Raising Sons Sound in Faith: Do We Love the Gospel Enough?

I finally had the privilege of meeting Dr. Voddie Baucham last night.  It was truly an honor.  And just as every other message, last night’s was just as riveting and motivating as ever.

Discipleship in the church was the topic and we left with all sorts of thoughts to chew on.  But my favorite point was one he made about our “intolerance of mediocre men” in the church.  And as I have two sons, any subject on manhood concerns me and beckons my attention as I pray to see them grow up to be fervent disciples of Christ.

The point was prefaced by the fact that Titus 2 teaches us that men are to be “sound in faith and doctrine”.  That exhortation is given to all men, and is to be primarily taught from the older men to the younger men.  Of course he pointed out how the church has unwisely broken the model of passing down faith from the older to the younger generation, but I digress.

Here was Dr. Baucham’s keen observation:

“We don’t tolerate anything but spiritual mediocrity in men.

Which sounds odd at first, until his illustration proved the point.  If a young man takes an interest in the things of God, begins memorizing Scripture and studying theology, we tell him it is certain he has been called to the ministry.  And thus, as Dr. Baucham jokingly/truthfully added, “You need “Reverend” in front of your name so I won’t feel bad”.

He lamented the fact that so many men who have walked with the Lord for 30 or 40 years don’t have a soundness of faith and doctrine, leaving that stuff to pastors and men in ministry.

It ought  not be!  And it’s a primary reason the strength of faith that we once saw in the past heroes of the faith is sorely lacking.

But that all involves men, and we’re women.  So what does this have to do with us? (By the way, he discussed what it looked like for the older women to teach the younger women as well, but I wanted to expound on this point today.)

As a mother with sons, we, alongside our husbands, are given the task of discipleship.  And while we pray that our young men will have older men who are sound in faith to emulate, starting with our husbands, it is mostly mothers who are given much of the “leg work” in the training process.

The message was a good reminder to me to provide as many examples of godly men in my sons’ lives as possible.  Our culture has a staggering dearth of godly role models.  Athletes, musicians and movie stars abound (and a few of those are  men sound in faith); but where are the George Muellers, Martin Luthers, and Jonathan Edwards of our day?  Men willing to lose all they had for the cause of Christ?

Do we impress on our children the importance of memorizing Scripture so that the Word of God can get deep in their hearts and grow and bear fruit?

Reading about the heroes of the faith, memorizing Scripture, honoring godly men (beginning with our husbands) with our lips are things mothers can do to develop an appetite for the things of God in the hearts of our sons.

And to leave you with Dr. Baucham’s final thoughts and question…(Slightly paraphrased)

“We love academics enough to send them to the best schools and sacrifice to get them to college, we love athletics enough to hire a coach or sacrifice to get them involved in all the sports teams, but do we love the gospel enough to do all that we can do to raise children who love Him?”

39 Responses to “Raising Sons Sound in Faith: Do We Love the Gospel Enough?”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I have a male relative who is a homosexual. His mother to this day constantly de-masculinizes (is that a word?) her husband. It is our job as wives to build up our husbands and point out those beautiful -yes,beautiful!- aspects of our husband’s masculinity to our boys instead of tearing it down.

    “Daddy is such a hard worker. Aren’t you glad he works so hard?”

    “Daddy is such a strong man; don’t you want to grow up to be like him?”

    And of course we point out those godly things he does: “One day you will be able to lead your family in worship… just like daddy.”

  2. Kim M says:

    Thank you for this post. I think it is very important that we women do receive teaching about how to bring up godly sons. Our husbands have a gigantic part in that, and I am very thankful that I have a husband who actively participates at home.

    Yet, there are so many families where the men are too passive or they have become too busy.
    I think those are very hard situations because we can only change ourselves (you know what I mean by that). We cannot change our husbands and we shouldn’t. I think prayer is very important because God can show us the right attitudes to have, and help our husbands get “the vision” as well.

  3. Karrie says:

    Thank you Kim M. I was just going to write about that. I am hoping for more information about this that pertains to families that only have mothers in faith. I have 2 sons that I try to teach, but I have no help from my husband. At this point in time he is not a follower. It makes this issue very hard.

  4. Kim M says:

    Karrie,

    It was also Dr. Baucham who said that there are so many Christian women who would be tempted to (even though they are firm Christians) to use Voo-Doo if necessary to get their men to spiritually lead in the home.

