But, there are plenty of women – godly, mature, fun, creative, beautiful women – who want to do more than sit around and wait to be rescued. They want to do things too. But things like Wild at Heart shame them for wanting more for their lives. If that system is bad for women, it will be bad for men too.

  45. Janet says:

    Eugene,

    Have you read this? I don’t want to share the blog address because honestly, I don’t want to give them/him/her/anonymous bloggers any more traffic. I know it’s meant to be a satire but it is nevertheless very telling and honestly, is very painful.

    “Prepare thyself, he who reads this, to tremble and quake before the Incredible Word of God, as written by THE LORD HIMSELF!

    Today I would like to talk about something I feel very, very strongly about – My deep and abiding hatred for women. Now don’t get Me wrong! I’m not a gay. Far from it…

    And I always have. I regret ever creating their stupid gender.

    I should have listened to My Divine Instincts. I said to Myself, you’re creating a garden of delights God, and all you’re gonna do is make one little man and keep him happy. It was just supposed to be Me and My best bud Adam, hanging out in paradise…together forever.

    But then Adam just had to get his jimmy waxed. And I, being the good friend and loving God that I am, gave the stupid jerk what he wanted. A creature that would spend its life worshipping his penis. So I took one of his ribs and made that treacherous whore Eve.

    I HATE WOMEN! I HATE THEM SO MUCH!

    They’re rife with design flaws. I mean, sure, they look fabulous and you just want to grab’em and do nasty things. But that doesn’t change the fact that they’re all vile, selfish little whores that scowl at you when you hold the door open for them. And do they ever say thank you?

    The answer is: rarely. I’ve watched every instance of this situation since doors were first invented. And women only say thank you 17% of the time. Mostly they just stride through like it’s every man’s job to hold doors open for strange bitches.

    I AM THE LORD YOUR GOD AND I HATE WOMEN! If you’re a woman, you know this to be true. Deep down, you’ve always known.

    But I digress. Getting back to that slut Eve, what do you think is the first thing that backstabbing bitch ever did?

    Yup, that’s right. Stab Me in the back. She betrayed Me, the Lord God Almighty, who gave her absolutely everything, for some smooth-talking serpent. BITCH!…

    So anyway, I decided to punish women for all eternity. You might not be aware of this, but I made it so that they bleed once a month. For a week!

    I also made several sweet alterations to the pregnancy process. See, originally, the human pregnancy cycle was only supposed to last a couple of weeks. I extended that to nine long months of weight gain…

    Finally, I made women half as strong as men, so that a man could always just beat the crap out of a woman if she ever got too annoying.

    HA! THAT’S WHAT YOU GET WOMAN!”

  46. aaron says:

    Jennifer,

    I do not think the intent of the book is to exclude women. I understand if you feel that is Driscolls intent. Honestly, I only know what I have heard about him… and I do not agree with a lot of it. Also, I do not think the book encourages women to “sit around and wait to be rescued.” I think it would be very unhealthy for a woman to “put all [her] energy into being ‘capitaving'”. I am not sure how Wild at Heart shames women… but I do not think that was its intent.

  47. aaron says:

    Janet,

    I think that post is disgusting. I am not sure what it is “telling” of but it bothers me a lot.

  48. Danny says:

    Jennifer,

    Umm. Now, I agree with what Eugene is trying to get at in this post but let me take a moment to interject here. Have you actually read Wild at Heart? All of it? Because I can’t remotely understand how you came to the conclusion that it shames women.

  49. Jennifer says:

    aaron,

    I dont think that is the intent. But, I do think that is the outcome. A woman with a wild heart has no place in that system. Her own desire for relationship is used against her – unless she is captivating enough (which is the opposite of being wild), no man will pursue her.

