In my Februar 12, 2010 post I wrote about what it takes to please God. Here, lets look a little deeper into this subject.
What is God looking for in a man; just what is his standard? Does God ask for more than mortal man is able to give. Jesus told us to be perfect as God is perfect (Mt 5:48). Is this something that we should try to do, or is it unattainable in this life? What does God call perfection?
To answer these questions lets start with King David. David asked, “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?” (Ps 8:4, Heb 2:16).
Good question. What is it about you and me that we fill God’s mind?
WHAT DOES GOD EXPECT ?
“For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that we should follow his steps:” (1 Pet 2:21)
So we are to follow the steps of Christ. To do that, we can look at his life in the Gospels. Jesus went about doing his Father’s work (at least from the age of 12, Lk 2:40-52). He knew the scriptures and his place in them. He had the Spirit of God manifest in his life. He was an Apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher. He did signs, wonders and miracles. He loved the good and hated the evil of this world. He withstood his enemies and facedown his critics, those who hated his Father and corrupted with hypocrisy the simplicity of God. I could go on but the point is that here is God’s example of what he wants a man to be; the perfect man and a real man in God’s eyes.
Jesus didn’t have a physical appearance that would draw people to him (handsome face, outstanding muscular build or long curly hair) according to the scriptures (Isa 53, 1 Cor 11:4). What he did have was the Spirit of God, his Father. Jesus honored and loved his Father above all else. The focus of his life was to be obedient to his Father. God honored his faith by giving Jesus the action, or the manifestation, of his Spirit. Through him God met the needs of his creation, he healed the sick, gave sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf and life to the dead. The fulness of God was in his Son.
“Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know:” (Acts 2:22)
JESUS WAS A MAN’S MAN
Jesus’ love for the world was such that he gave up his vocation in this world (he was a carpenter, Mk 6:3) and fulfilled his calling. (He knew the scriptures concerning himself but he had to choose to fulfill them.) He stood before government, legal and religious leaders and rebuked them for their unbelief and hypocrisy and faced injury and death because of his stand. He did not compromise his beliefs, he didn’t back down under threats from authorities and persecution. Many would paint Jesus as a passivist and not give him credit as being what some would call a “‘man’s man”. He wasn’t wishy-washy or a pansy. He did (and does) love mankind with all his being. He had joy and comfort, peace and freedom. He was free from fear and wasn’t self-centered. He had every thing to live for and yet he gave them all up to be the propitiation for our sins, he became sin for us, that we could become righteous in this world.
“And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” (Phil 2:8)
“For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him” (2 Cor 5:21)
Only Jesus could be the unblemished Lamb that God provided to be the sacrifice for our sins, but in all other things in his life he was the example of what God wants in a man.
PETER AND PAUL
The Apostles Peter and Paul both had livelihoods before their ministries. Peter was married (Mt 8:14) and was a fisherman. Paul was a Pharisee, a high position in Judaism (Acts 26:5) and therefore should have been married, also he may have had children (1 Tim 1:2). Both gave their life to live for God and became as if they were not married. (That doesn’t mean they abandoned their family). Paul lived in Arabia and Damascus for 3 years (Gal 1:17,18) learning of God before going to Jerusalem and beginning his ministry. He was a tentmaker (Acts 18:1-3)). Both preached to multitudes. They stood, as Jesus stood, and rebuked the hypocrisies of the religious and political authorities. They were used of God to heal the sick, give sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf and life to the dead. They were both a “man’s man” in character and action. As Jesus did, they manifested the 100 fold fruit bearing life of a Christian.
Look at Moses, the meekest (but not timid) man on the earth (Num 12:3), who withstood the most powerful man on earth. Look at Job, David, the prophets of old and John and others of the New Testament. These men were not mealy-mouthed and timid, but they knew their God and had his Spirit within them. These were not passive and timid men, but men of love and compassion for God’s creation, who withstood the wiles of the Devil.
SONS OF GOD
The scriptures in 1 Corinthians 11:17 reads, “For a man indeed ought not to cover his head, forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God: but the woman is the glory of the man.” It says man is the “glory of God”. The scriptures also reads , “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Rom 3:23) Have we not all come short of being the man God created us to be in this world? This is our own fault, not God’s. But now, of course, we can change that through Jesus Christ. When we give up our life and receive him and start our walk of following the steps of God’s Son.
THE LAST DAYS
These are special days in God’s plan for the ages. When we received him as Savior and believed on his name, we were all given power to become his son (Jn 1:12). In these last days God is going to manifest his sons in a special way. Now is the time for the manifestation of the sons of God spoken of in Romans 8:19, the time when God will glorify himself in his many sons in the manner of his Son Jesus and like Peter and Paul, and Elijah and Moses. God is looking for men, real men, to be these manifested sons. Men who do not walk in fear of this world. God is calling an army of sons to be manifested world-wide; to walk as Jesus walked. His sons (because of their great number) doing the greater works Jesus spoke of in John 14:12.
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.”
The high mark that God set for man is to be like his Son Jesus. Where can God find men like this in the earth today?. Where can he find men like Peter and Paul? This is God’s greatest prize, what could be a greater calling on a man’s life? Paul knew this when he said, “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil 3:14). For God to make a man into the image of his Son is the greatest prize of all. And yet, that is what is going to happen soon as the end of this age draws nigh. God’s word will be fulfilled and we will see these sons with power in the earth showing forth God’s great love. Multitudes will be saved (Rom 11:26). God will reap his great harvest out of great tribulation before he closes the door on salvation. These things will happen during a time of trouble on the earth such has never been, when God brings justice to the ungodly for all their ungodly sins against him and mankind. Some will cry out to God and others will curse God. His sons with signs, wonders and miracles will bring the gospel of salvation to those who will receive it. God has pleasure when he is able to give a repentant soul the kingdom (Lk 12:32, 2Pet 39), and we were created for that purpose (Rev 4:11).
So who will receive this prize of being one of God’s manifested sons Where will God find men who will answer this call? Look at Isaiah when he heard the Lord say, “Whom shall I send, and who wll go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.” (Isa 6:8).