Last evening before prayer meeting, we were invited to our daughter and son-in-law’s home for supper to celebrate his birthday. While waiting for supper to be put on the table, Andrew shared a book he had received as a Christmas gift entitled Manly Dominion by Mark Chanski. The book’s description is as follows:
In billards, the four-ball is passive; it’s the one that gets knocked around by the other balls. Christian man, is that you? Are you knocked around by your environment, rather than taking you God-given assignment to lead? Mark Chanski’s book is a clarion call to all Christian men to face life’s challenges with Manly Dominion. It will challenge and encourage you to lead, wherever God places you, with Spirit-filled conviction. No Christian man (or woman!) living in today’s world should be without it. Read carefully, and transform your life!
As I flipped through its pages, the following two paragraphs from Chapter 18, Churchmanship, arrested me:
However, the king said to Araunah, “No, but I will surely buy it from you for a price, for I will not offer burnt offerings to the LORD my God which cost me nothing.” So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver (2 Samuel 24:24). David’s worship slogan must be ours. Church worship and service must not be engaged in passively and cheaply. We must resolve to be aggressive and expensive in our public devotion to our Lord.
Passive, “come when I feel like it,” low priority, cheap churchmanship is in an offence to our Savior when we claim to worship. How much did it cost Jesus to coerce justice to sheathe its sword against us as sinners? It cost Jesus the heavy price of his own life blood poured out on the cross. The sincere Christian thinks: the sword of justice that I deserved to have run through me for eternity in hell, ran through my Lord Jesus on Golgotha.” (p. 149)
After a delicious supper, we headed for the service at church and truly met with the Lord in a most powerful way. The visiting speaker showed us in supreme fashion how the Lord is saving souls in some of the roughest places in the world! He shared with us the stories of thousands of people who faithfully attend church in war-torn cities and villages. Some attend undercover with the constant threat of persecution. We were all moved by their testimonies and conversion stories. We all left saying, “What a Savior!” But that’s not the point of this whole blog post. I saw a genuine “churchman” last night. I’ve been watching him for over fourteen years. He turned 89 years old last week, shuffles when he walks, is having heart surgery today, and came to church last night in the bitter cold of 10 degrees and howling wind!! Why? Because he is part of the body of Christ that meets in local assembly and is not passive or cheap about his love for Christ and His body! His devotion and resolve has always been “aggressive and expensive” and not “come when I feel like it.”
Men, look at the cross. Look at your Savior hanging there for you. Look into the faces of the many who faithfully attend their local church under the constant threat of terror and death. Look into the face of this 89 year old man. Are you a genuine churchman? If so, may “David’s slogan of worship” grow within in your heart! If not, what’s your excuse?
And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:24-25)