Sermon:  Real Men

Summary:  Like the woman of honor in Proverbs 31, God also praises Men of honor in the 
112th Psalm.  He praises the godly man for fearing God, for accepting responsibility, 
for acting courageously, and as a result, the godly man becomes a blessing to his family 
and many others.  This means that the ideal of manhood is far from being a quaint relic 
from the past, but is defined, affirmed, and praised by the God who created it.

Text:  Psalm 112

Scripture Reading:  Prov 20:5-7

1.  Happy Father's Day
2.  Need to be reminded of the honor and dignity of manhood
	a.  Manhood is ridiculed in books, movies, 
	b.  Radical feminism would like to destroy it
		- Tried to feminize men and masculinize women
		- I believe this is one of the contributing factors to societies ills
3.  God made men to be men and women to be women
	a.  God even condemns cross-dressing as an abomination, Dt 22:5
	b.  God upholds and praises the idea of womanhood in Prov 31
	c.  What about the man?  Is there something like Prov 31 man?
4.  Yes, Ps  112 is a song, a tribute to the godly man
	a.  Like the Proverbs 31 woman, it highlights praiseworthy characteristics 
	     of manhood
	b.  From this, we will look at some characteristics of the godly man

I.  Fears the Lord  (v.1)
	A.  Can't be a godly father without a healthy fear of the Lord
	B.  ILL:  What does this fear mean?
		1.  I like to compare it to fear electrician has for electricity
		2.  Could compare it to fear lifeguard has for water
		3.  They don't avoid it, but the highly respect it
	C.  So fear is not sheer terror
		1.  This isn't the kind that makes you go run away
			- In fact, text says in the parallel line the man in his fear of 
			  God "greatly delights" in God's commandments
		2.  It is kind of fear Moses had at burning bush, or Isaiah, or John
			a.  In each case, they were confronted with God in his glory
			b.  Did Moses run from the bush, or Isaiah from God, or John 
			     from the glorified Christ?  
			c.  No, they prostrated themselves, they were humble, 
			d.  They gladly and faithfully served him
		3.  Fear includes idea of reverence, respect and honor
		4.  Lack of fear is a roadblock to several things
			a.  Wisdom
				- Prov 1:7 - Fear of Lord is beginning of knowledge, 
				  but fools despise wisdom and instruction
				- Prov 9:10 - Fear of Lord is beginning of wisdom
				- Can't grow in wisdom without fear of the Lord
			b.  Happiness, fulfillment, meaning
				- Not sure which word to sum this idea up
				- Eccl 12:13 - Fear God and keep his commandments 
				   is the whole of man
					= Had to learn hard way under the son
					= Tried to find meaning without God
					= But it all begins with the fear of God
			c.  God
				- Jas 4:6 - God opposed to the proud, grace to 
				- Without humble fear, we put self at odds with God
	D.  Healthy fear of God is foundational to being a godly man

II.  Accepts Responsibility (v.4-5)
	A.  The godly man not passive, accepts responsibility to do what it takes 
	B.  Look at the kind of man this Psalm praises
		1.  Describes him as light in darkness - is a model, guide, warmth
		2.  He is gracious and compassionate, lends to help
			a.  He sees a need and he helps
			b.  He doesn't sit passively by
			c.  He is a man of action
		3.  He maintains his cause in matters of justice
			a.  Some Bibles say "judgment," Hebrew can mean justice
			b.  Godly man takes action to deliver people and do justice
			c.  He is passionate about what is right and just
			d.  He doesn't sit idly by
		4.  Example of a godly man is Job (Job 29:12-17)
			a.  Helped the helpless, defended the defenseless, 
			     championed justice
			b.  Didn't sit idly by saying, "it is not my problem"
			c.  Gained respect as a leader in his community, Job 29:7-11
			d.  Not everyone get to that level, but all take responsibility
	C.  ILL:  Robert Lewis book - Raising a Modern Day Knight
		1.  Talks about opportunities to teach lessons of manhood
			a.  Teaches sons that a real man is
				- Rejects passivity
				- Accepts responsibility
				- Leads Courageously 
			b.  Models it for his boys
			c.  Takes every opportunity, even in little things, to teach it
		2.  Family went to dinner, his son Garret charged in, not hold door
			a.  Dad stopped him and asked, "What does real man do in 
			     situations like this?
			b.  Garrett: "Well, I guess a real man accepts responsibility 
			     for the women he's with."
			c.  Dad: "Bingo!  So instead of charging in, act the gentleman 
			     and hold the door"
		3.  His wife, Sherard, talks about when a girl took interest in Garrett
			a.  A friend was going back and forth, trying to set it up
			b.  Garrett pondered it, then called the girl directly, told her 
			     he couldn't be her boyfriend
			c.  Mom overheard and complimented how he handled it
			d.  Said: "Man must reject passivity and take responsibility"
	D.  In all things as way of life, real men accept responsibility
		1.  Whether it is caring for, protecting, or leading others
		2.  We see this modeled in God himself
			a.  Accepted responsibility to make salvation available 
			     through the cross
			b.  Accepted responsibility to make sanctification and 
			     transformation possible through the Spirit

