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Men Made Here!
Judges 8: 21
In London, there is a mission church in West Ham which has ministered for all over half a century to the down and out.
Over the entrance there is an unusual sign.
It says, "Men Made Here."
Through the years, thousands of men, women and families have learned the meaning of that sign.
Men, who were not men at all, who were, rather existing on the animal level of nature, who had exchanged
their manhood for a mess of pottage, found within those doors the means of having their lives remade by Jesus Christ.
What a motto and ideal for a home!
"Men Made Here!"
There are homes which follow this ideal.
Such homes are not interested in keeping up with their neighbors, nor just living to supply the house
with the latest gadgets, nor just to amass a large fortune.
They are engaged in the nurture of children, that they may grow up into persons of good character
and strong spiritual personalities, and be useful in the world.
Many homes are successful in this.
Good examples are applied by parents.
- They pay the price.
- They made the necessary sacrifices.
- They study the methods of how Christian character is nurtured.
They produce strong men and women.
What a motto for a school!
At a resort, while on vacation, someone asked a person, "What is your business?"
"I teach," he answered.
"What do you teach?"
"I teach boys!"
It's an old idea, of course, that the person taught is more important than the subjects taught.
What a motto for a business!
Of course, profits are necessary.
But there are businesses, some firms, and large corporations, where the more important product is not
the manufactured article, but the men who are developed in the business.
Is it too idealistic to expect a business to be as proud of its men as it is of the fine product it makes
or of the excellent service it renders?
What a motto for the world!
"Men Made Here!"
What a motto for the community, and for the world!
The world? Yes!
Paul said in Romans 8: 19, (NEB): "The created universe waits with eager expectation
for God's sons to be revealed."
The words of Paul are not out of bounds.
His insight was inspired by the Holy Spirit of God.
The world is making men for whom God's whole creation is eagerly awaiting.
The whole universe waits expectantly for men, who are sons of God.
So, put up a sign on the planet Earth -- "Men Made Here!"
This is what God is busy doing, making men, God's sons, men with eternal destiny.
We have not mentioned the church.
I believe the church sometimes forgets it's true mission. (We are the church.)
We become busy building our buildings, elaborating our traditions, deepening our theology, perfecting our polity,
honing our organization -- and our main objective becomes less imperative.
Too often, we lose sight of our main objective altogether.
What is our task, but to bring men and women and boys and girls into a relationship with God as God's children.
Men who are lost, fallen, are to be brought to God.
- Our task is one of teaching.
- Our task is one of nurturing.
- Our task is one of redemption.
Men are to be made new.
The church is to open up the channels of grace to all men.
Let the church put up in truth and reality, the sign, "Men Made Here!"
It is a God-written sign.
The church will then stimulate the home, the school, business, community, and the government,
to share in the glorious enterprise of making men.
It was for this that Christ died, that men might become men -- men of God.
No man has attained his true manhood until he becomes a son of God, knowing God as his Father
and every other man as his brother, and is filled with the Spirit of God.
The End Product
The end product will be a responsible man.
He may operate under severe physical or other handicaps, but he does not whimper, complain,
- He stands on his own feet.
- He supports his family.
- He assumes obligations, and discharges those obligations, honorably.
You will know where he stands.
- He doesn't play games. He's open and above board.
- You can count on him.
or put the blame on someone else.
The end product will be an understanding man.
He has learned to put himself in another's place, and to see life through the eyes of another.
He would be like Ezekiel, the prophet, who God sent to minister to the Hebrew exiles in Babylon.
The Bible tells us that the first seven days he was among them; he didn't say a word.
"For seven days," he said, "I sat where they sat."
Until he had done that, he had not earned the right to say anything to them.
The end product will be a man of faith.
He lives from a great depth of being.
His faith is not a pretense.
It is not a matter of formal church membership or the passive acceptance of someone else's creed -- his faith is real.
He may have his share of doubts, but deep within himself he senses the reality of God,
and honestly, day by day, seeks to live by the precepts of Jesus Christ.
The end product will be a man of decision.
When Christ called the disciples, "Straightway they forsook their nets, and followed him." (Mark 1: 18)
The church needs such men today.
This involves surrender, sacrifice, and service -- for Christ will take nothing less.
- The Church needs men who will take Christ seriously.
- The Church needs men who will give to God his whole life.
- The Church needs men who will take initiative for Christ and risk their lives for their Saviour.
Christ can and will use this kind of man!
"God give us men! A time like this demands,
Strong minds, great hearts, true faith, and ready hands;
Men whom the lust of office does not kill!
Men whom the spoils of office cannot buy;
Men who possess opinions and a will;
Men who have honor, -- men who will not lie;
Men who can stand before a demagogue,
And condemn his treacherous flatteries without winking!
Tall men, sun-crowned, who live above the fog
In public duty, and in private thinking;
For while the rabble with their thumb-worn creeds,
Their large professions and their little deeds, --
Mingle in selfish strife, lo! Freedom weeps,
Wrong rules the land, and waiting Justice sleeps."
God, give us men!
Made our motto be, "Men Made Here!"
Sermon by Dr. Harold L. White
Email Dr. White at hleewhite@AOL.com