God Is . . .

. . . Building An Army . . .

. . . of Men!

“Being a father is one of the greatest rewards and one of the most significant challenges a man can face...
... No father should miss this God-given responsibility
and blessing!”
- Akili Kumasi (Quote from
On the Outside Looking In)

Part 3 of What is Manhood?

This concludes the drafts for Chapter Three, What is Manhood? from the upcoming book, Manhood, Power and Responsibility.  Currently, i am working on Chapter 4: Satan Comes to Steal, Kill and Destroy.

Tell me your comments, ask your questions below.

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The First Man, Adam

Now, let us walk through the three levels of manhood with the first man, Adam, and show more of how all of this flows from God’s First Seven Words to Mankind. Again, we start with God’s creation of mankind in His image and after His likeness in Genesis 1:26. Chapter One of Genesis gives us the overview. But in Chapter Two we can see the steps where man and woman were created.

We noted that on level one of manhood, a man is responsible for taking care of himself as he serves God. This was true for Adam as well. After God created Adam, He placed Adam in the garden.

Let’s read the relevant verses in Genesis Chapter Two:

Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

Now the Lord God had planted a garden in the east, in Eden; and there he put the man he had formed.

Genesis 2:7-8 (NIV)

Initially when Adam was placed in the garden he had fellowship with only God as God was teaching Adam. Adam was God’s child. God was Adam’s father.

Seven verses later, God gave Adam the job to take care of the garden.

15 The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.

Genesis 2:15 (NIV)

Adam must have done well in his responsibility because God did two things of note here. First, God observed that Adam was alone and should have a helper, suitable for him.

18 The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”

Genesis 2:18 (NIV)

Then second, God gave Adam a second responsibility and a higher level job working with live creatures.[1]

19 Now the Lord God had formed out of the ground all the wild animals and all the birds in the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them; and whatever the man called each living creature, that was its name.

Genesis 2:19 (NIV)

Here it says Adam was to name the animals. But, remember in Genesis 1:28 in God First Seven Words to Mankind, God said we would have dominion over the animals. So, Adam had stewardship over the plants in the garden and later over the animals.

Much of the two responsibilities that God gave Adam on level one of manhood was (amongst other things) to prepare him for level two, to be a husband to Eve. When God saw that Adam could be trusted with increasing amounts of responsibility on level one, then, God observed for a second time that Adam was alone. Then, He gave Adam a wife:

22 . . . But for Adam no suitable helper was found. 21 So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. 22 Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.

23 The man said,

“This is now bone of my bones

            and flesh of my flesh;

she shall be called ‘woman,’

            for she was taken out of man.”

24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.

25 Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.

Genesis 2:20b-25 (NIV)

Adam had moved to level two of manhood where a responsible man joins with a wife. He was then responsible (as the husband) to take care of his wife.

Now let’s move to the next chapter, Satan Comes to Steal, Kill and Destroy, to see how Adam handled level two and level three of manhood.

 

[1] As noted in Chapter _______, the plants and animals were placed on the earth for God’s purpose for mankind. Chapter Two of Genesis shows that God created both plans and animals in preparation for the first man, Adam.

Part 2 of What is Manhood?

Training Begins in Childhood

Keep in mind that a man does not just arrive at the first level of manhood. In childhood and in his teen years a boy should be preparing for his future. He should be taught how to be responsible in several age-appropriate areas so that he can become a man. All the teaching that goes on from age zero through high school and college age, both in formal education and in family education, as well as in church, should be geared toward raising responsible adults. Thus, boys should grow and develop into men so that when they arrive at the “age” of manhood, they are not surprised by the need to be responsible. They should be ready to handle the responsibility of being a single man.

God’s Word confirms that children are to be taught to prepare for adulthood:

Train up a child in the way he should go [teaching him to seek God’s wisdom and will for his abilities and talents], Even when he is old he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 22:5 (AMP)[1]

And . . .

Children, you belong to the Lord, and you do the right thing when you obey your parents. The first commandment with a promise says, “Obey your father and your mother, and you will have a long and happy life.”

Ephesians 6:1-3 (CEV)

Parents should naturally be teaching their children about the Lord and about how to survive and prosper in the world. Parental training is an ongoing non-stop process that covers a minimum of two decades of preparation for each child – and continues (through mentorship) into each child’s adulthood.

