February 16, 2018 Matthew

Act Like Men by James MacDonald ★★★

I don’t know who James MacDonald is but I felt this book of his misfired too much.  In fact I got tired of it and never finished it.

Misfire #1: If you’re single then its all about “where you’re trying to get to.” What, marriage?

Misfire #2: To the single dude he says, “I’m not going to keep writing separate stuff for you, unless you have a direct word from God almighty himself, asking you to stay single…” <chuckle>

Misfire #3: “There are 2 trillion amazing available Christian women…” What a dangerous attitude. We should not presume to think that all or even the majority of Christian women are prime candidates for bonding flesh and soul to a man. Men, DO NOT lower your standards. It is better to stay single just as Paul said in 1 Corinthians 7 and that is a direct word. Wait. God will provide what you need when you need it and not a moment too soon. Don’t ahead of him because you will hurt yourself. Bad. It’s the stupidest thing you’ll ever do. We don’t live in a culture that has any boundaries for keeping marriage intact anymore and the Church has largely failed to supplement what has been lost.

Misfire #4: “I wrote my doctoral thesis to help Joe be more open about the things he struggles with, and I started a church in a warehouse because Joe doesn’t need fluff or fancy.” You wrote a doctoral thesis and you’re talking to men like they’re kids. Stop it.

Misfire #5: “The book is really about two main Bible verses…the end of Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, he exhorts believers to take hold of what they long for and what God created them to be and experience. In 1 Thessalonians 2:7 Paul challenges all Christians to demonstrate the tenderness best illustrated in a nursing mother with her children…” What?

Misfire #6: The tone and voice of the book is based on the notion that “men like simple”. I hate that. Like, I really hate that, dude. Men do like simple, but they also like women’s breasts and the reality TV show Jackass. I’m not going to fill a book for men with pictures if women’s breasts however while trying to call them up to a higher standard. If they don’t know the language or the words, they need to be taught them. Their minds need to be stretched and pulled. It needs to hurt a little bit–not in a condescending way but in an up-building way. You don’t relax standards for a soldier and hope to win a war. You push them, and it is critical that you do so. If they can’t make it in training, they will never make it through the real world battles. Call up don’t insult.

Misfire #7: The subtle insulting tones and broad categorizations of men don’t help.

MacDonald was on track with realizing there was a specific nature and theology for men. He titled the book after the central New Testament verse to men: be strong, act like men (1 Cor. 16:13). It’s frustrating however when all you have to say about what that means is “don’t act like women.” 1 Cor. 16:13 is merely evidence that a vast plethora of truth awaits the man who undertakes to find out what “acting like men” meant to Paul…

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