    It is a huge problem even with Christian men (The culture has really impacted them,and most didn’t have very good examples in their own fathers).

    You are not alone!

    Something I did that really helped my husband was to read a good book to him (Dr. Baucham’s Family Driven Faith was the first one I read to him and he really enjoyed it!). A lot of men will listen to another man 🙂

    I just told him that I heard about this book and I wanted to read it together.

    He enjoyed it so much that we have read another.

    It gives some fodder for discussion as well. You never know, he may be open to you reading with him and he may see the light that way.

    If not, just keep praying. The Lord can soften his heart.

    I heard another suggestion by a lady with 6 sons. She recommended reading Christian hero stories. It gives those boys Christian men with character (even if they are of the past) to emulate. Kelly links to them on her side-bar (the one above the google ad).

    Vision Forum has some great resources because they are so committed to this.

  5. Kim M says:

    oops… I meant to say Kelly links to Vision Forum on her sidebar.

  6. Civilla says:

    This is part of the feminist takeover. Now we are all afraid of masculinity. Masculine men are portrayed as mindless apes.

    Also, mild-mannered men in the pulpit is because there are mostly women in the church. Many women like soft-spoken preachers, and churches, which are mainly made up of women, make sure that they call mild-mannered preachers, making it the reason why there are mostly women in many churches — it goes around in a circle. They don’t want a real man who preaches from the Bible, they want somebody who tells a story or gives a little talk from Chicken Soup for the Soul (which is nice to read, but it is not the Bible, kwim?).

    Can anybody remember who said this: “Most churches are led by mild-mannered men who are teaching mild-mannered people to be more mild-mannered”? I can’t remember who said that, and I’m probably not quoting it exactly right, but it is pretty much the way things are in many churches in America today.

    ‘Course, weren’t many of the mighty men of old bounced out of their churhes, or had to leave them? The Luthers, the Wesleys, etc.?

  7. Charity says:

    “It is a huge problem even with Christian men (The culture has really impacted them,and most didn’t have very good examples in their own fathers).” Kim M, I couldn’t agree with you more on this. My husband is one of those men that grew up with no example, didn’t grow up in church, never even had a Bible. It is because of his grandmother’s godly example and influence on his life that he is a christian.

    “If a young man takes an interest in the things of God, begins memorizing Scripture and studying theology, we tell him it is certain he has been called to the ministry. And thus, as Dr. Baucham jokingly/truthfully added, “You need “Reverend” in front of your name so I won’t feel bad”.” Kelly, I laughed when I read this because my husband said the same thing to me the other day, almost verbatim! The thinking is something like, “oh, ok, it’s your job so that’s good.” (Kinda like for a woman, “oh, you care for X number of children in your daycare, wow! That’s great.” But heaven forbid you have X number of your own!)
    My husband is a very godly man, and certainly wants God to be the center of our home and desires to fulfill his roles as laid out in scripture. I could not imagine the tremendous responsiblity that rests on his shoulders as the leader of our home. He says he feels like he is still learning to become a man, how will we raise men? Maybe having that thinking is the key…helps us stay focused on HIM.

    Oh, Karrie, just a sidenote…my husband’s favorite male Christian hero is Jim Elliot. If you do decide to use some literature with your sons, I would suggest his biography, ‘In The Shadow Of The Almighty’ written by his wife, Elisabeth Elliot. ‘The Journals of Jim Elliot’ is a must read too. (Actually, I love all her books. Lots of great ones on womanhood and manhood.)

  8. Karrie says:

    You all are great. Thanks for the ideas! As my boys get older (the are 10 and 6) I am seeing more selfish behavior and disrespect. It is really scaring me. Alot of it comes from other family members the kids are around who are very selfish. Including my husband…I must admit, it has even rubbed off on me! I am ready for a change!

  9. Diane says:

    As a single mom I find this very encouraging. I yearn for my son to grow into a Godly man, but it seems a very difficult task when there is no man in the home. His father has turned away from God, and although there are wonderful Godly men in our church they all have their own families to attend to. As kind as they are, they really don’t seem to have the time or inclination to take another little guy under their wing. One always hears how important it is to have Godly male role models for one’s sons, but honestly, that’s not always possible.

    I’m encouraged that Mr. Baucham seems to place so much of the responsibility on us mamas, though. It does give one cause for hope♥

  10. Kim M says:

    Karrie,

    I think Kelly is the one who gave this link to study character traits. It is free and you could print out the section called “generosity” and use it as a study or devotional.

    http://www.characterjournal.com/

    I am using it with my kids. We are doing the “obedience” study.