  50. ryanbd says:

    I was thinking more about this tonight while skinning a deer with one hand and spit-shinning the role bar on my ’77 Bronco with the other… The flaw I see in this movement is that it begins with a great motivation – addressing why the gospel doesn’t seem to be ‘good news’ to ‘macho’ (unchickified) men. This is a great challenge to the church. You can’t disagree with the spirit of Mark’s efforts. It would be great to have some anonymous focus groups with men between the ages of 18 to 35, read the Bible with them and get their honest impressions. If the gospel ‘has the power to save’, why is the ‘save’ rate so low among this demographic? And I think one reason Mark gets singled out is because he is having ‘success’ in drawing this demographic (my demographic) in large numbers – this can be infuriating to those who dislike his tactics.
    The problem is that somehow Mark and others of his mindset think that cracking jokes and making comments at the expense of women and those not like them are a part of the solution. There’s some kind of belief that you have to appeal to some of the lowest common denominators among men to attract them. Is that really part of what manhood is about? Maybe in the 7th grade… Ultimately, it’s hard not to believe it’s about creating, maintaining and furthering their power structure. How about leading by example in the ‘upside down’ way of Jesus? One of the macho-est Christian men I’ve known was Mike Gaffney at UPC’s college ministry, the INN. Gaff was successful in leading the largest college ministry in the country thru drawing primarily from UWs Greek system. He had no problem making space for women to lead and teach and somehow maintained his manly manhood with an incredible ministry to college students.

  51. elderj says:

    Jennifer… if I may humbly interject… I don’t see how the book Wild At Heart does or leads to any particular outcome vis a vis woman. The book isn’t written to women, and addresses men who quite frankly are rather bored with the whole notion of what “church” and Christianity has meant for them as men. While I am not an Eldredge devotee, I certainly get his point, and am not distracted by his use of certain US cultural imagery of masculinity. That is, after all, where he’s coming from, and I cannot expect him to neuter himself nor deny his own reality. If people are so offended by it, here is pen and paper. What hinderest them from being baptized?

    To the larger issue, I am frankly saddened by the absolute lack of male involvement in the church, and it is not a secondary issue. It is an issue of evangelism and of family. Without fully involved and engaged Christian men it is extremely challenging to have stable Christian families. The appalling absence of men from the church is epidemic and much of what is appealing in church seems to be designed for and by women, who are the primary customer – speaking from a strictly economic point of view. To take another tack, inasmuch as women in leadership issues are often thought of as issues of justice and power, so too should the abject failure of Christian churches to do an adequate job saving and discipling men be seen as a a great miscarriage of justice. As one who works in ministry, I can testify that in most cases it is easier, by far, to work with women – who tend to be easier to attract to ministry and more devoted once involved. Men are simply hard to deal with, and a good chunk of that is because they are men. Nevertheless, I cannot rest content with that and so do what I must to preach the gospel to all of them, while degrading none.

    I think what is missed in this “debate” if it can be called that, is that far too often following Jesus is equated with adopting a certain “Christian” culture, which is too often a very feminine culture, though we who are on the inside don’t see that. What we must do with this issue, as we strive to do so ardently with ethnicity and culture, is to remember that Jesus’ calls us away from our sin, not away from our sex. We are male and female, together made in the image of God, though not in any way interchangeable. Masculinity and femininity are NOT exclusively socially constructed, but we are physiologically different (vive la difference!) and the so-called men’s movement, crudely done though it sometimes is, is an effort to call us back to that reality so that we can stop losing so many men to death and hell.

  52. Daniel says:

    Or you could stop tying your personal identity to that of a guy who died 2,000 years ago … Just throwin’ that out there. I mean, translations from Latin/Aramaic/Greek ain’t always accurate. You might wanna consider being your own person and sweatin’ the small stuff when you’re dead and actually confronting St. Peter (he’ll understand)

  53. Jennifer says:

    elderj

    Wild at Heart is for men…and the “women’s version” of it is called Captivating. It’s basically a guide on how to catch a man who is wild at heart. If you fit into those molds, its probably good stuff…my point is that there are plenty of godly, mature, fun, interesting, passionate men and women who dont.

