The Duty of Christian Men

Here's what Paul desires for every Christian man. 1 Timothy 2.8

The Pastoral Epistles: 1 Timothy 2 (4)

Pray 72.18, 19.

Blessed be the LORD God, the God of Israel,
Who only does wondrous things!
And blessed be His glorious name forever!
And let the whole earth be filled withHis glory.
Amen and Amen.

Read and meditate on 1 Timothy 2.8.

Reflect.

1. Should we care what Paul desires? Why?

2. What does Paul desire for Christian men? 

Meditate.
Paul addresses the men of the churches in Ephesus, and by association, Christian men in all times and places. What does he desire for them?

That they should pray.

That they should pray everywhere. 

That they should pray in holiness.

That they should pray in love, and without doubting.

As Christian men, we should ask ourselves, “Does this describe my practice of prayer?” Jesus told His disciples that they should always pray, and not grow weary in it (Lk. 18.1). Is that our practice? We can work toward achieving this high standard for our prayers if we will bring prayer into every place and space of our lives – all the nooks and crannies of our Personal Mission Field. Do you pray at home? In the car on your way to work? While you are working? In meetings? During conversations? Somehow, we have to learn to make prayer the continuous presence of our every place – like breathing. We may not always be speaking, but we must strive always to pray, and in every place.

But for our prayers to be effective, they must be offered up with holy hands. We must not harbor sin in our lives, or else the Lord won’t listen to our prayers (Ps. 66.18). A good portion of our time in prayer should be given to listening to the Lord as He searches us, and confessing any sins He makes known (Ps. 139.23, 24).

Let our prayers be saturated with love for God and for those for whom we intercede and give thanks. And let us not doubt the power and efficacy of prayer; rather, let us act on our prayers. Let us move in the direction of answered prayers, as though we actually believe God is going ahead of us to grant our requests. Let your life of prayer embolden your life of witness and service, and you will find that you pray even more out of wonder and thanks and praise for the Presence of God with you.

Men, if you’re not praying like this, you’re merely playing at being a Christian. 

Reflect.
1. Why do you suppose Paul felt it was necessary to address this instruction specifically to men?

2. How does your prayer life compare with what Paul outlines here?

3. How can Christian men encourage and help one another to have better prayer lives?

Whenever we lift up pure hands in prayer, without diverting distractions or contention, we are playing to the Lord with a ten-stringed instrument. We play, as the psalmist wrote, “with ten-stringed instrument and lyre, with melody upon the harp.”
Our body and soul and spirit—our harp—are all in harmony, all their strings in tune. Jerome (347-420), Homilies on the Psalms 21

Help me, Lord, to work harder at my prayer life, beginning today, as I…

Pray Psalm 72.18-20.

How many “wondrous things” can you think of for which you can praise and bless the Lord?

Sing Psalm 72.18-20.
Psalm 72.18-20 (Martyrdom: Alas! And Did My Savior Bleed)
Let Christ be praised and all the gold of Sheba be His right.
Let blessings to His Name be told, and prayers made both day and night. 

And let the earth abound with grain, let fields His fame proclaim.
And may our King forever reign and nations bless His great Name.

Now bless the God of Israel Who wondrous works performs. 
And bless His Name, His glory tell both now and forever more!

T. M. Moore

Men, God commands you to pray. Watch this brief video about our Men’s Prayer Movement (click here). Then order two copies of our booklet, If Men Will Pray (click here) – one for yourself, and one for a friend. Use these resources to jump start your prayer life to a level more in line with what Paul desires of us in 1 Timothy 2.8.

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Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. All psalms for singing adapted from The Ailbe Psalter. All quotations from Church Fathers from Ancient Christian Commentary Series, General Editor Thomas C. Oden (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2006).All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (available by clicking here).

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT. 

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