Apathy: An Indictment of Christian Men

Men, don't go through life apathetic about the plight of your brothers in Christ.
Men, don't go through life apathetic about the plight of your brothers in Christ. (iStock photo )

It's painful to say this, but after working in men's evangelism and discipleship for four decades, it's clear to me that most men don't care what happens to other men.

Perhaps they care in theory. But, not in practice.

I am guided to this conclusion by something Andrew Carnegie once said: "The older I get the less I listen to what people say, I just watch what they do."

I offer this as an indictment of Christian men. I apologize if you are one of the few faithful men who care enough about other men to help them become disciples.

For the rest of you, you should be ashamed of yourselves. In your neighborhood, on the job, at the gym—men's lives are falling apart and they're dragging their families down with them.

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And this, while you become more and more spiritually obese at your little "feel good about me" Bible studies and church services.

Sometimes you need a hug, but sometimes you need a kick in the pants. This is your kick in the pants.

Most of you are more upset over your favorite team losing a game they were never supposed to win than over a dozen men who abandon their families.

When are you going to do something about it? When are you going to stop waiting for someone else to help these men and their families?

Wake up. If you don't do it, who do you think will? It takes a man to teach a man how to be a man.

"And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also" (2 Timothy 2:2).

"Disciples making disciples" is the only plan. In fact, disciples not making disciples is an oxymoron.

If you have tasted Christ, been saved by His gospel, fed by His Word, built up in your faith, and blessed by His grace, then isn't it about time to obey His command to go make disciples?

You're it. No one else is coming. There is no alternative rescue mission on the drawing board. No elite, black ops commandos about to swoop in to save the day. Just you.

I've heard all the high-sounding excuses. I just can't bear to listen to any more of your good intentions. I'm only going to listen to what I see you actually doing.

And by the way, I think the Lord Jesus is using the same approach with you.

"But I really do care. I just don't know what to do."

Please don't tell me that you care. I'm calling your bluff. Show me. Better, show Jesus. Like the good Samaritan, loving your neighbor is something you do, not something you say.

And please don't tell me you don't know what to do. If you're smart enough to draw a paycheck, you know what needs to be done. It's just not that hard.

Discipleship is simply one man caring enough about another man to help him build a relationship with God, a worldview that's biblical, and a lifestyle worthy of Christ.

So, what can you do? How can you be that faithful disciple-making man?

Let's get practical. You can start by asking a man if he'd like to have a cup of coffee. Ask him about his family. Ask him about his work. Say, "Tell me about your relationship with God."

Do that. Then follow the conversation wherever it leads.

Just take a man as far as he wants to go toward Jesus at that particular moment.

God is not holding you accountable to produce a particular outcome. But He is expecting you to be faithful.

Do you care—really—what happens to other men and their families?

I hope I am wrong, but I doubt it.

If you do care, prove it.

You will have your answer a week from today—more than enough time to identify a man who needs help.

And so will Jesus.

Patrick Morley is chairman and CEO of Man in the Mirror. His book, Man in the Mirror, was selected as one of the 100 most influential Christian books of the 20th century. For the original article, visit maninthemirror.org.

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