This is also part of what God meant when He said be fruitful and multiply. How can we fill the earth without training each new generation how to have dominion over the earth?

God’s First Seven Words to Mankind
and the Servant-Steward-Leader Pattern

We can see the application of the Servant-Steward-Leader Pattern in God’s First Seven Words to Mankind. When God blessed mankind and told them to be fruitful and multiply and have dominion, He was saying, “Serve me and I will make you stewards of the earth for you to rule over. Be productive, and have lots of children that you will lead (and train) to take over the earth after you.” The Servant-Steward-Leader Pattern is predicated on service first – which is submission to God. From there, everything else flows.

Thus, service to God – leads to stewardship – which leads to leadership. A Godly servant makes a Godly leader – who can exercise Godly stewardship and Godly dominion over the earth.

Servant-Steward-Leader Pattern Overlaps
All Three Levels of Manhood

We noted earlier that the Servant-Steward-Leader Pattern overlaps all three levels of manhood. Thus, a man is to be a servant on each level of manhood. He is a steward on all three levels and in some ways he can also be a leader on all three levels.

Servant:

As a man he serves God, as a husband he serves God and his wife; and as a father he serves God, his wife and his children. A man might also serve in his community, church, business or government. In these capacities he is also a steward and a leader.

Stewart:

It is only through submission and service to God that a man can truly understand his stewardship role. Remember, The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it . . . (Psalm 24:1 NIV). Thus, every man is a steward of his wife and his children as both belong to God and are given by God to each man. Additionally, a man is a steward over anyone outside of his family that he has responsibility for, as well as all the resources, possessions and jobs that God gives him from the first through the third levels of manhood.

Leader:

It is only through serving God (on level two and three) that a man can properly lead his family – because God equips us to do our job – when we serve Him. Part of serving God is to practice good stewardship, and good stewardship of people requires good leadership. Thus, as a steward of his family a father is charged to be a leader to guide them in the direction and in the things that are pleasing to God.

A man (no matter what level he is on) could also to be a leader in society, in communities, in nations, in business and in church. If a man cannot lead his family he is probably not fit to lead outside of his family – especially in the church (1 Timothy 3:4-5).

 

[1] Note that there is a new Amplified Bible released in 2015 (AMP). The previous version (1954-1987) is now referred to as the Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC).

 

What is Manhood? – Part 1 of 3

Well it took me a long time to finish Chapter Three – What is Manhood? from the draft of the book, Manhood, Power and Responsibility.    It was a real challenge to synthesize all the concepts into a comprehensive presentation.  But here it is, Part 1 of Chapter Three: What is Manhood.

What is Manhood? (Part 1 of 3)

In Chapter One we answered the question: “What is Man?” or “What is Mankind?” showing that God created mankind (man and woman) in His image and after his likeness.   In Chapter Two we discussed how God’s First Seven Words to Mankind were to be accomplished through the anointing or bless[ing] that God gave us. Now in Chapter Three we want to answer the question: What is Manhood?

In order to answer this question, “What is Manhood?” it was necessary in the first two chapters to show mankind’s origin and to establish that we are beholden to God for our existence and for our purpose. Without God, there is no mankind and thus no manhood.

Three Levels of Manhood

When we look at manhood we see that God designed three distinct levels of manhood.

First, God created man.

Second, God gave man a wife.

Third, God told man and woman to multiply.

Thus, our three levels of manhood are: man, husband and father.

Level 1 MAN
Level 2 HUSBAND
Level 3 FATHER

These three levels are graduating levels with increasing amounts of complexity and responsibility – as well as reward – on each level. Thus, success on each of the three levels of manhood is determined by how well a man handles the responsibilities for each level!

In other words, what a man learns on level one he is still responsible for on level two and level three. And, when a man is successful in his responsibilities on level one, he is more prepared to move to level two, to be a husband. When he is successful on the level two, he can move on to level three, to be a father.

But, if a man ignores his responsibilities or is not successful in his responsibilities on level one, he should not even think about moving to level two or level three, because – when a man moves on to the next level without being properly prepared, he sets himself up for possible failure and calamity. It is somewhat like asking a student who got a “D” in Chemistry 101 to design a jet propulsion system. It is not wise for a man who cannot take care of himself to have the responsibility of taking care of a family a family.