  54. eugenecho says:

    @janet: yes, i know of the blog you are alluding to. i know it is satire but is in extremely poor taste. the fairly new blog pretty much goes at many sensitive subjects. i’m almost tempted to share the url here.

  55. Capt Ralph says:

    Great (and greatly neglected) question: What is a christian man? I beg to differ with you, Jason. I have struggled with this question for 6 decades – no easy answers. You might say it is simple but not easy. Please ask me to show you the photograph of my son and grandson, with a cigar on a bearskin I killed and ate!……but the real question is what qualifies me for church leadership – deacon or elder???? …..and what salt and light am I for my world?

  56. elderj says:

    Jennifer, I haven’t read “Captivating” and likely won’t since, well, I’m not the target audience, so I cannot rally comment on the book with any degree of insight. I have read “Wild at Heart” however, and I can hardly be thought of as fitting “the mold” as you call it. Indeed, having just finished a delicious mocha, and being rather enamored of all things chic and trendy, I could be considered in many ways quite the antithesis of Eldredge’s “mold.” Nevertheless, the point and the challenge still stands.

    As we have been duly reminded by women and minority voices, images and externalities matter a great deal, and to assert that we can somehow lift the “qualities” of Jesus out of his lived reality as a man is borderline heretical. Christianity is an embodied faith that insists on the incarnation and the bodily resurrection. Much of what is admittedly problematic in the “men’s movement” can be seen as an awkward attempt to recapture the truth that Jesus was indeed a man, a real actual man, and not simply a set of virtues and ideals that we ought to somehow emulate. As son of God and savior of the world, he is of course transcendent in a way that none else is, but his experience on Earth was a male experience, and that is a truth that is sadly and unfortunately obscured. It is ironic that so many men identify Christianity with a certain type of emasculation when Jesus and his twelve were men and most of them were married, while so many women see in the church only patriarchy and oppression of women when Jesus was (obviously) born of a woman who is held in the highest esteem and over and again affirms and validates women.

    I don’t advocate for a pseudo masculinity based on an unredeemed western stereotype. However we need to recognize that calling people to repentance and faith is not a calling away from their male identity or from masculinity, but is a call into authentic maleness and masculinity. The same is true, of course for women.

  57. ubuntucat says:

    @elderj

    Sure, Jesus was male. He was also a Jew and a carpenter. His personal hygiene probably left him pretty smelly, and he didn’t speak English. Does that mean we should all convert to Judaism before becoming Christians, take up carpentry, be smelly and dirty, and speak only Aramaic?

    No. That’s silly.

    Nobody’s denying the maleness of Jesus and “his lived reality as a man,” but we aren’t taught to emulate the literal physicalities of his existence on earth. We’re taught to emulate his heart and love.

    You’re honestly starting to sound like those early Christians who insisted all new Christians had to be circumcised before they could become Christians.

    There’s no biblical basis for a call to “authentic maleness and masculinity.” There is a call to godliness, faith, and love. In Christ, we are neither Jew nor Greek, and neither male nor female.

  58. eugenecho says:

    Is it time for me to change the design of the blog temporarily so that the comments are numbered?

    This could be a long and worthwhile dialogue…

  59. numbered comments would be great pe!

    on line 560 of style.css change the line:
    list-style: none;
    to:
    list-style: decimal;

  60. chad says:

    you forgot to mention that real men also pee standing up…

    on a more serious note…what do Driscoll and the likes say about Jesus giving himself up in the garden rather than fighting it out to the finish? whenever i try to paint Jesus as a tough, manly man i always come back to the fact that when confronted with violence he tells his disciples, “put your sword away.” but i guess we’re not interested in really following Jesus all the way to the cross…

  61. elderj says:

    ubuntu, I advocate no such thing as what you suggest, and I apologize if my ill chosen and inadequate words have led you to that unfortunate assumption. As for your assertion, contra mine, that there is no call to “authentic maleness and masculinity,” I respectfully disagree, though I suspect the disagreement is less sharp than it may appear. My point is that as we grow in godliness, we become more human – not less. We are, in our sinful state, really less than fully human, and inadequate in our ability to properly reflect the image of God. So then as we are redeemed and transformed from glory to glory – we become like him, and consequently become more of who he created us to be. This is the call to which I alluded, to authentic maleness and femaleness, rather than the false distortions that are evident throughout the broken creation.

