I Corinthians 16:13-14 — Being men

I know this tends to get lost in some of the newer translations, but it seems to me that while Paul is talking to all Christians in this letter (I Corinthians 1:2), he does specifically address the men in this passage.

He said,

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love.  (13-14)

That word man is literally “man.”  And literally speaking, it’s saying “Be men” or “Act like men.”

It’s very similar in fact to King David’s words to Solomon.

So be strong, show yourself a man.  (I Kings 2:2)

What does that mean?  Essentially it means to be courageous.  But I think it also incorporates everything else that Paul talks about here.

Be on your guard.  Against who?  Against Satan and his demons.  Against those who would persecute you.  Against those who would arise from among you in the church spouting off false doctrine.  We are in a spiritual war, and we will face enemies both from within the church and without.  So Paul calls us to be on our guard.

Stand firm in the faith.  When the storms come, when trials and tribulations hit, don’t waver.  Don’t fall.  Stand firm.

Be strong.  Not in your own strength, but in the Lord’s.  And in the face of opposition, stand with courage, knowing that God is with you.

Do everything in love.  Not out of arrogance or pride.  Not out of a desire for power or respect.  But out of love.

Should women also be this way?  Certainly.  But if men are to be truly men, this is how God calls us to live.

So if you are a man…are you acting like one?


About bkshiroma

I'm from Hawaii, but have been in Japan as a missionary/English teacher since 1995. I'm currently going to a church called Crossroad Nishinomiya, an international church in Nishinomiya, a city right between Kobe and Osaka. Check out their website: crossroad-web.com 私がハワイから来ましたけど1995年に宣教師と英会話の教師として日本に引っ越しました。 今西宮にあるクロスロード西宮という国際の教会に行っています。どうぞ、そのホムページを見てください: crossroad-web.com
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