Calling all godly men… by Jonathan Oldacre
October 20, 2006, 10:27 am
Filed under: Featured Resource


Actually, this is a call for all men who desire to be more godly. Beginning next week, we’ll begin a study on Thomas Watson’s book “A Godly Man’s Picture“. Watson was a puritan who had a high view of scripture, loved the gospel, and hated his sin. The subtitle of the book is “drawn with a scripture pencil“. This dude knew scripture. As you begin to read this book, you’ll notice that after every sentence he writes, he references some verse of scripture. This is exactly why I want to go through this book. As we think about what it means to be a man, Watson will walk us down the stream of God’s Word (what John Piper calls ‘The River of Reality’) instructing us on how to fulfill our role as men. In a culture that is losing it’s grasp on manhood and womanhood, Watson goes to the source — God himself as revealed in his word to find the truth of what a godly man looks like.

Another motive I have for this book is that Watson is a puritan (a group of passionate Christians that lived between 1550-1700). J.I. Packer, in his book A Quest for Godliness, refers to the puritans as Redwoods of the faith. Men who stand as godly giants who we can come under and learn from. Watson is one of the easiest puritans to read. He illustrates his points constantly and organizes his thoughts well. I hope that he will introduce you to the world of the puritans, and that this book will only be an introduction into the “Avenue of the Giants” that the Puritans are.

Watson has 24 characteristics of a godly man, not to mention a kickin’ introduction and several exhortations to be more godly that will leave you feeling like a girl scout. A godly man loves the Word, is humble, prizes Christ, is thankful, patient, zealous, prayerful, and weeps (this will be a fun one to review). These are just a few of the qualities we want to grow in and apply to our lives.

So, buy your copy, read the introduction, and let’s explore manhood for all God meant it to be!


On another matter, Squatty, that was a hilarious response to the many accusations being thrown around about your first post. I think you will learn, along with the rest of us, the more your mouth keeps moving (or, the more your hands keep typing in this case), the more trouble you will get yourself into. To defend yourself on Manspeak is not a good idea. Make fun of yourself, make fun of others, and when ‘outsiders’ of our little blog team start making their funny comments about one of us, slam ’em! This is manlaw.


7 Comments so far
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Preach it Plew!

Comment by Jonathan Oldacre

Hey, what happened to the original Manspeak banner? I liked it better than the new one.

Comment by Cap Stewart

I wonder what Thomas Watson has to say about making fun of people…? Thoughts?

Comment by joshcan

Not sure what Watson would say, but here’s what one of our heroes, C.J. Mahaney, would say about this subject (courtesy an interview by Justin Taylor):

As for laughter, well, don’t get me started on that neglected subject. At some point I want to teach a series on this often misunderstood and misused gift. But now is not the time or place. I learned a lot about laughter as a means of weakening pride and cultivating humility from my Dad. He taught me to laugh at myself and he was skilled in pointing out all the material that was present in my life that was truly humorous and humbling. And reading C.S. Lewis has increased my understanding and appreciation for this gift as a means of weakening pride and cultivating humility. In his book Surprised by Laughter: The Comic World of C.S. Lewis author Terry Lindvall writes the following inspired by the example of Lewis:

Laughter is a divine gift to the human who is humble. A proud man cannot laugh because he must watch his dignity; he cannot give himself over to the rocking and rolling of his belly. But a poor and happy man laughs heartily because he gives no serious attention to his ego.

There is a chapter in this book titled “Humor and Humility” that I particularly enjoy. So I would encourage the appreciation and the appropriate cultivation of this gift as a means of putting to death pride and cultivating humility. I would encourage us to laugh, really laugh, because funny stuff is happening all around you and often because of you.

As young men we have a sinful tendency toward pride, and our high estimation of ourselves is often exposed when we’re made fun of. I think you can rip on a guy with good motives (having fun, you’re not offended, not seeking to harm them, loving the individual, servant’s heart, etc.) and if that man is indeed humble he’ll usually laugh at himself and “give himself over to the rocking and rolling of his belly.” I think it serves us as young men to be the first to make fun of ourselves, but in a loving spirit we should wisely dish it out on other men as well!! We take ourselves so seriously (myself included!), and we need all the help we can get in killing our sinful pride!

Here’s the interview Taylor did with C.J.:

Comment by Jonathan Oldacre

I’m with ya, and that’s a really good exerpt. I pray I can grow in willingly humbling myself before others for laughter and fun. Something Ive been noticing though is younger Christians and other groups of people in vfc seem to take the wise/cautious use of humbling laughter at guys who understand all the gracious qualifications of making fun of people (ie: not out of harm, loving the individual, servant’s heart, no one’s offended, etc.) and take that example as license to make fun. Thats the only thing I’m concerned about (besides the desire to build myself up by making fun of others). Any thoughts??

Comment by joshcan

I think those are great concerns, Jcan. I hope we will use our humor in a way that is encouraging and funny for everyone and not in a way that minimizes the seriousness of sin, attacks someone’s character, makes light of sin in someone’s life or takes lightly our call to encourage, love, and serve others before ourselves. More thoughts?

Comment by Anonymous

I received Watson’s book as a gift over a year ago and have not read it yet! What have I been doing with my life? I forgot about it until you mentioned it in your blog post. Thanks, I’ll suggest to a group of my brothers that we read it together.

Comment by Steve C.

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