Responsibility

A word on Responsibility:

Responsibility is the quality or state of being responsible. The Merriam-Webster definition of responsible is:[1]able to be trusted to do the right thing in making decisions or in taking care of someone or something. Thus, when someone has a responsibility he or she is expected to: do the right thing in making decisions or in taking care of someone or something.

Responsibilities of Manhood

So, when discussing manhood, there are specific responsibilities on each level. Generally speaking, a man is a servant, a steward and a leader.

On level one, a man is first and foremost to be a servant of God. He is responsible for taking care of himself (under God’s direction and provision) while he serves God.

On level two, a husband is responsible for his wife. He becomes a steward of another person – in service to God.

On level three, a father is a leader over the people God has given him stewardship of. He leads his family in service to God and he and his wife raise their children to be responsible adults who serve God as well. Not only is a father responsible for other people, but he also has to cooperate with another in his responsibility as a father. Thus, he is part of a team.

This is the Godly process. Thus, fatherhood (as designed by God) is the highest level of Manhood. And, I can tell you – that there is nothing more personally fulfilling as being a good father! No man should miss this responsibility or this blessing from God. Note that the fatherhood level can also include step-fathers, uncles, mentors of younger men or boys, etc.

Let us also note that each of the three levels of manhood have stages.[2] For example, on level three, fatherhood also includes grandfather and great-grandfather.

It should be noted that the three responsibilities of servant, steward and leader overlap all three levels of manhood, but seen in the context of family, they roughly correspond to the three levels of manhood.

Level 1 MAN Responsible
for taking care of himself
Servant
of God
Level 2 HUSBAND Responsible
for his
wife
Steward
over another person
Level 3 FATHER Responsible
for his
family
Leader
of people

 

Level one clearly lays the foundation for level two and level three. Once a man is truly submitted to be a servant of God in his own self, then God can give him more.

 

[1] http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/responsible (February 5, 2016).

[2] The stages within the Levels of Manhood, to be discussed in another [format].

 

See part two of three tomorrow.

God’s First Seven Words to Mankind, Part 3 of 3

This is the THIRD of three installments for Chapter II: God’s First Seven Words To Mankind from the book, Manhood, Power and Responsibility.

This is still in DRAFT form, so your comments are very much appreciated!


Now here is another concept that most every reasonable person – without qualification – will agree with: when you borrow something from someone – when you give it back, it is should be in the same (or better) condition from when you borrowed it – barring natural wear-and-tear. This is something we teach children, especially siblings. When you borrow something, you cannot tear it up or ruin it and then give it back. If you do damage or destroy what you borrowed, then you have to replace it.

I can remember when I borrowed a digital camera from a friend of mine one summer when we were going on vacation. Something happened and the lenses on the camera was busted. I tried to have the lenses replaced, but could not. The cost to repair was more than the cost to replace the camera. So I explained it to my friend and apologized – for not being a good steward. Then I brought my friend a new camera, same brand, same model. But because the new camera was three years newer than the one I busted, the camera I gave back to my friend was much better than the one I borrowed.

So when God said that we should have dominion over the earth’s resources, He was making us stewards over the earth to use for our benefit and for His. Shall we not blow it up, pollute it or leave it covered with stockpiles of non-disposable toxic waste? Shall we position the earth to do what God wants done – fill the earth with people and use all its vast resources for that purpose. And in so doing we exercise Godly dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.

*     *     *

Most of us know the Parable of the Talents,[1] where the master gave three servants different amounts of money to use before he left town. Then upon his return he expected them to have increased the value of what he gave them. The good and faithful servantswere those who increased the master’s value. With this parable, Jesus tells us what the Father’s expectation of us is – with everything He has given us. Thus, we must do the same as the good and faithful servants in the Parable of the Talents, increase the value of what God has given us stewardship over, including the earth.

Here’s how we do that. We cultivate all the earth’s vast resources to help us fulfil our mandate to subdue the earth and bring all its vast resources in the service of God and man . . .

And in the process of cultivating the earth’s resources, shouldn’t we use the resources for all the people that fill the earth and not for unreasonable personal gain for those in positions of power and influence. Profit is good, but not at the expense of fulfilling God First Seven Words to Mankind.