III.  He is Courageous (v.6-8)
	A.  This means he is brave, valiant, has backbone, determination
	B.  This means he is not a coward, spineless, timid, not shrink in fear
		1.  Only one thing that he fears.  What is it?
			a.  Not evil, not enemies, not even Satan
			b.  He fears God and God alone
			c.  Nowhere in scripture does it say to fear Satan
			d.  But it does praise fear of the Lord, as in this Psalm
		2.  v.7 - He trusts in the Lord, this is the source of his courage
			a.  v.8 - He will look with satisfaction on his enemies
			b.  God is good, therefore good will ultimately triumph
			c.  God will reward his godly men, and he will win
	C.  ILL:   10 yrs ago 3 teen boys came to church on Wednesday evening
		1.  Teen girl in our group dismayed, told me they here to harass her
		2.  I confronted them, they said they wanted to just go to church
			a.  From look on their faces, I had my doubts this was true
			b.  I said if that is why they were here, then fine
			c.  But if they stepped out of line, they would have to leave
		3.  One of the men and his older teen son stuck to them like glue
			a.  After the devo, classes were split, guys class and girls
			b.  Teen boy sat right behind them in class watching
			c.  One had to go to bathroom, so he followed him to door
			d.  After about ten minutes, all three boys got up and left
		4.  First instinct of this man was to accept responsibility
			a.  That was in his nature to do this sort of thing
			b.  That teen boy now a police officer, serving and protecting
	D.  God's man is a man who accepts responsibility with courage
		1.  He doesn't run away because it looks too hard
		2.  He doesn't sit by because it looks like it might be dangerous
		3.  He is courageous and does what needs to be done

IV.  A Man of Honor (v.9)
	A.  Text says - "His horn will be exalted with honor
		1.  In other words, he will be known for his honor
		2.  He will be known for his integrity, trustworthiness, courage, etc
		3.  He will be respectable, polite, responsible, etc.
	B.  Idea of honor not as important as it once was in our world
		1.  But Prov 31 reminds us the woman of honor is to be praised
		2.  Likewise, Psalm 112 reminds us the man of honor to be praised
		3.  Part of being honorable is showing honor 
			a.  To God - 1 Tim 1:17 - To the only God be honor and glory
			b.  To wife - 1 Pet 3:7 - Show her honor as a fellow heir
			c.  To parents - Eph 6:2 - Honor your father and mother
			d.  To brethren - Rom 12:10 - Outdo one another honor 
			e.  To king & those in authority - 1 Pet 2:17 - Honor the king
			     Rom 13:7 - Give honor to whom honor is due
			f.  All people - 1 Pet 2:17 - Honor all people
		4.  1 Tim 2:21 - Says you are a vessel for honor
	C.  ILL:  Getting a job with no skills as a short-order cook
		1.  Visited for over an hour
		2.  Wanted to know if I had done this, I had no skills in this
		3.  Boss said he was interested more in character than in skills
		4.  Skills can be taught, character is type of person you are
	D.  This is part of what it means to be men of honor
		1.  We serve an honorable God
			a.  Our honorable God has courageously taken responsibility
			b.  He provides a way of salvation for us (inv)
		2.  Since God is honorable, we are honorable people
		3.  God's man is an honorable man

1.  Look at the result
	a.  v.2 - His descendants will be mighty on the earth
	b.  The generation of the upright will be blessed
	c.  (Prov 20:6-7) - How blessed are his sons
	d.  The godly man is a blessing to his family, future generations, to the 
2.  You see what has happened?  Godly man naturally becomes a leader
3.  Close with this (1 Cor 16:13-14) - Says, "act like men"
	a.  God defines what a man is, not radical feminism, not our law, not our 
	     current social scene, etc.
	b.  Men, you are real men, God's men
	c.  Real men Fear God, Accept Responsibility, Act Courageously, 
	     Men of honor
	d.  You are godly leaders
4.  You are not out of touch, you are not a relic from the past, you are not a quaint ideal, 
you are God's man who has received God's blessing