    I do not think, nor suggest in any way, that we are to emulate “the literal physicalities of his existence on earth.” I do mean to suggest however that we take the reality of that physicality seriously as a point of identification. Godliness, faith and love are not disembodied ideals, and if they ever were, they were embodied in Jesus who is his physical, Jewish, first century, Palestinian, male life demonstrated what it is to image God in creation. When those traits are dis-embodied, it is no longer Christianity, but some perversion thereof.

  62. Kacie says:

    Eugene, one of your comments about the wrong image of Jesus that we have (as blue eyed and white) reminded me of the Derek Webb lyrics to his song “A King and Kingdom”

    there are two great lies that i have heard:
    “the day you eat of the fruit of that tree, you will not surely die”
    and that Jesus Christ was a white, middle-class republican
    and if you wanna be saved you have to learn to be like Him

  63. ryanbd says:

    ubuntu and ElderJ – you both are making good points. I was struck in reading this though that it seems we are trying to ‘narrow’ in on what a Christian man should be. Why? What if it needs to get more diverse and varied? One of the things I’ve always loved about Jesus is that he will piss you off because of who he hangs out with. One minute you think Jesus is down with you and your crew; the next he’s up across the street with your enemy. This is frustrating to us who want Jesus to reinforce who we are – that’s the ultimute affirmation, yes? But on one page he’s crafting a hand-made whip and chasing crooks out of the temple, on the next he’s telling another crook (Zacchaeus) he’s coming to his house for dinner, then he’s weeping publicly for a dead friend, then he’s having an intimate meal with his boys – one of whom is laying his head on his chest. Whoa. That blows so many stereo-types out of the water! It’s a fair critique to say we need to give more room and expression in church to the John Wayne / Wesley Snipes sides of Jesus. But the answer is not in trying to narrow our definitions. Paul alludes to this later – in 1 Corinthians 9:20-22 he says, “I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.”

  64. leochen says:

    Speaking of fighting Jesus… I’m plugging shamelessly for an upcoming grappling tournament! Our very own Nick Hurtado placed first last time he competed at one of these events. Come and watch him beat up little boys again. These submission matches rarely meet in Seattle. So come check it out and support a Quester! http://www.subleague.com/

    I don’t know who you people are talking about whimpy Christian men… =)

  65. eugenecho says:

    leo,
    umm. didn’t nick get his arm broken during one of these matches the last time.

    you tell him that i’m not scared of him. i’ll challenge him – anytime, anywhere,..because i’m ragin’ asian.

  66. Linda says:

    PE, I keep accidentally reading that as “raggin’ asian” which is a euphemism my ex roommate from Canada used to refer to her monthly ‘red tide ride’. if ya get what i mean.

    And i suggest that you permanently number the comments, b/c you never know when comments might nearly break into the hundreds like your conversation with rob bell

  67. [...] reasons why men should not be ordained for ministry In light of last week’s Ultimate Fighting Jesus post, this list which is making the rounds is too funny not to share.  Here are 10 reasons Why Men [...]

  68. amy powell says:

    i have a dream…that one day…men and woman who follow jesus…will be able to hold hands and support the leadership that God blesses regardless of gender.