These are the mandates of God to fill the earth. These are the Godly principles to be taught and used in our families, our schools, our government, our churches and in our businesses. These are the principles to build communities and societies on that strive to fulfill God’s First Seven Words to Mankind.

[I]n the service of God and man . . . means fulfilling God’s First Seven Words to Mankind. We have to use the earth’s resources to feed the people – not pursue profit – because the pursuit of profit – above feeding the people – is what motivates people to use the earth’s resources in a damaging way. It’s what takes science off course because science is developed to pursue profit (and make war) not to fill the earth . . . using all its vast resources in the service of God and man.

Thus, as has been done (to some degree), infrastructures, techniques and training have to be constantly developed which focus solely on harvesting (and distributing) the earth’s resources for all the people. This is how we are fruitful to eliminate starvation and out of control diseases across the earth.

And there is no reason to think that this cannot be done because God told us in His Word (2 Peter 1:3 KJV) that He has given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness. Thus, we can sustain life on earth and do it in a Godly way.

Further God says we (including everyone) are not stuck in lust and greed:

. . . He has bestowed on us His precious and exceedingly great promises, so that through them you may escape [by flight] from the moral decay (rottenness and corruption) that is in the world because of covetousness (lust and greed), and become sharers (partakers) of the divine nature.  2 Peter 1:4 (AMPC)

[1] (Matthew 25:14-30; Luke 19:12-28)


Your comments are very much appreciated.


Look for Chapter III: What is Manhood next week.

Thank you

Akili Kumasi

God’s First Seven Words to Mankind – Part 2 of 3

This is the SECOND of three installments for Chapter II: God’s First Seven Words To Mankind from the book, Manhood, Power and Responsibility.

This is still in DRAFT form, so your comments are very much appreciated!


The most critical component involved in God’s First Seven Words to Mankind is the spiritual aspect. Remember, right before God blessed us and gave us His First Seven Words, He created us in His image and after His likeness. He grafted into our DNA His image and His likeness. Thus, the children that were born as mankind multipl[ied] and fill[ed] the earth were also to be brought up in His image and after His likeness – and they were (are) to follow the same First Seven Words from God – even to this day.

Adherence to God’s First Seven Word to Mankind is what ensures that the bless[ing] from God continues and we stay focused. This is what ensures that each individual is committed to and connected with the covenant that God established. It also ensures that the reason for developing the earth’s resources is to benefit mankind in service to God – not for individual profit and personal gain.

It is this pursuit of individual profit and personal gain that led to some sciences going off course – which in turn has led to widespread starvation and disease (even if only as the result of neglect of certain populations and cultures). Whether you concur with this point or not – the bottom-line is that if the resources of the earth were primarily focused on improving the quality of life for ALL the people who have fill[ed] the earth, then we would have done a better job of fulfilling God mandate to be fruitful.

But, you might be thinking or asking, “What about the fall? That all changed when Adam sinned and he and Eve were kicked out of the garden.” Yes, things did change. But, Our Lord Jesus Christ came, died for our sins, rose from the dead and sits at the right hand of the Father – we (who believe) have been restored back into right relationship with God the Father. Look, God tells us in His Word that we are re-born in God’s image,

For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. Romans 8:29 NIV

and

So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. 2 Corinthians 3:18 NLT

Thus, even though mankind fell, we who believe are restored to right relationship with God – in the image of His Son and God makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image. Consequently, God’s First Seven Words to Mankind are still valid today. They are to be adhered to just as in the beginning. So even today we must be fruitful in adding value to the quality of life for mankind.

*     *     *

One of the key principles we should keep in mind is that the earth does not belong to any of us individually or collectively. The earth is on loan to us from God for our use.

Psalm 24 explains:

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;

for he founded it on the seasand established it on the waters.  Psalm 24:1-2 (NIV)

So profound is this passage of scripture, it explains that not only does the earth belong to God, who created it, but so do the people who fill[ed] the earth. Does that make sense? Thus, whatever we do must be in accordance with God’s will, His plan and His purpose (His First Seven Word to Mankind).

*     *     *


Your comments are very much appreciated.


See Part 3 of this chapter tomorrow.

Thank you

Akili Kumasi

God’s First Seven Words To Mankind – Part 1 of 3

This is the FIRST of three installments for Chapter II: God’s First Seven Words To Mankind from the book, Manhood, Power and Responsibility.