  11. Kim M says:

    Civilla,

    I completley agree with you. We need bold pastors!

  12. Word Warrior says:

    Thank you all for responding to Karrie…I spent most of the afternoon at the ER with my mom and wasn’t able to read or follow up with comments…she is OK now.

    Karrie,

    I would also encourage you to ponder the examples we have from Scripture about mothers who raised godly men (Timothy’s mom comes to mind) without the apparent presence of a godly father.

  13. Kim M says:

    Glad your mother is o.k.!

  14. brenda says:

    Would this talk happen to be available on youtube or anything? I would love to hear what he had to say!

  15. Carrie says:

    As a mother of two sons, I’ve wondered how to encourage my sons towards godliness. Definitely some thought provoking material. I too would enjoy hearing his talk on this topic? Do you know where I could find it?

  16. Becky says:

    Another WND article I thought you’d like.

  17. Lori says:

    Thank you for this post! Do you know if there is an audio file of Dr. Baucham’s message anywhere? Thanks a bunch!!

  18. Lori says:

    Hi y’all. I also recommend the bood Future Men by Douglas Wilson
    http://www.amazon.com/Future-Men-Douglas-Wilson/dp/1885767838/ref=pd_sim_b_3

    I highly agree w/ Kim M who’s friend recommended reading good Christian hero stories. I have a friend who started reading the Chronicles of Narnia novels to his children when they were only 5, and they loved it (a chapeter each evening, and the mom could do this as well). Also, since the VF books tend to be pricey, I thought I’d let you know that a lot are online for free at gutenberg.org (project gutenberg), in plain pdf files. Just go to fiction and look up by author: Henty or R.M. Ballayntyne(or any other pre-1922 book). If you have some spare time I’d bet yoy could even find some nice artwork images to be customized illustrations (like at allposters.com, or any online artwork site).

  19. Lori says:

    (note: sorry if this pops up twice. My internet connection said there was a problem.)

    Hi y’all. I also recommend the bood Future Men by Douglas Wilson
    http://www.amazon.com/Future-Men-Douglas-Wilson/dp/1885767838/ref=pd_sim_b_3

    I highly agree w/ Kim M who’s friend recommended reading good Christian hero stories. I have a friend who started reading the Chronicles of Narnia novels to his children when they were only 5, and they loved it (a chapeter each evening, and the mom could do this as well). Also, since the VF books tend to be pricey, I thought I’d let you know that a lot are online for free at gutenberg.org (project gutenberg), in plain pdf files. Just go to fiction and look up by author: Henty or R.M. Ballayntyne(or any other pre-1922 book). If you have some spare time I’d bet yoy could even find some nice artwork images to be customized illustrations (like at allposters.com, or any online artwork site).

  20. Kelly L says:

    This is very important to me too, even though I have a daughter. I am always extolling the virtues of her Daddy to her so she will know what a great husband looks like. But I also want her to have a Godly, bold man who will lead her as Christ leads us. And there are so many milk toast men out there. Fortunately, I am praying for the perfect man God has for her and He knows exactly who he is! Great post!

  21. Civilla says:

    My boys liked Chronicles of Narnia. My husband would also read The Hardy Boys and The Sugar Creek Gang aloud to our boys. They were old-time adventure stories for boys (kind of like Nancy Drew books, only for boys).

    We also were in churches which did not have women pastors/elders/deacons/trustees. That helps boys to see that men need to take on these responsibilities. My husband also read a chapter from the Bible to them every morning at breakfast, starting when they were grade-school age, and managed to read through the whole thing twice before they were grown. (Before they were grade-school age, he read aloud to them every evening from a children’s story Bible, but even very young children can absorb from the real Bible, more than you think, so you don’t need a children’s story Bible.)

    I’m thankful I had a husband who did all this, but as Kelly pointed out, Timothy in the Bible was shown to have a godly mother and grandmother; no mention is made of his father. My husband came to Christ by the example of a godly aunt who told him about Jesus, and he went to Sunday School. His parents were not church-goers.

  22. Kelly L says:

    Kelly,
    Just read your comment….praying your mom is better and praying for your family as you take care of your mom, too.

  23. Margaret says:

    Good subject.

