The calling of a husband and father
A very important post from Martyn Iles. He is responding to an incident in Brisbane in which a man murdered his estranged wife and their three children, and killed himself.
We've all been shocked by the harrowing incident in Brisbane.
In that vein, here's an intimidating but timely thought for men, especially if married or in a relationship.
When you meet God, as you surely will, you will be held accountable for the condition of the woman in your life.
The standard is given in Ephesians 5. It is this: have you given yourself up for her? Is your love for her a sanctifying influence, leading to increased holiness? Is she free of blemishes inflicted by you, whether physically or spiritually?
I once met a guy who struck me as a very morally corrupt person. My instincts were confirmed with time. I then watched as he set his sights upon a beautiful, innocent young woman and worked his way into her affections.
He slowly corrupted her, making her as worldly-wise as he was (to put it mildly). People tried to warn, but it was too late to reason.
They married, and and he inflicted psychological and physical violence on her. The tragedy is continuing even now.
I think we are all familiar with this sort of thing. It is purely satanic.
It is the hallmark of an evil man, that those who he claims to love are worse-off for it.
It is the hallmark of a good man, that people are made better, lifted higher, and greatly blessed by him ESPECIALLY in terms of spiritual growth.
And that is made very clear in the standard I mentioned... When you meet God (again, as you surely will), she is to be "in splendour, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish." (Eph 5:27).
And who has set the example? No less than the Lord Jesus Christ in his astonishing, selfless, sanctifying love for you, and His plan to present you in the same way before His Father in heaven (as stated in the surrounding verses).
If that does not cause you to gasp and tremble somewhat, then I don't know what will.
But that is the calling of a husband and father (and the apprenticeship into which other men, including boyfriends/fiances have already enrolled).
Men will be accountable in God's judgement for this very thing.
Some are saying 'family violence' is the product of male power, and that men need to be torn down and demasculinised.
To be clear, power isn't the problem. Evil is the problem. It is the difference between a good man and a wicked man, not the difference between a powerful man and a subjugated man.
We will never be Jesus, but we can, with prayer and obedience, inch closer to this calling every day.
Finally, being a man like this - whether married or not - is an astonishingly powerful testimony. I am blessed to know such men, and am often asked about them by fascinated people, such is their aura of Christ in a world like ours.