  69. WarriorSaint says:

    Talk about missing the point…. So far no one has defined masculinity, manhood, toughness, tenderness in a way that doesn’t seem to offend anyone. Likewise you would need to define, femininity, womanhood, and effemininate. The bottomline is that we have misunderstood our ROLES for forever and a day although they are clearly demonstrated in Genesis. Each culture has its own spin on what is deemed “masculine” and what is deemed “feminine.” The problem in my mind has to do with two things; interpretation of Genesis and the churches inability to influence current culture. Pop culture is influencing the church instead. As Christians we fair no better in divorce court, financial debt, or the ever popular lust for instant gratification. Communities are affected when we don’t know our roles and then don’t carry them out once we fully understand them.

    Again I will say simply this, Jesus was both a lover AND a fighter. It is Jesus and Jesus alone we should take our cues from. Everything else is noise. None of those men who Brandon O Brien demonizes in his article ever said anything that was hateful towards women. Notice all the men mentioned are married with children. If those commitments aren’t enough to make a man out of you then I dont know what is. We should consider these men in CONTEXT and not in the pull quote way they were represented in O Brien’s article/column.

  70. Bob says:

    Eugene and others,
    I’ve tried to live out being a man as described by the man’s movement for the last four years. Enjoyed all of Eldridge’s books. I gradually started to realize that the descriptions were an idol and felt straight jacketed by forcing myself into them. We as men and women have to move into our deepest self in Christ. I’m not sure that church is supposed to be popular with men. I know most men find their meaning in life through work. “Secular work” is good and Kingdom building.

  71. [...] light of last week’s two intense posts – Ultimate Fighting Jesus andConversation with Rob Bell [re: women in ministry], this list is too funny not to share.  [...]

  72. Ralph says:

    “Grow some balls”, “swear like Christian sailors”. Hardly the stereotype I want. I love football, the outdoors, fishing, hiking, sports in general, boating, skiing, etc. I weight lift, run, protect and provide for my family. But I also know we are called to effect change. Therefore something needs to be different about us. If we do all those things you described, we will be hard to pick out from the crowd.

  73. Channing Park says:

    This topic is actually like topical. In all seriousness, the timing is amazing considering I was just discussing what it means to be a man of faith with my pastor and then my son. I wasn’t even aware of the mascalinity movement in the church. Maybe I should get rid of my TV.

    I look at various men in scripture and draw upon many examples of what it means to be a man of faith – which I really don’t see a difference from being a woman of faith. David wrote poetry, danced, and sang and when the times got tough killed. I told my son that Jesus wept over the brokeness of the world. He willing sacrificed His life for us. Faith requires courage, compassion, and humility. For me, that is the true definition of Christian masculinity. A willingness to put your life on the line for others, holding your tongue, and caring for others.

    I think we need to redefine Christian masculinity. So now that the evangelical manifesto is done; maybe we can focus on the masculinity manifesto.

  74. Michael says:

    The Jesus I know doesn’t care if you wear eye makeup and look like a nancy boy. If you live a moral life and love our neighbors, yourself and our Dad with all your heart all your mind and all your soul he is going to be pretty happy.

    If you are six foot seven, hairy and have huge biceps, and growl “I am MAN hear me roar” while you wrestle bears for fun I think He might wonder what the hell you are doing when you could be out lifting the lame about in a hospice.

    Remember Jesus swept the floor of his Dad’s workshop and I bet he didn’t whine it was not manly enough.

  75. [...] So, you ask why then do I address some of the MD issues here?  Mainly, because he is such a visible figure and thus, people ask.  Not just Christians but non-believers which I find especially frustrating.  I’d like to talk to them about Jesus and not MD.  Because his voice is so dominant, I simply want to add another voice to the conversation for people’s consideration.  For example, I just don’t think we all have to be infatuated with Ultimate Fighting Jesus male theology. [...]

  76. [...] sometimes be schizophrenic. And as of late, with the increasing rise of the macho, masculine, and ultimate fighting Jesus presentation, the TNIV was immensely refreshing and encouraging – all while being scholarly [...]