    About books, though…raising biracial sons, I read some of the “older” books with a different perspective now. It is very difficult to swallow some attitudes of writers, and even worse many times those attitudes were carried around the world by our “heroic” western missionaries. 🙁 I’m also less and less inclined to idealize Western civilization or particular time periods. My brown sons don’t fit well into Confederate costumes and wouldn’t have been attending balls and dances that so many love to re-enact. 🙁

    (I’d really love to hear more from Dr. Baucham on this, being a very tiny minority in a “movement” that is mostly white and prone to idealizing certain era’s that weren’t particularly good for non-whites)

    Hero’s of the *faith* though, absolutely. I don’t need Henty and Ballantyne. :p We have Abraham, Moses, Paul, and then countless martyrs for Christ, and Gospel-bearers of all colors and cultures. And of course, my son’s father/my husband. 🙂 There are many men in my children’s lives who will influence them towards Godly masculinity, and for that I am so grateful!

  24. Margaret says:

    Good subject.

    About books, though…raising biracial sons, I read some of the “older” books with a different perspective now. It is very difficult to swallow some attitudes of writers, and even worse many times those attitudes were carried around the world by our “heroic” western missionaries. 🙁 I’m also less and less inclined to idealize Western civilization or particular time periods. My brown sons don’t fit well into Confederate costumes and wouldn’t have been attending balls and dances that so many love to re-enact. 🙁

    (I’d really love to hear more from Dr. Baucham on this, being a very tiny minority in a “movement” that is mostly white and prone to idealizing certain era’s that weren’t particularly good for non-whites)

    Hero’s of the *faith* though, absolutely. I don’t need Henty and Ballantyne. :p We have Abraham, Moses, Paul, and then countless martyrs for Christ, and Gospel-bearers of all colors and cultures. And of course, my son’s father/my husband. 🙂 There are many men in my children’s lives who will influence them towards Godly masculinity, and for that I am so grateful!

  25. Margaret says:

    eh. sorry for the double post. :O

  26. Word Warrior says:

    Kelly L.,

    Thank you! I was actually at her house, her heart started racing (I couldn’t count it) so I called 911 per my Dad’s instructions. When they arrived, it was 220 bpm! They had to give her meds that stopped her heart and restarted it and then rushed her off. I followed behind the ambulance. Drama. She’s good but going to see a card. doctor.

  27. Kelly L says:

    I am praying for complete restoration before she gets to that Dr. Father, please restore Kelly’s mom to your plan. We pray for peace, faith and trust to encompass her, and we rebuke anything that is not in line with you in the name of Jesus Christ! We speak wholeness, health and restoration in accordance to your word and in the mighty name of Jesus. We will continue to pray for her and the entire family.
    Hugs,K

  28. Civilla says:

    Update us on your mom.

  29. Diane says:

    Kelly, I’m so sorry to hear that your mother is having such troubles. It must have been very frightening to you all to have her heart race like that. I’ll be praying for her whenever the Lord brings her to my mind, and I do hope you’ll keep us updated♥

    Margaret,
    As a sister mama of a beautiful brown boy, I share many of your concerns… well, actually I share all of them and could have written your comment myself! One thing I keep in mind, and remind my son of is that all of the heroes in the Bible had brown skin. Jesus Himself had brown skin. Just like our little guys.☺

  30. Charity says:

    Kelly, your mother and family are in our prayers…God be with you.

  31. Karrie says:

    I thank you for all your wonderful idea! I am book marking them in my favorites so I can always look back at this and remember the good ideas! Thanks a bunch! 😀

  32. Karrie says:

    Oh, and Kelly we are praying for your mom and family also. Praying things are better with her!

  33. Word Warrior says:

    Thank you Karrie, Kelly and all of you for asking and your prayers for my mom.

  34. jen in AL says:

    OH, Kelly, so glad your mom is okay! Will be continuing to pray for her! so thrilled you got to meet Voddie! that must have been awesome. Hope to get to hear the whole message somehow. blessings, jen in al

  35. […] Raising Sons Sound in Faith Obviously since I have two sons I’m interested in how to train godly young men! After reading this article I want to make an effort to show our sons the examples of godly men around him…starting with their daddy and their grandfathers. What a blessing that my boys have three godly men in their lives! […]

  36. […] Raising Sons Sound in Faith Obviously since I have two sons I’m interested in how to train godly young men! After reading this article I want to make an effort to show our sons the examples of godly men around him…starting with their daddy and their grandfathers. What a blessing that my boys have three godly men in their lives! […]

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