Wednesday, 22 December 2010

The Masculine Mandate

In Chapter 1 Phillips focuses on man in the garden, he points out that in the New Testament teaching about relationships, gender, masculinity and femininity are all based on Genesis 1-2, it is there he goes to ground his teaching on the Masculine Mandate. In the chapter he seeks to answer a number of questions who, where, and what man is, and how is man to fulfil his mandate. His conclusion and summary is that man is made by God for his glory and mandated to work and keep.

What particular strikes me in this chapter is that he takes on the notions of John Eldridge's Wild at Heart, a book which I know many men have read but which short circuits the Genesis 1-2 mandate. Man is not outside the garden in the wilderness at Eldridge contends but God put man into the garden, so he was created for covenantal relationships and duties and to fulfil his mandate in that context.

Phillips includes testimonies of men converted and seeking to live out their mandate and challenges much modern Christian thinking on what it means to be a Christian man. I'm looking forward to ch2 where he examines in more detail man's calling to work and keep.

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