  77. [...] sometimes be schizophrenic. And as of late, with the increasing rise of the macho, masculine, and ultimate fighting Jesus presentation, the TNIV was immensely refreshing and encouraging – all while being scholarly [...]

  78. [...] This post was Twitted by thomaseward [...]

  79. J M Ford says:

    Someone needs to remind pastor Driscoll that the gift of Wisdom resides between his ears not between his legs. Testicles having been causing problems for mankind for thousands of years, especially today. One could make a case to the Lord for design flaw or at minumum unneeded redundancy. Driscoll and his ilk would love for violence to be redemptive…and Jesus proved clearly that it is not.
    Time for Driscoll to start wearing pink shirts on Sunday.

  80. JMS says:

    Um…what’s the “Ultimate Fight Club”??

    JMS
    The Discipleship Dojo

  81. Michelle says:

    Is there any virtue which only men, or only women, are called to cultivate?

    I can’t think of one.

  82. Thank you for the good writeup. It if truth be told was once a enjoyment account it. Look advanced to more delivered agreeable from you! By the way, how could we keep in touch?

  83. [...] related, is this article, “Ultimate Fighting Jesus,” with these slightly humorous (my favorite is the next to last sentence) [...]

  84. [...] or a “man’s man.” But, as I have written about here in the Dojo and others like Eugene Cho and Christianity Today have noted, they are not. We don’t need to re-image Jesus in order to [...]

  85. Rachael says:

    I’m coming in a few years late on this conversation, but I think it’s also important to note the negativity Driscoll associates with femininity. Driscoll insists that the 40% of male members in the church are “still sort of chicks”. I don’t know about Driscoll, but some of the strongest, most intelligent, wisest, and committed people I know have been “chicks”. Why the negative association?

  86. I can’t eat porn any more? Dang…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

stuff, connect, info

One Day’s Wages

My Instagram

Attempting to be the world's greatest smartphone photographer. #kenya #africa #impala #nakuru Nakuru National Park, Kenya. Not your average neighborhood zoo. #flamingoes Kenya. Asante sana. Bwana asifiwe. So grateful for God's grace and provision. It's emotional and humbling every time we sign a check to award another grant. This is ONLY possible because of all of our generous donors and supporters.

This 19,932.90 grant is for a partnership with CREATE! ... that will train and empower 250 Sengalese women to produce and sell poultry, start their own businesses, etc.

Thank you and let's keep going!!! Share our stories. Share your day's wages. Or start your own birthday campaign.

ONEDAYSWAGES.ORG Seattle. Right now. That is all. Today is the last day of my 3 month sabbatical. That went by so fast... On the first day, our family went to Santa, Cruz, California. The first thing we did after we arrived at the San Jose airport was to go straight to In-N-Out. If these kids grow up and feel like they need counseling because their Dad didn't show them love, I'm gonna show them this picture as well and say, "I'VE GOT PROOF. I TOOK YOU TO THE BEST BURGER JOINT WITH NICE CHRISTIAN VERSES UNDER THE DRINK CUP."

my tweets

  • "Waiting time is not wasting time. Waiting patiently in expectation is the foundation of the spiritual life." ~ Henri Nouwen || 22 hours ago
  • Without genuine relationship, we rob people of their dignity and they become mere projects. - youtube.com/watch?v=U5sJms… || 1 day ago
  • One of the most dangerous things we can do as leaders in any context is to intimidate people to stop asking questions. || 1 day ago
  • Yeah! Randall, my assistant manager @QCafe is in the running for best latte artist. Check out his art & vote for him: latteartsmackdown.com || 1 day ago
  • Without relationship, we rob people of their dignity & they become mere projects. Don't reduce people into projects: youtube.com/watch?v=U5sJms… || 2 days ago
  • The truth is that we all fail. The greater truth is that no single failure ever defines us. Learn from mistakes. Grow wiser. Press on. || 2 days ago
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,027 other followers