The very idea of masculinity is under attack as part of an altered vision for males in western society but our sons don’t have to be victims of this vision.
Let’s purpose to raise our boys to be God’s men.
1) Teach your sons to Fear God
The Bible declares that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. How do we teach them this? First, by modeling it in front of them – expressing a godly fear and reverence before an Almighty God; second, with your words. Teach them the 10 Commandments – what Paul described as the “ . . . schoolmaster unto Christ.”
2) Teach Them to Honor You
I tell my young children, “God has something He wants you to do. He wants you to honor me.” Your sons need to honor you – not because you walk on water – not because you deserve to be honored all the time, but because God’s moral law brings order and beauty to the obedient.
3) Teach your sons the Gospel
Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God. Don’t rely on what goes on in that building you call “The Church” for what your sons know about God. Imparting the knowledge of God to your children is your responsibility, not someone else’s – Deut. 6
4) Teach Them to Work Hard
When we’re working together in the hot son and my 6 year old says, “It’s hot. Can we be done?” I tell him, “Men work until the job is done. Hang in there, buddy. I need your help. We’re almost finished.” I phrase it this way because I want him to identify with manhood. I’m informing his self-perception. Count on it – someone is going to so be proactive, but don’t be too hard, here, especially if they’re young. Pick tasks that stretch them but that they can handle. Read more about the “How To Teach your Kids to Work Hard” here.
5) Teach Them to Be Gentlemen
Inform you son’s understanding of what a gentleman is and what a gentleman does. Different topic but same approach as #4. This takes years to reinforce. The world, his flesh, and his Enemy all conspire to teach him to be thoughtless and selfish. Use the average day’s events to instruct his understanding in this ideal. (more on this in the next post!)
6) Teach Them to Stand for Truth
I have observed some parents be dishonest and furtive in their dealings with people. Guess what? Their children are just like them. If we wish our children to stand for Truth, we must not tell them it’s important then live differently. Chaos follows in families where Dad plays fast and loose with Truth. Our sons must be taught not only to believe the truth but to be uncompromising in the defense of it.
7) Teach Them to Value Money
Wait a minute . . . this sounds a little unspiritual. But, it isn’t. Jesus has a lot to say about money. Our use of money shows what we value. Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. In Heaven, the streets are paved with gold. And that is the proper value of money – as a means to an end – as something that takes us where God wants us to go. If your son learns to properly value money, he’ll use it carefully in preparation to be a husband and dad, and for furthering the Gospel, but he’ll never love it.
8) Teach Them to Love Others
People have intrinsic value because God says they do. Love your neighbor as you (in the manner you) love yourself. When we truly value others, we care about more than our own interests and desires.
A culture filled with Future Men like this is a beautiful thing. Let’s do our part to build that culture.
For single moms everywhere, Lisa’s and my heart is with you. Your doing more than God intended but, with God’s grace, you also can successfully teach these things to your sons.
Matt Jacobson is a biblical marriage coach and founder of FaithfulMan.com a biblical marriage, parenting, and discipleship ministry providing written and audio teaching, as well as couples marriage coaching. He is the co-host (with his wife, Lisa) of Faithful Life Podcast and is author of the bestseller, 100 Ways to Love Your Wife. Matt is pastor of Tumalo Bible Fellowship and is married to Lisa, founder of Club31Women.com (they have 8 kids!).