This is still in DRAFT form, so your comments are very much appreciated!


God, in His wisdom, after He created mankind in His image and after His likeness, blessed us and gave us seven things to do. We’ll call these “God’s First Seven Words to Mankind.”

To re-cap, we saw that when God blessed us, He was empowering us to fulfill His First Seven Words to us. It was an anointing – to install us in a position of authority and power on earth. Here is our scripture again:

28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”  Genesis 1:28 (ESV)

Notice, the bless[ing] came first, then the instruction to do the following seven things:

  1. be fruitful
  2. multiply
  3. fill the earth
  4. subdue it [the earth]
  5. have dominion over the fish of the sea
  6. [have dominion] over the birds of the heavens
  7. [have dominion] over every living thing that moves on the earth

Several books could be written about each of these seven commands from God, but we will spend just a little time on each to get a working understanding.

Now, to see God’s command another way, I like how the Amplified Bible (Classic Edition) expresses a portion of this Bible verse:

. . . Be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it [using all its vast resources in the service of God and man] . . . Genesis 1:28 (AMPC)

And the Contemporary English Version of the Bible gives a good interpretation of this as well:

Have a lot of children! Fill the earth with people and bring it under your control. Genesis 1:28 (CEV)

Wow, this is God speaking through various translators. Regardless of the Bible version, the message is clear: God gave very basic and simple instructions to mankind. Essentially, God said, “Fill the earth with people. Bring the earth and its resources under your control for your use, as you serve Me.”

Now, let’s examine God’s First Seven Words to Mankind. The first of these, be fruitful, is probably the most important because much of the remaining six flow from being fruitful.

To be fruitful means to bear fruit. That is – to produce in a broader sense. In this instance, it does not necessarily mean to produce babies. That’s what multiply means. Fruitful[ness] (by mankind) has to do with sustaining life and being productive members of society. And, it means to fulfill God’s First Seven Words to Mankind.

One aspect of our responsibility to be fruitful is in our effort to subdue the earth and have dominion over its vast resources in the service of God and man. This has been done – to a degree – through the development of the earth sciences and the physical sciences from the rudimentary beginnings to the present, especially in agriculture, engineering, environmental, machinery, and the other hard sciences.

The development of science, scientific methods and professions happened through several centuries (even millenniums) of accumulating knowledge – and – the use of that knowledge to make us more productive in the use of the earth’s resources. However, mankind’s dominate approach was to be creative, industrious, adventurist and innovative in primarily market-driven (or profit-based) economies – which gave rise to “greed” as a primary motive for harvesting the earth’s resources. Thus, as we fill[ed] the earth our course of development required more and more scientists, inventors and engineers, but, in service to market-economies – not in service to God’s First Seven Words to Mankind.

Without this development over centuries of time, life on earth – as we know it now – in the industrial societies – would have been impossible. So, there is a problem, several actually. Two that we want to mention here are: (1) today, there is starvation and disease in far too many places on this earth, and (2) some science has gone off course and developed in a manner to exploit and murder people in the pursuit of profit and personal gain (lust for power, greed for wealth) – at the expense of being fruitful for all the earth’s people.

The cause for these two problems is the same: we have gotten away from God’s original mandate and the purpose for which we were created to be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion . . . [using all its vast resources in the service of God and man] . . .


Your comments are very much appreciated.


See Part 2 of this chapter tomorrow.

Thank you

Akili Kumasi

What is Man? – Part 3

OK, here is the third and final part of Chapter One, What is Man? from MANHOOD, POWER AND RESPONSIBILITY

Please leave comments or questions below.

* * *

Let’s explore this from yet another angle – and keep in mind we have not yet defined what each of these seven things are.

Verse 28 is a very interesting verse – because part of it (God’s command or empowerment to be fruitful and multiply) is repeated twelve times in the Bible. In fact, verse 28 – is the second time God said it.

Each of these occurrences of this phrase or idea has a specific purpose – which is mostly to reaffirm God’s command and His covenant with His people. But, the one that bears immediate discussion is that of Genesis 1:22. First, because it came before God’s command to humans, and second, because it is one of the two times God made this command to animals.

