From prison to ReTrain: Russell’s story
Mon May 20, 2013
9 types of leaders in Scripture
Mon May 20, 2013
by Justin Holcomb
5 bits of wisdom for the professional Christian woman
Sun May 19, 2013
by Shandel Slaten
Sat May 18, 2013
by Hugh Whelchel
Resurgence roundup, 5/17/13
Fri May 17, 2013
Jesus Makes Men New
Jesus took responsibility for what wasn’t his fault. Jesus took responsibility for our sin, our mess, our failures. Responsibility is my response to his ability. Responsibility is my response to the One who took responsibility for my mess.
The Bible calls this message the gospel. The heart of the gospel is that Jesus, the second Adam, took responsibility for what wasn’t his fault, offering men a new life driven by a new power.
Jesus doesn’t make men better. Jesus makes men new.
Nobody has ever loved me the way Jesus loves me. I deserve none of it.
That first time I looked at my wife, Taylor, in that Palo Alto kitchen my life changed. I fell in love. Everything became new. Looking at Taylor still moves me. But something even greater happens when men look at Jesus.
I thought I saw Jesus clearly a long time ago, but the last few years, Jesus has stunned me. Every day he becomes more amazing to me. He is always surprising me. His gospel proves bigger and better with each passing week. Nobody has ever loved me the way Jesus loves me. I deserve none of it. It feels like Jesus has reached into my chest and given me a new heart. The pivot point of my life has changed. I’m not trying so hard to get the world to revolve around me. I feel free.
Christ loved us. He lost us. He got us back.
Men, you will not pursue your wife well until you know the God who pursues you. The Bible is the most romantic book in the world. The Bible, the gospel, is God shouting: “I loved you, but I lost you, and I want you back!” (cf. King’s Cross)
Men, no matter the state of our marriages, I want us loving our wives with this heaven-sent passion. But we can’t do it until we believe, until we see, that Jesus has first loved us like this. “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her” (Eph. 5:25).
He loved us. He lost us. He got us back. He gave himself up for us so that we could give ourselves up for our wives.
My responsibility is to respond to Jesus’ ability.
Men, what you believe will drive how you live. Every husband has a belief system that drives his life and drives his marriage. Religion destroys men and destroys marriages. But the gospel makes men new and makes marriages new. Will you believe, whether for the first time or for the thousandth time, what the second Adam has done for Adams like us?
Yes, Adam is one of the two characters I identify with the most in the Bible. But I identify with the second Adam more. I’ve realized I can’t live life and love my wife through the power of my own resources and righteousness. It’s not enough. I screw everything up. I need the help, power, and grace of Jesus—the One who took responsibility for my mess. My responsibility is to respond to his ability. And my identity as a man comes from what he’s done for me and what he says about me, not from what I’ve done or from what others say about me. The gospel has made me a new man.
- Read Genesis 3 with your wife. Talk together about the dynamics of sin, temptation, and grace at work in this chapter and how you see them play out in your marriage.
- Detect and name the idols that tend to drive your life. (Power? Control? Comfort? Approval? ) Read a good book on idolatry and the gospel, such as Timothy Keller’s, Counterfeit Gods: The Empty Promises of Money, Sex, and Power, and the Only Hope that Matters (Dutton, 2009).
- Believe the gospel.
This post is excerpted from Date Your Wife by Justin Buzzard copyright © 2012. Used with permission from Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187. To find out more about the book, watch this video.