26 August 2009

Abdication of responsibility

Genesis 3:6 "So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate."

A couple of days ago, I wrote about Genesis 3:1-5 and how in original sin, Satan convinced Eve to conform God's word. In verse 6, we read of the sin itself, but there is something else here too, something that may inform our understanding of previous verses.

It reads, "she also gave some to her husband who was with her." It doesn't say that Adam was off somewhere else living righteously; he was at her side while the deceiver spoke with Eve. And he did nothing. Nothing, that is, except follow her into sin. It was, as my friend Joel said, "the first abdication of responsibility by a man" and you can see how well it went.

The Bible is replete with examples of the Biblical headship of man and how that looks. In today's society, saying that man is the head of the wife is not popular, which I suppose is true of much of God's word. But it works because God designed it that way. He designed us to live in complementarity with each other.

Churches today are plagued by a remarkable lack of men. In fact, in the UK, woman make up about 2/3 of congregants and the gap is widening. Of the men in the church, too many of them act like Adam; they stand by and watch like a bunch of emasculated weaklings. That is, if they show up at all. Many of them are too busy with their hobbies or their work to lead their families.

The church needs men to stand up and be men, to not relinquish their duty. That's what real men do. They don't leave it to their wives, assuming that women will figure it out. Whether they voice it or not, women in the church are desperate for men to lead--in their families and in their church. And if men don't take the reins, they will be called to task.

Genesis 3:9 "But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, 'Where are you?'" In standing by, Adam was not let off the hook, he was called out. Men, when you meet God face to face is he going to call to you and say "where were you?"

(For a free copy of Piper and Grudem's Recovering Biblical Manhood & Womanhood, go here).

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