Here are some things to note about that – the command to animals to be fruitful and multiply in verse
22 is not the same as it was to humans in verse 28. Let’s take a look:

22 And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” Genesis 1:22 (ESV)

Now, let us look at verse 22 in context – God created all the creatures (except humans) in verses 20 through 25. He specified the birds in the air, the fish in the waters and the animals on the earth.

20 And God said, “Let the waters swarm with swarms of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the heavens.” 21 So God created the great sea creatures and every living creature that moves, with which the waters swarm, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.

22 And God blessed them, saying, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.” 23 And there was evening and there was morning, the fifth day.

24 And God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds—livestock and creeping things and beasts of the earth according to their kinds.” And it was so. 25 And God made the beasts of the earth according to their kinds and the livestock according to their kinds, and everything that creeps on the ground according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:20-25 (ESV)

When God created the birds, fish and animals, seven times He used the word kind or kinds to distinguish that there were to the different specifies of birds, fish and animals.

God gave them a command, to be fruitful and multiply according to their kind. So between verses 20 and 25 – all of that is settled, each creature populates the earth, sky and waters according to its kind.

Now watch – After God created the birds, fish and animals verse 20 through 25 – IN VERSE 26 GOD CREATED MAN – But, He makes an important distinction, however with humans. He made man and woman IN HIS IMAGE AND AFTER HIS LIKENESS. So our kind is that of God – not of animal, bird or fish. Might sound funny (or unnecessary) – but the point bears noting because when we look at – who we are – and – what we do – just as God grafted certain things into the DNA of birds, animals and fish, He also grafted certain things into our DNA – that of His image and His likeness. So when God tells us to be fruitful and multiply – it is within the context of being created in His image and His likeness.

And that is the first step to answering the question that is the title of this chapter – “What is Man?” or “What Kind is Man?”

Man is made in the image and after the likeness of God, to have dominion over the earth, its vegetation and animals. That is mankind.

Now, let’s go on to define those seven things God told mankind to do.

Look for those definition in the next installment, the first part of Chapter Two.

Please leave your comments below.

What is Man? – Part 2

Here is the draft of Part 2 of Chapter One: WHAT IS MAN? from
MANHOOD, POWER AND RESPONSIBILIhttp://menhusbandsfathers.com/wp-admin/post-new.phpTY

Please give me your comments below.

* * *

Now, let’s look again at what God gave us to do – He made us lords over the earth:

28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Genesis 1:28 (ESV)

There are actually seven commands from God in this one verse. Let’s list them:

1. be fruitful
2. multiply
3. fill the earth
4. subdue it [the earth]
5. have dominion over the fish of the sea
6. [have dominion] over the birds of the heavens
7. [have dominion] over every living thing that moves on the earth

The interesting thing here is not so much that there are seven things that God said to do – and – each one is important. But, most importantly, what happened before God told Adam and Eve to do these seven things? God blessed them - then – and only then – did He tell them what to do. So the blessing from God was not only a commissioning for them to do these seven things, it was also an equipping. The blessing was to equip and empower us to do what He said.

God could not tell us to do something without providing a way for us to do it. For example, I am not going to tell my nine year daughter to take the car and go to the supermarket to buy groceries. She might want to try to do it. She might even think she could do it. But, the fact is – that she just does not have the ability to drive the car and she does not have the money to buy the groceries. So therefore, I am not going to “tell” her to do something she is incapable of doing. Neither will God tell us to do something we are not capable of doing.

So even though all of these seven things seem monumental for us to do on our own, we don’t have to do them in our own power. It is as if God was saying, “Here is my blessing, now you have the power, go and do these things.”(3)

Therefore, since God said do it, then we know that we can do it.

* * *

Another aspect to this is that these seven things are commands, not requests. Let’s look carefully at the word “said” in verse 28. It is the same word “said” used seven times to describe how God created the heavens and the earth in Genesis 1:3-24. And God said, Let there be light,” and there was light, etc. Notice in those verses, God said – and then whatever He said came into being.

The meaning of this word said is the same as to be told. So when God “told” us to Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion . . . – He was telling us what our role and responsibility on this earth is.

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Notes:
(3) There is a similarity between this command by God and that of Jesus telling His disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the Father’s Promise. Both involve an empowering by God to do as He commanded. (Luke 24:49).

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See Part 3 of Chapter One: “What is Man?” in a couple of days.

What is Man? – Part 1

Well, I am continuing to write. The first chapter is about done.
Your comments are very much appreciated!

