Lay Down Your Life: Self-Sacrificial Love as Masculine Strength

Author: Bob Lepine
August 29, 2018

Just after midnight on April 15, 1912, in the middle of the North Atlantic, hundreds of men faced the challenge of going against their natural instinct for self-preservation and laying down their lives for their women and their children. As they tucked their wives and children safely in one of the few lifeboats on board the Titanic, those men bravely stepped back, waved good-bye to their families, and waited to die.

The sinking of the great ship is still today a landmark historical event, seared on our collective consciousness. Historians and sociologists have discussed at length the significance of the event. Some have seen it as a wake-up call to those who had begun to embrace the arrogance of industrial optimism. Others have called the Titanic a microcosm of man’s ongoing class struggle.

Woven in between those subplots are the heroism and the chivalry of the men who did what the Scriptures exhort husbands to do. Douglas Phillips comments, “With only a few exceptions, Titanic’s men willingly gave up their seats on lifeboats for others, this exemplifying the Bible verse: ‘Greater love hath no man than he lay down his life for another.’”

The men on board the Titanic responded to catastrophe with courage and love. The lifeboats were the place for women and children. Phillips continues, “For 1,000 years this principle has guided Western civilization. Simply stated, that principle is this—the groom dies for the bride, the strong suffer for the weak, and the highest expression of love is to give your life for another. This is the true meaning of biblical patriarchy. The men aboard the Titanic recognized their duty because they had been raised in a culture that implicitly embraced such notion. Only by returning to these foundations can we ever hope to live in a society in which men will make the self-conscious decision to die so that women and children may live.”

In order to live as we were designed to live, we must be in pursuit not simply of manhood but of godly masculinity. That begins by being men who are rightly related to God, who understand what it means to fear him, and who respond to that fear by being alert, standing firm in the faith, and being men of courage.

Verses to remember:

"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another." John 13:34 

"Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins." 1 Peter 4:8 

"Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves." Romans 12:10 

"Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth." 1 John 3:18

This article was originally published here.


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