I was speaking to a single mom not too long ago, and she spoke rather candidly about the frustration she was experiencing with the father of her son. (And rightly so, since he was failing on many fronts…)
She was also somewhat deflated by short fallings of the numerous (it seems) poor fathering examples (of men) found in the Bible.
David, Noah, Lot, Jacob, and Abraham (who also made some poor choices), and the list goes on… From favouritism to infidelity and in some cases incest (yuck), I agree some of the examples are quite hard to read. (Should I even begin to mention others biblical characters who were less than stellar husbands?) However, interestingly enough, still God had some positive things to say about some of those very same men.
I can understand how this could leave some women scratching their heads… (even when trying to make sense of these behaviours in the light of cultural and social historical norms)
So here’s the sacrilegious question, was God being sexist? Does God care about proper fathering?
Here are my thoughts, and they are just my thoughts…
First of all, because God chose to highlight these men, (with bad rap sheets – from our vantage point) it doesn’t mean that other good fathers and husbands didn’t exist. It doesn’t mean that they were a representational cross-section of all males from those time periods. The Bible is not a survey. These men don’t necessarily represent a cultural “riding” or some kind of social ratio.
So why did God chose some of these men (for example David -a man after God’s own heart, committed adultery; Noah “walked with God” yet was guilty of alcohol induced incest)?
Why? That’s a good question.
Here’s a consideration, perhaps the overwhelming currency in the Bible is that of redemption and restoration, and with in the best of all of us (male or female) is the very worst of us… but God makes the difference.
In any case, men, you may have made a spectacular train wreck of your lives, leaving the carnage of damaged people and emotions (really, that’s not good), but God is good.
I’m always optimistic that whatever has happened in our lives, (yes, consequences will be faced) God can redeem and restore us, and will say positive things about us.
One comedian said; It’s unfair that women call all men dogs… After all, dogs are so loyal…
God can help us aspire to live out and live in the qualities of true masculinity, and true manhood found in the Genesis Man.
One more thing men…November is “Movember”! Be proud, grow out those mustaches and let’s bring awareness to the issue of Prostrate Cancer.