Here is a draft for:

MANHOOD, POWER AND RESPONSIBILITY
Part 1 of Chapter One: WHAT IS MAN?

In Psalm 8:4 (KJV) the writer asked “What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?

This word man can be very confusing in the Bible at times. Some say this portion of Psalm 8 refers to Jesus, others that it refers to men and others that it refers to humans. I believe Psalm 8 (as a whole) refers to all three in various ways. The one we want to look at here is how it refers to humans. Thus, let’s use the New International Version of the Bible (NIV) to look more closely at this question.

[W]hat is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?
Psalm 8:4 (NIV)

The NIV uses the terms mankind and human beings, making it very specific. It is mankind that is our focus.

The scripture goes on to say:

6 You have given him [them (NIV)] dominion
over the works of your hands;
you have put all things under his [their (NIV)] feet,
7 all sheep and oxen,
and also the beasts of the field,
8 the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea,
whatever passes along the paths of the seas.
Psalm 8:6-8 (ESV)

To answer this question What is man or mankind? – we must go back to the beginning, because this is our only true means of understanding today. Everything that is – and – everything that happens to (with) humans – refers back to this one central point: God’s first Words (or commands) to humans in verse 28 of Chapter One in Genesis.

28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Genesis 1:28-29 (ESV)

So this is how it happened: God created humans [mankind (NIV)], placed them in charge of the earth, the birds in the sky, the fish in the oceans, the animals on the land and all that grows on the earth. Additionally, God told humans to prosper, to populate the earth and to take care of the earth.

There is so much to cover here. Let’s start with a brief first point – looking at verse 28 in context. It comes after two very important verses: (v26 and 27):

26 Then God said, “Let us make man [mankind (NIV)] in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

27 So God created man [mankind (NIV)] in his own image, in the image of God he created him [them (NIV)]; male and female he created them.

28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” Genesis 1:26-28 (ESV)

God created mankind in His image and after His likeness. Now, without even having a deep understanding of what image and likeness mean, two things should be crystal clear: first, God made us after Himself (in His image and after His likeness). Second, since we were made in His image and after His likeness then – who we are – and – what we do – is related to Him – is with Him – or for Him – or by Him. That might seem like a simple point, but it is one that can easily be forgotten if we do not keep it in the forefront of our minds.

God made us for Himself(2).

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Notes:
(2) Revelation 4:11; Colossians 1:16

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Please comment below – does this make sense? Do you agree or disagree?

Please pass this on to others.

Look for Part 2 of Chapter One: “What is Man?” coming up next.

Introduction – Manhood, Power and Responsibility

As promised, here is the INTRODUCTION to the book I am working on. Hope you enjoy. Your comments are very much appreciated.

In a “perfect” world Adam would have protected his wife by knocking the devil on his red behind and taking his wife to safety. But no, the Bible tells us that Adam ate the fruit as well and that he was with her (Genesis 3:6 ESV). That could be interpreted that Adam was either standing by or hiding behind a rock while Satan seduced his wife. The Bible does not say (or imply) that Adam was somewhere else at the time, or that he came up later, or that he happened to show up after the fact.

6 So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. (Genesis 3:6 (ESV))

The Bible makes it clear, he was with her. So Adam was right there.

And to add insult to injury, Adam blamed God and then blamed Eve for the whole calamity. God came around the next day and spoke to Adam:

11 He [God] said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?”
12 The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.” (Genesis 3:12 ESV)

When God questioned Adam, what did Adam say, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit …” See the emphasis on WOMAN . . . YOU . . . SHE. In other words, Adam did not take responsibility for his part in his own disobedience, his own sin.

As the saying goes, “He passed the buck!” He pointed the finger at someone else. He blamed God and he blamed Eve.

Adam set the stage for what is happening with men today as we follow in his footsteps, many of us blaming God and not taking responsibility.

In this book, Manhood, Power and Responsibility, we want to take a look at how God defined men and manhood, and how Satan still tries to take that away from us. We also want to see how to get back what Satan took and how to handle the specific challenges facing men today.
God has a special mission for men and the time is now to ready ourselves.

Thank you for reading along with me. I hope that you find excitement in this topic as I have.

God Bless You!
In Jesus’ Name,
Akili Kumasi