Mark’s #49 – The Measure of a Man by Gene Getz (2004)

Long time pastor and author Gene Getz sets out to help men live godly lives based loosely on passages like 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1.  The result is a lot of moralizing, self-congratulatory examples, some self-stylized child psychology, and very little gospel.  I would put this book in the category of a lot of contemporary mainstream evangelicalism, where the gospel is more assumed rather than being the lens through which we are to view and live life.  This is the type of Christianity that assumes everybody is on board with the gospel already, and thus we can move on to other stuff, or that the gospel really only applies to converting people to be Christians.   Thankfully there are others in the church today that are sounding the sufficiency of the gospel for all areas of life (including being a man), such as Matt Chandler, John Piper, Francis Chan, Tim Keller, Michael Horton, etc.

We recently went through this book during a men’s study.  Though the book itself isn’t all that good, it did serve as a good book for the group because it gave us opportunity each week to push our weekly reading through a gospel lens – taking the good, leaving the bad.  Since, by default, we as men prefer the moralistic, “what do I have to do to be a good man” approach, it was good to pause each week and ask, “so what does the gospel have to do with this ______ (topic)?”.

So, in conclusion, I wouldn’t waste my time reading this book on my own, but it may serve as a good springboard for gospel conversation with other men.

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